BENGALURU: State Commissioner for Persons with Disability has ruled against a private school for indulging in corporal punishment for an autistic child. The commissioner ordered ‘complete fee reimbursement and relocation of 20 children with disability (enrolled in the school), to nearby schools within 15 days.
Block Education Officer Salim Pasha is expected to guide relocation of these 20 children within the stipulated time, informed Geetu Ahuja, mother of a 10-year-old child who was subjected to corporal punishment multiple times in school on account of ‘inappropriate behaviour.’
On one such occasion when the child returned home with bruises, Geetu lodged a complaint at Whitefield police station. The case was then transferred to the Office of State Commissioner for Persons with Disabilities.
Parents have raised concerns in the aftermath of this incident. The faculty members who assaulted the child were only SSLC qualified, which is a serious issue of concern as it proved the school management’s negligence towards the quality of education proposed, the complainant Geetu claimed.
Schools enrolling children with disability should also be registered under the Rights of Children with Disability Act, 2016 and teachers should fulfill requirements of being special educators under the Rehabilitation Council of India. In this case, the school was not registered under the act and also didn’t have special educators, said an official from the Commissioner’s office.
State Commission for Protection of Child Rights should actively engage in raising campaigns like TogetherWeCan where strict regulations have to be laid with respect to formal schooling where parents should also be members of committees monitoring and reviewing the curriculum, teaching methods, etc., suggested Geetu.
Further to this, Purnima Tharanath, parent of another special child said “In the name of inclusion, certain mainstream schools enroll special children. However, in return, they expect parents to pay fees and donation for which a receipt that acts as an Income Tax exemption is produced.”
She cautioned parents about mainstream schools that raise hope by stating that upon undergoing training, the child can be transferred to the routine academic atmosphere. However, she emphasized that not every child can reach this level. Thereby, she appealed to parents that based on this false hope a parent should not force the child to perform better as it could lead to psychological problems....