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D.A.V. PUBLIC SCHOOL
Block-C, B.R.S. Nagar, Ludhiana
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Child Protection Policy  

This document is an affirmation of our faith in the physical and psychological safety of all students and demonstrates our commitment to safeguarding them from maltreatment and sexual offences  perpetrated by people – strangers or those falling in the child’s circle of trust. The ethos of the school aims to inculcate high standards of morality among all students along with espousing  a caring and affectionate attitude in elder students with respect to their younger counterparts .The school fosters high expectations of outstanding conduct from all adults in vicinity of children  and any behavior that falls below this will be consistently and promptly challenged as soon as it is reported.

Objectives :

1. To inform all adults in the vicinity of children about safe working procedures and agreed staff behavior.

2. To apprise the parents and teachers about the distress signs and symptoms shown by the victim.

3.To declare the School’s stand on Child Abuse, and  the strategies adopted to counteract and prevent any incident .

4. To disseminate information about the steps to be taken and the reporting procedure in case , any such incident happens thus ensuring consistency of behavior.

5. To establish and maintain guarded ambience and bestow pastoral care conducive to healthy learning environment.

6. Enumerate the responsibilities of teachers, parents and students.

Child Abuse : Definition and purview

Child abuse is an umbrella term covering all forms of physical and emotional ill treatment , sexual abuse ( deliberate acts of commission ) , neglect   (inadvertent acts of omission) by a care giver that cause harm , or threat of harm to a child’s health, survival, development or dignity.

Child sexual abuse is the involvement of a child in sexual activity that he/ she does not fully comprehend , is unable to give informed consent to ,or for which the child is not developmentally prepared or that violates the law or societal norms .It could be between a prepubescent child and an adult or an adolescent child who, by age or development is in a relationship of responsibility , trust or power and the activity is intended to gratify the carnal instincts or satisfy the needs of the other person. This may include

a) exploitative use of children in pornography.

b) inducement or coercion of a child to engage in any unlawful sexual activity.

Child Abuse may be:

a) Physical : Kicking, pushing, punching , pinching, hitting, making mean/rude hand gestures, scalding , pulling hair, twisting ears, forcing children to stay in uncomfortable positions, smacking, spanking or slapping and other forms of corporal punishment.

b) Emotional/psychological  : Sarcasm, stealing or damaging belongings, deliberate exclusion,  repeated verbal / symbolic pattern of care giver that conveys to the child that they are worthless, flawed, unloved and unwanted, routine humiliation.

c) Sexual Abuse : Indecent exposure, pestering children to engage in sexual activity , penetrative sexual assault, sexual harassment and use of a child for pornographic purposes.

d) Cyber abuse : using a false identity to trap children and befriend them in chat rooms, extracting personal information, sending porn , setting up a meeting outside the house.

Distress signals :

Behavioural indicators

Abuse challenges the self-worth and self-esteem of its victims, rendering them helpless, hopeless, traumatised and unable to express themselves. This makes it imperative that care givers get equipped with simple  diagnostic tools to get to  the root of the malady.  Some potential signs of victimization are :

1) Poor educational achievement

2) Inability to discharge responsibilities and care for self.

3) Lack of self confidence , prone to addiction and mental health issues.

4) Eating disorders

5) Low self esteem, anxiety and depression, poor peer relations

6) Post traumatic stress disorder( PTSD)

( Whilst these behaviours may be symptomatic of other problems- Child abuse  may be one reason.)

Physical Indicators 

1) Unexplained genital injury,inflammation or discharge

2) Bedwetting and fecal soiling beyond the usual age.

3) Anal fissures, pain or bleeding, urinary tract infection.

4) Sexually transmitted infections

5) Missed menstrual period.

Dynamics of Child Abuse

Child Abusers are skilled at planning and executing strategies to involve themselves with children . The perpetrator of child sexual abuse is typically a known and trusted care giver who manipulates a child’s trust and hides the abuse. Perpetrators usually engage the child in a gradual process of sexualizing the relationship over time .

Signs of Offenders

1) has “favourite’’ student or child .

2) attempts to find ways to be alone with children, indulges in stalking the child.

3)Inappropriate language , foul jokes and discussions on sexual matters.

4)requires secrecy in relationships.

5) gives private gifts or has private chats on Facebook /Internet.

Paedophiles are individuals who prefer sexual contact with children to adults.

School’s stand on Child Abuse :

  • The School condemns all forms of child abuse vehemently and labels these  as repugnant and reprehensive acts of perversion  deserving urgent attention . It is a serious violation of individual rights and a grave threat to the self-esteem and self-confidence of the victim. Child Abuse is neither to be ignored , nor to be condoned
  • Being potentially damaging to the mental and physical health of the victim, the school bears zero –tolerance to Child Abuse.
  • The Child Protection Policy applies to all adults working in and on behalf of the school.
  • Installation of complaint boxes at strategic locations, collection of feedback from the Complaints Committee and following a proactive approach towards Child Abuse.
  • Conducting awareness workshops, orientation programmes ,seminars and counselling sessions to train the staff professionally, to combat and eradicate Child Abuse.
  • Respecting privacy and confidentiality yet  creating comfort zones for students to confide in without hesitation.
  • We aim for a ‘Pro active Whole School Approach’ that involves the administrators, teachers , non academic staff , students, parents and guardians to fight the malady.

Reporting Procedure

Whom to tell

                                               1. Any teacher in the close vicinity of the occurrence of the incident of bullying/      

2. Class Teacher/

3. Trusted friend who will speak to the class teacher/

4. School Complaints Committee.

How to tell 

1.Verbal communication to class teacher/ any teacher/

2. Phone call to class teacher/

3. Inform parents and they speak to the class teacher/

4. Email school/

5. Witnesses can inform the class teacher.

Proactive Strategies in Place 

1) Stringent Recruitment process.

2 ) Restricted Photography involving children

3) Seminars targeted at specific audience.  

Rights and Responsibilities

For all

You have a chance to protect some vulnerable soul  by   sharing your story .

Be the kind of survivor  who sets the world on fire with  truth . And you never know who needs your light , your warmth and raging courage.The silence is what keeps the abuse alive.

Develop a sense of empathy and engage in responsible reporting . Being neutral in situations of injustice makes you side with the oppressor by default.

Teachers’ Responsibilities

1. Paying due attention to all reports of Child Abuse and addressing each situation in line with the laid down procedure.

2. Lending a patient ear to the traumatized child .

3. Developing positive partnership with parents.

4. Implementing prevention and intervention strategies that build a safe learning environment

5. Empowering students to deal with conflict in constructive ways.

6. Reinforcing the repercussions of Child abuse  through various areas of curriculum.

7. Inculcating positive leadership – Strong people stand up for themselves but the strongest ones stand up for others.

Parents’ Responsibilities

1. Watching out anguish-signals that their child may be getting abused

2. Notifying the school if they think their child is displaying aberrant behavior and co operate with the school in addressing the issue.

3. Ensuring that their wards use social media safely under adult supervision.

4. Maintaining regular contact with their ward’s teacher.

‘Humankind owes the child the best it has’ says the UN Charter on Human Rights of the child . Let Child Abuse not remain an iceberg issue buried deep beneath social imperatives . Chidren do need space but let us not forget the thin line between space and void.  Let us resolve not  to expose our children to the worst of humankind. Let’s shatter the silence because every child deserves to be safe.

School Complaint Committee ( Session 2018-19)

Mrs Jaswinder  Kaur Sidhu ( Principal)

Mr Kamaljit Singh

Ms Meenu Bansal

Aditya Grover   XII Com                     

Mehreen Mander  XII Humanities