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Nagaland chalks out school safety policy
CORRESPONDENT
 DIMAPUR, Oct 25 - The Nagaland State Disaster Management Authority (NSDMA) has prepared a comprehensive Nagaland Disaster Management School Safety Policy, 2019 to ensure a safe learning environment for children in the State.

The policy was prepared by the authority in collaboration with the State School Education Department.

It seeks to highlight specific actions for school safety, which can be undertaken by different stakeholders within the existing framework for imparting education.

A copy of the policy was made available during a capacity development programme as part of the preparation for the forthcoming Nagaland Emergency Preparedness Exercise, 2019, to be held in Kohima on Thursday.

The policy guidelines lay stress on keeping children and their teachers as well as other stakeholders in the school community safe from any kind of preventable risks posed by natural or man-made hazards that may threaten their well-being during the pursuit of education. It focuses on the urgent need to strengthen risk resilience of schools in rural as well as urban areas of the State.

It is hoped that the document would be useful in ensuring that all schoolchildren across the State remain safe from any kind of disaster as they access their right to education, the policy said.

The policy stresses on key elements like inclusion of school safety in the State policy sphere in a more inclusive and holistic manner, capacity building of children, teachers, school personnel, State and district education machinery on school safety and disaster preparedness, anchoring/implementing child-centric and community-based disaster risk reduction in the local context, and mainstreaming risk and safety education in the school curriculum.

It also speaks of strengthening coordination among institutional structures at the district, State and national levels to promote effective child rights governance in disaster situations.

The guidelines apply to all schools in the State – government, aided/unaided or private irrespective of their location, besides all stakeholders involved in delivery of education.

The policy also dwells on maintaining educational continuity even in the immediate aftermath of a disaster so that children feel physically, mentally and emotionally secure within their schools.

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