The Central Board of Secondary Education has issued comprehensive guidelines to ensure safety of children in school buses on Thursday . Stating that the guidelines “should be scrupulously followed and complied with by all affiliated schools,“ the Board said the management and the head of the school will be held responsible for any lapse which could lead to disaffiliation. The Board has made speed governors, GPS and CCTV mandatory .
The Board divided the guidelines into seven broad categories which include exterior and interior of bus, facilities, permits and advisory to parents. The CBSE, in its circular, stated that “the recent unfortunate instances reported in the media about callous approach by certain schools with respect to safety of schoolchildren during transit to and from the school have again stirred deep concern regarding the safety of school children. The time has come to make schools sensitive to this serious issue and take proactive remedial measures to ensure safety.“
The Board said buses should be painted yellow with the name of the school written prominently on both sides.`School bus' should be written prominently on the back and front of the vehicle and if it is a hired bus, “On school duty“ should be clearly written.
The Board also said details such as driver's name, address, licence number, badge number and telephone number of the school or the bus owner and transport department's helpline numbers should be displayed at prominent places inside and outside the bus in contrast colour. It is also mandatory for windows to be fitted with horizontal grills and mesh wire. There should be speed governors with maximum limit of 40 km per hour. GPS and CCTV arrangements should be made compulsorily in each school bus and will have to be installed by the owner of the bus.
Norms also require school authorities to provide one mobile phone in each school bus.