Teach Disaster Management in Schools

We send our children to the school to get educated, and till a few decades ago, we did not have to dwell too much on the safety of our children in the schools; we took it for granted, for the school was always synonymous with the word ‘safe’. Unfortunately, it is no longer the case.

From natural calamities to the man-made ones, from the negligence of man to the beast like action of man, our children are no longer safe in school. Some of these disasters could have been averted by simple prevention and preparedness. We, as parents, must make certain that we are aware of the norms and regulations that a school must follow, and keep a vigil on their compliance. The recent terror attack on a school in Pakistan should jolt the parents of school going children in India out of their complacency, and they should become more aware.

Creating a safe environment for the children in school is the most important task, as in the case of any emergency they are the most vulnerable. National Disaster Management Authority, of the Ministry of Home Affairs, strongly feels that there has to be a structural, as well as non-structural intervention, to ensure the safety of the children. Structural intervention would include strict check on the guidelines set up for school buildings, while non-structural would mean educating the staff, teachers, and students about disaster management. Under this programme, the students learn about safety measures, thus becoming future disaster managers, while a disaster resilient society is built by way of educating the community.

Viji Athreye

Gurgaon, New Delhi, India

Author: SubEditor

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