Panel wants child rights and laws in school syllabus

KOLKATA: To make children understand what rights they are entitled to, West Bengal’s child rights panel wants the students to be taught about them as part of the school curriculum.

Ashokendu Sengupta, chairperson of the State Commission for Protection of Child Rights, said they will recommend the state government to include various laws related to right to education and protection from sexual abuse a part of the school syllabus.

“We do not want to put any extra load on the children but there should be at least one page somewhere in their book which tells them about their rights in a simple language. This will increase awareness. Only we know about child rights and laws but they must also know,” he told PTI.

The panel will soon meet the state school syllabus committee to impress upon them the need to include child rights at primary and secondary school level.

Teenager Sikha Patra, who works as a peer leader and educator with child rights NGO Prayasam, said she would never have been aware of her rights as a child had she not been associated with activists.

“My friends don’t know what are their rights as a child. Those in English medium schools are aware of these things but not those in Bengali medium ones. Therefore, child rights should be included in the school curriculum,” she said.

UNICEF’s West Bengal chief Asadur Rahman also supported it saying basic rights about children should be there in the school syllabus.

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