With instances of child sexual abuse on the rise across the State in recent years, the introduction of Posco and JJA was mooted in 2018 itself after a detailed meeting with State Council of Educational Research and Training SCERT officials and authorities of the Juvenile Justice Committee, to ensure the safety of children in schools.
As per the plan, relevant information on these two Acts will be included in regular curriculum textbooks from middle school to the higher secondary stage. Accordingly, SCERT has been entrusted to prepare a comprehensive syllabus for both schools on Pocso and JJ Act.
A senior official from the School Education Department, seeking anonymity, told DT NEXT that though the curriculum panel have started preparing the syllabus, there were differences of opinions among the members and other stakeholders have created the hurdle.
"Different of opinions also came with regard to the allocation of Posco topics for each standard", he said adding "the members were also unsure whether graphics images could be included in the textbooks".
He said adding to the woes some of SCERT officials were transferred to some other department, which also delayed in preparing the syllabus. "Now, the new government is planning only an orientation module, which will be prepared for use by schools to raise awareness about Posco Act among all stakeholders and to improve safety in schools", he pointed out.
The official said the School Education Department has also planned to observe child abuse prevention week every year during November to create awareness about Posco Act among the students.
Stating that like it was planned for school curriculum, the SCERT, earlier, was in the process of introducing both Pocso and JJA in B.Ed and M.Ed. "Though authorities had already asked for feedback and inputs from Tamil Nadu Teachers Education University, which has the M.Ed course, about preparing the syllabus, there was no progress in preparing the module", he added.
Tamil Nadu Teachers Association president P K Ilamaran said the introduction of especially Posco Act in the subjects will largely create awareness among the students about the sexual harassment. "The rise in Posco cases in the schools was due to lack of knowledge among the students", he added. EoM