NEW DELHI: With frequent cases of sexual and physical abuse of children reported from preschools, the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights is ready with guidelines to regulate such private playschools.
Once the guidelines are notified by the women and child development ministry, no child below three will be enrolled at a playschool and all such institutions will have to register with the district authorities. Violators will face derecognition and action as per law.
WCD minister Maneka Gandhi said that the guidelines were an important step towards regulating early childhood care centres operating in the form of playschools in the private sector. “The guidelines also state what kind of play and educational activities the children can be engaged in to ensure that the goal of development is achieved,” Gandhi said.
Since NCPCR’s recommendatory guidelines have been prepared within the framework of early childhood care, a subject that falls under the purview of women and child development, it comes under the concurrent list and cannot be made mandatory for states. However, the guidelines issued by the Centre will set the course for states to regulate playschools. The states will have the option to adopt these guidelines or even explore the possibility of a legislation.
Himachal Pradesh happens to be the first state that is planning to bring a law to regulate play schools. “The aim is to prevent violation of child rights and any kind of abuse against children in the age group of 3 to 6 years by regulating preschools education,” NCPCR stated.