The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child enshrines the right of every child to protection from harm and abuse. The government of India is a signatory to the convention, having ratified it on 11th December 1992. It is incumbent on all authorities dealing with children and indeed all adults who are part of Indian society to ensure that all children are sheltered, either by adults or peers, to the best of their ability.

All incumbents have been entrusted with the responsibility to ensure that children are safeguarded. It is imperative for the members of the community, specifically teachers and to observe changes in student behavior and recognize outward signs of abuse. It is vital that they are alert to the signs of any distress and understand the school’s Child Protection Policy.


2.1All schools have a responsibility to ensure the safety and well- being of their students. It is particularly important for a school like ST.ELIZABETH PUBLIC SCHOOL, to whom parents have entrusted their children in good faith, to be very vigilant in the task of safeguarding the welfare of students.

2.2While ST.ELIZABETH PUBLIC SCHOOLis a closed environment, there is an understanding that children can be guaranteed safety from harm and abuse while within the ST.ELIZABETH PUBLIC SCHOOL campus.

2.3All members of the community are expected to uphold their responsibilities for safeguarding the welfare of children. It is especially important that children should be heard in an open and honest way and that they should be aware that any disclosures or allegations they may make cannot remain confidential between the student and member of staff. Thus if a child asks for a promise of confidentiality, it should not be given unconditionally by the adult. This should be clear from the outset.

2.4Despite the fact that ST.ELIZABETH PUBLIC SCHOOL is a closed environment during school time, children do go home after the class and the school is not in   a position to guarantee a child’s safety during such periods. However, some children are subjected to abuse within families; statistically, children are more likely to be sexually abused, for example, by a family member or close family contact than by a stranger.


  1. SCOPE

The Child Protection Policy has exclusively been formulated for ST.ELIZABETH PUBLIC SCHOOL, and it applies to all the members of the ST.ELIZABETH PUBLIC SCHOOL community- staff at all levels (academic, co-curricular, administrative), students, parents and visitors.


The policy has been formulated on the basis of the existing laws of the country and the United Nations Convention of the Rights of the Child that seek to protect children. The following legal frameworks have been the key points of reference:

  • The United Nations Convention of the Rights of the Child (UNCRC, 1991)
  • POCSO (Protection of Child from Sexual Offenses) Act, 2012
  • Council of Indian School Guidelines for prevention of bullying and ragging in schools (*Extract of D.O. No. 12-19/2012-RMSA-1 dated 8th November, 2016)
  • Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015

The implementation of the  Policy  is  overseen  and  directed  by  Rev. Manager, St.Elizabeth Public School. Fr. Manager is also responsible for the reviewing and referencing of legal expectations and requirements regarding child abuse.


For effective implementation of the policy the team consists of the following members


The team provides strategic leadership for Child Protection in St.Elizabeth Public School. The team is led by the Principal and other Child Safety Officers. This team is responsible for the ongoing monitoring, compliance, review and improvement of the Child Protection Policy at ST.ELIZABETH PUBLIC SCHOOL.

The following are the roles and responsibilities of the school’s Leadership Team for Child Protection:

  • Develop school’s policies with regard to Child Protection and Safeguarding and maintain confidentiality of all case documents
  • Conduct annual review of compliance/effectiveness of the existing policy every academic year (during policy review)
  • Ensure safe practices for staff recruitment
  • Schedule regular mandatory training for staff (in-house and face- to-face)
  • Liaise with local/medical/legal services (if required)
  • Provide detailed procedures to report, address and investigate any allegation
  • Ensure that the proceedings are fair and do not hamper the child’s development and the future opportunities in any way
  • Ensure that all staff comply with the code of conduct and guidelines of the Child Protection Policy both at the time of employment and during the annual review
  • Coordinate with the Admissions Department to ensure that students and parents have read the Child Protection Policy and signed the declaration form
  • Ensure that police verification and background checks for all staff are carried out in adherence with guidelines of the Recruitment Policy.

Staff members are made aware of the procedures for student safeguarding, child abuse prevention, recognition, intervention and reporting. Training sessions are conducted at the beginning of every term.


This policy gives definitions of the widely understood categories of child abuse.

8.1Child care professionals agree internationally that child abuse falls within four categories:

  • Physical abuse
  • Sexual abuse
  • Emotional abuse
  • Neglect

8.2In India the term ‘ragging’ has been widely used in reference to bullying in schools and other institutions of learning. Ragging is a wide-ranging concept most frequently used to describe physical bullying and harassment of students by their peers. The term may however cover aspects of the first three categories in the list above, not simply physical abuse but with elements of sexual and emotional abuse as well.

8.3Extract of D.O. No. 12-19/2012-RSMA dated 8 November 2016 issued by the government which contains broad policy statements, advice and guidance for schools in combating bullying and ragging is contained as an appendix to this policy document and should be read and understood by all teaching, boarding, co-curricular, administrative staff and coordinators in the institution.

8.4Physical abuse covers all aspects of physical punishment, beating, slapping and the use of excessive force against a child. Children may display the external traits of excessive physical punishment, the most obvious being bruises and abrasions on the skin some of which may be old or faded.

8.5Sexual abuse covers all aspects of inappropriate sexual behaviours between children, and between adults and children. Inappropriate touching, observing and displaying of the sexual organs represent sexual abuse. Sexual penetration of a child by an adult or of a younger child by an older child is the most serious example of child abuse.

8.6Emotional abuse can take many forms but the intention behind such abusive behaviour is to belittle the child and to undermine their feelings of self-worth. Emotional abuse can involve insulting behaviours, rejection and withdrawal of emotional warmth, blaming and sarcasm.

8.7Neglect is widely regarded as pernicious lack of care for a child. Often children are neglected as part of a cycle of generational neglect within a family, where good parenting has never been learned or practised from generation to generation.  Neglect is often demonstrated through inconsistent parenting, lack of physical care, poor hygiene and nutrition. It is unlikely, but not impossible, that students coming to St. Elizabeth Public Schoolwill have suffered wilful neglect at home.


All staff should be vigilant in observing students’ behaviours. It is not a simple matter to identify traits in behaviour and to readily attribute causes. Students who spend a number of years in an academic institution, particularly a closed one, mature and develop naturally and will exhibit differing behaviours as they mature and develop an understanding of their place in the world. Nonetheless, a sympathetic staff member will always be sensitive to the needs of the students with whom they have been entrusted and should be open and available as a first point of contact should they be approached. Staff in the boarding section must be particularly vigilant in assuring that all students are protected from bullying and ragging of any kind. Any incidents must be reported to Counsellors / Coordinators immediately.


10.1There is the possibility that a staff member may be confronted with an allegation by a student. While this is a difficult matter   to deal with, the child must be listened to and the allegation investigated by Academic Council members. At no time from the point of allegation to conclusion of the investigation should the student be scapegoated by any adult and due process should be completed in an impartial manner. Clearly, the parents of the child making the allegation should be contacted and involved    in the investigation. Such an allegation should not result in the student being sent away from the school summarily in view of the substantial emotional and intellectual damage that such a move would cause to the student. In the event of a false allegation being made by a student against a member of staff, normal disciplinary procedures against the student would be applied. In the event  of an allegation by a student being upheld after due process, the member of staff would be subject to instant dismissal and could face criminal charges.

10.2Staff should make themselves aware of their responsibilities towards the students, with whom they have been entrusted. Because they operate within a closed community setting, staff should be aware that their behaviour in relation to students will be open to scrutiny by colleagues and students alike. There is no possibility of hiding abusive behaviour and all staff and students have a duty to report what they see as abusive behaviour by staff and students alike.

10.3No member of staff will engage in physical punishment against a student. This includes any form of beating, slapping or use of any instrument to inflict pain on a child. These examples are not exhaustive but constitute physical abuse and criminal behaviour.

10.4No member of staff will engage in humiliating treatment of a student. This includes excessive shouting, name calling, humiliating language or gestures. This also includes kneeling, bowing or other unnatural body positions. These examples are not exhaustive but constitute emotional abuse and criminal behaviour.

10.5No member of staff will engage in any form of intimate relationship with a student. This includes sharing of personal information including photographs of a sexual nature. These examples are not exhaustive but constitute sexual abuse and criminal behaviour.

10.6Staff should act in a responsible manner at all times in relation to students. On very rare occasions children make false allegations against adults who are entrusted with their care. These false allegations may be as a result of a desire to harm a teacher. What is certain is that whether or not an allegation is subsequently proven to be untrue, the reputation of a teacher can be destroyed along with considerable emotional damage being inflicted on the teacher and his or her family. Therefore, all staff should take steps to protect themselves from unwarranted accusations of unprofessional conduct, including abuse, by acting at all times in a professional manner.

10.7All staff members have been made aware of the Child Protection Policy which specifies roles and responsibilities for safeguarding children. Staff at all levels, are required to sign The Directive and Guidelines for staff responsibilities with regard to appropriate and inappropriate behaviour of adults towards children.


St.Elizabeth Public School thrives on its reputation for high standards of academic achievement, encouragement of intellectual growth through innovative teaching and co-curricular programmes of learning. The physical and emotional well-being of students is a fundamental building block in the school’s philosophy, ensuring that students are successful learners, ready to grow into confident individuals who are responsible citizens and effective contributors to their society. Staff members are responsible to protect them from harm and safeguard their welfare.