The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) has asked all schools affiliated to it to do psychometric evaluation of their employees.
The circular which came in the wake of the brutal murder of a 7-year-old student at Ryan International, Noida, stated: “Schools must get police verification and psychometric evaluation done for all the staff employed. Such verification and evaluation for non-teaching staff such as bus drivers, conductors, peons and other support staff may be done very carefully and in a detailed manner.”
The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), which functions under the administrative control of the Union human resource development ministry, has issued a circular asking for a security and safety audit of the premises and personnel by police within two months.
“They must get the police verification and psychometric evaluation done for all the staff employed. Such verification and evaluation for non-teaching staff such as bus drivers, conductors, peon and other support staff may be done very carefully and in a detailed manner,” said the circular issued by deputy secretary Jaiprakash Chaturvedi.
“It is reiterated that all schools affiliated with the CBSE are directed to strictly adhere to all the guidelines issued by the MHRD (the ministry) and the board from time to time. Any violation/lapses with regard to the safety and well-being of children on campus would invite appropriate action, including the disaffiliation of the school… ,” the circular adds,
Schools affiliated to the CBSE are spread over 26 countries and they employ around 10 lakh people. Such schools in India include around 1,100 Kendriya Vidyalayas, 600 Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalayas, 2,700 schools run or aided by state governments and 14,900 private schools.
Delhi-based clinical psychologist Ripan Sippy welcomed the CBSE’s directive. “It is a good thing. But it is a huge task and a time-taking process. Evaluation of one person should take half an hour to one hour,” he said. The process may take six months to one year, Sippy said.
“Psychometric evaluation involves use of cards and expressions followed by a few questions to understand a person’s cognitive ability and personality trait. If the expert feels that the person is faking the answer, the person may be subjected to a detailed evaluation,” Sippy added.
He said schools located in remote areas, such as the Navodaya Vidyalayas, and small towns may find it difficult to get trained psychologists.
Some stakeholders frowned at the initiative. “I do not subscribe to psychometric evaluation. We have to take preventive steps. While recruiting non-teaching staff, we have to look at their antecedents and the antecedents of the agency through which the person has come,” said Jyoti Bose, Principal of Springdales School, Dhaula Kuan in Delhi.