The poor performance of Chennai-based CBSE (Central Board of Secondary Education) schools in sanitation ratings held by the board has raised questions on the standard of private schools when it comes to providing clean and appropriate number of toilets.
The CBSE website shows that only Ashok Leyland School in Hosur secured a ‘blue’ rating which indicates it fulfilled 75-90% of the norms. Sources from the board revealed that sanitation ratings would soon be made mandatory and that the schools have been asked to improve their sanitation conditions and secure a fresh certificate every 4 months after the previous certificate is issued. Many schools had not applied for the ratings.
However, a number of schools in Chennai are planning to apply for the school sanitation rating by September 30, 2012, which is the next deadline.
As per National School Sanitation Manual, there should be 1 toilet for every 80 students, taking into account strength of the school, queuing time and lunch/break time.
Day schools should have 1 toilet unit for 40 girls and one female teacher with one urinal for 20 girls.
The National Building Code defines the norms for design of school toilets, urinal and washing facilities.
The WHO suggests one toilet for 25 girls and a female teacher and 1 toilet plus urinal per 50 boys and a male staff.
As per WHO, toilets should be situated within 30 meters of users and the number of toilets should be based not only on the number of staff and students but also on the frequency of its access. The guidelines state that break times should be adjusted to make the access easy.
Toilets should be provided with hand washing point and soap. Many schools in Chennai have clean toilets but they lack hand wash or soap.
Sources from school education department expressed that in 2011, 5000 non-teaching staff was appointed and another 4000 will be hired this year. School toilets should have arrangements to keep sanitary napkins and to dispose them off.
Guidelines for toilets
- One urinal for 20 girls and a female teacher, one urinal for 20 boys a male staff plus one unit for physically disabled students in each block.
- One recessed place in the wall in every girls toilet to keep sanitary napkin.
- Boys and girls toilets must be located separately and should provide security and privacy.
- One soap per two wash taps or atleast 2 hand wash dispensers in every toilet block.
- Wash water storage of 500 liters per school of 100 children.
- The sanitation facility should have a universal design which is child and disabled friendly.
Source: The Hindu
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