The recent controversy at Baldwin School, Bengaluru has shocked the entire city, especially all the parents of school-going children. A case of extreme cruelty towards students as young as 4-6 years of age and a charge against the Principal and school staff for indulging in physical as well as a verbal attack on the parents has shook all the parents of Baldwin students.
Baldwin school, though one of the oldest and reputed schools in the city has been in the news for all the wrong reasons in the recent times. From the staff protesting against Management for harassment to parents protesting against the extortion of money in the name of text books, Baldwin School management has been in troubled waters. But this charge against the School looks to be like a last nail in the coffin.
Sandeep BC, father of a 1st standard student of Baldwin Boys High School has written a letter to N Mahesh, Minister of Primary and Secondary Education Department of the State Government of Karnataka dated 27th July, 2018. In his letter, Sandeep has narrated about the inhuman treatment towards small students as well as parents by the School staff.
On 26th July, Sandeep happened to visit school at 9.15 am to deliver his son’s lunch box. He noticed around 10 students between 4-6 years age group outside the gate who were denied the entry for coming late. Their transporter had dropped them at school gate at 8.25 am and left. Concerned about their safety, Sandeep requested repeatedly to the Principal Anthony D’souza to allow them inside the school premises. But the Principal chose to be
irresponsible and cruel in the name of discipline. Imagine the children as young as 4-6 years of age abandoned and exposed to the risk of kidnapping or road mishaps.
Having no heart to leave the children to their fate, Sandeep called 100 Emergency Police helpline. The patrolling Police arrived at 9.50 am and warned the School authorities to be responsible and human towards such small children. The children were allowed inside the school.
The matter didn’t end there. Sandeep and his wife were called to visit the school immediately. Once they both were inside the Principal’s cabin, Principal Anthony D’souza and more than 8 staff members surrounded the couple. They started assaulting the couple physically and verbally. They were hit with fists, pushed and held by the neck. Their mobile phones were snatched and crushed. They were cursed for poking their noses in the school matters and involving the police. They were threatened that their son would be thrown out of school. They were held captive for more than one and half hour. The Principal even called their ‘insider’ police from Ashoknagar Police Station who harassed the couple further, instead of rescuing them. They were let out with the strict warning not to breathe a word about the incident.
Sandeep who spoke with the Postcard Team told that he was still waiting for the response from the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education Department. He is running from school to school for the admission of his son in the middle of the term. He wants the Minister to set up an Enquiry Commission to look into the malpractices of not just Baldwin School but all schools in the city. The safety measures for children should be strictly followed by all schools. Just like Sandeep, yesterday one more parent lodged a complaint against the Baldwin school authorities for locking the child outside the gate and demanding Rs 500 from the parent for 5 minutes delay.
Baldwin School has three branches with the collective strength of 30000 students. The annual fees plus transport sums up to Rs 300 Cr. Where is all that money being spent if the school can’t even provide basic safety measures to the students?
This ugly incident is an eye-opener that Schools are no longer the temples of education but money-making mafia. Sandeep says that the goodness in him has turned out to be bad for him and his family. Let’s stand by Sandeep for his
responsible gesture towards the small children. Share further till the message reaches the sleeping Karnataka Government.