A day after a 15-year-old was apprehended by Delhi Police in connection with the ‘Bois Locker Room’ case, the principal of one of the South Delhi schools the boys have been linked to spoke to parents of senior students on technology use and cyber crime.
Girls and young women, and their parents, have been alarmed by the incident, in which there has been a complaint about teenage boys from prominent South Delhi schools allegedly sharing photos of girls, discussing their body parts and sending each other sexually explicit messages, including threats about sexual assault, on an Instagram group chat.
The students are from four South Delhi schools, and one from Noida. On Tuesday, the principal of one of these schools held a meeting on the Zoom app with parents of all students in classes X, XI and XII. Though a workshop on parenting was scheduled to take place on Tuesday before the incident, the principal dedicated the end of the meeting to talk about cyber bullying.
“She urged parents to keep tabs on their children’s use of technology — including keeping the passwords to their accounts and even taking away their phones. In the afternoon, there was another session only for parents of class XII students with educational psychologist V S Ravindran, who spoke of parenting through positive reinforcement and warning signs of depression in teenagers,” said a student whose parents attended the sessions. The principal in question did not respond to calls and messages by The Indian Express.
The principal of another one of these schools said that conversations on cyber crime and gender sensitivity are a regular part of the school’s life.
“Since issues on this matter keep coming up from time to time, we regularly talk about gender sensitivity. Last year, we had extended sessions with a cyber security expert who addressed all students in batches. At the beginning of this session too, we had orientation on the etiquette to be maintained in online classes and our counsellors are available for any parent or student who might need help,” she said.
However, principal Sprindales School principal Ameeta Wattal emphasised on the need for social and emotional learning in school.
“Something like this is an outcome of the lack of social and emotional skills in our children. These are circumvented in the obsession with grades and competition. This is not one individual we are talking about in this case but multiple children from multiple schools, which means that this is a problem across the board. This should be treated as a call to deal with this urgently, and the moment schools are opened, children should be given a large amount of social and emotional learning. Otherwise these kinds of things will keep happening until it becomes a norm,” she said.
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