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Safety checks of preschools begin

By Xin Wen | China Daily | Updated: 2017-11-28 07:49

Immediate corrective measures will be taken to reduce risks to children

The Beijing Education Commission said on Sunday night that a thorough safety inspection will be conducted at all kindergartens citywide, with an education inspector assigned to monitor the process.

Results will be listed in a database that includes information on the kindergartens' facilities, safety and management systems. Those with potential risks and problems will be improved immediately, it said.

The move follows accusations of child abuse at a Beijing kindergarten in the Xintiandi community of Chaoyang district. The kindergarten is affiliated with RYB Education, an international preschool provider listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

All districts in Beijing have been asked to set up a mechanism for kindergartens that will allow parents and communities to communicate in an emergency.

The commission will provide overall checks of the qualifications of people running kindergartens, as well the preschools' health and safety status, level of nursing education and management structures.

Fire-control systems and the preschools' canteens are the key areas for the safety inspectors. Potential or hidden dangers will be corrected immediately, especially those involving a lack of equipment, according to the education commission.

A proposal released by the Beijing Preschool Education Society stressed the importance of protecting toddlers' physical safety, as well as children's legal rights.

The faculty at kindergartens must also be held to strict standards, the commission said, and the professional level of faculty team-building should be improved.

The addition of surveillance cameras was requested for kindergartens - allowing for full visual coverage of a facility, according to a report in Beijing Youth Daily.

The supervision of some kindergartens in Dongcheng district have been connected to the public security bureau's network. Full-coverage digital surveillance has been installed in a number of Beijing kindergartens, as required by the authorities.

"Cameras have been installed in our kindergarten. A classroom should have 360-degree coverage," the newspaper quoted a kindergarten worker in Haidian district as saying.

A kindergarten in Dongcheng district said surveillance cameras have been set up in all areas of the school, including stairways, playgrounds, classrooms and kitchens. The only places not covered are the toilets.

Boarding kindergartens were also asked to install night cameras.

The head of the RYB Xintiandi kindergarten and a teacher allegedly involved in child abuse were detained on Saturday, according to a statement by the police.

Several parents reportedly told police on Wednesday that their children, all about 3 years old, had suspicious needle marks on their bodies and had been given white pills on numerous occasions.

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