First session of children’s Parliament ends
The first session of Bhutan children’s parliament (BCP) that started from 4th of January concluded last Friday. The closing ceremony saw members gathered in the great fourth auditorium offering Tashi moenlam prayer for long life of His Majesty the king, for peace and prosperity and happiness in the country.
Youth related issues like education, unemployment, drug abuse and teenage pregnancy were some of the highlights of the first session of the children’s parliament.
The members discussed ‘’one-teacher one-subject policy ‘’, which the members believe that teachers should be teaching specific subjects that they are specialized in.
The ‘’ one –teacher onesubject policy will bring in professionalism which will in turn improve quality of education’’, said BCP- National Assembly speaker Tsheten Dorji.
In some of the schools in Bhutan, where there is scarcity of teachers this practice of teaching multi subjects even if not specialized in all is common said the speaker.
Enrolment of children in government schools from age five was also discussed. Members unanimously concluded that it is now time that children are enrolled in school by the age of five disregarding the current practice of children being enrolled at six.
Currently, only children who are aged six can go to government schools but often teachers’ children who are barely six are being enrolled in school, which the members say, is unfair.
Meanwhile Gelephu’s MP, Yeshi Jamtsho raised his concern regarding drug and alcohol use in school. He shared that there are students in his school who have fallen under the influence of drug and alcohol adding that this discussion on drug and alcohol will help get their message to government.
Issues like sexual harassment and suicide cases in schools were also raised. The members look forward to deliberate child labour, sex education, improving computer and laptop facilities , rationalizing the teacher’s extraordinary leave and sustainability of central schools.
The BCP-NA and BCPNC sessions were held in two different halls at democracy house in Kawajangsa, Thimphu.
The proceedings of the BCP sessions will be submitted to His Majesty the King, Chief Justice, the Speaker of Parliament, Prime Minister, Chair- person of the National Council, and Leader of Opposition.
The Ceremony with the Members of Bhutan Children’s Parliament was graced by the Works and Human Settlement Minister Her Excellency Lyonpo Dorji Choden who is also the Chairperson of the National Council for Women and Children and attended by the Chief Election Commissioner, Election Commissioners, Senior Officials, Representatives of the UN Offices and Political Parties as well as members of the Bhutanese Media, the 22 Escort Teachers from the 20 Dzongkhags and Officials from the Election Commission.