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Resource officers’ service to be reformed

By Tatia Megeneishvili
Friday, January 10
From January 20 the resource officers at schools will have a new name - child protection officer. Uniform and duties will also change as these people will now be in charge of child protection, medical and psychological assistance.

According to the Deputy Minister of Education and Science, Lia Gigauri, the guards’ did not correspond to the new requirements. “Their function is no longer punishment, but - protection of children,” Gigauri stated.

According to the head of the guard service, Levan Zardalashvili, child protection officers will no longer take part in the education process. He said the reform at this stage mainly involves training of the officers.

From 1,150 guards, over 300 have already been re-trained. Guards are learning basic human rights, children's rights, children's ages and stages of development peculiarities, and mental health grounds in order to be able to detect the problem. They should also undergo a special course in mediation and conflict resolution, as well as learn the basics of the psychology of communication, verbal and nonverbal communication skills, and so on.

Only those who have successfully overcome all the exams will be Child Protection Officers. Examinations will start from January 20.

According to the head of the Legal Department of the Ministry of Education, Davit Liminashvili, the guards will have two additional very important functions. These are psycho-social services for children and employees and to promote and assist them in orientation.

Lominashvili said the draft law introduced by the government to the Parliament will be considered in the border of the legislation.

The age of the officers will increase from 20 to 23.