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Revealed: Shocking number of attacks on Derbyshire teachers

Teachers have been kicked, punched and bitten.
Teachers have been kicked, punched and bitten.

Punching, kicking, slapping, stamping and biting are just some of the attacks carried out by pupils on teachers and staff in Derbyshire schools in the last year.

Our Freedom of Information request to Derbyshire County Council has revealed that there were a total of 128 incidents during the 2017/2018 academic year.

The results highlight some of the shocking injuries suffered by teachers and staff in our schools - including a broken nose, lacerations and severe bruising.

A Derbyshire County Council spokesperson said: “We teach 90,000 pupils across Derbyshire which puts into context how rare attacks by children on teachers and school staff are but it is an issue we take extremely seriously.

“The county council offers full support for school staff including training on how to de-escalate situations like this and procedures for dealing with any incidents safely.

“In relation to incidents at our special schools, pupils may have additional and associated behavioural needs which may at times require specialist care and support.

“The guidance we provide ensures teachers and staff at all our schools are fully supported to keep themselves and their pupils safe.”

The results show that the majority of incidents took place in special schools. But there were also incidents in primary and junior schools.

Actions taken against pupils ranged from exclusion, isolation, detention, time out from lessons and ‘discussion with pupil’.

Chris Keates, general secretary of teaching union NASUWT, said: “No teacher or other worker should go to work with an expectation that they should tolerate violence and abuse. Yet evidence shows that teachers are not receiving the support from their employers to tackle these issues.

“Where a pupil is known to exhibit violent and disruptive behaviour, a risk assessment should be undertaken and action taken to support the pupil to address their behaviour and to protect other pupils and staff. In too many cases no effective assessment is ever undertaken.

“Even if it is, all too often this is not always shared with all staff or is not passed on to receiving schools if the pupil is moved.

“Employers who fail to disclose safety information leave themselves vulnerable to legal challenge and industrial action, but more importantly they are behaving recklessly with the health and wellbeing of staff and other pupils and this simply cannot be justified.”