The new powers under the Education and Inspection Act 2006 reaffirm teachers’ ability to:
- Discipline pupils on and off school premises,
- use reasonable force to prevent pupils from harming themselves and others and in some cases of serious misbehaviour,
- clarify the powers relating to confiscation of pupil’s property.
The Minister said:
“The new powers and guidance for schools released today will clarify what teachers can do when sanctioning pupils when they misbehave.
“It is important that pupils are protected, are treated fairly and consistently and know what behaviour is acceptable in and out of school. Teachers in turn must be clear what powers are available to them to discipline pupils, and how they might apply them when needed. The emphasis, however, remains on schools maintaining an environment which encourages positive behaviour and lessens the need for the use of disciplinary sanctions. “
The new powers come into force on the day that schools and further education colleges in Wales have the power to screen any pupil for a knife or weapon under the Violent Crime Reduction Act.
Guidance on the commencement of new powers under the Education and Inspection Act 2006 and Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006 will now be sent to schools and will also be made available on the Welsh Assembly Government’s website.
Leighton Andrews continued:
“It is important schools and colleges are safe places to ensure the best possible educational environment for our young people.”