Schools must be safe places for all who are in them

The Sunday Post (Dundee) - - Opinion -

It is a prob­lem that has to be ad­dressed.

There are more chil­dren who re­quire ad­di­tional sup­port in main­stream schools than in the past. The phi­los­o­phy be­hind this is good. Hav­ing chil­dren of all abil­i­ties to­gether, so they can forge friend­ships and grow to­gether to find un­der­stand­ing and ac­cep­tance, is a laud­able aim.

As rea­son­able hu­man be­ings we can only ap­plaud the idea of chil­dren of all abil­i­ties mix­ing and find­ing com­mon ground to­gether.

All chil­dren ben­e­fit from a wide exposure to the world – that, after all, is what an ed­u­ca­tion is sup­posed to do.

But, inevitably, when new ideas come in, new prob­lems will arise too.

So this idea needs good plan­ning, with safe­guards in place for the chal­lenges that crop up in class­rooms ev­ery day.

Some chil­dren are more dif­fi­cult to man­age and to teach than oth­ers. Fac­ing those prob­lems and de­feat­ing them is the rea­son an in­te­grated ed­u­ca­tion pol­icy was put in place.

But our story tells to­day of teach­ing as­sis­tants be­ing as­saulted.

No mat­ter the laud­able aims and the ben­e­fits that come, that can’t go on.

What­ever the dif­fi­cul­ties and ob­sta­cles, there should be re­sources in place to pre­vent vi­o­lence in schools.

If this plan is to work, then it has to have a struc­ture that will al­low it to work.

New ideas should be wel­comed, but all as­pects and all even­tu­al­i­ties have to be con­sid­ered.

A cul­ture of vi­o­lence in class­rooms isn’t fair on pupils, teach­ers or teach­ing as­sis­tants.

Our schools must be safe places for ev­ery­one.

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