Belfast Telegraph

Budget cuts blamed for rise in school staff attacks

By Staff Reporter

Budget cuts, rising class sizes and the cutting of specialist support services are leading to increases in physical and verbal abuse against staff, a conference will hear today.

The NASUWT teachers' union will hold its annual conference at Belfast's Stormont Hotel, where a motion highlighting that more than one in 10 (13%) of NASUWT members have been assaulted at work will be debated.

It follows recent revelations that the number of suspensions for assaults on school staff trebled between 2014/15 and 2015/16.

In the last academic year NASUWT members in three schools in Northern Ireland have voted overwhelmingly in a ballot to refuse to teach violent pupils who had attacked teachers.

The motion says increasing assaults on teachers "can be attributed directly to budget cuts, redundancies, rising class sizes and fewer resources for specialist support."

And it calls on employers to fulfil their statutory obligations to maintain a safe environment for all staff.

Belfast Telegraph

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