Misconduct guidelines for teachers tightened

Published on Monday, 20 January 2014 09:36
Written by Govtoday staff

Any teacher who receives a criminal conviction or caution involving indecent images of children should be banned from teaching, strict new guidelines set out on Friday.

Changes to the National College for Teaching and Leadership Teacher misconduct: the prohibition of teachers advice have been published by the Department for Education.

The advice gives clear guidelines to the NCTL panels which consider cases of teacher misconduct. The panel's recommendations are then referred to senior officials, who act on behalf of the Secretary of State, for a final decision.

The changes published today make clear our expectation that any sexual misconduct – not just 'serious sexual misconduct' as set out previously – and any criminal conviction or caution involving indecent images of children should lead to prohibition.

A Department for Education spokesperson said: "Nothing is more important than ensuring children are protected when they are at school. We have already improved the system to make it tougher than ever before.

"This revised advice sets out our expectation any sexual misconduct and any criminal conviction or caution involving indecent images of children should lead to prohibition from teaching."

High standards are expected of all teachers, and when making decisions panels should always take into account the need to maintain high levels of public confidence in the profession.

The publication of the revised advice follows an eight-week public consultation launched in July last year.

The results showed 86 per cent of respondents agreed that the advice should be revised to toughen guidance on cases involving sexual misconduct, while 90 per cent supported revisions to clarify that panels should give serious consideration to evidence that a teacher has committed activity involving indecent images of children.

Source: Department for Education

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