Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Questions (167)

Richard Boyd Barrett

Question:

167. Deputy Richard Boyd Barrett asked the Minister for Education and Skills if he will outline all protocols set down by his Department for bullying in schools, including any bullying of pupils by teachers; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [12070/14]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

The Deputy will be aware that I published new anti-bullying procedures for all primary and post primary schools at the beginning of the 2013/14 school year. The purpose of these procedures is to give direction and guidance to school authorities and school personnel in preventing and tackling school-based bullying behaviour amongst its pupils. The procedures include specific requirements in relation to the use of prevention and education strategies and the consistent investigation, follow up and recording of bullying behaviour amongst pupils.

Under the provisions of the Education Act, 1998, the Board of Management is the employer of the teachers in a school. In general, the Board has the responsibility to ensure that the school operates efficiently and effectively, to take all reasonable precautions to ensure the safety of pupils in its care and, as employer, the Board also has responsibilities in relation to the action of its employees. If a parent wishes to make a complaint against a teacher or school they should contact the relevant school authorities. The complaint procedures adopted by most schools are those that have been agreed between the teacher unions and school management bodies.