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Nearly half abuse claims against teachers 'unfounded'

October 15, 2011 - London

Nearly half of allegations made against teachers are malicious, unsubstantiated or unfounded, new research has suggested.

Almost a fifth of teachers who faced accusations in 2009/10 were suspended while claims were investigated, with many waiting weeks for a conclusion.

The survey, commissioned by the Department for Education, examined the number and nature of allegations of abuse referred to 116 English councils between April 1 2009 and March 31 2010, reports The Daily Express.

The findings show that of 12,086 allegations referred, 2,827 (23percent) were against schoolteachers.

A further 1,709 allegations of abuse were made against non-teaching staff in schools, the latest survey found.

The majority of allegations were of a physical nature, the survey found (56 percent in relation to school teachers and 49 percent for non-teaching staff).

Almost half (47 percent) of all allegations made against teachers, and two fifths (41 percent) of those made against non-teaching staff members were found to be unsubstantiated, malicious or unfounded.

But 18 percent of schoolteachers and 29percent of non-teaching staff were suspended while accusations were investigated. And one in eight teachers (12percent) and nearly a fifth of those non-teaching members of staff (19percent) faced a criminal investigation.

Just 3 percent of concluded investigations against teachers resulted in a criminal caution or conviction, for non-teaching staff this figure was 5percent, the survey found.


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