What steps is the Welsh Government taking to reduce the risk of crime and violence in schools?

Jan 31, 2018 | Articles, Assembly Business, Assembly Issues | 0 comments

Plenary 31st January 2018

13:35
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Gareth Bennett AM

Gareth Bennett AM

Party: United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP)

Diolch, Llywydd. I refer to the point of order that was raised with you on 13 December last year. I’m sorry that people took offence at what I said and I wish to make it clear that I respect your authority as Chair. I do, however, stand by the views I expressed about the proposed changes to the gender recognition Bill.

Kirsty Williams AM

Kirsty Williams AM

Title: Cabinet Secretary for Education Party: Welsh Liberal Democrats

Thank you, Mr Bennett. Violence and aggression in schools, against teachers or pupils, is completely unacceptable. In order to tackle such violence and aggression, in and outside the classroom, working with stakeholders, we must first understand why children are demonstrating these behaviours. Otherwise we are simply treating the symptoms and not the underlying causes of such behaviour.

Gareth Bennett AM

Gareth Bennett AM

Party: United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP)

Yes. Thanks for that answer. I agree that we do need to understand. We also perhaps need to pursue a standard approach to monitoring the level of violence so that at least we can also ascertain how much actually is going on, which is something that the National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers are currently calling for. So, would you be minded now to think about a standard approach to monitoring levels of violence in schools?

Kirsty Williams AM

Kirsty Williams AM

Title: Cabinet Secretary for Education Party: Welsh Liberal Democrats

Thank you for that. I think it’s, first of all, very important to recognise, as mentioned only recently in the latest chief inspector’s report on the education system in Wales, that behaviour in schools is improving, and I would hate people to be listening to this question and thinking that we had a particularly acute problem. But clearly, as I said in my opening answer, any violence, whether that’s directed towards fellow pupils or directed towards the staff of the school, is completely unacceptable to me. Welsh Government has issued guidance to schools and local authorities around safe and effective interventions, and I am always willing to consider what more steps Welsh Government can take to address these issues. I want Welsh schools to be safe, secure and happy places of learning and work.