Protection must extend to all

3rd October 2003 at 01:00
Claire Curtis-Thomas's proclamation (TES, September 19) that teachers should not teach "disturbed or vulnerable" children is admirable but misguided. There are many issues to consider here, for instance, to what level must a child be disturbed or vulnerable to be a cause for concern?

How should practices for working in areas such as English as an additional language, special educational needs and reading recovery, be modified to consider child protection issues and safeguard the teacher in their professional role?

It is not financially viable for schools to fund CCTVs in all rooms or stretch to extra staff to police one-to-one sessions.

I welcome the National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers proposal for anonymity for all those that stand accused. But I believe it is essential to consider ways in which all teachers may be protected, and that procedures are put into place to ensure that those making false allegations are made accountable and dealt with accordingly.

Although Martin Farrell reports that only 69 of the 1,742 were convicted, for anyone wrongly accused the devastating consequences on their well-being are immediate.

Manjit Dhillon 16 Rectory Road London E17

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