What you should do if you are accused

16th February 2001 at 00:00
* Write down what happened as soon as possible, including the names of any witnesses. Your memory could play tricks on you later.

* Keep your own counsel. Talking to colleagues and pupils about an incident could give the impression that you are trying to cover up what really happened.

* Headteachers will often b sympathetic and can be a useful source of information and support.

* Contact your union (or a lawyer if you are not a union member) for advice and support at an early stage.

* Co-operate fully with any investigation. Remember, you are allowed a third party presence at meetings with head or governors.

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