Primary school classroom (Picture: Wikimedia Commons/Douglas P Perkins) - Credit: Primary school classroom (Picture: Wikimedia Commons/Douglas P Perkins)
Wednesday, 6 April 2016 - 10:26
Sexual abuse in schools increasing; MPs shocked
Reports of sexual abuse in schools are increasing, the Education Inspectorate announced on Wednesday. A total of 112 reports were received in the 2014/2015 school year, compared to 86 reports in the previous year. Dutch parliamentarians are shocked by these figures. More than half of the reports involve a serious sexual offense - fornication, sexual assault or rape. A third of the reports involve a teacher or someone else working at the school. Reports of sexual harassment increased slightly, from 249 to 254. Most of these reports involved unwanted touching or inappropriate behavior on social media. The Inspectorate is calling on schools to to implement and enforce codes of conduct for teachers, non-teaching staff and students. Schools must also provide proper sex education, make their students resilient and make sure that there are no unsafe situations. PvdA parliamentarian Loes Ypma is calling on Education State Secretary Sander Dekker to take action. "These figures really scared me. As a parent, you should be able to assume that your child is safe at school. Teachers have a position of trust, and abusing that online or offline is unacceptable", Ypma said to NU.nl. VVD MP Karin Straus agrees. "I find this message shocking. Schools should work on safety. Harsh action should always be taken against education staff that abuse children." D66 parliamentearian Paul van Meenen agrees. "From my own experience as principal and director I say: dismissal on the spot and police report. Such people should not be allowed to work in education."