Dec 282012
 
 December 28, 2012  Posted by  Non-U.S., Youth & Schools

Seen on Stuff, a report from Fairfax NZ about proposed amendments to education law to clarify search and seizure in schools:

School principals fear they could soon be powerless to confiscate weapons and illicit drugs from pupils, under changes to the Education Act.

The Education Amendment Bill, now before Parliament, includes changes to the surrender, retention, search and seizure powers held by schools.

Under the proposed changes, teachers would not be allowed to search pupils or their property but would be able to search property owned by the school, such as lockers and desks.

Dogs would no longer be allowed to search schools for drugs, and schools would not be able to test pupils for drug use.

Read more on Stuff. Take a look at the provisions and see if you think the law goes too far in the other direction or if it provides the right balance.  One provision strikes me as somewhat dangerous to staff:

If a pupil refuses to reveal, produce or surrender an item, a teacher can take any reasonable disciplinary steps to manage their behaviour.

What’s “reasonable?” The minute a teacher lays hands on a student, a situation is likely to escalate to physical confrontation or violence.

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