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Music teachers should not avoid contact with pupils, says Gove

07/01/2011 Kelly
Education Secretary Michael Gove has spoken out after music teachers were advised to avoid physical contact with pupils.

The guidance was given by the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children, the Musicians Union, Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music and Youth Music, but the government claims this sends out the wrong message.

"It plays to a culture of fear among both adults and children, reinforcing the message that any adult who touches a child is somehow guilty of inappropriate contact," Mr Gove commented.

"We must move away from this presumption and the Department for Education is taking steps to restore common sense to this whole area."

In a letter to the aforementioned organisations, the minister said it is "entirely proper" for teachers to be in physical contact with pupils when they are tutoring them in music and sport, leading them away from trouble and intervening to prevent disorder.
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