Saturday, 25 July 2009

Parents’ Support

“It is by the goodness of God that in our country we have those three unspeakably precious things: freedom of speech, freedom of conscience, and the prudence never to practice either.”

Mark Twain (1835-1910)

I have taken the decision to allow comments to be openly shared that are relevant to my case. This decision hasn’t been easy but, since my recent press coverage, I feel that it is important that people are given the opportunity to discuss their opinion.

I am indebted to two parents who have contacted me with information pertinent to the events of 26 September 2007 and, from what they say, there are other parents who would like to provide additional details. I would be grateful if these other parents might come forward.

For those wishing to provide support, my e-mail address is :

Courtesy Daily Mail
20 July 2009
Courtesy Lancashire Evening Post
24 July 2009

Courtesy Chorley Guardian
22 July 2009

Andrew Kidd, Duke Street Primary headteacher said (Chorley Guardian): “There was a disciplinary hearing in March 2008 at which a member of staff was dismissed for assaulting a child, which was witnessed by another member of staff.
A subsequent appeal hearing decided that while the original finding of misconduct was correct, the decision to dismiss should be reduced to final written warning and at that point the member of staff was invited to return to work in July 2008.
However, the staff member did not return to work and was dismissed by the governors in May 2009 on grounds of non-attendance.”

I was sacked, reinstated and sacked again because I was too ill to teach !

How can your employer get away with making you ill and then sacking you because you are ill ?

to invite : to politely request; to attract; to encourage, to provoke, to promote, to welcome

In the paper, Andrew Kidd said “... the member of staff was invited to return to work ...”

I ponder his definition of ‘to invite’ as the school did not extend any invitation to return. In fact, there was no contact what so ever - maybe a telepathic or subliminal welcome back ? Or maybe he sent it in another text message that I missed this time ?

The other point that I reiterate is that the teaching assistant witness took some 20 hours to report the story and then only after much discussion with other teaching staff. You might have expected that, after witnessing, what was claimed to have been a violent and vicious assault, that she would have gone to the aid of the girl; certainly report it immediately. But she did nothing ... the reason for this was because nothing happened !

nothing : not any thing; no thing; an absence of anything, including empty space, brightness, darkness, matter, or a vacuum; something trifling, something of no consequence

Two witnesses, including the teaching assistant, confirmed that at the time of the allegation the girl showed no reaction nor did any of the other children in the vicinity. A “violent and vicious assault” that results in no reaction - how can that be possible ?


  1. How things have changed definitely, for the worse. When I was a child I didn't dare tell my mum and dad if I had been punished at school or I would have been in right trouble at home as well. That poor women has had her life wrecked, even if she did hit the child it was only on the hand allegedly so hardly life threatening, but she probably only did hit the table like she claimed, and I notice there is no mention of what the child had done, to warrent the outburst from the teacher.

  2. Things are pretty bad in New Zealand at the moment. We have an anti-smacking law and parents are getting arrested all over the place. The clever government has now decided we need a referendum at a cost of millions to vote on this anti-smacking bill. We are PC politically crazy also. Looking after my 4 grandchildren and looking after there safety on roads I have had to give a gentle tap to stop themselves getting killed and I am not ashamed of it .. so there!

  3. CCTV cameras should be placed in all classrooms and corridors.

  4. That's appalling, Jane. If ever I needed a reason to support my view that most council staff are pompous dullards with little or no comprehension of due process, that's it.

    I can't believe how children have survived through the centuries, to be honest. 100 years ago we sent them up chimneys, when I was at school standard disciplinary technique was the flying (wooden handled) board duster. Most staff could part your hair or knock you out at 15 paces. One or two developed a particularly vicious yorker - make a young lad wince, that would.

    Never did us any harm, did it lads?

  5. Jacques Vimont28 July 2009 at 10:22

    Mme Watts

    I represent a company in Paris for the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg.

    I apologize for my English - I speak English more languuages but not my best.

    The problems have been common throughout the EEC, and now we are representing 6 teachers throughout Europe, in a test case to be presented in late November this year. I read the details of your case and you fit the criteria for submission to the court. I make no promises about the outcome but I'd like to discuss with you.

    I need to locate 10 teachers who have had violated their human rights and are not able to advance their cause through the courts in their country of origin.

    It gave me a link to the European Court of Human Rights (questions and answers):


    Jacques Vimont

  6. I hardly think that throwing blocks of wood at children is the answer here and besides Jane has been falsely accused of slapping a child. She smacked the desk not the child ! Therefore this thread is about her innocence not that she did it and there is no harm in it ! I did appreciate the corporal punishment of " The Strap " that my school dished out to wrong doers but I didn't agree with teachers taking the law into their own hands and cracking pupils round the head with the back of their hand etc ! We do live in a nanny state now and I am all for punishing kids who overstep the mark but I would draw the line at some megalomaniac with a wooden chalk duster. In fact I am pretty sure that if that had happened to me I would certainly have no respect for the teacher throwing a block of wood at me ! Lets not forget the fact that Jane DIDN'T even hit this child,she merely hit the desk to astonish her with awful consequences for herself !

  7. I think the point is it's about time people realised just how sheltered a lot today's kids are. Had Jane tapped the girl on the back of her hand (which I accept she didn't), it would hardly have been the end of the world, would it? Get a grip and a sense of proportion would appear to be the order of the day.

  8. There are plenty children make me yearn for the age of parental discipline being something other than "Please don't darling"
    I'm sad but not surprised to have seen so little documented support from other teachers or parents and people more closely involved with the school and this particular incident. Often opinions have raged against general lack of standing up for things, but on we go....................we let off steam and lower the stress levels; meanwhile another headline fades into obscurity but some lives are changed for ever.

  9. Thank you for your words. My partner says much the same - "the article will be wrapping fish & chips next week !"
    Whilst the headline might fade into obscurity, I and my fight will not ... I have much 'in the pipeline' and more ideas ... my life has been changed forever and I WANT IT BACK !

  10. Dearest Jane, I know more about what you're going through than other contributors. My advice is to move on. It happened to me and what you're trying to do is admirable, you've achieved more than me but in the end, you're fighting a government appointed, government maintained and government controlled organisation - in your case Lancashire County Council. No matter what the injustice, the animal and its master will protect it for it has no option. To do otherwise, then the government itself becomes accountable. You and I were doomed from the moment of the accusation and so is every other teacher. Sadly this failure of accountability extends like a cancer through everyone's lives in Britain. You are right to say that "truth was never on the agenda" but the sad fact is that you as a British citizen were of no relevance either.

    It is clear to me that the judgment of your headteacher was poor but he is supported by his peers and so it goes on. The puppet master must ultimately support his puppets and you know already that you were sacked in the sake of political expediency.

    So what's it all worth ? Nothing, for this is Britain, a country that cares little for its citizens and nothing for its teachers who help create our society of tomorrow.

  11. Sadly Julie's assumptions re Jane's traumatic experience, alongside her own, would appear to be correct - all the best for happier times to you both

  12. I noticed in your next item that you're asking for other teacher's support. Count me in Jane, I'm right with you ! I've sent you an email with my details and I know another teacher who this happened to so I'll try to get them in touch with you.

    I feel better for finding your story. They make you feel dirty and that makes you quiet; but you've shown me that there's another way.

  13. I think ou have done really well to survive this, you must be a special person.
    I was subject to malicious allegations this year but mine only lasted a short time, I can only try to imagine what you have gone through.
    I often ask myself, "is it worth it?" and the more I ask, the more I reply...."of course not".
    If I can help, contact me...
    Keep strong