Civil lawsuits against principals and teachers

Published Date: 03 July 2017 12:00 AM

News Parliamentary Replies

Name and Constituency of Member of Parliament

Dr Tan Wu Meng, Jurong GRC

Question

To ask the Minister for Education (Schools) over the past three years (a) how many civil lawsuits have been initiated against school principals and teachers in their official educator capacity; (b) what proportion has been initiated by students or parents/or students' next-of-kin; (c) what are the reasons cited for such lawsuits; and (d) whether the Ministry provides (i) legal aid coverage and/or (ii) professional liability insurance for educators who may face such lawsuits arising from their official duties.

Response

1. Lawsuits initiated against our educators in relation to their official duties are few and far in between. In the past three years, there have only been two such lawsuits; with only one having been initiated by a parent against an educator. That case involved the parent suing the Principal of his child’s school for the return of a mobile phone that was confiscated in accordance with the school’s rules.

2. An educator who faces such a lawsuit may be provided with legal representation in a number of ways. This can take the form of representation by the Attorney-General’s Chambers, the grant of legal aid by the Government so that he or she may engage lawyers, or through lawyers engaged by his or her school.

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