A Tayside mum’s campaign for greater protection for disabled children in schools has been picked up by the United Nations.
Beth Morrison, whose son Calum is a former pupil of Dundee’s Kingspark school for disabled children, has been calling for national guidelines on restraint and seclusion in schools through her Scottish parliament petition.
The issues she identified were then included in a report to the UNCRC (United Nations Convention of the Rights of The Child) and were discussed further during a recent summit in Geneva, with the UNCRC making a number of recommendations to the UK government and all three regional assemblies.
Beth, from Monifieth, said: “I am absolutely delighted to say that following a summit in Geneva last month, the issues in the petition were discussed and the UNCRC has now concluded its observations.
“There are lots of things in the report that will benefit disabled children and young people, which the UN is saying should be implemented by The UK government and all three regional governments as a result of my campaign on the use of restraint and seclusion.
“Because of my campaign, from August 2016, the school inspection process will change with a much greater focus on safeguarding.
“I hope that the government will make sure the UN committee’s recommendations are carried out as soon as possible.
“Scotland should be absolutely leading the way in protecting our most vulnerable children.
“We need to make sure that all education staff are trained in the use of ‘positive behaviour support’ and I want to make sure that no child is subjected to the kind of treatment that Calum was in school.”
Beth’s campaign journey began when Calum came home with injuries from school as a result of a restraint incident.
Two separate investigations cleared Kingspark staff of any wrongdoing, but the outcomes were queried by Beth and other parents of pupils at the school.
Calum is now at a different school where he is said to be thriving, with Beth determined to continue her campaign on behalf of other disabled children throughout the country,