On November 27 the Government published plans to prohibit corporal punishment in all part-time educational settings, including madrassas (see: consultation).
The proposals also aim to prevent children being “radicalised” in madrassas (inspections will be “risk-based” inspections where specific concerns are raised such as the “harm caused by extremism”). Although registration will only apply to settings giving “intensive education” of over six to eight hours a week, it is proposed the ban on corporal punishment will apply to all out-of-school educational settings, regardless of hours. This is obviously welcome, but it should be noted that the ban does not cover all people with temporary care of children. Private foster parents, nannies, baby-sitters, boyfriends, relatives and any home tutors or coaches not working in an institution will still be entitled to raise the defence of “reasonable punishment” for common assaults, even when inflicted against the wishes of the parents.
The consultation deadline is 11 January 2016. CAU! supporters are encouraged to respond, making this point as well as promoting children’s right to full protection from all assaults, regardless of place or perpetrator.