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Medical Reports

Volume 201: debated on Wednesday 15 January 1992

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To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he will make a statement about the guidance given by his Department to medical practitioners providing medical reports under regulation 10 to the Education (Teachers) Regulations 1989; and whether the teacher has the right to access to the report before it is sent to the Secretary of State.

Guidance to local education authorities and others on the suspension or termination of a teacher's employment on medical grounds is contained in circular 1/88 "Physical and Mental Fitness to Teach of Teachers and of Entrants to Teacher Training". Copies are available in the Library.Whenever the Secretary of State requests a medical report to consider a person's exclusion from teaching on medical grounds, individual guidance is given about the nature of the report required. The teacher may have access to the report before the Secretary of State determines his or her case, except where the medical practitioners concerned consider that disclosure might not be in the teacher's best interests. The teacher also has the right to submit a separate report from a medical practitioner of his or her own choosing.The Secretary of State has no power to require a medical report for the purpose of considering barring a person from teaching or related employment on the grounds of misconduct. However, he may, in appropriate cases, suggest that it would be helpful for the teacher to provide one. In all cases, the teacher's written consent to the report's being seen by the Secretary of State is obtained before the report is commissioned.