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Jenny
Jenny, Solicitor
Category: Law
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Experience:  Qualified Solicitor specialising in Employment Law and general legal matters. Please start your question For Jenny Only
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Can a teaching assistant get a penalty a relationship

Resolved Question:

Can a teaching assistant get a penalty for having a relationship with a student aged 17 from another school.
He's not her student.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jenny replied 1 year ago.
Hello my name is ***** ***** I am happy to help you today. Are you the teaching assistant in this scenario?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
A friend of a friend is a primary school teaching assistant. She was in a relationship with a 17 year old student who was from another town and attends a high school not in her community
Expert:  Jenny replied 1 year ago.
Are you asking if the employer can take action against her?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I'm asking if student was to ever report it can it affect her or her profession.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
She's never taught him
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
He was never in her duty of care.
It's just someone she met
Expert:  Jenny replied 1 year ago.
It would depend on the policy of the school she is working in and whether it could be deemed to be an 'abuse of trust'. The person was not under the age of 16 so it is not illegal. It is possible that there is a school policy which may cause a problem for her but on the face of it it is not a criminal activity.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
If it's not a criminal activity, what's the worst cast scenario.
Appreciate your quick resposes
Expert:  Jenny replied 1 year ago.
If there is no policy on this then the only course of the action the school might take is to say that it amounts to 'brining the school into disrepute'. If the nature of the relationship is known to the public this could be the case. If the school were to think that this is the case then this can be classed as gross misconduct. The worse case scenario in those circumstances could be termination of employment. As it is not illegal the teacher could argue that this is in breach of her human rights but this argument is fairly tenuous.
Expert:  Jenny replied 1 year ago.
Hello is there anything further you would like to know?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Just abit confused.
The lady is a primary school teaching assistant and relationship isn't in the policy as all the children are under 11.
Can it be a crime for dating a 17 year old.
Expert:  Jenny replied 1 year ago.
No it isn't a crime. But criminal law and employment laws are different. Just because something is not a criminal activity does not prevent an employer from taking action from an employment law point of view. It is not criminal to have sex with a 17 year old but if you are in a position of responsibility and representing a school as a Teaching Assistant it may be undesirable for the school if parents find out that the TA is having a relationship of this nature. I'm not saying that the school will dismiss I'm just saying that it is not beyond the realms of possiblity that if they found out they would object. It may, in part, depend on the age of the TA as some can be very young. A 19 or 20 year old TA having a relationship with a slightly younger male may be viewed differently from a middle aged woman doing the same. Does that make sense?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Yes it makes better sense.
Expert:  Jenny replied 1 year ago.
Good is there anything further you would like to know?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Have I got a one week offer on asking questions
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
So in a nutshell she cannot be sentenced but it can affect her job of parents and employer finds out
Expert:  Jenny replied 1 year ago.
Hi I'm not sure what offer you have signed up to, I can ask someone who deals with this kind of thing to look at it. Yes it is not a criminal matter and she cannot be sentenced, but the employer may take action if they find out. I would be grateful if you would take the time to rate my answer. I will be happy to answer your follow on questions.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Really appreciate your feedback
Expert:  Jenny replied 1 year ago.
No problem, if the question gives you the option to rate or accept my answer I'd be grateful if you would do so before you leave the site as I am not otherwise credited for my time. Many thanks
Jenny and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi taratillThe TA was respectedly 32years old at the time, looks half her age quite frankly, and was in a relationship with the student for only three months.