A PETITION has been launched calling on a St Cyres teacher to be reinstated into his job after he was suspended for allegedly punching a 13-year-old pupil.

The staff member at St Cyres Comprehensive School in Penarth is accused of hitting the pupil, who was said to have been misbehaving in a lesson on Thursday, June 12.

The Vale of Glamorgan council said an investigation was taking place after a male teacher had been suspended from the school.

South Wales Police confirmed that an allegation had been made against a male teacher and that they were investigating the incident.

Vale of Glamorgan councillor Chris Elmore, who is the cabinet member for children's services, said: "We can confirm that a member of staff at St Cyres School in Penarth has been suspended following an incident that took place on June 12.

"The police are aware of the incident and council officers are currently working to assist them in their inquiries."

A petition has been launched by former pupils calling on the allegations to be dismissed and for the teacher to be returned to his position.

The petition, signed by more than 800 people, states: “Due to the current child protection laws it has become incredibly easy to completely ruin a teacher's life following mere allegations made by anyone who dares to chance their arm. Whether evidence is presented or not, these cases are almost always viewed as 'guilty until proven innocent' yet these accusations are likely to be pure fabrications.

“Those who know and have known the teacher in question would describe him as incredibly happy, inspiring and the most friendly and familiar teacher any student could ask for. Photos of him with his class uploaded to Facebook truly present his loving relationship with his students.”

It adds: “He deserves much more support than he is given, and deserves his pardon if he is failed to be proven guilty.”