VIOLENCE by primary school children against support staff has more than doubled in five years, according to new research.

One in four people who work as support staff, including classroom assistants, librarians and technicians, reported physical attacks, compared with 11 per cent in 2012.

The type of violence included using weapons, punching, kicking and headbutting, according to the Scottish Government research.

Four hundred primary school support staff took part in the Behaviour in Scottish Schools Research 2016 report, published this month.

Support staff said 79 per cent of pupils were generally well-behaved, well below teachers’ estimates of 87 per cent.

Danny Phillips, a spokesman for Unison Scotland, said: “Pupil support assistants generally have to deal with the pupils who get more frustrated or who are more difficult.For instance, they are often the ones who are asked to take a child who is being disruptive out of class to calm down, but the resources to fully support these children are not there.

“Our members suffer from a lack of training.”