Furious parents are campaigning to save a secondary school teacher who was suspended after allegedly calling pupils 'retards' and 'cowards'.

The male teacher was accused of making the remarks during an emergency assembly this week to address the poor behaviour of Year 11 students.

A social media post claiming that the teacher referred to students as "chicken shits, retards and cowards" later went viral, leading to his suspension.

But angry parents have since slammed the kids who complained as "snowflakes".

They've written to the school to demand that the teacher, who has been named locally on social media, is allowed to keep his job at Gable Hall School in Corringham, Essex.

Headmaster Ceri Evans is due to publish the outcome of the school's investigation into the teacher's behaviour in coming days.

Local resident Jayne Louise said that she was "at a loss how this poor fantastic teacher is being suspended".

She added: "Over 80% [of parents and pupils] are fed up with those kids in question and are saying what a fantastic teacher he is."

Tegan Herbing, who claims to be a former pupil at the school, said the suspended teacher was an "absolutely amazing and supportive teacher".

She said on Facebook: "As a past student from that school can speak from experience that the kids are absolutely awful and can almost guarantee they needed to be put in their places.

"Gable would be at an absolute loss if they lost [the teacher]."

Others took to social media to slam the pupils who complained about the teacher.

Samantha Taylor commented: "What a bunch of snowflakes. Come on he said a few bad words oh no. Grow up."

Moose Dineen agreed: "If these kids are offended by a few words from a teacher what hope have they got when they get out in the big wide world."

Malcolm Lewis said: "Poor kids... I bet they use much worse language than that, they all must be so traumatized to the point of needing therapy....."

In a statement, headteacher Ceri Evans said that the teacher will remain suspended until an internal investigation is completed.

He said: “It has come to my attention that a member of my teaching staff has made derogatory comments to the cohort of year 11 students.

"As a school we do not tolerate or accept such behaviour.

“A formal investigation is now underway which has been assigned to a senior leader within the Ortu trust.

“The teacher is suspended pending the outcome of the investigation.

“The decision of the investigation will be implemented by myself with the support of the governing body.”

On Facebook, some recalled their own school days and times when they had been disciplined by teachers.

Carmine Rizzo said: "Jesus !!! back in my day we were all called d**k heads 🤣 no one got sacked or investigated."

Dominica Crawley added: "Lol. We heard far worse. Had objects thrown across room at ya."