Updated DfE guidelines will encourage teachers to impose tough penalties on misbehaving pupils including writing lines and picking up litter.
Although there has been significant progress on improving behaviour since 2010, the DfE said that although existing guidelines make the legal backing for setting punishments clear, they fail to outline potential punishments, leaving heads and teachers uncertain of what action they can take.
The new outlines state that “tough but proportionate” sanctions such as writing lines “are just as crucial to an effective education as praising and rewarding good behaviour”, the BBC reports.
Education Secretary Michael Gove explained that sanctions to tackle bad behaviour range from verbal reprimands to community service. “Our message to teachers is clear – don’t be afraid to get tough on bad behaviour and use these punishments,” he said. “The best schools already ask pupils who are behaving poorly to make it up to their teachers and fellow pupils through community service. I want more schools to follow their example by making badly-behaved pupils pick up litter or help clear up the dining hall after meal times.”
Russell Hobby from the NAHT described the guidance as “a PR exercise” and ATL’s Mary Bousted accused Mr. Gove of “increasingly bizarre” behaviour: “While he says he wants to give school leaders and teachers the power to make the right decisions for their schools, he takes every opportunity to tell them what to do,” she said.
Would you feel comfortable imposing these ‘traditional’ punishments on pupils?