NASUWT comments on Scottish behaviour in schools report

Published on Thursday, 04 October 2012 16:23
Posted by Vicki Mitchem

Commenting on the publication of the Behaviour in Scottish Schools 2012 report by the Scottish Government, Chris Keates, General Secretary of the NASUWT, the fastest growing teachers' union in Scotland, said:

"This report illustrates that the vast majority of schools are relative havens of peace and security where serious pupil indiscipline poses few problems.

"It is also pleasing to note that most teachers report that overall trends in pupil behaviour are improving.

"However, the report backs up research by the NASUWT which found that low-level disruption continues to be a common problem for the majority of teachers, including the use of mobile phones during lessons.

"Low-level disruption is often taken less seriously than other forms of indiscipline, but it can have a hugely negative impact on pupils' ability to learn, and absorbs a significant amount of a teacher's time, distracting them and other pupils from focusing on teaching and learning.

"Schools must ensure there are clear behaviour policies in place which are applied consistently and that teachers' professional judgement about pupil behaviour is backed and respected by school leaders.

"Behaviour policies and practices in every school must work to promote good behaviour and help schools deal with issues of pupil indiscipline effectively."

Jane Peckham, NASUWT Scotland Organiser, said:

"The report demonstrates that incidences of verbal and physical violence are rare in Scotland's schools, but it is vital that when such episodes do occur, they are taken seriously.

"It is concerning that the report shows that nearly one in four teachers who had experienced verbal or physical violence from pupils were dissatisfied with the way it was dealt with by their school.

"Teachers should not have to put up with being assaulted, either physically or verbally, at work, and schools need to ensure that there are robust procedures in place to protect all school staff from violence.

"The NASUWT is a member of the Scottish Advisory Group on Behaviour in Schools and will be discussing the findings of this report further with ministers to press for greater support for teachers to deal with issues of poor behaviour and violence."

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