Decrease in assaults on teachers in secondary schools


Figures published by the Department for Education have revealed that since the education reforms, which have enabled heads to have greater control over the running of their schools, the number of cases of serious behaviour and assaults on teachers in secondary schools continues to decrease year on year.

The three most influential reform policies behind this decrease in serious bad behaviour by pupils are said to be:

  1. Revoking the ‘no-touch’ behaviour policies which means disruptive pupils can be removed from class
  2. Giving teachers the power to issue students with no-notice same-day detentions
  3. Including behaviour management in training for head teachers.

For the sixth year running, assaults on teachers by secondary school pupils have decreased, as have the number of pupils who have been temporarily and permanently excluded.

According to the figures, the number of pupils permanently excluded in 2009/2010 was 5,740, compared to 4,630 in 2012/2013. Likewise, the number of fixed-term exclusions also decreased, by 63,860. Fixed-term exclusions as the consequence of physical assault decreased, with more than 11,000 less cases in 2012/2013 than in 2009/2010.

Nick Gibb, School Reform Minister, said: “A tiny minority of disruptive children can absorb almost all of a teacher’s time and attention, and have an enormously negative impact on the education of other pupils.

“We have given heads and teachers more power than ever before to ensure strong discipline in school, so they can take action before exclusion becomes necessary. We have introduced new search powers, no-notice detentions and have put schools back in charge of exclusion appeals.

“We are also tackling the causes of exclusion by improving the quality of teaching, tackling disadvantage through the pupil premium, overhauling the special educational needs system and making radical improvements to alternative provision.

“These figures give further confirmation that our reforms are starting to have a real impact on improving behaviour in schools and this is supported by teachers on the ground – in 2013 more teachers rated their school’s behaviour as good or very good than when previously surveyed in 2008. And 130,000 fewer pupils are persistently missing class than in 2010.”

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