School-wide ban on raising hands in class

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A common practice within the classroom has been banned by a school in Nottinghamshire. Children are no longer allowed to raise their hands to answer a question, in a move which Jane Crich, National Teachers Union (NUT) spokesperson said ‘shows a lack of respect to the teachers at the school.’

Principal of Samworth Church Academy, Barry Found informed parents of the controversial changes through a letter which read, ‘we have taken the decision at the academy to dispense with the age old ‘hands up to answer a question’ practice.’ However the use of the gesture will still exist within the school as the gesture is seen on the school’s logo, but within the classroom ‘hands will only be raised in the academy to establish silence.’

The decision has received backlash from the NUT, teachers and parents. The school-wide decision is seen as removing some authority from teachers within their classrooms, Ms Crich argues that ‘any professional teacher should be trusted to teach a particular topic in a particular style according to the class they have.’

Some parents are worried at how the changes will affect their children’s confidence and self-esteem, with one online post stating ‘It's going to be awful for kids who are naturally anxious if they spend all their classes scared they will be picked, and if they don't know the answer they might be ridiculed by other kids.’ While another post explains ‘some kids don't want to be put on the spot, and it's ok to be quiet or shy.’

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