Ofsted supporting stricter punishments for unruly pupils

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Amanda Spielman, Ofsted’s chief inspector, says she wants inspectors to focus more on behaviour in schools including “low level disruption” – such as swinging on chairs and talking in class.

The schools’ watchdog could create a separate “behaviour and attitudes” judgement in inspections.

Ofsted inspectors will support headteachers who decide to adopt stricter punishments – such as “community service” on school grounds, writing lines and detentions – for low level disruption in class.
 
“I fundamentally disagree with those who say that taking a tough stance on behaviour is unfair to children,” she will say.
“There is nothing kind about letting a few pupils spoil school for everyone else. That is why we expect heads to put in place strong policies that support their staff in tackling poor behaviour.”
 
Ms Spieman will back calls for heads to ban mobile phones at school, saying it can create disruption in class.
“I want us to look just as hard at low level disruption, which stops pupils learning and which can make the job of classroom management miserable,” she will say.
 
“Technology has made the challenge of low level disruption even worse,” Ms Spielman will warn.
 
“I am yet to be convinced of the educational benefits of all day access to ‘Snapchat’ and the like; and the place of mobile phones in the classroom seems to me dubious at best.”
 
Her comments come after the culture secretary, Matt Hancock, called on heads to ban mobile phones, saying he admired those who do not allow the device to be used during the school day.
 
Mr Trobe added: “We can assure the chief inspector that schools do not shy away from putting in place strong behaviour policies and that they are well aware of the importance of a well-ordered and disciplined environment as a cornerstone for effective learning.
 
“They decide on the nature of sanctions based on their knowledge and experience of what is most effective in their school, and it is important that this remains a matter of professional judgement rather than an expectation that certain sanctions will be used.”

“Holding schools to account for the work that they do is an essential part of our publicly funded education system, but the National Audit Office (NAO) recently concluded that Ofsted cannot show whether its school inspections are having a positive impact on standards.
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