Above all other things, our school must be a safe place for all children and staff. This means that we cannot allow those actions which cause harm. Our non-negotiables set the context for a safe school and, as such, they must be enforced at all times by all people.
It is important that children know we like them, even when we don’t like their behaviour. That’s why we need a clear set of expectations that every young person – and every adult – adheres to. The difficulty with sets of rules for the classroom, rules for the corridor and rules for the playground is that nobody can ever remember them!
To achieve total consistency we need a simple, shared language that describes the positive behaviour we want to see in the school; a language that applies across the age and ability range and in any context. Our expectations of behaviour are therefore ‘Respect People, Respect Property, Respect Learning’.
Of course, things will go wrong from time to time. When they do, adults will always remain calm, remembering that a child’s poor behaviour is not personal. Staff will employ any of the following strategies to help manage behaviour in the classroom. Which strategy they use and when they use it is entirely up to them. After all, staff know the context of their class better than anyone.
- Verbal reminder(s)
- Chat at the door
- Quick breather
- Swap seats
- Teacher’s desk
- ‘Subject park’
- Removed from room
Managing a classroom is no easy feat. All concerns are passed on so that staff feel supported and children know that the school and home will collectively reinforce the classroom expectations. Classroom concerns are passed on using the ‘Classroom Concern’ card.
Appropriate follow-up actions may include but are not limited to: a telephone call home; direct work with the child; removal of recreational time; use of a tracker; or, in serious circumstances, a short, fixed-term exclusion from school. The focus is the immediacy of the action as opposed to the weight.
All classroom concerns are recorded and used to inform decisions by the Wellbeing and Inclusion Panel who manage the school’s Graduated Response.