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Podcast | Season 1 | Episode 17: Pupil Behaviour in Schools

What is the best approach to pupil behaviour in class? In his presentation Tom Bennett presents the key findings of the Independent Review of Behaviour in Schools 2017, and discusses the resulting recommendations.

📎 How Can We Raise Standards of Behaviour in Schools?

  • Examining the key issues illustrated in the Independent Review of Behaviour in Schools, 2017, and the resulting recommendations
  • Discussing how behaviour audits can be utilised to create a data map of school behaviour to compare and benchmark schools over time
  • Examining the common characteristics of schools that deal with behavioural issues and enable pupils to thrive in an outstanding learning environment
  • An overview of the upcoming £10 million ‘behaviour network’ and its aims

💡 Tom Bennett, Independent Behaviour Advisor, Department for Education

📘 The review Creating a Culture: How school leaders can optimise behaviour can be found at this link.

🏫 This session was recorded live on 14th November 2019 on the Main Stage of the Schools & Academies Show at the NEC in Birmingham.

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Andy Mellor

Tom is the founder of ResearchEd. A grassroots organisation raises research literacy in education and campaigns for better evidence awareness worldwide. He now holds events in five continents and 13 countries, attracting thousands of followers and generating discussion and changing schools throughout the world. He's also the editor of ResearchEd magazine with over 15,000 global subscribers. In 2015 he became the UK government school behaviours advisor advising on behaviour policy, as well as chairing the mental health in schools panel. He's written four books about teacher training. And in 2015, he was along listed as one of the world's top teachers in the GEMS global teacher prize. In the same year, he made the Huffington Post top 10 Global bloggers list. He's also the Director of Tom Bennett Training, which works exclusively with the most disadvantaged students and schools in England, helping them to turn around. His online resources have been viewed over 1,200,000 times, I don't know who's counting. He's a Teacher Fellow of Corpus Christi College, University of Cambridge, Tom, welcome,

Tom Bennett

Right. Good day, good afternoon. In the next 20 minutes, I'm going to try to persuade you of my vision as to how we can improve behavioural standards in schools throughout the UK nationally. Not an easy prospect given the complexity of the system that we face. Anyway thank you very much for coming along. Hope to have to be persuasive in some cases. They'll be some questions at the end, we'll try and build that in. Okay, so I have the honour of being the government's independent behaviour advisor, which is just it's an independent role. What I'm seeing isn't the government's view, but I'm the person that advises the government on behaviour in schools. The benefit of that is I get to see why I want and what I think is actually true. In 2017, I was commissioned to write a report called creating a culture. And one of the reasons behind that report was to try to see if there's anything we could discern from the most effective schools about what they do that could be scaled and replicated in other schools. In other words, do schools with good behaviour, achieve it through a succession of themes that can be passed on to other schools? Or is it just the luck of the draw? In order to try to answer this question, I was very, very animated by the idea that we needed to go to schools that were genuinely inclusive also with comprehensive antics and cultures, the opposite flourishing. I'm not interested in what Eton College is doing with its children, I'm sure they're doing wonderful things. But when it comes to passing on ideas that can be sustainable and scalable, and I'm less interested in what leafy schools in the Cotswolds are doing with highly, shall we say, selective demographics, that I am in finding out what genuinely comprehensive schools do in real world real life situations with real children? And I think that's important. So was there anything they had in common? Unfortunately, there was otherwise this would have been a very, very short report indeed. And just do your best. So the things that schools did in common were normally quite thematic. And individually, they could look quite different. But they all had large themes in common. I'll try and run through with just now. I mean, I was relieved for many reasons to hear this. I mean, you can be a school, which is beanbags and high fives and first names and you can be a school which is micromanaged down to the blink rate in the heart rate of the students. And I'm quite happy, I'm quite at peace with the idea of a very plural educational system where schools are very, very different. The last thing I want to do something, the thing I fear is to come up with the, you know, the Tom Bennett school that every school must aspire to. I want schools to be the best version of themselves so that they can flourish, but want them to do so in such a way where students feel safe, and everyone feels like they're treated with dignity and respect and learning occurs and still to this flourishing. So this is what we came up with.

Tom Bennett

This is this is my TED Talk. This is my one slide. And it's basically this, that most schools haven't been trained how to handle behaviour. I'd like to expand that if you're a classroom teacher, and you've been through a PGC or a school based route and so on. Traditionally, if you received any behavioural training at all, it may have been short and sporadic, or you may have got some great training I've seen plenty of teachers go through lots of training routes, having had great training and behaviour management. Historically, there's been a real deficit of high quality behavioural training. I mean, I must have been going back, say 15 years, I remember getting a 45 minute lecture on behaviour management, and then good luck for the rest of your career. And for something which is so intrinsic to the maintenance of our classroom order. I think that wasn't enough. It's bad enough if you're a teacher, but if you're a school leader, there is no guaranteed path by which you will receive any kind of training in order by which you can run behaviour as systemic and institutional level. So if you're a school teacher, or a school leader, the idea appears to be that you'll pick it up by osmosis as you go along. You'll walk into a school and you know, do whatever it'll be fine eventually. Now that sounds to me like the classic fudge and I think it's nothing short of a scandal. And because of this system in which we find ourselves, and I might add, many countries around the world are very, very similar in very similar circumstances. Because of the situation. We find situations where classroom teachers and school leaders are reinventing the wheel every single generation every single time they go into the schools that sort of work out what works for them individually or what works for them in schools. And they try some things at work. Can they say some things that don't. But it's grasping in the dark. I remember when I first started to teach at a very, very difficult class and fancy that. And they used to run around. I remember I said to my mentor, what do you think I should do with this class? And they said, we'll take the take the take the child is misbehaving the most, and put them in charge of the lesson.

Tom Bennett

He said, Have you thought of that? I said, No, I'd never really thought of that. Because it sounds mad. But I'll give it a try. So I'll give it a try. And there's this young lady, I see a lady and I put her in charge of the class. And she proceeded to make Shrek impressions for the next 45 minutes. You know, I can't think why. And I sat at the back of the class with students with me and one student turned to me and says, so what are you doing? And I said, I've got no idea. And I went to my mentor after the lesson and I said, Oh, it was covered in blood. I said, That was awful. has a really hard time. And he says, oh, did it not work? And he said, no, it didn't work when you tried it and he said, No, I've never done it. You know, and that's the system in which we find ourselves. I'll try that. Who knows? That's not good enough. It's not good enough for children is not good enough for teachers. What we found amongst the most successful schools that were inclusive, and had atmospheres with people could flourish. As human beings and students with this. Most teachers, most schools tend to primarily respond to misbehaviour. The idea is basically I'll try to teach them, I will try to teach them in general. And if they misbehave, we'll do something about it. That's my classroom level that usually looks like the teacher then sanctioning a student. Now, I'm not saying you don't respond to students, misbehaviour, and I'm certainly not against sanctions. I'm very pro sanctions. As part of what we do in education. It's only one part of the things that we can do to modify the behaviour. But if that's all you've got in your repertoire, then you'll never be able to move the behaviour needle for some children a little bit. You cannot punish children into behaving know what the defective skills do. The most effective schools did something which was perhaps perhaps obvious but isn't happening a lot, I assure you, which is this, they proactively taught the children, the behaviours that they needed to perform well, in order to flourish. I say taught not tooled, because again, one of the most common errors I see happen in schools and classrooms is that people will say to the children, these are the rules and then walk away, as if that means they are no experts in those rules. Now, we know from the curse of expertise, that when you are very good at something, it's very easy to underestimate how hard it is for somebody who's not good at it, like mathematics or speaking of foreign language, for example. So if you are like if you're a regular adult, if you are good at behaving, as you all are, thank you, I appreciate your, your your quietness, I'm gonna I'm gonna take that for for good manners rather than boredom. And if that's if you're an adult with you know, good self regulation and, you know, you're you know how to share and take turns and you're patient and you wait things inside. Children who haven't been taught these habits, behaviours and attitudes, find it really, really hard. And if you've got a child with special education leads as 10 times as hard. And yet, if we say to a class of 30 peoples you need to behave, that what behave means 30 things to 30 different pupils. And if you say to a group of teachers, you need to make your children behave, that's worse than useless. My father was a taxi driver, he knows I say that so he doesn't mind me saying this. My father was a taxi driver for 25 years. A brilliant driver, the world's worst driving instructor. You know, and when he taught me to drive he used to get really frustrated and say, can you just drive the car just drive it is if that meant something to me.

Tom Bennett

But it's been I'm weeping normally. And you know, the word drive is a complex set of maker behaviours to deal with clutches and steering wheels and gear sticks and so on. If we want children to behave, we need to teach them the individual habits and behaviours that we expect them to be able to perform. So the best schools by far proactively taught behaviour They were utterly clear. They weren't vague. They didn't say behave. They said things like we want you to behave. And this is what good behaviour means. They gave children something towards which they could aspire, and something towards which they could attempt. And if the children struggled with those behaviours, they helped them to achieve those behaviours. That's why I see behaviour must be taught, not told. You know, every good teacher knows the pedagogical. If you want to teach something to somebody, you don't just give them a sheet of paper and say, that's it, now you're an expert. You teach it, you get them to do something with it, you check their misunderstanding, you correct their misconceptions, you get into practices, and then you do it again and again and again. The same with behaviours. If you're learning a new behaviour, whether that is focusing or sharing or being patient or taking turns, it must be taught, not told. And if I'm honest to practitioners who are who are normally best at this, you tend to find in the early years sector, because famously, little children don't know how to do very much by themselves. They're not born with these behaviours. They're not born with these habits and attitudes. The first time I worked in an early your sector, a boy walked up to me and pointed his nose and said, my nose is full. I know I went like that, too. I also said, what do you want me to do kid. And the teacher said, he wants you to put a handkerchief under his nose. So you blew his nose all up my sleeve, which was a great lesson. But you know, children need to be totally safe. They don't even know how to sleep, as I found it with my own children, you know, just like that and shut your eyes, but do it for longer.

Tom Bennett

So, children struggle with behaviour frequently needs to be taught behaviour. And I mean that in a positive, healthy, encouraging we this is what we call the proactive approach to behaviour management. You create an environment where children find it easier to learn, to behave, how you teach them to behave. Contrast that with the purely reactive methodology of if you misbehave, I'll tell you off, I'll punish you. Which means that the only time children hear about behaviour is when they're being punished or sanctioned. Right think of it as an association that creates for them, and also is a great way to learn anything. Imagine if somebody said to you, I want to learn Albanian and you don't know anything about it, if every time you get a word wrong, I'm gonna I'm gonna, you know, punish you, you know, that's not the most effective method. ]Sanctions are part of a process, but not the not the be all and end all. So the most effective schools did both. They had the proactive methodology whereby they taught children behaviours and about utterly crystal clear about it, and they repeated themselves over and over again. And they corrected misunderstandings and they help children to understand why their behaviour was wrong. And they had very effective reactive mechanisms. The reaction, the consequences or whatever you want to call it, is the thing that closes the circle. Because no matter how well you teach behaviours, then by how well you encourage an agenda, these good habits and behaviours and children, some children will still misbehave. This is why people break the law. You know, we're not born perfect. We sometimes see opportunities for our own betterment, or perhaps you could just be lazy or not thinking you're distracted by something else that a million other reasons why you might break a law, you know, to be true.

Tom Bennett

So we each have consequences as well, in the most effective schools, they're both. The things that these are built on are normally norms and routines and consequence codes. So by norms, I mean, social norms showed me to hear from you explicitly across the school and in each classroom. And in each space. What does normal good behaviour look like? Otherwise, you're asking them to guess. And once enough people do it sure to see it in other children, and they gravitate towards those norms. It doesn't make them behave, but it helps them to behave, because it's easier for them to behave because they see everybody else wanting to behave. And the reason why children gravitate towards norms and the reason why we all do, instead of a simple reason is that human beings are actually quite conformist in some ways. You know, we'd like to try to fit into the people around the about, as if somebody were to walk into this room just now. They will probably copy the behaviour that you're doing just now. It doesn't mean that there's kind of slavery robotic copies, it doesn't mean they don't have free will of their own mind. It just means that people like to fit in. Why? Because of something that most educators know about Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs, the sense of belonging, the sense of being valued, the sense of being accepted the sense of forming meaningful relationships with other people. One of the reasons why we want to fit in with other people, is because we want their approval. And if children don't get approval for doing the right thing, they will seek approval for doing the wrong thing. I would argue that a hell of a lot of misbehaviour in schools, a lot of it not all but a lot of it is mucking around. I don't think that's controversial and art, that it's essentially amusing yourself as making your friends laugh, a bit bored, you're a bit distracted and so on, but there's nothing darker sinister going on. I would also argue a lot of behaviour in schools is to do with things which are more complex and challenging, so we must never lose sight of that either. I think both things are true. So the norms are useful, and then the routines, and a routine is just another form of a norm. But I'm cheating slightly. It's basically just a normal But it's a set sequence of behaviours, do this, then do this, then do this, the mirror signal manoeuvre of classrooms and schools, and it's simply it's a way of helping children to understand, intuitively innately the things they should be doing without them having to think about it very much. If you want children to enter a classroom in a particular way, and it doesn't matter to me if you want them gliding silently up the corridor like monks are singing the skill him or making a human pyramid on a motorbike it doesn't matter to be one job or however you want to do it. The question we must ask ourself as educators is, have they been taught the routine effectively, have the practice routine 12345 and you can have a routine for leaving the classroom entering the classroom give routines for transitioning between activities, you can have routines for how they behave in the assembly hall did any hold up the corridors, the playgrounds, school trips, you can render anything you want to try to systematise any behaviour you want to be the same roughly all the time should be systematised. And taught. Otherwise, you're asking children to guess what's in your head in terms of what the behaviours. Children are not born knowing how to start a lesson, but not born, knowing what you mean by a good lesson start. So teach them what it is through the methodology of routines and norms. And finally, we fall into consequences. I am a huge believer in things like mailed sanctions as a deterrent, particularly when they're consistent and apply throughout the whole school. By hope our vows to persuade you so far that I don't think that that is the primary thing we use in schools, I think it's something which you need to round off the circle to close the circle. But by far the most effective technique is the proactive version of this equation. But if you don't have the consequences, if people know that they can still misbehave and nothing will happen to them, then the problem of that then is that about 5% of your children will choose that avenue choose that alternative. So in order to make sure that those children aren't permitted to do as they please, you need mild sanctions as a deterrent.

Tom Bennett

We know the sanctions don't work equally on all children. The children that sanctions work most effectively are not the children who are already the most well behaved, which we should expect, because, you know, I know it sounds a bummer. But these are the ones I've already bought into the school behaviour system the most. It doesn't mean we don't use sanctions on our children. But it means that we we make sure that is consistently applied throughout the school as possible, as well as rewards. I would be very careful about the type of extrinsic rewards that we use in schools. We don't want children to behave because they're going to get free or sweet or uprisings. I once saw school, they no longer does this. And they used to allow children to accumulate merit points. And if they got enough merit points, they could skip lessons. Right. And yeah, I mean, if you think of that, think of what that's the message that's sending out. But there's lots of other rewards you give and so on. But it's crucial to remember that rewards can disempower children too, and that actually the best reward going back to Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs, appears to be sincere, targeted proportionate praise. Knowing the child and understanding when they've done something well, and speaking to them, and thanking them for it and mentioning what it was they did well, if you've got a child in your class that comes in with a dirty collar, smelling of smoke, never brings in the equipment, you walk up to that child one day, and you find they've got a clean collar on and they've got that equipment, who knows how that's happened, maybe mum or dad maybe themselves has made it happen. You walk up to that child, and you say thank you, your uniform looks great today. I appreciate that. And then you walk away, you don't do front of anyone else. And that child knows that you notice them, that they exist, that they matter, and that the appearance matters. That's the best type of reward you can give a child or a member of staff for my eyes, the most effective schools did both, they treated staff as if they were human beings. I know it's a crazy idea. But they treated staff as though they mattered. And they remembered things and they made personal comments of congratulations and so on. And they remember to do that and that's not easy. And the treadmill on the hamster wheel of education.

Tom Bennett

So that's essentially what most schools did. I mean that really is the coles notes, that's the globetrotter guide. There's far more to it than that. But that was the systems in place. And if you see these and they seem simple, they're reasonably simple, but they're not easy. But then nothing valuable ever was easy. And the implementation of these three aspects is incredibly difficult. Okay. One of the things they also all did was they had behaviour maps. Most of the schools we saw that were very effective at managing behaviour with a genuinely comprehensive intake, knew what their challenges were, they knew who had problems with their behaviour and when and with whom, and then what combination of class groups and geographies and corridors and one of the best ways you can find out about this, if you're a school leader, is to run something like you know, SurveyMonkey or something like that, or Google Docs and do a survey which is entirely anonymous, and they only take about 10 minutes. And you ask about say 15 to 20 questions, either to staff or to students, preferably both. divide up the information and ask them questions like what are the The most frequent misbehaviors you encounter? How many minutes of the lesson do you lose each day? But on average, do you think? Do you think there's a problem in building? If it's staff, you could ask questions like, do you know where to find out more about behaviour management, and so on? Now, these types of questions are only one point in your data triangle. It's useful to know what people think about behaviour in schools. It's not the final judgement. It's not the last say in that matter because obviously people can be wrong. But at the same time, it's incredibly important for leaders to hear what staff the students actually think about behaviour on the ground, rather than in this, this bubble that can sometimes follow leaders as they go around the school. I mean, some leaders are very clued up about their schools, but some schools could do a lot more to find out what's actually going on in the ground, or like the Queen does everything smell like paint to them whenever they walk around. Bare in mind of course, that some people will have a very different experience of the school than the leaders may have themselves given that they lack status, and time and follow up and relationships and so on. So behaviour maps are another thing we saw, which were very, very commonly used. They also use for example, things like you know, their Sims data and so on, to really understand what the problems were, where and when. Bearing in mind, of course, that recorded data is just one part of the story. You may get a teacher that's not recording behavioural data, because their too swamped and too busy or too upset or too depressed to do. So. I may get teachers not recording data because they don't care. And this should be, you know, it goes both ways. So once you have your data, it's terribly important that leaders make a judgement call and go beyond the data and think what's really going on here. And here's another interesting point we found. There's a lot of talk in the press about schools being exclusive and schools be unfair and so on. Perhaps counterintuitive finding we made was that the best schools that were inclusive and had flourishing behavioural environments were sorry, the best schools that flourishing behavioural environments, were frequently incredibly inclusive. And the reason for this was because A, they thought very closely and carefully about teaching the types of behaviours and habits to people that needed to learn it. And they particularly focused on people who were struggling with those behaviours and habits. Not million appear to have sense but also in a supportive sense, like I will teach you what to do when you have to manage manage your anger because somebody cussed your mum or something like that. A lot. The best practice we saw came from alternative provision and PRU's, perhaps that's unsurprising. But these places frequently have have to very, very seriously consider how to manage behaviour and effective and positive ways.

Tom Bennett

Now I better say it from the outset, there are some terrible PRU's and there's some brilliant ones. And we went to some brilliant ones where there was enormous amounts of structure and routine and so on, because very frequently, the children from the least structured most dislocated backgrounds needed the most structured at school to feel safe because of course, safety is another massive part of our basic motivational needs. But at the same time, what most PRU's tend to do if they're a good one is as well as lots of structure and norms and routines and so on, also have an enormously targeted therapeutic approach to these children, where they would be coached through their behaviours and through their perhaps mental health issues and so on.

Tom Bennett

Most mainstream schools don't have the capacity to do it to that level. What I think is interesting is about missing schools can do, even in challenging circumstances, as to focus and things like norms and routines. I chaired the mental health panel for the DfE last year. One of the things we found was if you want to try to support children's mental wellbeing at school and staff mental wellbeing at school, one of the best things you could do as a school, because remember, schools are not themselves clinicians. What school can do is to provide an environment which is safe, dignified, calm, where people feel like they were treated like human beings, which are less stressful, and therefore reduce the triggers that can sometimes exacerbate mental health issues. And where to imagine mental health issues can be spotted in a calm, safe environment, chaotic skills and challenging classes. systems are good for no one. They are good for no one. And I think what was most clear to me was that the schools with the best behaviour, genuinely best behaviour cared a hell of a lot about their most challenging and most most marginalised students. That was an interesting finding for me, perhaps it shouldn't be a couple of things about coming up the behaviour hubs project, which I'm leading to the DfE and the DfE initial teacher training, core content framework has just been released. And my behaviour, shall we say structure has been included as part of it as as a handy two piece infographic for easy consumption. So hopefully that will help to be adopted across the ICT platforms, and then the Ofsted Inspection Framework itself. Again, I've been working with Ofsted to try to suggest ways in which they can improve their their judgments and what they're looking for. I'm quietly optimistic about some of this. There's the new behaviour and attitudes judgement focused on calm and orderly environments with high expectations, consistency and fairness music to my ears, we shall see what happens on the ground. But I think it's steps in the right direction. And finally, the behaviour hubs network, which is a project of a leading for the next two half years for the DfE, has essentially pairing up highly effective schools with schools that want help to improve their behaviour systems, it is not a system by which schools will be asked to see you must be like that school, it will be a coaching system, where we hope schools will be encouraged to be the best version of themselves, usually through things like leadership training and staff training. But there will be money available for targeted packages, which have been agreed by the DfE by the lead advisors and myself that the school might need to help them get through and help them become self sustaining and healthy, positive school cultures.

Tom Bennett

I'm going to I'm going to leave it there because I believe there's some questions. Okay, sir just scream. Yeah, I can hear you.

Audience Member 1

A polarised approach around behaviourist behaviour policies are very sanction based. And there's also a rise in schools looking around the restorative approaches in schools as well. The bit about not punishing to get behaviour seems to be lost on a lot of the behaviourist approaches. And I think I don't know if that message is just lost, doesn't come across because, sure.

Tom Bennett

Okay, I'll let me just pick it up. It's a great point. It's a brilliant point. I want to first say I'm not against certain approaches either. I've seen schools use them very effectively. What I what I would encourage schools to do, though, is, as I put this, I don't think school should not sanction students, either. I think sanctions are a necessary part, a part of the repertoire of the utility belt of a school of a school response system. You know, some children do just need you know 20 minutes some of the teacher the end of the day, do some extra work. the only the only thing a sanction does the only thing a sanction does, if it works is to deter people. That's all it is. It must never be retributive, it must never be something revenge. You know, the minute you do that the child knows that you've lost them forever. But mild attempts do tend to what come in, if you're driving down a road with 10 speed cameras, and you know, they're all on. And you know, you'll get three points in your licence as I did recently, then will it deter you? I mean, yes, it will. Yes, it will. But if but if there's one there and you don't know if it's on or not, then you might you might still speed, you know, human behaviour is to some extent, the talent by the fear of being caught and then further and so on. The sanctions themselves must only ever be mild, mild deterrence, you know, certainty better than severity, as Bill Rogers famously says, but the distortion approach is necessary when you are genuinely destroying relationships between children. You know, if you've got two friends that have fallen out and had a big fight, then effectively trained restorative counselling is terribly useful to get those kids back together again. Whereas if you've got a child has been perpetually bullied by somebody with whom they have no relationship, the distorted approach is in my experience in schools far less effective, because the child will frequently say, I have no relationship with that person to restore, I do not wish to sit down and chat with them. I wish them not to, not to punch me again. And I think we need to take that into account too. It should also be understood that the restorative approach was developed in the prison system that obviously has been transplanted wholesale. But we must remember that when schools are considering going to purely startup approaches, because I think that it's as part of your repertoire, it's very, very useful and effective. But when we when we see things like I will never use sanctions, then we're also seeing things like I will never use a reprimand. I will never say to somebody that wasn't good enough. I will never keep somebody behind at the end of the day to give them a little ticking off for a few minutes. You know, I will I will never tell someone off in a classroom.

Tom Bennett

All of these things are sanctions. And when children lose a little bit status in the classroom, that can be a mild sanction to if I need to see you in my office for five minutes.

Audience Member 1

Yeah, I think that's a slight misinterpretation that was started with what goes on in schools. To be honest.

Tom Bennett

I can only I can only say that I've been to a lot of schools that are starting approaches. And while there may be a pure version, which works and I'd be happy to discuss it, most schools...

Audience Member 1

...relationship based version

Tom Bennett

Okay, fine. But most schools I see, make mistakes, in that path. But a valid point. I'm sure. Is there time for one more question? Miss.

Audience Member 2

In terms of providing a safe environment for children, ideally, in a behaviour policy, and how do you propose that you would deal with staff who are not following the policy, whatever the policy might be? We talk a lot about sanctions for children. And, you know, leaders are putting in a lot of effort to their behaviour policies, you know, to allow learning for everybody, but if it's the teachers causing the problems, how do you propose that leader deals with that issue.

Tom Bennett

Have you seen Goodfellas? Concrete? No. Listen, teachers are human beings a fact which is often lost in this debate. And teachers themselves are often imperfectly trained to manage behaviour. And when we ask them to manage behaviour, there's sometimes thinking I wish I knew how. If you notice a teacher, for example, not on their duty, not on their post lunch...

Audience Member 2

I think some teachers try to be friends too much with students and which is where the behaviour policy goes out...

Tom Bennett

A leader, what leaders should do first and foremost, is to support the teacher and say, do you know what you should be doing? And the answer is no. Can I show you how to do it? And then is that an impediment? Is there a reason why you can't do this thing or wanting to do you know, you can't be on duty because you've got to come too far across school. So the first three responses to the leader must always be supportive. I want to help you get good at the thing I want you to do, just as with the students, otherwise, we're going down the same punitive reports with them. And again, you can't you can't really punish Teachers into becoming better professionals. Obviously, at some point you may have to go Don't keep abilities if someone is just resolutely refusing to learn and improve and to change. And I have seen a very fractionally small percentage of teachers who are sadly unsuited to the role. And I mean, like, you know, half of 1%, who are mean and cruel, and just want to scream at kids that have got problems with their own the tag off the chest, and I'm not talking about them, they need to go straight, you know, fairly quick witted capabilities. Listen, I do apologise. And it was only half an hour. I'm sorry, I didn't have time to expand and talk properly with you on that one. I thank you very much for coming. It's been a pleasure. Thank you very much. Take care.


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