British Politics’s Blog

The ravings of an individual, UK voter frustrated with our politicians

School Exclusions report is a load of tosh!

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A “Think Tank” supported by the Private Equity Foundation calls for difficult children to remain on the school register rather than being excluded. Once again, we witness these so called experts focusing on the perpetrators rather than the victims. Don’t get me wrong, I accept that those children that are excluded should receive help, but not at the expense of the other children.

The study by the Think Tank, which was based on statistical analysis and workshops, suggests exclusion does not solve behavioural problems and is linked to very poor results. That may be so…but one disruptive pupil can cause misery to the rest of the class and in some cases, change the entire dynamic of the school.

I have personal experience of such a case. One youngster in a primary school was very disruptive and constantly bullying other children. Parents complained to the teachers and the head teacher of this primary school for more than a year. Children that had once looked forward to going to school, were coming home and saying that they wanted to change school or that they “felt sick” and didn’t want to go to school. The matter only got dealt with when parents collecting their children started talking to each other and realised that the reason for their children’s change of attitude stemmed from their experiences with just one pupil.  The school had attempted to keep a lid on the matter, by not taking the collective experiences into account. It was only when the parents started to talk that matter were eventually dealt with.

The child was subsequently excluded and provided with a private tutor. The atmosphere in the school literally changed overnight…children were celebrating and all of a sudden they wanted to go to school to learn.

Where in this report have the experiences of other children been taken into account? Where in the report have the authors taken into consideration the experience of parents in terms of their children’s attitude to such disruptive behaviour? What is the point of having a Think Tank if their review is so narrow as to exclude the consequences of including disruptive pupils…in other words, ignoring the affect on the majority at the expense of the minority? Not for the first time in this country have we seen Think Tanks’ act in a similar fashion…indeed, some imbecilic Government ministers have even introduced legislation to support the recommendations of these Think Tanks.

What is really worrying is Ed Balls is not known for independent thinking…god help us if he reads this report and believes it will gain him a few positive headlines. Next, we can expect to see a raft of new rules or, worse still, new legislation. Remember, this is a man that wants to be Chancellor…Schoos Minister is just a ‘stop gap’.

I fully support the notion of providing children that have ‘behavioural issues’ with additional, specialist support…but their needs must not be the overriding consideration. The Government and teachers have a duty of care and a responsibility to all of the pupils and parents…not just those with behavioural problems or special needs.

The report’s author Sonia Sodha claims that other countries do not exclude children in the way the UK does, that may be true, but do these countries support the notion of allowing children with behavioural difficulties to remain in school to disrupt the education of the majority.

This country has done much to protect the needs of minority groups…but this should never be done at the expense of the majority…as has been the case with so much legislation introduced by this flawed, headline grabbing, self-serving and failed Government.


One Response

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  1. I have a friend who also described something similar to you. It is clear that schools are quite complacent and this advisory board have hardly been objective. I hope parent power will ensure that this report ends up in the bin, where it deserves to be.


    3 March, 2010 at 8:51 am

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