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is this one reason why you left the UK?

is this one reason why you left the UK?

Old Apr 24th 2005, 3:20 am
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Default is this one reason why you left the UK?

'The disruption made teaching virtually impossible. I could not believe what I saw'

By Julie Henry, Education Correspondent
(Filed: 24/04/2005)

As the petite, middle-aged teacher shouts desperately for the 20th time for the out-of-control class to be quiet, a faint, childish boy's voice can be heard, calling out above the deafening din: "Suck ** ***, miss".

The appalling scene of classroom disorder and disrespect is just one of many captured on film for a channel Five documentary, to be screened this week, which will reignite the debate on how to tackle bad behaviour in schools.

'Sylvia Thomas', a teacher who agreed to film her classes secretly On returning to teaching after a 30-year absence, a supply teacher using the pseudonym Sylvia Thomas secretly filmed shocking examples of lessons ruined by large numbers of pupils over a three-month period.

The documentary shows children aged from 12 to 15 completely ignoring her and other staff while they shout, scream, fight, swear and wander around the classroom at will.

In one scene a full-scale fight breaks out and a 6ft tall boy is seen wielding a rubber truncheon, as the terrified teacher calls for help. In another, pupils throw books, pens and balls of paper across the room for a full 15 minutes as the teacher protests, before they declare that they "don't give a ****". In yet more disturbing scenes, a boy in a computer class is filmed accessing hard-core porn sites and then protesting his innocence, saying "I just typed in '****', miss".

The supply teacher was filming in 15 ordinary secondary schools in London and the north of England - randomly chosen by the supply agencies she contacted, and none of them considered to be failing by recent inspection reports.

Clearly shaken by her experiences, the teacher said she could not comprehend the behaviour she filmed, using a tiny camera hidden in a briefcase and a microphone disguised as a jacket button.

"I could not believe what I saw. I could not describe what I saw," she said. "The disruption that I experienced made teaching virtually impossible. These were schools in middle-class areas, not sink estates. We are not trying to single out the schools in the programme. They could be schools in any part of the country as far as I am concerned, this behaviour is so widespread."

In almost every class, the teacher is seen repeatedly trying to restore order - but her authoritative voice and friendly, no-nonsense approach makes no apparent impact on pupils.

She is ignored or challenged constantly. In one maths class, a 12-year-old who was censured for saying, "Shite, miss!" told her: "I've got just as much right as you to say what I want. I've got a right to speak up for myself."

"It was a constant battle," the teacher said. "Some pupils have got the idea that they can threaten the teacher with the police, with being summoned and sued. Teachers end up walking on eggshells, and when you do that, you can not discipline a child. The balance between the child and the teacher has swung too far in favour of the former - and they know it. The whole way they walk down the corridor says 'We are in control'."

The documentary, Classroom Chaos, to be broadcast on Wednesday, lays bare a growing tide of "low-level disruption" identified earlier this year by school inspectors as a major concern. In his annual report, David Bell, the chief inspector of schools, said that nine per cent of secondaries suffered from "persistent and unsatisfactory" behaviour - up from six per cent in 2000.

Schools staff also report increasing levels of abuse and violence. A recent survey by the Teacher Support Network, a charity that runs a helpline for school staff, found that 98 per cent of respondents had been verbally abused and 45 per cent threatened with violence. One in five had been assaulted and 38 per cent said their personal property had been damaged or defaced.

At its conference last month, the National Union of Teachers, the biggest teacher association, voted for a national charter of behaviour - with sanctions for pupils who breach it - to be drawn up in an attempt to stem the tide.

All three main political parties have pledged to improve school discipline. Ruth Kelly, the Education Secretary, has promised support for teachers who apply zero tolerance in the classroom.

The Government still insists that schools must take their fair share of disruptive pupils, however. The Conservatives have promised to abolish appeals against pupils exclusions and create "turnaround schools" where poorly behaved pupils can be rehabilitated. Some 21,000 new teachers and smaller classes are pledged by the Liberal Democrats.

According to Ms Thomas, however, the turnaround will not be easy. "I thought maybe their behaviour was because I was bad teacher, or because I was on supply," she said. "But I've shown the video to teacher friends and they say the same things have happened to them." She has now given up teaching for good.
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Old Apr 24th 2005, 3:37 am
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Default Re: is this one reason why you left the UK?

Then you have the other extreme where a 5 year old girl was cuffed in Florida.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/4475513.stm
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Old Apr 24th 2005, 3:40 am
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Default Re: is this one reason why you left the UK?

Originally Posted by Iginla
Then you have the other extreme where a 5 year old girl was cuffed in Florida.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/4475513.stm

I have two solutions:

(1) corporal punishment
(2) We pay for public education so what's the point of having this punk in the classroom? We need the "Shutup and learn or get lost".
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Old Apr 24th 2005, 4:17 am
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Default Re: is this one reason why you left the UK?

Originally Posted by Iginla
Then you have the other extreme where a 5 year old girl was cuffed in Florida.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/4475513.stm

That's sick beyond words. Why the heck weren't the parents called in and given a good thrashing instead?

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Old Apr 24th 2005, 8:46 am
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Default Re: is this one reason why you left the UK?

It goes from one extreme to another! :scared:
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Old Apr 24th 2005, 8:56 am
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Default Re: is this one reason why you left the UK?

Originally Posted by Craftybanshee
It goes from one extreme to another! :scared:
Yes, scary isn't it!!

Congrats on your 3rd 'Star', by the way.
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Old Apr 24th 2005, 9:56 am
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Default Re: is this one reason why you left the UK?

I know that not all canadian kids are angels, but as far as I have seen, behaviour is so much better generally there because they have a culture in which the word "respect" still figures strongly.

Those of us who were brought up to respect authority figures, ie parents teachers, policemen or whoever, cannot believe the lack of respect shown by kids today. However this is not surprising when you look at many adults in our society. The kids only mirror what they see. They learn by example.

Kids in canadian schools are shown to respect eachother, the staff and other adults, and most importantly themselves. How much self-respect do our kids have???

This in turn is mirrored in the strong community spirit demonstrated in many parts of Canada compared to here, where it is very much "every man for himself"

If people, not just kids, will just behave towards others as they would like others to behave towards them, then respect and "good behaviour" follow automatically!
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Old Apr 24th 2005, 10:28 am
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Default Re: is this one reason why you left the UK?

Originally Posted by Morwenna
If people, not just kids, will just behave towards others as they would like others to behave towards them, then respect and "good behaviour" follow automatically!
Agreed, it's a karma thing, you get what you give.

Yesterday I was in town walking around, there was people barging into each other, obstructing each other, rushing around, blocking the aisles, mumbling about things and generally looking miserable with life. Oh, and there was an international fresh food fair on in the market and an umpah band playing, but all I could hear was people moaning about 'all this foreign muck' and ranting about foreigners going back home. Mentally drained, I was, and happy to get the hell out of there....bad vibes, bad karma !

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Old Apr 24th 2005, 10:34 am
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Default Re: is this one reason why you left the UK?

I am American (though I lived briefly in Toronto!) and have to say that while there are certainly gangs here and children are treated far too much like little adults, there are no chavs. This shocks my friends in England who have resigned themselves to it, believing that chavs are just the next generation of "punks." I don't think so..... it's starting younger and they don't seem to outgrow it or have any artistic or political output.

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Old Apr 24th 2005, 10:51 am
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Default Re: is this one reason why you left the UK?

Originally Posted by snowbunny
This shocks my friends in England who have resigned themselves to it, believing that chavs are just the next generation of "punks." I don't think so..... it's starting younger and they don't seem to outgrow it or have any artistic or political output.(
Punks, back in the day and in the true sense of the word, at least had some ideology or belief, which however negatively perceived, many people developed out of that mentality and this in itself resulted in leading fashion, innovative minimalist design and art, an ideology that had a certain attitude to 'smash up the old way' and focused strongly on "anti-traditionalism". which for many means progress. Bono and Geldof grew out of punk mentality and look at their positive impact on politics and globalisation. Bono is a world leader for me, a truly great man with such potential to change the world.

In the same way the hippy evolved into a business focus of democracy, empowerment, progress, environmental conscience, caring and sharing, profit sharing, recycling, green energy, etc. Some of the most progressive business minds many from the ex-hippy class or influenced by them, taking progressive business and management thinking into the boardroom and to market, and kicking the old boy network / stuffy male chauvenist authoritarian control freak / old school tie brigade into the corporate rubbish bin. Doing all this whilst still turning a profit, proving that sharing can work. Greed isn't always good.

The chav, however, cannot articulate anything and stands for nothing. It is the new underclass, tasteless, violent, brutish, and more nihilistic in values than any punk ideology. Nothing to contribute, nothing to say. Grunting, smashing and puking it's way through post adolescent life.

Sad and desperate as it is, the future of Britian is truly chav, unless things change very quickly. Witness the offspring of the chav and chavette, the next phase of degeneration. All this brought about by a Labour government that had so much potential and has done so much positive work, yet leaves a wide gulf between good and bad people.

Very very sad.

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Old Apr 24th 2005, 11:10 am
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Default Re: is this one reason why you left the UK?

I work in a special needs school, but i have taken a lad for intergration into a "normal" if thats the right word, high school.
The behavoiur of 30 kids aged 15 in the science lab is absolutely disgusting, objects such as paper, rulers etc are thrown around, test tubes are broken , just dropped on the floor on purpose, the kids just run riot, and the teacher cannot do a thing.
If I could afford to take my own daughter out of our local high school I would, and put her in a private school, where the ratio of kids to 1 teacher is much better. She can't wait to live in Canada as she is constantly bullied here. But we dont have enough points.
Jeanette
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Old Apr 24th 2005, 1:38 pm
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Default Re: is this one reason why you left the UK?

If I could afford to take my own daughter out of our local high school I would, and put her in a private school, where the ratio of kids to 1 teacher is much better. She can't wait to live in Canada as she is constantly bullied here.


How I agree with you Jeanette. My daughter is 13 and by the time we get to BC, (if we do succeed) she will probably have left school here anyway!!
She is in a Standard mixed comprehensive and I would so dearly love to be able to afford to get her in somewhere better. She really wants to learn, but comes home daily, depressed that she cant do that because of the constant disruption in the classes, usually by the same small band of kids who clearly dont want to be there.
My thoughts (and my girl's) are for them to get the heck out then!! the school just dont want to deal with it and say nothing they can do!? :scared:

One thing on a positive note though, I had thought it was me getting old and turning into Mrs Meldrew and constantly saying ' I never happened in my day'!!
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Old Apr 24th 2005, 1:39 pm
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Default Re: is this one reason why you left the UK?

Originally Posted by Scouse
Yes, scary isn't it!!

Congrats on your 3rd 'Star', by the way.
Thanks I'm pleased, but don't understand why I have 3 stars and lots of little boxes underneath?

Back to schools - I work at a High School here as support staff, and am dismayed by the bad behaviour and disruption that goes on in classes.

When we were in Canada last month we visited a potential future high school for our son. The main thing I noticed was how the staff spoke to the students, which was in a much more positive manner and the kids responded to this likewise. There was no shouting. They also moved between lessons in a orderly manner, not like at our school where I get a bit nervous if I'm the corridor during lesson change. It's a bit of a free for all and the kids pass my office like a mad herd of wilderbeast :scared:
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Old Apr 24th 2005, 2:08 pm
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Default Re: is this one reason why you left the UK?

Originally Posted by Craftybanshee
Thanks I'm pleased, but don't understand why I have 3 stars and lots of little boxes underneath?

Back to schools - I work at a High School here as support staff, and am dismayed by the bad behaviour and disruption that goes on in classes.

When we were in Canada last month we visited a potential future high school for our son. The main thing I noticed was how the staff spoke to the students, which was in a much more positive manner and the kids responded to this likewise. There was no shouting. They also moved between lessons in a orderly manner, not like at our school where I get a bit nervous if I'm the corridor during lesson change. It's a bit of a free for all and the kids pass my office like a mad herd of wilderbeast :scared:
The stars go with the number of posts you have made...I think the first one comes in at 20 or 25, and then you get extra ones at 50, 100, 250 etc.

The blue boxes are Karma....if people enjoy one of your posts, or if you just give them a good laugh, etc, they can send you Karma. You will see the Karma box in the bottom left hand corner of the posts.

The 'wild children' syndrome just comes down to lack of discipline, and the fact that children in the UK have far too many 'rights' without any idea of 'responsibility.'

Hopefully it will change.....if it doesn't, then I really do not want to be here in another 10 years time!!! :scared:

Last edited by Scouse; Apr 24th 2005 at 2:11 pm.
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Old Apr 24th 2005, 2:23 pm
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Default Re: is this one reason why you left the UK?

Originally Posted by Scouse
The stars go with the number of posts you have made...I think the first one comes in at 20 or 25, and then you get extra ones at 50, 100, 250 etc.

The blue boxes are Karma....if people enjoy one of your posts, or if you just give them a good laugh, etc, they can send you Karma. You will see the Karma box in the bottom left hand corner of the posts.

The 'wild children' syndrome just comes down to lack of discipline, and the fact that children in the UK have far too many 'rights' without any idea of 'responsibility.'

Hopefully it will change.....if it doesn't, then I really do not want to be here in another 10 years time!!! :scared:

Thanks Scouse And thanks everyone out there for my Karma!
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