Glasgow aims for a new partnership with parents

David Henderson

Signing on is likely to take a new meaning for many parents in Glasgow.

Under a discipline crackdown, the city is to test the viability of home-school agreements next session in two New Learning Communities, or clusters.

At the same time, teachers are to sign up for more in-service on behaviour management, setting aside one of their five days to learn about latest techniques and skills on controlling classes.

The city's education committee was yesterday (Thursday) set to approve a package of measures recommended by a broad-ranging discipline working group that has taken two years to report. A driving force for reform, the city says, is the advent of the Additional Support for Learning Act 2004 and its impact on pupils with social, emotional and behavioural difficulties.

At the core of the new disciplinary approach is a clear public commitment between the school and home to work "in a partnership to ensure a climate of mutual respect and high expectations". Schools are also to adopt "robust" behaviour management policies to tackle the minority who can have a detrimental effect on attainment and motivation.

The city wants parents to be committed to a "positive climate for learning", playing a key influence on time-keeping and attendance, dress, citizenship, equal opportunities, anti-racism, anti-bullying and anti-sectarianism.

Any agreement, which would be formalised following further consultation, would make it clear that pupils are entitled to a productive education and in return must show a positive commitment to the school and its staff.

Pupils would again be made aware of policies on bullying.

The city is also agreeing to continue time-out bases in schools to offer short to medium-term support for some pupils.

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David Henderson

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