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Ofsted: Heads must do more to tackle 'low-level' misbehaviour

Headteachers are not doing enough to eliminate low-level disruptive behaviour in classrooms, which is costing hours of students’ learning, Ofsted will say this week.

According to a survey of teachers by the watchdog, school leaders are “failing to assert” their authority when dealing with poor discipline and pupils “flouting the school rules”.

The Ofsted report, which is expected to come out on Thursday, has drawn on evidence from nearly 3,000 inspections conducted this year as well as two specially commissioned surveys.

According to the poll, the majority of teachers said low-level disruption was “prevalent” in their classrooms, and the watchdog claims supports Sir Michael Wilshaw’s comments that there is a “culture of casual acceptance” of persistent misbehaviour in England’s schools.

The watchdog has identified such behaviour as “pupils making silly comments to get attention, swinging on chairs, passing notes around, quietly humming and using mobile phones”.

It means that the chance of a pupil being taught in a calm and orderly classroom was “something of a lottery”, Ofsted will say.

In its annual report last December, the inspectorate said around 700,000 students were attending schools where behaviour was said to be a problem.

Sir Michael is expected to use this week’s report to demand that heads crack down on poor behaviour, describing it as the “number one” priority for parents and will call on school leaders to treat it as such.

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Sir Michael Wilshaw vows to crack down on bad behaviour as he launches Ofsted annual report - 11 December 2014

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