Face up to facts with violent pupils;Letter

7th May 1999 at 01:00
YOUR correspondent Rob Ryan (TES, April 23) is obviously determined to caricature the National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers' position on violent and disruptive pupils.

The rest of your readers deserve to be properly informed that the NASUWT believes that responsibility for such pupils should be transferred to others only when all other reasonable measures have been exhausted within the school.

The NASUWT has consistently advocated the provision of suitable alternative education, so that schools could "refer to'' rather than simply "exclude from''.

The NASUWT neither ascribes "failure'' nor "blame'' to anybody, least of all myself personally as Rob Ryan absurdly does.

It is simply a question of recognising reality and doing the best for the individual youngster at the heart of such problems, while taking into account the equally deserving claims of the remainder of the class, and the rights of their teachers to operate in a safe and healthy working environment.

The "holier than thou'', naive and wholly unrealistic attitude of people like Rob Ryan has wrecked the educational opportunities of thousands upon thousands of youngsters.

Nigel de Gruchy

General secretary

National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers

5 King St

Covent Garden

London WC2E

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