Parents called to account

10th November 1995 at 00:00
Headteachers want the law changed to give schools more powers to deal with violent and disruptive pupils, writes Emma Burstall.

David Hart, general secretary of the National Association of Head Teachers, said schools should not be compelled by local authorities or the Education and Employment Secretary to take pupils permanently excluded from other institutions.

And he told the NAHT primary conference that parents should also not be allowed to "ride roughshod" over any sanction, such as detention, which was part of the school's disciplinary code.

"A loud and clear message has to be given to the minority of parents who are guilty of abdicating their responsibilities that the consequences for their children will be dire, leading inter alia to criminality and poor job prospects," he said.

"We must now start to halt the steady increase both in parental neglect and in parental belief that they can shuffle off their responsibilities on to schools. There has to be an effective homeschool partnership or there is nothing. "

He welcomed the Government's decision to review the operation of fixed-term exclusions but said only a commitment to widen the maximum of 15 days per term to 45 days per year would satisfy heads.

Mr Hart added that there was an urgent need for better training for teachers how to deal with violent and disruptive pupils as well as a recognition from parents of the "vital contribution" they could make to educational achievement.

And he said that heads needed more freedom from governors.

"Heads largely influence whether the schools they run succeed or fall short of legitimate aspirations. They only have all the powers they need to discharge their responsibilities by grace and favour from the governing body. This is wholly unsatisfactory."

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number

Comments

The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now