Segregation is not the answer

28th October 2005 at 01:00
As your columnist Louisa Leaman points out the most unsurprising result of the TES poll is that "behavioural issues are causing the most consternation". Teachers, however, would be wrong to conclude that children with behavioural difficulties benefit from placement in special schools.

The research evidence is equivocal, and there are good reasons for avoiding a situation where pupils' only peer role models are others with behavioural difficulties.

Unfortunately, the inclusion debate has got mixed up with that about the alleged increase in anti-social behaviour. The solutions envisaged are increasingly segregationist: build more prisons and special schools - with the latter by and large filled by the poor and the disadvantaged.

If teachers want that kind of society, they should carry on giving more time and resources to those most likely to improve the school's exam results, in other words pupils who do not have special needs. If they don't, they should change their priorities.

Professor John Quicke

22, Dalewood Road


Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today