Attacks on teachers by children aged four and five have doubled in six years

The Sunday People via the Mirror is reporting that record numbers of the youngest schoolchildren are being suspended for attacking teachers.

Reception class pupils of four or five were sent home after assaulting adults 940 times last year. The total has doubled in six years, the Sunday People reports.

Another 510 were ­temporarily excluded for assaulting playmates, 310 for persistent disruption, 130 for verbal abuse, 20 for vandalism, ten for sexual misconduct and a handful for bullying or racist acts.

An average of ten ­reception class pupils a day were suspended while 30 behaved so badly during 2014 they were expelled.

Christopher McGowan of the Campaign for Real Education fears video games and unsuitable web images may be to blame…

Anastasia De Waal, head of family and education at the think tank Civitas, added: “While we’re talking about a small proportion of children, any rise in antisocial behaviour, particular among our youngest pupils, is a concern.”

More at: Attacks on teachers by children aged four and five have doubled in six years


Whenever changes like this are reported the question is whether behaviour has become worse or schools have become more likely to suspend pupils for the kinds of behaviour involved.

How would you see it: is behaviour in young children getting worse? If so, what do you think is responsible and what can or should be done about it?


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Categories: Primary.


  1. aligoodseed

    SchoolsImprove and its suggested that children start earlier in institutions, start spending all day in nurseries from two yrs up!

  2. teach_well

    hilarywilce SchoolsImprove I think parents also need support and actually to be told straight about what happens to chi = can’t read,

  3. teach_well

    hilarywilce SchoolsImprove aren’t spoken to at home, neglect, etc. So point waiting until its actually happened.

  4. hilarywilce

    teach_well SchoolsImprove ALL parents definitely need more support and info about how crucial they are to a child’s education

  5. ged10

    hilarywilce SchoolsImprove Many of these parents had appalling education+ poor school models.Tragedy that broadsheets rarely analysed sit.

  6. ged10

    hilarywilce SchoolsImprove Very true – but also implications of decades of poor schools/schooling rarely subject of reflective analysis.

  7. JeniHooper

    SchoolsImprove we need to look at what triggers aggressive behaviour. Are some children finding the step up from nursery too tough?

  8. Ephemeral321

    JeniHooper SchoolsImprove How often are infants being hit by other infants in class or the playground? Both adults and chn should be safe.

  9. little_mavis

    JeniHooper SchoolsImprove I see parents not correcting children for hitting them, almost encouraging it by laughing. Always found it odd.

  10. little_mavis

    JeniHooper SchoolsImprove I see parents not correcting children for hitting them, almost encouraging it by laughing. Always found it odd.

  11. LornaWalter

    SollyKathryn JeniHooper SchoolsImprove I think in many cases this is so! School readiness applies to the school as well as the child!

  12. WendyC116

    SchoolsImprove this is a parenting problem – parents no longer instil respect in their children. Parents are also abusive and aggressive

  13. cliff_margaret

    SchoolsImprove No its Head/Give problem,supporting bully,broke 8yr Tibia 2places,admits deliberate assault, no explulsion,nothing,nepotism

  14. cliff_margaret

    SchoolsImprove is bully related Head/Govs If not why no punishment,admits in note deliberate assault 8yr.Tibia broke 2places,in wheelchair

  15. MatthewRHead

    SchoolsImprove such poor behaviour is a symptom not a cause. PLEASE can we start focussing on causes rather than symptoms #inclusion

  16. paulsnorman

    MatthewRHead SchoolsImprove until gov acknowledge and challenge role of poverty of parenting gap properly we won’t move forward.

  17. paulsnorman

    MatthewRHead SchoolsImprove schools carry all responsibility leaving some parents abrogating responsibility or struggling to cope

  18. MatthewRHead

    paulsnorman SchoolsImprove parents need support not castigation. Most love their kids but link between poverty & #exclusion is undeniable

  19. paulsnorman

    MatthewRHead SchoolsImprove I agree but they aren’t getting it and schools no longer have the resources to plug that gap.

  20. MatthewRHead

    paulsnorman SchoolsImprove perhaps affluent & well educated parents are just better at navigating the system & hiding their shortcomings

  21. paulsnorman

    MatthewRHead SchoolsImprove yes – well researched evidence for reproduction of inequality in a system designed to benefit mid class

  22. MatthewRHead

    paulsnorman SchoolsImprove true. Schools taking the main brunt of cuts to front line servs as LAs lose funding 4 youth work & social care

  23. paulsnorman

    MatthewRHead SchoolsImprove so kids suffer deficit of aspiration, self esteem and struggle with resilience. Quelle surprise.

  24. paulsnorman

    MatthewRHead SchoolsImprove but if gov acknowledge role of poverty it exposes failure of social policy, so easy to blame on schools.

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