A study from the Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) finds a lack of evidence that controversial “zero-tolerance” behaviour policies – where a strict approach to discipline is adopted in schools – have an impact. The Independent reports.
Under such policies – which National Education Union members have criticised – pupils will often automatically receive detentions for being late or forgetting homework.
Guidance from the EEF suggests that personalised approaches, like daily report cards, can instead improve disruptive pupils’ behaviour.
Schools should use simple approaches as part of a regular routine, such as teachers taking the time to greet each pupil personally at the door of the classroom, to improve behaviour, the report says.
Another suggestion includes offering free, universal breakfast clubs before school starts, which has been found to prepare pupils well for learning, the EEF says.
The EEF guidance reviewed the best available evidence regarding behaviour in schools, and spoke to teachers, academics and other experts for the guidance.
Stephen Fraser, deputy CEO of the EEF, said: “Zero-tolerance policies can be controversial due to their strict, no excuses approach.
“Advocates say these approaches help to raise standards, while critics say they may lead to unnecessary exclusions.
“Our report has found that there’s a lack of evidence looking at the impact zero-tolerance policies have on pupil outcomes.”
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