Saturday, November 20, 2004

Charles Clarke's Latest Wheeze

Stephen Pollard has a superb piece on Charles Clarke's latest ridiculous piece opf social engineering - share disruptive pupils around the schools. You really couldn't make it up. CLICK HERE to read more.


Andy DM said...

But it's not ridiculous, Iain.

Imagine a small LEA with 5 comprehensives, each with around 1,000 pupils (5 year groups of 200 pupils). 2 of them are slightly oversubscribed, 2 with roughly the right number of students and 1 undersubscribed. For the moment we'll assume that each of those schools provide the same standard of education and the only reasons for the underscription of the 5th school is shifting demographics.

Assuming each school excludes the national average percentage of children that will be 8 pupils per year per school. The LEA is obligated to educate these children and so in the absence of a Pupil Referral Unit, they are decanted to another school. As the 5th school in our example has spare places, they take the 32 per year expelled from the other four schools. That will be 160 pupils in the whole 5 year cohort or to put it another way, 16% of the school's roll.

With one in six of the school pupils having been excluded from other schools, you can imagine the standard of education at that school falling. therefore more parents prefer the other schools and the percentage of disruptive pupils grows and the problem gets worse.

As an expellee myself (Foundry Lane Middle School, Southampton, 1982, aged 9, for assaulting a teacher - hi to anyone who knew me back then, I'm a lot nicer now) I obviously feel that these disruptive pupils do deserve a second chance - putting them in a sink school of no-hopers isn't going to help. What would you do with excluded pupils instead?

Anonymous said...

Just passing through the site. V good blog Mr. Dale, good luck the campaign.

I am 19 years old, now at university, and a few years ago when i was still at school, which was voted number 1 comprehensive in the country last year by the Independant + Guardian newspapers, we were lumped with 4 disruptive pupils from a nearby not-very-good school. Within 3 weeks, six students had been beaten up and robbed, three windows had been smashed, PE equipment stolen, teachers abused and a car vandalised. The 4 pupils admitted all of this quite readily and simply laughed off any attempts to discipline them. Class work was also disrupted in the lower sets to which they belonged, to the disadvantage of the hard-working students. Based on my recent experiences putting these young vandals into good schools is an inherently stupid idea that will do nobody any good, not least the expelled pupil themselves. They needed tough discipline that our school had little experience of giving, as we had never needed to in the past!
It is far better to keep them where they are and isolate the problem, dealing with it there. What to do with expelled pupils? Borstal for most of them. They know perfectly well they are doing wrong and don't particually care.

Anonymous said...

I know that he is hardly impartial, but another local Conservative candidate Antony Little - who is a teacher - covers this subject too. If the feelings that he describes are true, then Clarke may find this harder to shove through the staffroom than he thinks. Try:

Anonymous said...

I read in the Daily Express teachers are threatening industrial action if they are made to take violent or disruptive pupils into their classrooms. I hope their pupils will join them in striking.