Teachers’ union blames the parents

By politics.co.uk staff

Increasing teachers’ sanctions will not help improve bad behaviour among school pupils, the UK’s largest teachers’ union has said.

A survey of 8,000 teachers by the NASUWT union published today has revealed that “pupil indiscipline” is the leading concern of almost half of all teachers.

Sixty-eight per cent of teachers cited a lack of parental support as one of the most prominent causes of bad behaviour in the classroom.

But the teachers rejected an increase in search powers, the government’s solution to the problem.

Fifty-six per cent of those surveyed thought that this would not help, but 46 per cent wanted support for proportionate action, such as confiscating offending items.

Chris Keates, general secretary of the NASUWT, said the survey showed the union was right to disagree with the government’s plan to expand search powers.

“The response to this survey is also a vindication of the stance that the NASUWT has taken against the extension of the powers to search in the education bill,” she said.

“The NASUWT has maintained consistently that it’s not more sanctions teachers need but more support in enforcing the existing ones.”

Teachers listed unruly behaviour as chatter in class, the inability to follow rules, backchat, distraction of mobile phones and other electronics along with the failure to complete homework.

Just over half of the teachers surveyed (51%) said students were being sent to school without basic equipment like pens.

Ms Keates said the survey showed parents were not helping teachers tackle disruptive behaviour.

“Teachers are not receiving the support they need from parents, school leaders or government to assist them in maintaining high standards of pupil behaviour,” she added.

“Parents can’t simply abandon their responsibilities at the school gate.

“Sending their child to school with basic equipment, on time, with homework completed and with clear expectations of how they expect them to behave in school is a critical part of their role.”

The survey found that teachers thought other causes of indiscipline were a lack of backup from senior management, the influence of negative TV and media, large class sizes and a lack of enforcement of school rules.