School Isolation as Punishment!

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Re: School Isolation as Punishment!

#21  Postby Spearthrower » Apr 16, 2019 7:13 am

tuco wrote:Yeah, I've been Googling since. Seems the US has it too but no other mentions so far.


My attempts ran into problems right away.

It seems there are as many different terms for it as there are schools: reflection rooms, time-out spaces, meditation booths...

And then when you consider the non-English language possibilities, it's hard to imagine how it would be easy to independently evaluate unless there's a handy report summarizing it across the world.
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Re: School Isolation as Punishment!

#22  Postby Spearthrower » Apr 16, 2019 7:16 am

I can imagine a Cooling Off room being appropriate. Somewhere a really riled up kid could sit for a bit and reflect on whatever occurrence happened and their role in it. But I don't see how it can be justified over even the course of 1 day, let alone multiple days. That just represents a failure on the school's part. If a kid is that anti-social or problematic then they either need special help or to be suspended or excluded from school.
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Re: School Isolation as Punishment!

#23  Postby tuco » Apr 16, 2019 7:17 am

Well yes, that is why I said .. it seems.

https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/233644

Apparently, it does not bother anyone and other issues like gender pronouns, for example, get more attention. Oh well, it does not bother me, right?

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Re: School Isolation as Punishment!

#24  Postby Scot Dutchy » Apr 16, 2019 8:25 am

It is all to do with the lack of finances. Another problem in UK schools:

Primary school pupils in England to be given free sanitary products

Ministers to provide towels and tampons from early next year to tackle period poverty


Just the state of inequality the UK finds itself.
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Re: School Isolation as Punishment!

#25  Postby tuco » Apr 16, 2019 8:52 am

Well, lack of finances does not explain why it does not bother anyone. The UK is not Eritrea (I am sorry guys but had to pick someone) where lack of finances would not need an explanation.
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Re: School Isolation as Punishment!

#26  Postby Fallible » Apr 16, 2019 9:21 am

The explanation is that the government is incompetent and doesn't care about the people. Families being too poor to provide sanitary products to their kids is not a problem in UK schools - the schools are solving a problem which exists in the households of their pupils because many families are too poor to have even the most basic of supplies, and often children are sent in without having even eaten.
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Re: School Isolation as Punishment!

#27  Postby Fallible » Apr 16, 2019 9:21 am

The explanation is that the government is incompetent and doesn't care about the people. Families being too poor to provide sanitary products to their kids is not a problem in UK schools - the schools are solving a problem which exists in the households of their pupils because many families are too poor to have even the most basic of supplies, and often children are sent in without having even eaten.
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If I hear that fucking phrase again, this baby's gonna blow
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Re: School Isolation as Punishment!

#28  Postby UncertainSloth » Apr 16, 2019 9:42 am

the failing in this particular situation is the length of time it's been applied for such a length of time without other appropriate intervention or action

the problem is, it takes a huge amount of time, case-building, hierarchy of intervention and action before a school can even consider exclusion in our current system...coming from a primary perspective, we've been building a case against a specific child for 6 months and we're still nowhere near a final consequence - like many other aspects of our system, there are so many hoops to jump through, often while spinning plates at the same time, before anything can be achieved...gone are the days early in my career when i could lob a child in my car, drive them home and dump them on their parents...;)

Spearthrower wrote:

My attempts ran into problems right away.

It seems there are as many different terms for it as there are schools: reflection rooms, time-out spaces, meditation booths...


added to the difficulty is that some of the above can work differently to isolation...e.g. a reflection room is more like an in-school time detention room with multiple pupils, often a step before isolation...there is a myriad of different terms but different schools can have them placed at different stages in their own behaviour policy

it can also be argued that the aforementioned 'inclusion' has increased the need for such action...i'd argue it's much more complex than that
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Re: School Isolation as Punishment!

#29  Postby tuco » Apr 16, 2019 9:51 am

The aforementioned 'inclusion' has increased need for what action?

As far as I know, over here the main controversy seems to be that some parents bitch that the included pupils with special needs slow their own kids down. To counter this, assistants to teachers, for the pupils with special needs, are being placed in classrooms, tho the bitching does not seem to stop. Though the real reasons for bitching are perhaps indeed more complex.
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Re: School Isolation as Punishment!

#30  Postby Fallible » Apr 16, 2019 10:07 am

US informs me that compared to when he started teaching around 25 years ago, there are far greater numbers of children exhibiting disruptive behaviour which affects the learning and sometimes the safety of other children. These children do not heed instructions/orders, whatever you want to call them. I suspect this is what he's referring to more than 'slow' pupils.
John Grant wrote:They say 'let go, let go, let go, you must learn to let go'.
If I hear that fucking phrase again, this baby's gonna blow
Into a million itsy bitsy tiny pieces, don't you know,
Just like my favourite scene in Scanners .
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Re: School Isolation as Punishment!

#31  Postby tuco » Apr 16, 2019 10:11 am

I edited my post with some insight to local problems connected to said inclusion which are probably not shared elsewhere. By slow I meant, well, either not clever enough (mild mental disabilities) or not prepared enough. Never heard about disruption being an issue in connection to inclusion. Yeah, I've heard that kids do not behave like we used to but that is not an issue of inclusion the way I understand it.
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Re: School Isolation as Punishment!

#32  Postby Spearthrower » Apr 16, 2019 10:19 am

UncertainSloth wrote:the failing in this particular situation is the length of time it's been applied for such a length of time without other appropriate intervention or action



That's certainly a significant part of it, but there's also the punishment aspect too.

Isolation even for dangerous convicted criminals is considered deeply contentious, with the UN suggesting that, depending on the manner and length, it could be considered torture.

I'm a little distant from the UK now and I've seen some oddities I still struggle to process (like fining parents when kids miss school), and my time in school was unusual (we had a privilege system instead of punishment), but unless suspension and expulsion have been outlawed, then I can't see a distinction betweem a kid that's so irredeemably awful that they need to be isolated in school from other kids and a kid that should just be suspended. If their behavior's not bad enough to warrant suspension, then their behavior's surely not bad enough to warrant isolation?
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Re: School Isolation as Punishment!

#33  Postby UncertainSloth » Apr 16, 2019 10:24 am

tuco wrote:The aforementioned 'inclusion' has increased need for what action?

As far as I know, over here the main controversy seems to be that some parents bitch that the included pupils with special needs slow their own kids down. To counter this, assistants to teachers, for the pupils with special needs, are being placed in classrooms, tho the bitching does not seem to stop. Though the real reasons for bitching are perhaps indeed more complex.


the action we're discussing, isolation

some parents will always be concerned about their own cherub's progress if children with send are in the class - thing is, these should be provided for within the classroom under the send policy - this has gone on for a long time in primary here, though their role has changed massively (not their pay, though), and more recently in secondary where 1:1 seems to be more prevalent

we're back to government funding, though - many teaching assistants are losing their jobs (including my b-in-law, who was a 1:1 assistant for autistic pupils) or being absorbed into schools as 'cover supervisors' when schools can't afford supply teachers

however, i would still argue from my experience that a significant number of these disruptive pupils requiring true 'isolation' are not those with send, but behavioural or attitudinal issues caused by lack of provision for mental health (i've seen this as a teacher and a parent), deprivation, upbringing or environment etc -....or are just sods...

isolation was not correctly applied in the circumstances in the op, that much i know- and i can quite believe this goes on, as teachers try and seek some respite for themselves and others in class

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Re: School Isolation as Punishment!

#34  Postby tuco » Apr 16, 2019 10:29 am

Yeah, thanks for reminding me, I kinda got lost. Though I still do not think these two are too distant:

tuco wrote:.. it seems to go the opposite direction.


as the goal of segregation and isolation is the same .. let the class to carry on by pushing certain elements outside.
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Re: School Isolation as Punishment!

#35  Postby UncertainSloth » Apr 16, 2019 10:31 am

tuco wrote:I edited my post with some insight to local problems connected to said inclusion which are probably not shared elsewhere. By slow I meant, well, either not clever enough (mild mental disabilities) or not prepared enough. Never heard about disruption being an issue in connection to inclusion. Yeah, I've heard that kids do not behave like we used to but that is not an issue of inclusion the way I understand it.


bib

i have experience of a fair few pupils who have either come to us from behavioural units, who we have sent to behavioural units and have been sent back after some time, e.g. 3 months, as allegedly 'ready for mainstream education' - no send, just in terms of behaviour - that's still inclusion in this system

you'll find different definitions for 'inclusion' in our education system - it's not just about including children with diagnosed conditions or learning difficulties, but the desire for all children to be valued equally, treated with respect and provided with real learning opportunities alongside each other, regardless of what their needs are....shame we're not funded anywhere near enough to achieve this....the government's answer to it? be creative...fucking numpties....
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Re: School Isolation as Punishment!

#36  Postby UncertainSloth » Apr 16, 2019 10:44 am

Spearthrower wrote:
UncertainSloth wrote:the failing in this particular situation is the length of time it's been applied for such a length of time without other appropriate intervention or action



That's certainly a significant part of it, but there's also the punishment aspect too.

Isolation even for dangerous convicted criminals is considered deeply contentious, with the UN suggesting that, depending on the manner and length, it could be considered torture.

I'm a little distant from the UK now and I've seen some oddities I still struggle to process (like fining parents when kids miss school), and my time in school was unusual (we had a privilege system instead of punishment), but unless suspension and expulsion have been outlawed, then I can't see a distinction betweem a kid that's so irredeemably awful that they need to be isolated in school from other kids and a kid that should just be suspended. If their behavior's not bad enough to warrant suspension, then their behavior's surely not bad enough to warrant isolation?


so you believe it's ok for children to be taken out of school for an extended period of time for what isn't considered an exceptional reason? professionally, i don't believe they're fined enough, that's why it still happens...with the fine, it's still much cheaper to go in term time...the demands for progress are far too high for extended absence to not have an impact...
that said, personally, i'd extend the exceptional reason definition from its current form but that's a different debate

all schools should have positive reinforcement within their behaviour policy, that's not something that's disappeared, but sanctions are, unfortunately, very much needed

the issue with your reference to suspension and exclusion rather than isolation comes to what i mentioned above...those two are far more difficult to achieve than they used to be, especially permanent exclusion...basically, speaking as one who's working within the process at the moment, you have to demonstrate you have exhausted every possible avenue possible to support that's child's exclusion or referral to behavioural unit...this is made even more complex if the child has send
isolation, where it is used, is one of those hoops that has to be jumped through first...

to be clear, i know i'm coming from experience (and only from a uk persepctive) rather than evidence but i'm trying to explain the weaknesses in our system, not defend them and i certainly don't believe it was applied at all correctly in this case as that child's needs should have been catered for within the send policy, not the behavioural...

believe me, as fall said above, the standards of behaviour have changed massively in the last 25 years...i hold my own opinions as to why that is...

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Re: School Isolation as Punishment!

#37  Postby Spearthrower » Apr 16, 2019 11:14 am

UncertainSloth wrote:
so you believe it's ok for children to be taken out of school for an extended period of time for what isn't considered an exceptional reason?


Point of clarity: where did I suggest anything of the sort? :think: I said nothing about what I believe, or disbelieve, I merely compared it to isolation.

I first questioned whether suspension and exclusion were still actions a school could take (because I honestly don't know if that's changed while I wasn't looking) and if they are actions a school can take, then I followed through with...

I can't see a distinction betweem a kid that's so irredeemably awful that they need to be isolated in school from other kids and a kid that should just be suspended. If their behavior's not bad enough to warrant suspension, then their behavior's surely not bad enough to warrant isolation?


So why are they being isolated rather than being suspended or expelled? If anything, I was suggesting they are functionally equivalent.


UncertainSloth wrote:professionally, i don't believe they're fined enough, that's why it still happens...with the fine, it's still much cheaper to go in term time...the demands for progress are far too high for extended absence to not have an impact...
that said, personally, i'd extend the exceptional reason definition from its current form but that's a different debate


It is indeed another argument, and it's one where I'd wonder whether the poorest people should even be allowed holidays. But as you say, different debate.


UncertainSloth wrote:all schools should have positive reinforcement within their behaviour policy, that's not something that's disappeared, but sanctions are, unfortunately, very much needed


Ok, so back to suspension and expulsion...


UncertainSloth wrote:the issue with your reference to suspension and exclusion rather than isolation comes to what i mentioned above...those two are far more difficult to achieve than they used to be, especially permanent exclusion...basically, speaking as one who's working within the process at the moment, you have to demonstrate you have exhausted every possible avenue possible to support that's child's exclusion or referral to behavioural unit...this is made even more complex if the child has send
isolation, where it is used, is one of those hoops that has to be jumped through first...

to be clear, i know i'm coming from experience (and only from a uk persepctive) rather than evidence but i'm trying to explain the weaknesses in our system, not defend them and i certainly don't believe it was applied at all correctly in this case as that child's needs should have been catered for within the send policy, not the behavioural...


Then I am not really sure where you're disagreeing with me, to be honest. I can't see a single thing there that contradicts my point.


UncertainSloth wrote:believe me, as fall said above, the standards of behaviour have changed massively in the last 25 years...i hold my own opinions as to why that is...

Image


While I don't dispute this, I have to say that I went to a highschool where a 14 year old kid beat up a teacher right in the front of the class and was actually taken down by other pupils, teens routinely took drugs and alcohol during school hours, knives, shanks and other weapons were routinely discovered, during a full school assembly, a kid called Craig hopped up on the stage behind the Head Teacher, pulled down his trousers and full-mooned the entire school and staff, gave the teachers the bird, then climbed out of a window to avoid the head of P.E. tackling him. :lol: These are just off the top of my head, and I am sure given a while longer I can recall some even more extreme anecdotes.

Even I hit a teacher once, but fair play, he was strangling me at the time! :grin:

We were the school you got sent to when you were expelled from every other school in the area - one kid ended up at our school after putting a fellow 13 year old in a coma for refusing to share his crisps - but in all the time I was there, I only recall a single instance of our school expelling anyone, and I can't even recall what that kid did, but it would have had to have been unbelievably egregious by any standard, past or present.

Not to suggest you're wrong that this kind of behavior is more wide-spread than before, but it has always happened, and it's always been difficult to deal with. That doesn't make isolating children in our care any less of an abject failure, both in systematic terms and morally.
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Re: School Isolation as Punishment!

#38  Postby Fallible » Apr 16, 2019 11:23 am

I think whether you agree with the fine or not, how things are right now make no sense. The problem isn't a school problem, it's a problem within the tourism industry - that they choose to capitalise on the fact that families are constrained to take holidays during certain weeks of the year. You'd expect nothing less from a money making enterprise. Companies aren't going to respond to complaints about the price hike, so apparently parents decide to go for what they see as the path of least resistance in their quest to save money.

A lot argue that a couple of weeks off makes no discernible difference to the progress of their child. I don't think they're considering just how much things have changed since they were at school. Schools are facing unprecedented pressure for children to perform to increasingly high standards, and a couple of weeks off certainly do make a difference in this atmosphere. That of course does not make the pressure right. It just means that schools and teachers are harangued from both sides at once. We expect you to achieve the results, but we also expect you to be fine with our child taking a chunk of time out from school so that we can save money. Add to that the fact that even with a fine it's still cheaper to go in term time, and you have a situation where nothing is solved, except for the parent who doesn't mind paying the school for their child's absence while still paying less than they would during the holidays.
John Grant wrote:They say 'let go, let go, let go, you must learn to let go'.
If I hear that fucking phrase again, this baby's gonna blow
Into a million itsy bitsy tiny pieces, don't you know,
Just like my favourite scene in Scanners .
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Re: School Isolation as Punishment!

#39  Postby Fallible » Apr 16, 2019 11:33 am

Spear, my understanding is that suspensions and exclusions are still actions a school can take, but while it's taking months and months and months to get to the point where this happens, other children's education is suffering. Yes, this always happened, as per your personal experience. It happened in my school too. But I know, because I think we are loosely the same age, that there was simply nothing like the expectation placed on pupils that there is now. I remember well how my education was interrupted daily by kids who wandered the classroom physically attacking people - no one cared that much. You performed badly in exams, well...you performed badly. The end. In a school which was full of kids who had been expelled from elsewhere, expectations were probably less again, and so it really didn't matter what was going on. What we have now is practically a different planet. Children are constantly assessed, and there are consequences for not hitting those targets. I'm not sure what teachers are supposed to do.
John Grant wrote:They say 'let go, let go, let go, you must learn to let go'.
If I hear that fucking phrase again, this baby's gonna blow
Into a million itsy bitsy tiny pieces, don't you know,
Just like my favourite scene in Scanners .
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Re: School Isolation as Punishment!

#40  Postby Spearthrower » Apr 16, 2019 11:49 am

Fallible wrote:I think whether you agree with the fine or not, how things are right now make no sense. The problem isn't a school problem, it's a problem within the tourism industry - that they choose to capitalise on the fact that families are constrained to take holidays during certain weeks of the year. You'd expect nothing less from a money making enterprise. Companies aren't going to respond to complaints about the price hike, so apparently parents decide to go for what they see as the path of least resistance in their quest to save money.


This discussion is moving far away from the topic of the thread, albeit acknowledging that it was me who introduced it as a means of highlighting how I have lost some sense of schooling in the UK. But as we're here now, I will say that I came from a benefits family, and the only time we ever went on holiday was in the off-season. Not off-season for airplane travel as I never flew anywhere until I'd all been and groweded up after I was proparly edukated. I mean off-season for caravan parks on the south coast a hundred miles from home!

If back then my parents had been faced with a fine, we wouldn't have been able to go on holiday at all. I can't see how that's meant to be a superior situation for a child from any perspective, even educationally. My recollection of family holidays is that they were pretty abysmal, all things considered, but they were at least a change of scenery once a year.


Fallible wrote:A lot argue that a couple of weeks off makes no discernible difference to the progress of their child. I don't think they're considering just how much things have changed since they were at school. Schools are facing unprecedented pressure for children to perform to increasingly high standards, and a couple of weeks off certainly do make a difference in this atmosphere. That of course does not make the pressure right. It just means that schools and teachers are harangued from both sides at once. We expect you to achieve the results, but we also expect you to be fine with our child taking a chunk of time out from school so that we can save money. Add to that the fact that even with a fine it's still cheaper to go in term time, and you have a situation where nothing is solved, except for the parent who doesn't mind paying the school for their child's absence while still paying less than they would during the holidays.


For me, the problem is specifically located in the 3rd sentence. This isn't about kids or what's best for them, it's about school performance demands, league tables, and rankings. Why should kids lives be diminished for bean-counting purposes?

Given that we know through ample studies that professionals perform worse without breaks, why wouldn't we also expect that of kids? Education is vital as I've argued here in the past many times, but it's not only in school where that education is achieved.

I sense there is actually a link between these 2 points - again, I am far away and it's hard to get a sense of what's happening on a fine-grain level in the UK, but it seems like schools are being corporatized, and kids being treated like little budding workers. While I'd like to knee-jerk into believing this is all about the Tories, I have to say I imagine a lot of this happened under Nu Labour too. It's no wonder that reports suggest 40% of teachers are expecting to leave the profession in the next 5 years - I know what motivates most teachers (I was one for many years) and I can't imagine many would want to be complicit in this while also being paid shit for the privilege.
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