Monday, February 08, 2010

Come on then...

As you can see from this BBC article, we are in desperate need of more violence in schools, preferably carried out by ourselves.

The Association of Teachers and Lecturers, one of the 5764 teaching unions, has sensibly called for teachers to be trained in what they can and cannot do to restrain violent pupils. Unfortunately, I've been on one of these courses and it was an utter joke. We were even told not to resist when practising on each other because of the possible risk of injury.

Anyone who has studied judo for more than 5 minutes would realise two things:

Firstly, none of the locks we were shown would have worked with anyone who was not totally compliant. For some reason, violent people usually aren't.

Secondly, it takes an awful lot of practice to get them right without looking a complete idiot or hurting someone. A half day's course consisting mainly of blather about 'diffusing situations' does not turn you into a combination of Bruce Lee and Bill Clinton.

Not to worry though; the National Association of Head Teachers would prefer us to get a good kicking and the Department for Children, Schools and Families say that behaviour is much better now, so there's nothing to worry about.


Cabbage said...

Well, clearly in schools that actually HAVE violence, this sort of training should be given. Giving it to teachers working in quiet grammar schools in conservative, rural counties would be as pointless a waste of money diversity training, though.

Anonymous said...

All teachers should have a thorough grounding in restraint tecniques that work. Unfortunately this would open up a whole new can of worms when the schools get sued, the teacher gets suspended whilst an investigation is carried out, or the Police are called etc.

jerym said...

Read just recently
`The easiest way to bring down a society is to lose control of the children`

Anonymous said...

Unusually for you, Frank, you are missing the point.

Either you can handle the violent little bastards, or you can't.

This training simply teaches you to cover your arse with Health & Safety and Child Protection compliant paperwork so that you can walk home with a spring in your step, the little sods who tried to ruin your day walk home with a limp, and no-one can prove that you did anything wrong.

They spend so much time and energy explaining the rules to us teachers that we have no-one to blame but ourselves if we don't play the game to our own advantage.


MarkUK said...

As a Health & Safety Officer in schools, I'd LOVE to see more physical intervention.

The alternative is that some relatively innocent kid gets thumped by the local bully. The innocent may actually be extended to include other teaching and support staff.

Anonymous said...

I usually feign a heart attack. It's worked so far. Obviously I am concerned that my pupes will get wise to my ruse and ignore me when I have one for real.

Anonymous said...

Hello Frank

I once intervened in a fight between two pupils and an LSA who saw what happened asked me afterwards how I was. I felt fine but she was sure I got a punch in the head, apparently all the kids saw it too.

Anyway, since then got a proper bang on the head in a rugby game and ended up with two operations to repair a detached retina.

Believe me, the next time I see two pupils banging the living daylights out of each other I will be waiting until it is all over before I intervene. I have not had any training in preventing fights and I will not risk another injury like the detached retina. The surgery and recovery are a rather traumatic experience and my eye still has a fixture called abuckle to hold it together.


Kimpatsu said...

I love the way Vernon Coker talks about "violence that is proportionate". How does he know what proportionate is? He's not trained in any martial art, and I never saw him at any meetings of the Martial Arts Commission when I sat on its governing panel. If you want medical advice, you consult a doctor. When you want legal advice, you consult a lawyer. When you want self-defence advice, you consult a Shorinji Kenshi or equivalent. Easy, really, but that's not eye-catching enough for Zanu-Labour. The bottom line is that Coaker and his ilk are unqualified to pronounce on what constitutes "proportionate" response. That doesn't stop him from pontificating on the subject, though.

Anonymous said...

I once tried to separate two children who were beating the hell out of each other. I then was accused of having hit one of them (untrue), the accuser even brought "witnesses". The whole thing was investigated and it tturned out that they all had been lying. What happened? Nothing. "They have anger problems" I was told. So they got off. They lied to ruin my career just because they could. From then on, if I see pupils fighting, hitting, kicking, whatever...I smile and walk briskly away. let them injure one another, I sha't ever get involved again. it is not worth it.
Give all teacvhers an electric cattle prod, and there wouldn't be a problem.

Brian, follower of Deornoth said...

I would think the most effective way of dealing with violence is six of the best...

cheeky chappy said...

Oh when oh when will this bloody liberal nightmare end? Since the abolishment of corporal punishment, our schools have gone to hell in a hand cart. Granted it wasn't a perfect system, nothing ever can be, but say what you like discipline was far better than what we have today.

When I was a kid in the early 80s we still had CP in my school and that small amount of fear; the fear of knowing that if we stepped out of line too much then there was a punishment waiting for us that was going to physically hurt, kept at least 99% of us in check.

Kids need a small amount of fear in order to keep them in line. I shall say that again, A SMALL amount of fear. We weren't petrified of our teachers or too scared to go to school just because they could use CP, all it did was let us kids know exactly who was in charge and who had the authority, and it wasn't us kids.

Teachers shouldn't need to be taught what they can and can't do to defend themselves against violent pupils, and if things have got so bad then it's high time this liberal experiment in child centred bollocks was dropped.

Indeed I'll go further, with over 20 years since CP was abolished, kids have proven that they can't handle all this liberal freedom that they have had. I would argue that lack of effective discipline has shown what you end up with. The liberal do gooders have had their chance, it's time to go back to the days when kids were seen but not heard and adults were put back into authority.

TonyF said...

cheekychappie, Can I vote for you?

cheeky chappy said...

Dear TonyF, I'm afraid my views are not much liked. Indeed when I have said such things to friends and my colleagues at the college I work at I'm accused of being a Nazi.

I always hear that there are far better ways of getting discipline than beating kids, maybe that is so, as I said CP wasn't perfect. However, it was unquestionably better than this liberal child centred crap we have now, where the needs of the disruptive and violent child are put before the needs of the other students. After all you shouldn't try and control their need for personal development and expression.

As I've said over the last 20 plus years our young people have demonstrated time and time again that they can't handle all their freedoms, they don't know how to respect what they have, or respect their elders and betters. That only comes from having strict discipline first, then gradually you give them a little freedom as they demonstrate they can handle it. However, to begin with they need ruling with a rod of iron, so that boundaries are established.

To many modern thinkers that probably sounds barbaric and too authoritarian, but whether we like to admit it or not human beings need a certain level of control,a small amount of fear and order and that only comes from authority.

Sorry I'm ranting but it disgusts me how we have let standards decline and allowed our young people to have the upper hand.

Brian, follower of Deornoth said...

"I always hear that there are far better ways of getting discipline than beating kids"

If this is true, why are none of them in use?

cheeky chappy said...

Dear Brian, I have no idea, but I wish they were. I do honestly wish there was a better and more effective deterant than fear or the use of CP as I do not like the thought of having to cane a young person.

However, as I have stated, when I was a youngster we did have that SMALL amount of fear in our heads that if we messed around too much then there was a physically painful punishment waiting for us.

Whether this is right or wrong the fact remains that it was a very, VERY effective deterent, and it also meant we knew exactly who was in charge. Today, kids know there is nothing a teacher can do to punish them, and lets be honest, who is going to be afraid of lines or detentions?

I've said it before; in order for a punishment to be effective it needs to impart enough fear into you so that you don't want to have it happen again. Now, if a punishment isn't scary or painful enough then you are not going to give a monkeys how many times you have to endure it, and that is the sad truth.

Granted there will always be a small number of kids for whom even a small amount of physical pain will not deter from being bad and naughty. However, let me ask this question; for those of us who can remember getting six of the best, how many of us ever dared be naughty enough to get another six?

That is the difference between then and now.

Boy on a bike said...

Back in my day, we had a good number of nice teachers, and a few that absolutely terrified us. One in particular had been something sinister in Rhodesian Intelligence. We had very little bullying or fighting, because to be caught doing so meant fronting up to the likes of him. He actually caned very few kids each year - we were so scared of getting six of the best from him that just his presence was enough to shut people up and calm things down. I had the misfortune to test his wrath - after half the school saw the six bleeding welts on my backside, his reputation was so enhanced, no one else got caned for the rest of the year. "To encourage the others" works.

A school only needs one or two fearsome teachers like that - we had a female teacher in primary school that was the same. The rest of the staff can be soft, so long as there is someone hard to put the fear of God into the kids. If two kids were bloodying each others noses, all he had to do was glare and point at them, and that was enough for the fight to stop and the crowd of onlookers to scatter.

You have very little bullying when the bullies fear someone else.

Anonymous said...

Spot on Frank!

I'm an ex-student of Ju-Jitsu, and we were taught that restraints can only ever be used once you have applied a 'weakner' i.e a punch or blow that leaves your opponent in so much shock/pain they are unable to resist you.

Trying to apply an arm-lock. wrist-lock or head-lock to someone who is still fighting you is suicidal and virtually impossilbe.

Whislt you're busy twisting limbs and so on, the other guy is busy head butting, punching kicking bitting ect - it's total nonsense!

The weakners we were taught included head-butts, blows to nose, throat, temple, and even flicks to the eyes. All of which you will not have been taught, and would be considered assault - total bollocks!