From the Principal

Standards of behaviour

Maria Collins quote about teacher standards

Standards at SCAS do not stop at “tuck your shirt in”. In fact this is a peripheral aspect of the educational culture we have developed at our school. And that makes a difference to the quality and effectiveness of learning.

There has been considerable research in recent years that shows the (positive or negative) impact on classroom learning on your child, based on the attitude to learning of the other students in the classes they attend.

UK pupils are missing out on 38 days of teaching each year due to low-level disruptive behaviour in the classroom. Students typically lose an hour of learning each day, due to teachers dealing with misbehaviour such as swinging on chairs, passing notes round and using mobile phones…If we are going to continue to improve our education system to compete at the highest levels, we need to tackle the casual acceptance of this behaviour that persists in too many schools. Classroom teachers must have the support of their senior leaders to tackle these problems.  It isn’t rocket science.  Children need to know the rules and teachers need to know they will be supported in enforcing them.” Stephen Exley, 25th September 2014

Students acting out in classroom

Now further research shows that  standards of behaviour a school requires and enforces has a significant impact on educational outcomes.

“Improving discipline in classrooms can have a greater impact on academic performance than just investing in education, a world’s first study finds. Better behaved students learn more, perform among the world’s best and ultimately contribute to a more competitive workplace.” Discipline beats dollars in driving academic results, Balogh and Hutchison, Macquarie University, The Australian, Feb 21, 2017.

Teacher with students in netball uniforms

We have always believed that good manners and respect are attributes that distinguish our students, preparing them to be positive members of society. Now we have proof that these attitudes in the classroom have a role in the great academic results we achieve.

At SCAS we have always based our behaviour expectations on Respect – Respect for each student’s right to learn and make the best of their talents, Respect for the teacher’s right to teach uninterrupted by negative behaviour and Respect for the traditions, rules and good name of the school.Boy with wide open mouth and fingers plugging ears

“It’s pleasing to see research backing up the obvious (“Discipline beats dollars in driving academic results”, 21/2). Teaching is more effective if the students have the opportunity to hear everything and can then concentrate on set work rather than the teacher having to manage classroom discipline…It’s time for students and their helicopter parents to return control of the classroom to teachers”. Dennis Fitzgerald, Box Hill, Vic, The Australian.

It is nice to see that these “traditional” values not only make the school a safe and nurturing environment, but also actively enhance student learning and lead to high academic results.

Research also indicates that negative or uncontrolled behaviour in the earlier years of education can hold back learning, even when the behaviour is, eventually, corrected.

“A few mischievous children acting out in a classroom and disrupting an entire lesson is a common scenario that teachers deal with. However, trouble-making children who hit out and misbehave are not only disruptive to teachers and classrooms, they are also likely to get lower grades…learning lag caused by problem behaviours at a younger age might lead to reduced academic performance, even when the problem behaviours have subsided. The negative effects of bad behaviour on learning can be hard to make up fully. The Conversation, August 2015.

Calvin and Hobbes comic

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