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Behaviour Management in the Spotlight

Amanda Spielman, Chief Inspector of Ofsted

With behaviour management in the spotlight recently, a speech delivered by Ofsted’s Chief Inspector Amanda Spielman announced that there will be a considerable focus on two separate sections within pupil development within Inspections; ‘behaviour and attitudes’. It is hoped that this will place a greater emphasis on eradicating low level disruption, and ensure that the right learning environment is created. In addition, the new framework for Initial Teacher Training will be focused on teaching the important principles of behaviour management.

If we do not get managing behaviour right, we will not be able to provide children with the quality of education they deserve” Amanda Spielman

This is where Pivotal come in. In fact, there are many crossovers between Pivotal’s approach and her speech, as the proposals announced are strikingly similar to our own Five Pillars of Pivotal Practice:

  1. Calm, consistent, adult behaviour
  2. First attention to best conduct
  3. Relentless Routines
  4. Scripting difficult interventions
  5. Restorative follow up

Why not refresh your memory with the podcast: Pivotal Pillars Playlist- The Early Years- PP211 here: https://pivotaleducation.com/pivotal-pillars-playlist-the-early-years-pp211/

Transforming Whole School Culture

A statement from the new Education Inspection Framework reads: “Relationships among learners and staff reflect a positive and respectful culture” (The Education Inspection Framework, May 2019, Pg 10 No. 190015)

At Pivotal we strongly believe in the need for forming positive relationships with both learners and staff. Praising positivity and those learners who go ‘over and above’ shifts the focus away from solely negative behaviour. We start with shaping the behaviour of adults to create a platform for positive, whole culture change; ultimately resulting in calm, consistent adult behaviour.

Findings have shown that managing behaviour continues to remain a concern for teachers, in particular low level disruption, which is hardly surprising. In fact, NASWUT’s Big Question Report 2019 outlined that 87% of those surveyed believed that disruption of this kind is an issue, and nearly half (49%) citing a lack of back up from the senior management team as a contributing factor for poor behaviour.

Amanda Spielman noted that; “Worryingly, only a third of teachers said that the school’s behaviour policies were applied consistently. Teachers felt that this inconsistency, and a lack of support from senior leaders, undermined their efforts to manage behaviour well.”

We Define, Train and Sustain, supporting a whole school approach through building those positive relationships. There is no ‘Us and Them’ culture between Staff and Senior Leaders. Get staff all standing together, showing visible consistency. With this, certainty and attention to best conduct can be achieved.

This is something that both Pivotal and Amanda Spielman both agree on- to establish relationships with “all pupils to ensure ongoing good behaviour management”. (taken from speech)

Effective and Relentless Routines

Establishing clear routines and outlining student (and staff) expectations are key to developing a consistent culture. There is an interesting parallel to be drawn from the Chief Inspector’s speech between the concept of ‘effective routines’ and Pivotal’s Pillar three- ‘Relentless Routines’.

If you’ve worked with Pivotal before, or read Paul Dix’s book ‘When the Adults Change’, then you will have come across ‘Meet and Greet’, ‘Wonderful Walking’ and ‘Ready, Respectful, Safe’, our rules which have been adapted by many schools and colleges.

Routines are practised and perfected to help promote outstanding behaviour. Using these simple behaviour rituals helps to provide familiarity, safety and stability. It also helps to create common ground and reinforce those consistent expectations, ensuring that both teachers model the behaviour they want to see, and students know what their behaviours should be.

“When pupils and staff have a shared understanding of the expectations for these common behaviours, and both staff and pupils follow established routines, overall consistency is easier to achieve” (taken from speech). We couldn’t have put it better ourselves.

Within our ‘Relentless Routines’, ‘Scripted Interventions’ and ‘Restorative Follow Up’  (Pillars three to five) is the simplification of verbal cues, structured and concise interventions and clear follow ups. All of these feed into creating and maintaining a calm and organised classroom routine. In addition, having clear behaviour policies, one that everyone knows and can easily follow, are key.

“Shoot one rabbit at a time. Try to shoot two at a time and you will surely miss” Founder Paul Dix.

You can find out more about the Pivotal Approach, and our training packages ‘Lift, Whoosh and Soar’ on our website or by calling the Pivotal office on 020 7000 1735.

Read Amanda Spielman’s full speech here: https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/research-commentary-managing-behaviour 

For more information on the Education Inspection Framework, click here: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/801429/Education_inspection_framework.pdf

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