This week I report on the publication of the Timpson Review on exclusions, a new scheme to help teachers tackle bad behaviour in schools and a new programme to protect children at risk of exploitation.
Timpson Review on exclusions published this week
The Timpson review was finally published this week and makes 30 recommendations for the Government to consider, and the Education Secretary Damian Hinds has confirmed he accepts them all “in principle”.
Addressing Mr Timpson’s recommendation that changes should be made to strengthen accountability around the use of exclusions, the Government announced that it will launch a consultation later this year. This will include how to make schools accountable in the most effective and fair way, so they can fulfil their responsibilities for permanently excluded children. This may include through reform to commissioning and funding arrangements for alternative provision.
£10 million scheme to help teachers crack down on bad behaviour in the classroom
The Government has announced that more than 500 schools will be part of a new scheme to tackle bad behaviour in schools, backed by £10million investment. The programme will launch in September 2020 and the programme will run for an initial period of 3 years. Behaviour expert and former teacher Tom Bennett, who led a national review to identify the best ways of dealing with disruptive behaviour in schools, will lead the programme, where a network of expert schools will be identified to help teachers and school leaders in need of support.
A team of advisers (education professionals with a track-record and understanding of improving behaviour in schools) will be appointed to work alongside Mr Bennett to help develop and deliver the programme of support. They will help select the lead behaviour schools which will deliver additional support to others; work with supported schools to develop an understanding of the causes of the behaviour issues and how these could be addressed; develop comprehensive, bespoke action plans for the supported schools;
carrying out a series of follow-up visits; and participating in behaviour conferences to share best practice and ideas.
New programme to protect children at risk of exploitation
Yesterday the DfE announced a new ‘Tackling Child Exploitation Support Programme’ which has been designed to improve how different local areas respond to child exploitation such as gang, ‘county lines’ drug dealing, online grooming, sexual exploitation, trafficking or modern slavery and is backed by £2 million. It will help equip professionals involved in the protection of young people to identify those most at risk from dangers in their communities and online.
Councils in England will be able to apply for bespoke support from the scheme to tackle specific threats in their area, bringing social workers, police forces, schools, health services and charities together to improve how they respond to cases of exploitation, and learn from what works. The programme will be led by a team of academics and experts led by Research in Practice, together with The Children’s Society and the University of Bedfordshire.