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Dear Tom - Difficult pupil

Discussion in 'Behaviour' started by u01ver8, Feb 21, 2012.

  1. I am looking for any advice on how best to deal with a pupil within a Primary 6-7 class. I am a BEd student in my final year. His behaviour is mainly low level disruption but it is constant. This term he has not managed to sit through a whole specialist session without being sent out - they have three a week. He has problems with shouting out and saying inappropriate things during sessions(This is often of a sexual nature). His behaviour irritates the rest of the class and he does not have any real friends within the class.
    He appears to have a very low self image and is constantly seeking attention (Just in the wrong ways).
    I am really trying to promote positive behaviour with him, and reward him when he is doing well. I just do not feel that I am getting anywhere. When I use sanctions with him such as time off break it does not have any effect on him- with the amount of disruption he could be in everyday. His parents have been contacted about his behaviour but it does not seem to encourage him to behave well.
    I am finding his behaviour stressful and I know that all the other teachers in the school do too but if anybody has any strategies or advice it would be very much appreciated!
  2. Not my speciality, but if he is in Y6 or Y7, is saying inappropriate things 'of a sexual nature', has a low self image AND his parents do not appear to have much influence on his behaviour, then I would escalate the child up to the person in charge of 'safeguarding' in your school.
    It sounds as if the child may have problems beyond your remit and beyond the classroom.
    Write an email stating your observations and send it to the Safeguarding person plus copy it to one other person (Head of Year, Head master, deputy head .... ) whoever is appropriate & whoever you think will have the clout to ensure the child is seen by Social Services.

  3. Tom_Bennett

    Tom_Bennett Occasional commenter

    This boy needs a whole school response, because it could be beyond your capabilities. If the disruption is constant and repetitive, then the consequences need to be too; every time he misbehaves he needs taken out of lessons, which means there needs to be a strategy in place to accommodate that action, which means discussion IN ADVANCE of misbehaviour with appropriate staff.
    If he only sometimes gets in trouble, then he will learn that he can sometimes get away with it, which means that you;re back to square one and he never learns anything. I'm afraid the good of the class is important here too- they need him NOT to be disturbing lessons, and if he puts himself outside of mainstream education because of his extreme spectrum misbehaviour then I am afraid that is the lesser of two evils.
    The sexual comments are worrying; refer him to your Child Protection member of staff, because it could indicate levels of exposure to sexual experience or content that might be a real problem, for so many reasons. The CPO might feel it appropriate to take up enquiries with the parents as to the cause of these outbursts. As a class teacher, it's outwith of your remit, unless you have an unusually good relationship with him; otherwise, leave it for the pros.
    You cannot deal with a boy like this by yourself, nor should you be so required. Speak to the Head of Year/ Key Stage/ House- whomever has umbrella pastoral responsibilities and work out a strategy. It could be the most important intervention in this boy's life,. or he will carry these behaviour patterns with him into secondary, and his adult life, and that could lead to some very dark places. Act now.
    Good luck
    Read more from Tom here on his blog, or follow him.

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