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reasonable acceptance of physical abuse

Discussion in 'Special educational needs' started by clockworx, Jun 16, 2011.

  1. R13, thank you for your reply and I do appreciate that it is a difficult one to answer.

    Yes there is an individual plan in place. Also all incidents have to be logged on an IT system which is used for the whole school. The teacher in question was actually asked to stop logging incidents in the usual way and use another system as it was skewing the statistics and didn't look good. Yet all these logs dont trigger any additional actions. Every time the issue is raised the teacher is just told she is complainging for nothing. The HOD does have it in for this teacher too.
    Previously the school wanted to exclude this child permanently from the school, yet this teacher said that the child needed a second chance didnt want this course of action, yes regretting it now! The person in charge of pastoral care in the school has been in and seen the abuse and has simply said that there is nothing she can do! This teacher is at the end of her tether....
    The teacher receiving this abuse is an experienced teacher in the area of autism so knows what she is talking about. If statistics are compared with the teacher that taught this child last year logged fewer incidents, yet she just alllowed him to do as he pleased and never challenged his behaviour or his need to learn, he was literally allowed to do what he wanted when he wanted.
     
  2. I work in a unit in a residential special school. 6 out of the 8 students I work with have physically challenging behaviour so I get a lot of headbutts, hair pulling incidents, kicks, slaps and punches. Luckily my wipeaway and breakaway reflexes are pretty good now. We have a restraint policy where I work but, luckily, as it's a last resort intervention, I've never had to use a hold on a student yet and I've been there two and a half years. The scenario described in the first post does seem extreme though. Is it just the teacher that is being targeted or is he targeting support staff too? Are they trained in holding him when he is endangering himself or others? Obviously holding a child is a last resort but, if he is literally physically targeting her as often as it sounds he is, it sounds like they at least need to be trained in how to hold students effectively. I'm not sure what to suggest-where I work, there is a boy who has violent incidents almost every day which have led to staff having their fingers and noses broken and yet apparently they can't exclude him for another year (not sure of the full details as I heard it from a friend of mine who used to work with this child). It is very difficult and I feel for the teacher. I hope a solution is found soon.
     
  3. RJR_38

    RJR_38 New commenter

    This is a very interesting discussion and it is making me think carefully about my own situation. We have one child in our SEN class who is often quite violent - it is rarely towards staff and when it is we know that it is 'part of the job' to a certain extent so that is not really the issue. What I am starting to worry about is the increased violence he is showing towards one or two of the other pupils. They are 'friends' and will be fine together but then suddenly he will hit/kick them (today he kicked a child in the face). Unless an adult gets there quickly enough to restrain one or usually both of them there will be retaliation and a 'fight' would break out. How much of this is acceptable? As a parent of the other children I would be concerned that this was regularly happening.
    We have put all sorts of strategies in place and luckily for us and him he has a place at a more appropiate setting in September but this is still a question I feel could come up in the future. How much violence towards other pupils is accepted? :S
     
  4. RJR38,

    Where I work, we have 2 female students, both aged 18, who can sometimes be very affectionate towards each other and then, without warning, one of them will hit, kick or pull the other students hair (the other student does not have any such tendencies and is placid). This is dealt with by removing the student in question but, like you, I worry about it particularly as, recently, this student kicked the other student in the chest very close to where she has a medical implant. We inform both sets of parents and they are both very understanding but, if it was my own child, I would be very worried and I know of cases at my school where parents have asked for their children to be transferred to other classes due to physical attacks by other students.
     
  5. R13

    R13 New commenter

    Hi again
    You state -
    Yet all these logs dont trigger any additional actions. Every time the issue is raised the teacher is just told she is complainging for nothing
    As I've said before I find it difficult to define what is acceptable or not from a child but what you have quoted from management there is entirely unacceptable.
     
  6. RJR_38

    RJR_38 New commenter

    Yes, this would be the ideal scenario but we are the only SEN specialist class in a mainstream school and so this is never going to be an option. It is a very difficult situation though!
     
  7. Hi clockworx,
    What would be considered reasonable acceptance of physical abuse from pupils? Certainly not what you describe. I work with pupils with ASD and Severe learning difficulties working at P level 5 and below and have had many who posed a substantial physical risk to staff. That is not the point. The point is that what is being taught in the class you describe is obviously ineffective, never mind down-right dangerous. Pupils exibiting these behaviours are stressed, confused, anxious and/or wrongly placed. Your SLT should be ashamed that this many incidents are reported on a continuing basis and should be urgently looking to sort out the mess for the benefit of the child involved. It is not the teacher's responsibility to get hurt, it is ANY TEACHER'S responsibility to help children learn. They cannot do that in this case. Often for pupils with ASD behaviour is a skill that needs teaching, not learning. If your staff cannot teach these skills to this pupil then ask for help from someone who can! If the SLT won't do anything then phone an Ed Psych, shout to a social worker or CAMSH team and firstly get out of the way of the pupil. Your SLT will soon see a problem if you, your class team and the rest of the pupils continually decamp to the hall, leaving the stressed pupil to calm down on his/her own under discrete surveilance. STOP BEING A PUNCH BAG - IT'S NOT BIG OR CLEVER - SORT IT OUT!!! - IT'S YOUR JOB!!
     

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