The four reasons for poor behaviour in schools:

1. The pupil

Some students are just plain difficult. For various reasons (too numerous to go into here, but we all what they are anyway) some kids don’t like to, don’t want to or can’t follow our simple and reasonable instructions.

2. The cohort

Sometimes our classes contain a combination of ‘characters’ who combine to create a devastating type of negative synergy. Falling out, power-plays, one-up-man-shipping and showing-off can all contribute to tough times in class.

3. The teacher

Sometimes teacher competence doesn’t match behavioural challenge. Teachers newer to the profession or those stuck in a loop of ineffective strategies can have rings run around them by even the most compliant of classes.

4. Systems and support

This factor describes the extent to which school systems fail to support teachers in the implementation of robust systems to deal with challenging behaviour. It also includes systems to support teachers who are struggling to deal with any of the factors above.

Balance is essential

The key here for senior leaders and teachers is to look at these factors with more balance. Teachers shouldn’t always to look to blame school systems for a failure to manage behaviour. Nor should they dismiss a individual or class as impossible to deal with. Likewise, school leaders who take a more holistic approach to dealing with behaviour are more likely to achieve success. Senior leaders who blame teacher competence or cite lack of lesson engagement for poor behaviour are missing three essential avenues to better behaviour, relationships and learning.

Next week, I’ll look at some strategies to make improvements in all of these four areas.

*This week’s blog post was inspired by an app I’ve been using for the last couple of months called ‘[Balanced](’. It’s been great for helping me get the many elements of my life in balance. It might help you too*.

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