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School Violence Unacceptable

School Violence Unacceptable

Teachers and students need to be protected from both physical and verbal violence.

So says former Principal now Labour Te Tai Tokerau Candidate Kelvin Davis in response to reports from the Tai Tokerau Principal’s Association that Northland schools are in crisis because of poor student learning and behaviour.

“Te Tai Tokerau experiences its fair share of high intensity and high frequency misbehaviour,” says Davis, who empathizes with schools struggling to deal with the extreme behaviour and learning needs of some pupils.

He says however, that it is important to differentiate between students whose high needs stem from social or psychological reasons, and those whose needs stem from poor behaviour management and teaching or a lack of support systems in schools.

Excellent teachers tend to have fewer problems in their classroom.

Combined with significant improvements in teacher pedagogy and Ministry of Education provided “Non-violent Crisis Intervention” Kaitaia Intermediate School where Mr Davis was Principal was able to reduce incidents of violence by over 90 percent over a twelve month period.

“When a student’s low and medium level needs are not catered for they often escalate into high level needs that require high level intervention.

It’s easy for teachers to blame factors outside of their control for student misbehaviour rather than honestly appraising their own performance.

Having said that resourcing targeted in the right direction will make a difference.

“All teachers go to work in the hope they will make a difference in a student’s life, not to be abused.”

© Scoop Media

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