During my time as the Integration Manager, I was asked to draft a card monitoring and tracking system which would address the issues related to students who were on the behaviour card for a long period of time. This policy was design to integrate into the inclusion process, which I was responsible for, whilst tapping into the expertise and skill set of the integration team as a whole. This blog gives a historical perspective (2006) of the card system in a large inner city high school.
The profile of the students who spend a long period on card (more than four weeks) clearly mapped across to students labelled as BSED (behavioural, social and emotional development). More specifically, nearly all of these students were receiving specialised intervention through the support team for classroom related behaviour. It was clear that the card system had to be separate from the specialised intervention or risk losing the student engagement within this process. Although, there are clear links between the proposed system and the intervention system. The draft policy can be downloaded from here.
The students just laughed and thought it was another gimmick, until the first parent meetings and the constant phone calls to the parent(s) at work. Within three weeks and numerous complaints about phoning parents at work, most students had been successful and were taken off their behavioural card. Critically, for most students, they did not want me to phone their parent(s) or request a parent meeting. Student feedback, highlighted that the consistent pressure on the parent(s) had resulted in the students’ losing privileges such as access to digital technology or been grounded. Also highlighted was the robustness of the policy as there were no loop holes and it was consistently applied with no exceptions.
For the remaining students, it was a consistent application of the policy and support through the support team which resulted in these students settling down to a more manageable level of behaviour. Unfortunately, for a few students, they were asked to find other schools.
- The member of staff requires protected time at the end of the school day to contact parent(s), send letters and hold parent meetings.
- The member of staff requires flexible timetabling in the morning (lesson one) to address any concerns, this is a critical requirement.
- The member of staff needs to be seen as an authentic person of authority (for student and parent).
- The system needs to be seen as a robust system which is consistently applied fairly to all students.
- The member of staff needs to be committed and pro-active