• Articles

    Why we should #BanTheBooths

    There is good practice in many removal rooms. Caring adults calmly working with angry and frustrated children who have struggled to follow directions. There is mentoring, coaching and challenge so that children can be returned to learning as soon as possible. Then there are removal rooms and isolation rooms where children sit in punishment booths, abandoned. Their education on hold. These are not the children with the worst behaviour. They are often children who have irritatingly stretched the lines of tolerance. Sitting in a booth day after day. Same faces, same stories, same unmet needs sat staring into space. I met a child who had spent 35 days in an…

  • Articles

    A Matter of Rights and Wrongs #BanTheBooths

    Pindown had been a management regime for ‘cracking down’ on children’s wilful or defiant behaviour in their care homes, ranging from forcing children to dress in pyjamas and slippers at all times to deter them running away, to prolonged periods of being kept in isolation and detention. Pindown had become normalised among staff in the homes that deployed it over many years

  • Articles

    Myth-busting Monday

    BanTheBooths is growing in support but we are a small group of volunteers in the early stages of an exciting campaign.  To give some context we have been formed for just over two weeks. Our Parliamentary Petition went live a week ago. Yet we have already gathered support from MPs, have had Headteachers rip out their booths overnight and have been featured in national TV and press. At the highest level of decision making BanTheBooths has entered the conversation. At the DFE, Ofsted and in Parliament. Our campaign is polite, respectful and well mannered. We are a credible, experienced and utterly determined bunch of  Teachers, Parents, Advisors, Headteachers, Governors, Educational Psychologists, Professors…

  • Articles

    Booths and SEND, forced compliance v sensory processing

    It was during a job interview – I had done my research beforehand and it was a role I was really keen to do. Things started well; I talked to some enthusiastic pupils and delivered an assembly on Mental Health. Then we came to the tour and three quarters of the way through I was taken to a room at the far end of the school. “This is our isolation room. This is where pupils come when they refuse to follow our school rules. They stay in here for the whole day, including break and lunch times.” This week’s blog is from Callum Wetherill, Teacher, Pastoral Leader and SLE All…

  • Articles

    Why we should #BanTheBooths by Wayne Beech

    Let me set the scene: It is half past one, I am sat in my office and while the rest of the school settle into their learning for the afternoon, the verbal barbs of “let me out, this is child abuse, you’re not my dad!” echo into the otherwise tranquil corridor. This week’s BanTheBooths blog is from Wayne Beech, Deputy Headteacher of a Primary School serving an area of high deprivation.  His day has not been a productive one, with the Christmas season in full swing, the onslaught of Nativity practices, Christmas Fairs and regular interruptions to the timetable, his ability to cope with the school day has diminished. As…

  • Articles

    Support #BanTheBooths campaign – Simon Kidwell, Headteacher

      I have spent twenty-five years teaching and leading schools across Staffordshire, Stoke-on-Trent and Cheshire. I have led a school with a resource base for children with statements for behaviour, I have led a school out of an OFSTED Category, and I have worked as Local Authority Improvement Advisor with a number of schools that require improvement. In my experience, the vast majority of children who display the most challenging behaviour have a significant challenge establishing a sense of belonging. This can be a result of a difficult start to life, communication and learning difficulties, a chaotic home life, or from being excluded from school. There are two routes to…

  • Articles

    Why I joined the #BanTheBooths campaign (and why you should too)

    In the first of a series of blogs Jules Dauby a literacy and SEND expert explains why she supports the campaign: I like to be liked.  It’s a curse.  It means I struggle to commit to any one side of an argument because as soon as someone smiles at me, I agree with them.  OK, perhaps I’m not that shallow but I enjoy debate and I particularly love to hear robust discussion on challenging topics.  Often however, I sympathise with both viewpoints and because I went to a secondary modern and did typing and childcare rather than debating and philosophy, it’s intellectually stimulating to hear informed people battle with ideas,…

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