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Gove takes ‘radical action’ by giving Heads powers they already have

15 October 2010

Education Secretary Michael Gove recently announced that he would be giving teachers a ‘new’ power to punish pupils who misbehave outside school premises.

However, the power already exists under the Education and Inspections Act 2006 s.89 which states that a school’s behaviour policy may, to such extent as is reasonable, include measures to regulate conduct of pupils when they are not on the premises of the school. Is Gove saying that he will extend the power by removing the caveat of reasonableness?

Chris Keates, General Secretary of NASUWT questions whether teachers are confident in using the existing power.

Gove also states that he wants to ensure that the balance of power in the classroom changes and put teachers back in charge. Teachers are already in charge, but perhaps lack the confidence to exercise their powers through fear of criticism and reproach which could result in a legal challenge. Teachers would benefit greatly from clear guidance on how best to exercise the power.

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Mark Blois

Mark Blois

Partner and Head of Education

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