Behaviour and Discipline in Schools - Education Committee Contents

Memorandum submitted by the Training and Development Agency for Schools


  Since 2004, the TDA has invested significantly in support and challenge for the initial teacher training (ITT) sector to ensure that all programmes include high quality training in behaviour. Alongside this there has been a focus on e-safety and how to deal with cyber-bullying and homophobia. Classroom training to manage the behaviour of children and young people is an integral element of every ITT programme. Training providers must design and deliver their training programmes to enable all trainee teachers to meet a set of rigorous standards for qualified teacher status (QTS). These include standards relating specifically to discipline, the management of children and young people, and the organisation of the classroom. The standards were subject to a substantial process of review between 2005 / 7, and resulted in a coherent framework of standards for initial teacher training and for teachers at every stage of their careers. The standards on behaviour were a significant focus of the consultation and review process.


  In 2007 the revised standards for teachers were introduced. The revised framework for teachers sets out a logical progression of expectations from entry to the profession, via the core standards for all serving teachers to threshold and advanced and excellent teacher status.

The standards for the award of Qualified Teacher Status (QTS)

  The TDA provides extensive support for ITT providers and their trainees and sets out the scope and expectations related to each of the QTS standards in an easily accessible web-based format. All of those to be awarded QTS must demonstrate that they have met them in their practical classroom teaching.

Standard Q10: Have a knowledge and understanding of a range of teaching, learning and behaviour management strategies and know how to use and adapt them, including how to personalise learning and provide opportunities for all learners to achieve their potential.

  This standard requires trainees to demonstrate a range of learning, teaching and behaviour management strategies, and apply these to promote the kinds of behaviours that allow teachers to teach, and pupils to learn without hindrance. Trainees are expected to show that they can maintain secure discipline in the classes that they teach.

Standard Q31: Establish a clear framework for classroom discipline to manage learners' behaviour constructively and promote their self-control and independence.

  This standard requires trainees to demonstrate that they know about and can use a range of strategies that promote positive attitudes to learning. Trainees are expected to demonstrate that they can:

    — ensure that pupils know the boundaries of acceptable behaviour and understand the consequences of their actions, and

    — minimise the impact of the negative behaviours of some pupils on teaching, and on the learning of others.

Standard Q2: Demonstrate the positive values, attitudes and behaviour they expect from children and young people.

  Trainee teachers are expected to understand and demonstrate the values and attitudes that they want pupils to develop. Such values will include respect for other people and social responsibility. Trainee teachers are expected to demonstrate that they can:

    — establish high expectations for pupils' behaviour, and resolve conflicts inside and outside the classroom, and

    — implement the school behaviour policies, for example on equality, discipline, bullying and harassment.

Standard Q18: Understand how children and young people develop and that the progress and well-being of learners are affected by a range of developmental, social, religious, ethnic, cultural and linguistic influences.

  TDA guidance on this standard makes clear that those who might be at risk depend on teachers, among others, to monitor and manage their learning, and provide them with the support that they need. This standard gives trainees a focus for developing skills in tackling bullying and social exclusion in the classroom.

Standard Q3 (a): Be aware of the professional duties of teachers and the statutory frameworks within which they work

Standard Q3 (b): Be aware of the policies and practices of the workplace and share in collective responsibility for their implementation

  Trainee teachers are expected to demonstrate that they know the statutory framework in which they work including in relation to their responsibilities to maintain discipline, and the powers that they have to achieve this. Additionally, they are expected know and implement the range of policies that support school practice including in relation to bullying, racial harassment, and abuse.

  The QTS standards and accompanying extensive guidance can be accessed at


  Since 2005 the TDA has commissioned practical resources to support providers in improving the quality of teacher training programmes.

    — The teacher training resource bank (TTRB) provides access to a range of relevant resources to support trainee teachers with guidance on behaviour management. The TTRB can be accessed at The TTRB offers a direct link to other relevant resources including online Teachers TV video material and the National Strategies resources.

    — The Behaviour4Learning website at, features high quality resources that enable trainers and trainees to engage with the principles of "behaviour for learning". This in turn supports improvements in the management of classroom behaviour, and the raising of achievement. Evaluation evidence shows that trainees exploit the website to inform their writing of assignments on behaviour and to find ideas to use in teaching.

    — The Multiverse website ( contains relevant and practical resources for teacher trainers and trainees, addressing the educational achievement of pupils from diverse backgrounds.


Special Educational Needs (SEN)

  There is a strong link between SEN and effective behaviour management. It is recognised that persistent low-level disruption often arises when pupils cannot engage with the lesson. The TDA works with providers to embed SEN resources into ITT to ensure that trainees acquire strong skills in meeting the needs of pupils with the commonly encountered forms of SEN and know when to draw on the specialist support of the SENCO as appropriate. The TDA is also working to provide specialist dyslexia training to build capacity within the schools system to meet the needs of pupils who might otherwise become disaffected.

Early reading and literacy

  There are also clear links between behaviour and literacy. Early intervention to improve literacy ensures that pupils are more likely to be engaged with their learning. For primary trainees, their preparation to teach literacy, including reading, is a crucial element of their training and a key way of narrowing the attainment gap. Following the publication of the report of the Independent Review of the Teaching of Early Reading in March 2006, the TDA has worked closely with the National Strategies to provide a robust programme of challenge and support to the sector to improve the quality of the initial preparation of primary teachers to teach reading using an approach based on synthetic phonics.


i) Initial teacher training

University led ITT:

  The programme will include sessions on effective classroom control strategies. Trainees will also learn about the statutory responsibilities of teachers and specific aspects of behaviour such as how to identify and deal with bullying. They will learn how to plan interesting lessons that will engage pupils positively and so minimise poor behaviour in the first place. All trainees on University-led programmes of ITT spend a considerable part of their programme in practical teaching experience in at least two schools. They are based in schools for 24 weeks on a PGCE secondary programme and 18 weeks for primary. For the undergraduate programme the time based in schools for the equivalent of 36 weeks or one full year of the programme. During this time they behave as a member of the school team and are expected to show that they can operate the school's behaviour policy effectively in their own teaching. At the start of the school-based experience, trainees will have the opportunity to participate in school-based sessions setting out the school's expectations on behaviour and the policies which they must adopt. Each trainee has a mentor who gives written feed -back on every lesson observation giving emphasis to behaviour management and setting targets for improvement.

Employment based ITT:

  Trainees are employees of the school and are based there typically for a full school year. Within this time sixty days of the programme devoted to training. Employment based trainees are expected to operate the school policy on behaviour and discipline. Behaviour training is seen by trainees as a particular strength of school based ITT. Part of the reason for this high level of satisfaction is that trainees typically progress to employment in the schools in which they are trained.

  All trainees recommended for the award of QTS must demonstrate in practice that they have met the standards in relation to behaviour management.

ii) Induction

  In the first full year of teaching newly qualified teachers (NQTs) develop their classroom practice by demonstrating that they have consolidated their skills in managing behaviour. They are supported in this by an induction tutor who will regularly observe and give feedback on their classroom management.


  Ofsted inspection evidence indicates that providers are preparing trainees well to meet the standards at a high level. The 2006/07 Annual Report of her Majesty's Chief Inspector noted that trainees "who successfully complete primary and secondary teacher training programmes are competent in managing the behaviour of the classes that they teach because the training programmes equip them well with practical strategies."

  In addition the TDA carries out an annual survey of NQTs in the spring term following the year in which they complete their training, probing their views on the effectiveness of their training. Typically over 12,000 respond each year, giving us a robust evidence base. The data show that there has been steady progress over time in response to the question: "How well did your training prepare you to establish and maintain a good standard of behaviour in the classroom?"
Primary NQTs responding: "Very good / Good" Secondary NQTs Responding: "Very good / Good"

  Overall 94% of NQTs surveyed in 2010 stated that their preparation in this vital area was satisfactory or better.

  The TDA uses data from the NQT survey and Ofsted inspections to work with providers rated as "poor" or "satisfactory" to develop improvement plans in order to bring about system wide quality improvement. We are currently reviewing the NQT data on behaviour at provider level in order to identify those who significantly above or below the sector average in the preparing new teachers to manage behaviour and maintain discipline in the classroom.


  We continue to emphasise the importance of effective training in behaviour and discipline in raising the status of the teaching profession and in meeting the government's objective of narrowing the attainment gap.

  To this end, we are currently:

    (i) Reviewing the NQT survey data in order to identify the most effective providers and develop case studies to be used to exemplify best practice and to improve the performance of weaker providers.

    (ii) Working with Ofsted to ensure that training in behaviour is given priority in the review of the framework of inspection of ITT.

    (iii) Reviewing our advice to ITT providers ensuring it clearly and consistently represents what is known about effective practice nationally and internationally.

    (iv) Working with the Department for Education to develop new routes to QTS such as "Troops into Teaching" to bring fresh skills into the classroom, from mature entrants who may have significant skills in motivating and managing the work of young people.

December 2010

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