A survey involving 9000 teachers in England concludes pupil behaviour is ‘getting worse’

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1st June 2024 12:40 - Education

A survey involving 9000 teachers in England concludes pupil behaviour is 'getting worse’: A recent survey commissioned by the BBC has found that pupil behaviour in England is worsening each year, with nearly 20% of teachers admitting they have been hit by a pupil in the past year.

The survey was commissioned by the BBC and was conducted by Teacher Tapp, a survey tool made for teachers. Teacher Tapp asked up to 9000 teachers a series of questions about their experiences with behaviour in the classroom - the survey ran across February and March (2024).

Further findings from the survey highlighted that 30% of all teachers witnessed students fighting during the week they answered the survey, with a high proportion of primary and secondary teachers stating there has been an increase in fighting, pushing and shoving in the past two years. Additionally, 15% of secondary school teachers said they have experienced sexual harassment from a pupil during work hours.

It wasn’t just student behaviour that was concerning too. Around 1 in 5 teachers said they have experienced online abuse from a parent/guardian since September 2023. A similar number said they have experienced verbal abuse from a parent/guardian.

General secretary of the NASUWT union, Dr Patrick Roach, says since the pandemic, teachers are reporting that violence and abuse in schools “have risen notably”. He also said: “This is being compounded by cuts to specialist behaviour and mental health services for children, which have left teachers doing their best to fill the gaps and meet the needs of pupils that really require the skills of specialist counsellors and therapists” about the results and increasing concerns over behaviour in schools in England.

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