Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Whatever Happened to "Conduct"?

I really couldn't believe this story out of the UK......

According to a report in the U.K.’s Daily Mail, one school in the town of Wellingborough is allowing pupils to swear at teachers, providing they only do so no more than five times in a class. A tally of how many times the f-word is used will be kept and if the class exceeds the limit, they will be “spoken” to, the newspaper reported.

(snip)

According to the Daily Mail, assistant headmaster Richard White said the policy was aimed at 15- and 16-year-olds in two classes which are considered troublesome.

"Within each lesson the teacher will initially tolerate (although not condone) the use of the f-word (or derivatives) five times and these will be tallied on the board so all students can see the running score," the Daily Mail quoted White as writing in a letter. "Over this number the class will be spoken to by the teacher at the end of the lesson."


This part was the most interesting:

The newspaper also reported that the 1,130-pupil school plans to send “praise postcards” to the parents of children who do not swear and who turn up on time for lessons.

I believe in the power of positive reinforcement and that kids should be recognized for polite behavior. However, why are we tolerating inappropriate behavior and rewarding what should be expected?

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