Is this fair or are school BU?

(89 Posts)
M0naLisa Fri 25-Jan-13 08:30:35

At the end of each term 'good' children in school get to attend something called a 'no stage' party.

In each class there is a happy face and a sad face on the whiteboards.

Children who have been naughty go on sad face
Children who are good and do things extra special like helping with tidying and been friendly get to go on happy face.

Those children during the term that have been on sad face are denied an invitation to the no stage party. They have to sit in class and do work.

My 4yr old was put on sad face on Monday for talking when teacher was talking.

Now he's upset that he won't be able to go to the party that his friends and brother will be going to.

Is this being harsh for 4yr olds? Or reasonable?

hmm

WingDefence Fri 25-Jan-13 13:16:33

This sounds so harsh! I'd definitely complain if I were you.

neverputasockinatoaster Fri 25-Jan-13 14:09:23

We have a traffic light system in the classroom. Children can move up and down according to behaviour.
Each week we have Golden Time and children who have been on red at the end of the day lose some Golden Time.
Every half term there is a treat for those who have lost no Golden time - extra playtime etc but then that resets itself for the next half term.

I think a whole term is too much for such a little person.

maddening Fri 25-Jan-13 14:43:16

They should have the opportunity to earn it back imo

Pandemoniaa Fri 25-Jan-13 15:13:05

It sounds ridiculously punitive and almost certainly counterproductive. If a child is going to be denied an end of term treat for one episode of bad behaviour there's absolutely no incentive to behave better. It reminds me of my first school where 2 conduct marks ruled you out of the Christmas Party. None of the boys ever made it to the party but all of them competed to get as many conduct marks as possible!

I'd take up your concerns with the school,OP. I'm sure you won't be the only person unhappy with the system.

werewolvesdidit Fri 25-Jan-13 16:50:56

Sounds to me like a school with a lot of challenging behaviour so they are coming up with desperate strategies. It is a poor system and no 4 year old of mine would be going through something like that.

fairly standard I think, but sad if just one small bad thing effects a whole term. My daughter's school has the Manners Tea once a month, where two children from each class get to go have afternoon tea with the principle and counsellor and a few others... there are cakes and biscuits and lots of praise for being so good and they are encouraged to dress up for it. Since there are only about 8 over the school year not every child gets to attend, and they good children are chosen because of something especially good they did that month. My son didn't go at all one year, but because it was just the two best that got selected each month (though not more than once) it wasn't so upsetting for him. I thought that was a good plan as it rewarded good behaviour without punishing bad and without making the child give up if they made a small error.

hackmum Fri 25-Jan-13 17:25:29

I agree with Panedmoniaa. It's not just absurdly over the top, it's counterproductive. Not only is it no incentive to behave better, but it will cause resentment in the child. Talking while the teacher is talking is such a minor transgression, particularly when you're four and getting used to the idea that you have to be still and quiet. At that age punishments, if you have to have them at all, should be instant, and then the transgression should be forgotten about, not held against you for the rest of the term. You have to ask yourself: where did the teacher get the idea that this was a sensible thing to do? Don't they learn anything about the psychology of rewards and discipline in teacher training college?

ilovesooty Fri 25-Jan-13 18:57:31

I doubt the individual teacher is responsible for the intervention. It will be a whole school policy.

DizzyZebra Fri 25-Jan-13 19:33:15

I think talking is a petty reason, and once? For primary age children? They're not robots.

Argh i am dreading my daughter going to school. I am totally going to be THAT parent who is kicking off over everything. blush

AnneTwacky Fri 25-Jan-13 19:46:32

Don't think the one strike and you miss the party would be particularly effective.

It's taking the incentive away for any kid's with challenging behaviour who I presume is who they're trying to target with this scheme. Also the punishment is too far from the behaviour for the child to make the connection at that age.

I think the happy/ sad faces are ok in themselves as is anyone currently on the sad face missing a treat, as long as the children can earn going back to the happy face with positive behaviour.

missmapp Fri 25-Jan-13 19:51:12

Id check- my school has this system, but you have to had three or more red cards (same as sad face) to miss out, so plenty of time to redeem yourself - and that is for juniors.

jamdonut Fri 25-Jan-13 20:04:44

A party is held for all children who have been green all year at our school. An orange warning card ,just once, means no "I've been green" certificate to take home at the end of term.
The orange card is only given after 2 previous verbal warnings about their behaviour.
Children who get red cards, their parents are contacted. More than 3 reds in a week means an exclusion is very likely.

There has to be some form of consequence for bad behaviour. An orange card is not the end of the world...the aim is to earn the green back. More misbehaviour means orange becomes red.

It may seem petty,not talking while the teacher is talking, but it is so important that children learn quickly that they can't do this...it is not Behaviour for Learning. While the child is talking they have not got their mind on what they should be doing and are very likely distracting others at the same time.

betterwhenthesunshines Fri 25-Jan-13 20:06:06

At DDs school at this age they had a level system where you could move up or down, but it was fairly instant and each day started anew. I don't think there were any punishments involved either. Simply being 'moved down' seemed to be enough. Holding onto 'bad' behaviour for a term seems ridiculous and self defeating. It's not even a good policy for older children, but at four shock

M0naLisa Sat 26-Jan-13 01:46:44

At the end of every term on the last day is when the 'No Stage Parties' take place not just end of summer term.
October Half Term
Chirstmas Half Term
February Half Term
Easter Half Term
Summer Half Term

So with DS being placed on Sad Face on Monday this will reset itself when they return to school after February holidays.

I didnt manage to speak to the class teacher today because too many parents wanted to speak to her and were waiting outside, i had DS1 to collect afterwards and plus it was freezing cold (-3) so wanted to hurry up and get home. I will speak to DS2 class teacher on Monday morning and seeing about the no stage party because if he is denied an invitation to it then on that day i shall keep him off of school because it wouldnt be fair, plus he will be sat crying all day because his friends and brother (in Yr 1) would be attending.
I know he should face up to punishments to 'bad' behaviour but at 4yr old i think a punishment like this is too harsh.
We will have our own little party at home with Daddy and DS3 smile

CloudsAndTrees Sat 26-Jan-13 09:28:21

While the school are being way too harsh with their punishment for a four year old, and I very much don't agree with your son being denied the chance to go to the party just for one incident of talking, I think your idea of keeping him off school that day and having your own party is taking it far too far in the opposite direction.

Do you really want to send the message to your child that you disrespect the school rules and that he should be entitled to a day off and a party because the people who teach him are wrong?

I think that's just as bad a message to give him tbh. It will just confuse him and give him even less of an incentive to behave if you are going to over rule the school anyway.

LeeCoakley Sat 26-Jan-13 09:48:47

There are plenty of children (at our infant school anyway) who would get to attend this party. And as op says, her children attended last term. And MN is full of parents who tell us that their 'unnoticed' child never gets any reward. Well this is one school's answer to that! The party will only be a small part of the behaviour strategy, otherwise where is the incentive after the first sad face? All schools will try new strategies and if something doesn't appear to improve behaviour overall it will die a natural death. Imagine actually finding something that works perfectly for over 200 wildly different individuals! (AND universally liked by all the parents grin.)

I wouldn't agree with keeping off school though.

Lovelygoldboots Sat 26-Jan-13 09:55:38

I would talk to the head about your concerns. If you and the school are at cross purposes about disclipline at this early stage it will only get harder. You will not get to the bottom of it unless you get clear facts from the person responsible for maintaining discipline.

magicOC Sat 26-Jan-13 10:37:03

Our school does 30 mins of golden time every Friday, they get to watch a dvd, play games or whatever (disco last week) smile

Misbehaviour = a minute of golden time taken away for each offence. It just means that everyone unless very badly behaved gets some golden time depending on how many minutes they have left.

At the end of each term, cups are awarded for various achievements including behaviour.

Littlefish Sat 26-Jan-13 11:01:45

I very much doubt this was a single incident of talking when the teacher was talking, if children are usually put on the sad side for more serious misdemeanours. It is far more likely that he had received reminders and warnings over a period of time, with the final warning being that if it happened again, he would be moved onto the sad side.

You really do need to speak to the classteacher to find out what has actually happened.

JenaiMorris Sat 26-Jan-13 11:09:15

It's a horrible, spiteful system and I doubt it works.

socharlotte Sat 26-Jan-13 11:22:18

I think it is good that the children who are always good get recognised.I am betting that there are interim rewards like star of the day and golden time as well

TiggyD Sat 26-Jan-13 11:40:36

Doesn't sound good.

Firstly, the punishment takes place a long time from the offence when the offence would be forgotten.
Secondly, every day when the names are put on the faces he will be reminded that he failed in something. I do not think 2 months of that is terribly good for a child.
Thirdly, once a child is a failure why should they avoid the sad face in the future?

CloudsAndTrees Sat 26-Jan-13 12:28:38

I agree it's good for the children who are always well behaved to be recognised. In fact it's better than good, it's actually very important.

It's all too easy for the well behaved children to be forgotten, especially as they tend to receive less attention on a day to day basis than the more talkative children.

Emilythornesbff Sat 26-Jan-13 12:32:23

Seems a bit harsh and out of step with the current trend for a more positive approach to behavioural management.
I am dreading school for DS already. There are so many things that piss me off about it.
Can you encourage your ds in the ways of getting back on track so he feels he has some co trol over the situation and can "win" back his smiley face.
Poor sausage.

Ours have a weekly competition. They're grouped in tables and awarded points for good behaviour and doing well at work. Table with the most points on Friday gets a prize from as lucky dip bag (pencils, rubbers, etc) but the whole room (3 classes) gets sweets and a movie.

Seems to work really well.

I know for a fact ds1 could never manage as whole half term of impeccable behaviour so the system you've described would be a disaster. On our system he gets rewards for his work though, so although his behaviour isn't perfect he knows if he does his work well he can earn points for his table.

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