Reality? It's tough

November 28 2018

A STRICT behaviour management system known as Ready to Learn is in the spotlight in Programme 5, to be aired on December 4.

One of the young people featured is  16-year-old Joe, who has ADHD and frequently breaks the rules. His place at Mangotsfield School is at risk in the year he is due to sit his GCSEs.

The pre-publicity blurb from the show's makers, Label One Television, says: "In this programme, the demand for better classroom discipline for all meets a desire to accommodate a minority of students who struggle to behave. What is good for the many isn’t necessarily good for the few. The Heads and their teams are on a quest to instil personal responsibility while balancing the effects of medical conditions that don’t always allow children to choose how they behave.

"With a close eye on the exclusion rate, the fate of those students struggling to adapt to the new regime and calm classrooms for the majority of students, the Trust must decide whether the new Ready To Learn system is here to stay."

Spoiler alert: it is. However, David Spence, headteacher at Mangotsfield, says the system was refined several times during the filming and is working much better during this academic year. 

"The school is a very different place from a year ago," he said. "We have made changes to the staffing and the physical space, we have more parental involvement and we have reduced inconsistencies."