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EDITIONS
Monday, 2 September, 2002, 12:58 GMT 13:58 UK
Tories call for school behaviour contracts
Signing
Parents would sign an agreement on pupil behaviour
Parents could be made to sign contracts agreeing to rules on school discipline, as a condition of their children being offered a school place, under proposals from the Conservatives.

If parents did not agree to sign such "home-school behaviour contracts", pupils could be denied admission.

The terms of the contract would also be used in the monitoring of behaviour and any problems with discipline.

Schools already have home-school agreements, which set out the school's rules on subjects such as attendance, homework, behaviour and bullying.

They are intended to encourage a stronger relationship between schools and parents - and to make parents aware of school rules.

But the Conservatives' proposal would extend agreements so that they became a condition of entry.

The intention would be to make parents take greater responsibility for the behaviour - or misbehaviour - of their children.

Appeals panels

The tough line on behaviour is expected to be presented later this week by the Conservative party leader, Iain Duncan Smith.

Mr Duncan Smith might also repeat calls to give schools the final word on exclusions - reducing or removing the powers of appeals panels.

There have been claims that the authority of head teachers can be undermined when appeals panels reinstate permanently excluded pupils.

Conservatives have accused the government of over-centralising the education system - and giving too little independence to head teachers.

The proposals on discipline would be intended to highlight an area of recurrent concern - and to push the message that schools need to have more freedom over admissions.

See also:

14 May 02 | Education
19 Apr 01 | Education
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