The Housemaster body recently attended a workshop on the “Broken Window‘’ approach to discipline. The emphasis was on how the effective management of pupil behaviour in schools plays a critical role in maintaining a healthy school environment.
It is generally accepted these days that heavy handed enforcement tends to breed resentment amongst the pupils. Pupils respond better to motivation and encouragement which is a big part of the St Peter’s philosophy. One has to be careful not to fall into the trap of accepting that standards have slipped and that this is the “modern way.”
The spectre of racism, which arose so powerfully at the end of last year, constitutes a disheartening reminder of how little progress we have made in uniting as a nation since 1994.
I often think that as South Africans, one of our most limiting characteristics is that we do not know how to listen. We listen to respond rather than to understand. This is why, for me, the Parent Transformation Meeting held a few weeks ago was so important. It provided the first real opportunity for people, with different life experiences, to listen respectfully to each other.
We started our third Flexible Learning Programme (FLP) on Tuesday and once again the boys have been fully engaged. Every time we run these programmes we are amazed at the level of thinking and questioning from the boys. Again this week, boys have opted to stay in at break to work on tasks!