School Bans Words 'Good' and 'Bad' to Describe Behavior: They’re Too 'Emotional'
Good and bad behavior as either 'skillful or unskillful'
A school in Leicestershire, UK, has banned the terms “good” and “bad” to describe children's behavior because the words were too “emotional" for the classroom.
Loughborough Amherst School has opted to describe good and bad behavior as either “skillful or unskillful."
Headmaster Dr. Julian Murphy said the policy was loaned from Buddhism and “designed to take the emotional heat out of language.”
Murphy told the i newspaper that although he didn't want teachers to be “soft,” he did not want them to be “shouty” either-or “make pupils feel guilty."
“I think it’s human psychology, even when you’re an adult – if people make you feel guilty, then you get angry, and then actually that’s when you’re likely to play the blame game and not to work that well. That’s when things get into a bit of a vicious circle,” he said.
“You’re not really angry with them, your action is actually much more one of concern because they’re behaving in an extremely unskillful way which is going to negatively affect their live [sic] chances and possibly those of people around them,” he explained.
But the headteacher emphasized he still maintained “quite a strict school."
He said there was “cumulative behavior policy” that could result in expulsion for littering or handing in homework late too many times.
In 2018, Murphy also banned traditional school reports and replaced them with a biannual report modeled on employee reviews.
Murphy told The Telegraph his decision came from parents complaining teachers’ remarks criticizing their children’s efforts were upsetting.
Teachers then self-censored in reports, filling them with euphemisms such as chatty” or “high-spirited” when they mean disruptive.
“It is a cultural change – now parents are more likely to say to teachers: ‘You have upset my child, you have damaged their confidence, the problem isn’t my child, it’s you,’” Mr. Murphy had said.
A new teacher recently drew backlash from parents after scolding children for not speaking loudly and clearly.
Mr. Barry Smith was brought in as a consultant and had been “previously praised by Government ministers for his impact on school improvement,” said headteacher Dr. Rowland Speller.
While teachers and parents clash over maintaining order, one London school lost control of its pupils who demanded social justice-style action.
Influenced by Black Lives Matter activism, pupils at Pimlico Academy in London protested over “discriminatory” uniform policies, banning hairstyles that blocked the view of others — such as afros and Islamic headscarves.
They also protested against the British flag, which was eventually taken down from the pole and burned.
The headteacher later caved to the pupil's demands and later resigned.