Michaela School advertises for 'tough love' detention role


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Michaela Community School

A secondary school is advertising for a “detention director” who believes children need “clear firm discipline”.

Michaela Community School in Brent, London, wants “a sergeant major in the detention room” to bring order.

The job specification, published in the Times Educational Supplement, offers a salary of up to £35,000 for the role.

According to the school’s website, pupils can be put in detention for infractions including “turning around in class, calling out or being late”.

Other prohibited behaviour includes “failing to listen attentively, behaving badly outside of school, failing to bring correct equipment, and failing to complete homework”.

‘Children misbehave’

The role is “not suited to a would-be counsellor or to someone who wants to be every child’s best friend”, the advert states.

It reads: “This role is for someone who believes children need clear, firm discipline. This role is for someone who believes tough love is what children need to become better people and grow into responsible young adults.”

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Although the school, a non-denominational, non-fee paying, mixed school, was unwilling to talk to the BBC, educationalist Sir Bruce Liddington told the Victoria Derbyshire programme the success of such a position depended on whether parents would support the school’s policy.

He said: “If the parents think this role is good then it stands some chance of working. If they constantly resist it, then it won’t, I’m afraid.

“The important thing about pupil behaviour – and they are children and they do misbehave sometimes, that’s part of growing up and you have to accept that if you’re in an authority role – the vital thing is for them to learn from mistakes so they become good adults.”

Sir Bruce, a former head teacher of a large state school, said the role was not something he would have considered having at his school.

“The vast majority of children want to be good adults, good parents, and successful workers. Sometimes you have to help them on their way.”



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