Sorting out Behaviour

A head teacher's guide

By: Jeremy Rowe


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Products specifications
Attribute name Attribute value
Size: 174mm x 124mm
Pages : 104
ISBN : 9781781350119
Format: Hardback
Published: May 2013

Inspirational, simple, profound and clear, this guide provides no-nonsense advice providing teachers with the confidence to implement transformational, successful behavioural management structures within the school environment.

Drawing on years of experience, the author shares the most effective methods of classroom management – avoiding disruption – enabling teachers to ensure that pupils receive the best education, with minimal distraction. Jeremy Rowe provides a stress-free, step-by-step guide for teachers, parents and educational leaders in creating a positive approach to challenging behaviour in groups and individuals.

Picture for author Jeremy Rowe

Jeremy Rowe

Jeremy Rowe, the ultimate 21st century headmaster', is now a CEO who combines his 20 plus years of teaching experience with traditional values, and a realistic perspective, to put into practice an effective method of management that has previously helped him become a successful head teacher and public speaker. Jeremy has regularly written articles for a range of magazines and online publications, and he has also worked with PiXL and a range of schools and multi-academy trusts. He believes that implementing simple but effective rules for school conduct results in a happy and successful school.


  1. Practical advice under 45 headings such as: Mistakes, Assemblies, The tracking of behaviour, Dealing with complaints, What a school can look like that hasn't got it right, Sin bins (aka detention hall), Dealing with -˜difficult' parents, The on-call rota; Toilets, The 85% you can control now, My ten favourite approaches, The things naughty students love. Looks extremely useful for anyone who is or wants to be a head teacher or one who would like to know what a head teacher could be doing.
  2. Jeremy Rowe has written an easily read text which will support staff and managers on schools to “sort out” many key issues which result in behavioural problems arising. I am pleased that the author addresses key issues of consistency of response, tracking, rewards, uniform, fixed term exclusions, inclusion rooms,... a real systems analysis. It was a pity he didn't address two current issues of parents who take their children out of school during term time and the teachers who cannot create rapport with the children, fail to take account of pupils' needs, fail to mark work , etc. Despite these limitations this book will act as a good guide for those new to management or contemplating taking the plunge. Well worth the read.
  3. You may not think you have the time to plough through yet another book about leadership - but do try this wonderfully readable series of mini-lectures (many consisting of a single paragraph, and none longer than two and a half A5 pages), covering all aspects of behaviour management from implementing a uniform policy to dealing with `difficult' parents and working with the governing body. There's plenty of practical advice, illustrated with pertinent anecdotes, and laced with just the right dilution of wry humour; much of it will simply reinforce what you already know (the importance of consistency, for example, and the need for senior leaders to be visible and available). But there are some innovative strategies, too - the method Rowe and his staff have devised for tackling lateness being a particularly brilliant example.
  4. "Sorting Out Behaviour" is a gem. While many of the ideas will be individually familiar, the book's real strength is that the totality provides an invaluable checklist for reviewing a school's approach to managing student behaviour. It helps that it's well-written and funny...
  5. Sorting out Behaviour by Jeremy Lowe is a useful and practical guide to behaviour management for anyone involved in secondary education, but in particular for head teachers and other senior managers.

    The central message of the book is that all children have the right to enjoy and achieve well in their education and their schools and that this requires a clear understanding by all members of the school community of acceptable and unacceptable behaviours. Unacceptable behaviours are those which affect the learning taking place and in this book Jeremy sets out his ideas for developing a school community in which expectations of pupils are clear, rewards and sanctions are used appropriately and the senior management team are visible, consistent and involved.

    Through a friendly and informal style of writing the author uses his own experiences in school as a Head teacher to present some refreshing suggestions and advice largely based on common sense which makes you think 'Of course, I should have thought of that!'. Head teachers addressing behavioural issues in their own schools may find this a useful resource to dip into to help them to develop or rethink strategies that are already in place and may be becoming a little stale. I particularly liked Jeremy's suggestion of an inclusion room, as an alternative to suspension or exclusion. I feel that this resource, when well used, would give both pupils and staff the opportunity to take the heat out of a situation and pupils who have infringed behavioural expectations time to depressurise and, away from their peers and the catalyst of inappropriate behaviour, reflect on and focus on their learning.
  6. There is very little in here that the good Head Teacher doesn't already know. But what most also know is that it can be easy to forget the simplest things, or to be harried by circumstances into letting them slip. Offering a pertinent reminder of the wisdom of 'firm and fair', this short and concise little gem reminds us quickly and effectively of the key features of effective behaviour management, from how to implement a whole school strategy effectively, to remembering not to buy Cadbury's Chocolate Fingers for parent meetings. The advice here is slick, decisive and well worth reading for any head teacher who believes that there is 'an army of fabulous young people just waiting to define their school' and wants to give them the chance to do so.
  7. No infographics, no academic references and no complex analogies: it has been a while since I have read a book for professional reasons and encountered such a no nonsense -˜this is what we did' and -˜this is why it worked' approach. Simple and quick, the book took me two short morning naps of a six month old to complete. I had thought the birth of my first child would put an end, at least for a while, to my wider reading for work, but Mr Rowe's tell it like it is and no more style has meant not.

    It could be argued that the book's structure is possibly a little too straightforward and that the dedication of one whole page to -˜Sorting out a hall of fame' and the 14 words that follow is unnecessary. Perhaps it could have fitted easily into another chapter. I couldn't make up my mind whether the boxed up key points at the end of each chapter were patronising or served as helpful reminders; maybe they were both depending on the complexity of what had preceded.

    Rowe's sections on detentions and on call really hit home. I only wish I or some of my colleagues had read them a few years ago. He articulates what some of us have failed to quite put our finger on about these vital consequence systems and he articulates it simply without ego or evangelical zeal. Rowe talks about how some ill thought measures put in place by schools are -˜worse than doing nothing' and having been witness to this, again I only wish this book were about 5 years older. There are no tables or pie charts to back up his claims, but one cannot help but be convinced and want to put in place some of the measures he explains.

    While the style is at times conversational, his ideas are brave and there is a sense of the big picture. Rowe clearly keeps in mind what can happen to young people when we don't get it right and he makes this evident in his section on alternative education. Despite participating in a nationally run behaviour and attendance programme, I had not been exposed to Rowe's -˜big play' idea of study weeks, nor the idea of student questionnaires or the transformational value of home visits: brave and big ideas that make impact.

    -˜Remember, the burden of proof is lower in schools than in courts-¦' This is one of many golden nuggets in the sections on dealing with complaints, parents and uniform. Rowe doesn't just put forward measures and experiences, he answers the questions you have in your head while you read like how when a parent says something is -˜pathetic', he always agrees and asks why they are making an issue out of it in that case. Real advice based on dealing with real parents and children in real schools.

    The book contains continual references to the creation of a behavioural timetable. Too often, schools tackle behaviour on the whims of senior staff, local feedback and teacher complaints. Rowe's argument for a timeline is compelling and I wonder how many will be able to read this book without going off afterwards to sort out their behavioural timetable?
  8. Thank you to Jeremy Rowe for providing a plain English, common sense, easy to read guide about behaviour. Perhaps more importantly, he reminds us that children aren't criminals and that most schools are calm, productive, orderly places that are far removed from the image so often portrayed in the media. We need to hear that message more often.

  9. I strongly recommend this extremely useful and practical guide, which demonstrates that effective behaviour management is about clarity, transparency, consistency and a set of manageable policies and procedures which are kept under constant review. Drawing on the author's vast, first-hand experience, it is a source of common sense and practical pointers which would enable all school staff from trainees to experienced school leaders to review their behaviour policies, practices and procedures.

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