How do your children travel around the school?
Children run. It’s what they do.
If they see an expanse of space in a supermarket they will use it. A shiny floor aisle is perfect for sliding down – admit it, you are tempted too.
At school it’s no different. Space = fill.
A long corridor invites running and children will do just that. Some do what footballers do after they’ve scored a goal and launch themselves on their knees and slide about 5 metres towards their supporters…or in this case, slide into trouble.
Schools try hard to get their pupils to move around school in an orderly fashion without running, cartwheeling or doing a roundoff back handspring but to no avail.
Signs don’t work either. If you have a sign saying NO RUNNING then this just invites ruler-breakers to run.
Corridors should be calm and safe places not, as in some secondary schools, like Oxford Street with rugby scrums, wrestling, fighting and sexual harassment. If it means taking a tough line then so be it.
One school in Teeside suspended a number of children from running in the corridors because of their “dangerous and disruptive behaviour” leaving parents devastated and angry.
David Dawes of the The King’s Academy, in Coulby Newham said that the health and safety of pupils and staff was the reason why pupils were suspended.
“Although a large mainstream school with responsibility for the safety and welfare of over 1,400 students and staff, our population also includes a small proportion of highly vulnerable students and those with disabilities which include hearing, visual and other impairments.
The school environment relies on structure in its day-to-day routines so that children don’t feel its okay to run down corridors like Usain Bolt. The bottom-line is clear as day – students who run put themselves at risk of injury and they jeopardise the safety of vulnerable students and pregnant staff.
You can normally judge the senior management team of a school by how the pupils move around a school and whether it is knee-deep in litter.
Perhaps we need to invest in some Alice in Wonderland style optical illusion flooring and stop children in their tracks. Take a look at this perfectly flat floor from Casa Ceramica Tile Company….