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Steven Baker FCCT is the Executive Headteacher of two outstanding schools in Merseyside that cater for children aged five to 16 with social, emotional and mental health (SEMH) difficulties. The schools are both currently rated as outstanding in all areas and have won a range of national awards for their compassionate, collaborative approach; in 2018 the Department for Education cited the primary school as an example of best practice in mental health due to its focus on supporting pupil and staff wellbeing. Steven has held a range of leadership roles, is a former Ofsted inspector and regularly delivers national keynotes. With Mick, he co-wrote an online behaviour management course which had almost 10,000 subscribers from 165 countries. Steven is a member of the Ambition Institute and Learnus advisory boards and he was recently made a Founding Fellow of the Chartered College of Teaching for his 'significant and sustained' impact on teaching. He is on the SecEd and Headteacher Update editorial board and works with the Ministry of Justice in youth and adult establishments nationwide. He is currently seconded on a part-time basis to a national charity that is developing a collective impact initiative to transform opportunities for children in Birkenhead over the next 20 years. A former war crimes investigator, Steven regularly speaks in schools and prisons about the consequences of hatred; in addition to receiving the Queen's Award for Voluntary Service, he has been presented with an award by Lord Bourne for his 'outstanding contributions to tackling hatred and building a better society'.
Mick Simpson has been a teacher for over 30 years and has spent his entire career serving schools in challenging circumstances. A Pearson Award-winning teacher of science, he has undertaken most middle and senior leadership roles that can be imagined. He has recently taken post in his third headship and is implementing his sanction-free approach in his new setting. Mick has trained thousands of professionals, from teachers to members of the emergency services, in non-confrontational behaviour management theory and techniques and is a regular speaker at events and conferences. He has successfully facilitated learning for cohorts of middle and senior leaders in leadership theory and practice. Mick co-produced an online course on behaviour management, delivered on the Futurelearn platform, which was completed by almost 10,000 participants in 165 countries. He has worked with Her Majesty's Prison Service, offering training in leadership and behaviour management to individual establishments and to the National Working Group on Rehabilitative Culture.
A new approach to behaviour management | A book packed with sound advice and made more relevant because the writers are teachers and have put their advice into action. Evidence based practice is always the best. There are so many useful phrases and practical tips and quotes. Phrases like ‘never leave a child with no where to go, behaviourally or educationally’, or ‘a burnt-out teacher cannot foster positive relationships’ and the ‘importance of personal space’ are particularly memorable examples. The style is informal and chatty and clearly laid out. I like the key ‘learning point’ boxes at the end of each chapter and the interesting examples of successes had with previous pupils. On occasions however, the examples are a little too lengthy and a little too personal. Whilst not prudish in any way, I did not think the swear words added much to the narrative or the over personalisation of ‘Steve’ or ‘Mick’ in the chapter overviews. Whilst I respected the scientific research that had gone into the reasons behind why children behave as they do, I think it would be fair to say that most educators want solutions and answers. Not because they do not care or are not interested in the science, but because they just do not have the time. For me, the interesting chapters were those that provided solutions to situations and offered practical help to real life scenarios. There were certainly many useful, thought provoking messages and theories throughout the book that we can all learn from.