How many school staff to train in positive handling?
The Gravy Train positive handling courses for the masses?
Many schools have for years taken the Whole School approach to train positive handling for every member of staff at school. Recently I have been asking schools if this is really the approach that they need to take, they want to take and is having EVERY member of staff trained in restraint a proportionate, sensible and cost-effective way to address their risk?
Director of Training Gerard O’Dea discusses some ideas about how many staff need to (or should) train Positive Handling Strategies with children who display distressed, disruptive or dangerous behaviour in school.
Can you designate a specialist behaviour team?
If there are staff in your school who have a disproportionately high forseeability of needing to physically restrain a child, then it would seem reasonable to focus your training efforts on those staff. In some schools, all staff will share this responsibility and risk equally, but in MOST schools, there are a group of staff who are “on-point”.
This group, which would likely include your SENCo, some SLT members with responsibility for behaviour and inclusion, your teachers who have at-risk children in their classes and those children’s Teaching Assistants are all immediate candidates for this team.
Don’t be a slave to the cash-cow approach that is “Whole-School Training” in Positive Handling. Take control, think deeply about what you need and then carefully select the right level of training for the right people at your school. This will be the best way to safeguard your children, protect your staff and ultimately do the best thing for your school.
To read the accompanying article for this topic: https://www.positivehandling.co.uk/is-whole-school-training-for-positive-handling-the-right-answer/
Gerard O’Dea is a conflict management, personal safety and restraint training consultant who is in great demand across the education sector for his practical and effective approach to respectful physical interventions.. He is the training director for Dynamis, a specialist provider of personal safety and violence management programmes and the European Adviser for ‘Verbal Defense and Influence’, a global programme which addresses the spectrum of human conflict. www.dynamis.training