717 detentions in 4 days.

Sarah - posted on 04/08/2011 ( 45 moms have responded )





A headmistress who introduced a ‘zero-tolerance policy’ to improve standards in her school has handed out 717 detentions in four days.
Catherine Jenkinson-Dix has won the support of many parents after deciding to punish misdemeanours including smoking, chewing gum, eating between lessons, carrying mobile phones, applying excessive make-up and insubordination.

On Monday, the first day of the policy, 236 children – a fifth of pupils at City of Ely Community College in Cambridgeshire – were punished. On Tuesday the figure was 186, on Wednesday it was 180 and yesterday it was 115.
Supporters of the regime say the diminishing figures prove it is working. But the crackdown has divided parents, with some calling it draconian and others saying that old-fashioned discipline will be reflected in academic achievement.

florist Amanda King, 34, took her children, Ben, 12, and Shannon, 14, out of classes on Wednesday and is now looking for a new school. She said her son had been given a detention for arriving late to a French lesson.
‘I’m absolutely appalled. They are wrecking pupils’ education and turning it into a prison,’ she said. ‘Staff are nit-picking over everything – for behaviour, for what they wear.’

So, is it a stroke of genius, or a prison?


[deleted account]

WOW. I must be the meanest Mamma in the WORLD! Right here in my own home, I do NOT allow children to smoke, Chew gum, Eat in my living room, (that is done at the TABLE.) I do not let my 9 year olds have cellphones. I do not let them wear makeup at ALL....and if I am approached with subordination...we are in need of a time out. Gosh, my kids would fit right in at that school!

Jenni - posted on 04/09/2011




I'm not sure if anyone brought this point up yet. My kids are not school-aged yet. But when I do send them to school or HS. The time they are at school, that school is responsible for them. I would not want the school allowing them to get away with disrespectful behaviours.
It is their responsibility to ensure the safety and discipline of our children while they are under their supervision.
As far as the excessive make up goes... I can understand enforcing it.... it's not like you can go to many employment places and not follow the dress code. They have plenty of time to dress how they please outside of the institution. And this is coming from a woman who dressed like a goth in HS. ;)

Desiree - posted on 04/09/2011




And the problem is? High time actually, we are over sensitive about our kids and this is the reason a number of them are out of control. We scream childrens rights but what of the rights of the Teachers they have the right to be working in an enviroment where their lives aren't at risk and they have the correct tools. What of the rights of the other children not to be distracted or disrupted by bad behaviour. In South Africa we have just launched the "Bill of Responsibilities" This bill explains to the children that although they have right they have responsibilities that come with it too. Well at least someone is doing something. You can't please all of the people all of the time.

Esther - posted on 04/08/2011




I may or may not agree with some of the specific rules, but the fact is that they are in place. The correct way to deal with rules you disagree with is to take it up with the school board, not by encouraging your kids to just ignore them. I don't know why they have the rules they do, but I would expect my son to obey them regardless or expect to face the consequences. If specific rules need to be changed, then I would take that up with the appropriate people or perhaps change schools, but I would not have an issue with them enforcing the rules that they have through detention.

[deleted account]

Sounds like the kids will no longer be in charge of their school. The administrator will be in charge. What a concept. :-)


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Corinne - posted on 05/20/2011




Wow! A school that punishes kids for breaking the rules, good on 'em! When I was at school we had minimum skirt length, no make-up, no branded outer wear, no nail polish...... a very long list of rules and the were upheld. If your skirt stopped above your knees instead of below, you were up shit street, if you came to school with a NIKE jacket on, you were up shit street. I even remember teachers coming round in form period with baby lotion and cotton wool and all the girls had to clean their faces, if you had ANY make-up on you were straight into detention. Kids of all ages need rules, they break 'em, they pay. Simple.

K. - posted on 05/19/2011




I think it's genius. The time for child-empowerment is over. The kids don't run the school, and neither do their parents. Props to this new headmistress!

Christy - posted on 05/19/2011




Are these rules that are in the code of ethics? IF so, I'm betting parents and students signed saying they would support this code and agreed to these rules.

I think it's a bit excessive, but as a parent, I would watch for a few weeks to see what the results are before choosing to take my child out of the school.

LadyJane - posted on 04/10/2011




I agree 100% with this school and only wish I could send my daughter there. I do NOT allow makeup worn at my house but her father does at his and when she forgets to wash it off before coming to mine, she looks hideous, like she's one of those ladies from the 70s who just had to have 14 colors of glitter on their eyes... ICK! Definitely would love this school. :)

Desiree - posted on 04/10/2011




At the begining of the school year, I sign the code of conduct the children also sign it every year once the teachers have explained what is going on. Then there is no excuse for this nonsense or excuse for the children or parents to get upset for rubbish.

[deleted account]

I don't disagree w/ the rules, but the eating thing is the only part that concerns me at all. The rules for that make SENSE, but I'm also coming at it from the view of someone who has to eat about every 2 hours or I get sick. I also have two girls who went through a several month 'phase' where they would start eating as soon as we got home from school and not stop til it was time to get ready for bed (so eating for about 4-5 hours...).

Yeah, I have friends who limit their kids eating times and such or the kids won't eat dinner and that makes perfect sense, but it isn't the case in this house at all.

Vera - posted on 04/10/2011




Ink I agree, we are the same at my house. Parents are suddenly amazed by this and pulling their children out of school, what idiots! It says they sent out letters warning parents of the rules additionally; on the first day of school the teachers go over the “rules” with the children, if they missed those rules they are posted online, or in our case my step daughter brought hers home for us to review and sign.

So there is no excuse for the parents to be ignorant on any of the rules. They are not excessive or out of line. Everything they are banning is distracting or a nuisance at school. School is a place for learning, which is what everyone is complaining the teachers aren’t doing these days.

I would say as for the snack maybe make only for those special children who have medical needs to snack allow something that won’t litter on the grounds. But hey, with my “mean” rules if our kids don’t eat at meal time there are no snacks and even when there are it is at a specific time and it is healthy – if they don’t eat too bad I offered it.

As to the smoking and makeup etc… maybe there will be less little girls acting like big slutty girls and little boys acting like thuggy big boys out there so there will be less kids getting pregnant so young. Time to put your mommy and daddy pants on and actually act like a parent.

Tracey - posted on 04/10/2011




I have no problem with the kids being given detention. I do have concerns that they are spending 5 hours sitting in a hall reading a booklet about behaviour - missing lessons. Give them extra work to do, or keep them after school but don't let their education suffer.

Stifler's - posted on 04/09/2011




LOL Desiree, a lot of Australians think we have a "Bill of Rights" when we DON'T. AHAHAHA. If we ever get one I hope to God there's a Bill of Responsibilities brought out aswell. There's too many idiots in the world who think they have the right to do anything but have no responsibilities to the community.

Nikkole - posted on 04/09/2011




@Emma soo true about some kids who look like ompa loompas or ghosts with big black panda eyes. lmao!

[deleted account]

I am truly applauding the headmistresses crackdown on behavior. As for the florist that took her kids out because her child got detention for being late....Why shouldn't he get detention? He was late. He had no reason to be late as there is always ample time to get to each class. IF you need a bathroom break you go to class THEN ask to use the restroom.

Oh, and yes I would applaud and keep my kids there if mine went. Rules are to be followed all the time and not just when you feel like it.

Sarah - posted on 04/08/2011




I love it! It sounds like there has always been a dress code, they are just now more strictly enforcing it...fine, the students and parents should know what is allowed to be worn... It doesn't say that the kids can't eat between classes, simply that they have to be in designated areas and can't litter which sounds fine to me, I'd be upset if they couldn't eat at all since I have low blood sugar like many of you posted :-) And I'm sorry but I don't understand why kids even have cell phones and ipods in schools to begin with, there is no need for them, you don't need to text during school hours. Everything else is also things that I would expect to be rules in a school, you should be on time and shouldn't be rude... those are very much givens to me. I don't understand the parents who are pulling their kids out of school, do they let them do whatever they want at home as well?

Johnny - posted on 04/08/2011




There needs to be zero tolerance of some things with kids. Disrespect, tardiness (without valid excuse), smoking or doing drugs, etc. But other things like eating and make-up, it's pushing too far. I don't think it's beneficial to kids or their learning to ban eating between classes. Hungry kids don't learn well. And I personally tend to believe that children have just as much right to determine their own physical presentation as adults. As long as they are not wearing extremely exposed clothing or rude language, they should be able to wear as much ridiculous looking make-up as they want. Applying it in the classroom though? Ummm, no.

Rosie - posted on 04/08/2011




both, lol. i think the premise is good, the execution if horrid. eating and makeup??ohse nose!!!!

it reminds me of when i hear old men talking about how "back in their day children weren't allowed to talk at the dinner table, if they did they got a switch!!" it's crazy talk i think, lol!

Stifler's - posted on 04/08/2011




Stroke of genius. Old mate who removed her kids is clearly an anti intellectual twat. You should have seen the ground on the 'eating area' at my school, full of gum people had spat off the verandah of the buildings. Black and it was punishment to put gloves on and scrape it off the cement. Teenagers rarely know how to apply makeup either, not a good look for the school when half of grade 8 looks like oompa loompas or ghosts with big black panda eyes. Every school I went to you got sent home if you didn't wear correct uniform. Schools have rules, get over it.

Kylie - posted on 04/08/2011




Zero tolerance is not a good way to foster great working relationships ans respect in a classroom. High school students should be learning self discipline and responsibility. Definitely not genius. I'd take my kids out of that school too.

Nikkole - posted on 04/08/2011




The eating thing is just stupid if your not in class chomping down on some food then what should it matter? I know when i was in high school i would sneak food in because i was not a morning person and didn't like to eat earl so i would bring a snack with me and if im hungry and can't eat im not very nice lol

Lacye - posted on 04/08/2011




I personally think it is pretty freaking awesome! Those rules should have been in effect to begin with instead of just now introducing it.

Isobel - posted on 04/08/2011




In my high school, there was no eating in the hallways at any time...if you got caught, you had to help the caretaker clean the cafeteria after lunch.

I DO think that the make up part is directed at the goths that may or may not be freaking out the teachers (though I think teachers should be immune to that at this point) and that one's not really fair.

I got sent home in grade 11 for wearing a t-shirt that said "a hard man is good to find" (ironically I was still a virgin and didn't really "get" the whole joke, I thought it referred to hard-bodied lol). Anyhoo...I suppose now as an adult I kinda agree with them but I was pissed at the time.

[deleted account]

Me too. ;)

Smoking, being late to class, etc... YES, detention is fine. But eating BETWEEN classes? What if the kid felt a bit sick in the morning, so didn't eat breakfast... or has low blood sugar issues and HAS to eat? You do not want to be around me if I'm hungry. I am extremely shaky and unstable.....

Carolyn - posted on 04/08/2011




I have to agree, detention for make up, eating between classes etc is ridiculous. If im starving, im less likely going to be able to concentrate and focus in class, but Im going to get in shit for grabbing a granola bar between classes ? Or if the teacher disagrees with the amount of make up I have applied that morning she can give me detention ? fuck that, If my children ever got detention for such ridiculous reasons, I would have a few choice words for the school.

I fully support cracking down on negative, disruptive and disrespectful behaviour. But making kids go hungry, removing their right to personal choice ( or their parents choice) regarding make up and hair etc is crossing the line. So long as my kid isnt drawing swatiska's on their forhead in eyeliner, or shaving curse words into their hair, mind your own fucking business.

[deleted account]

Detention for excessive make up?? and who judges what that is? that is a ridiculous one to me also the one about eating between lesson?? so ima get a detention for eating a snack between classes? DUMB

but i think gettin detention for being late to class is common sense and that woman is crazy for pulling her kids out for that reason.

[deleted account]

I think that maybe it's too much too fast. I get the impresion that the school went from total lack of discipline to this overnight. Gradual changes would be been more appropriate.

But I think the woman who pulled her kids out is ridiculous. The message she's giving her kids is that its okay to be tardy and disrespect the rules.

Dana - posted on 04/08/2011




I really don't see a problem with it. I did think the applying excessive makeup was a tad too far but, it doesn't say excessive makeup, it says "applying". Which leads me to wonder if they're talking about girls applying makeup during class. That I could understand.

Otherwise, good for them. These kids knew the crackdown was coming and ignored it, obviously.

Louise - posted on 04/08/2011




I think this is great to bring publicity to the school I just think they have been very petty. I absolutely support the school for stamping down on bad behaviour but some of the things on the not allowed list is ridiculous. Every child has a phone on them but they are not allowed to check there phones in the corridors, or wear a scarf inside or wear odd socks. Come on this is just stupid. My son wore odd socks most of his days at school because he would get dressed in the dark! I know there is cracking down and there is just being silly. I am not sure I could put up with this my son would be forever in detention, it was hard enough getting him to school in the last few years this would of made it impossible.

I would support the school if they were weeding out the trouble makers for being rude, late bad behaviour and so on but for checking your phone when in the corridors is a bit silly and not worth an afterschool detention for. Get real school this is going to back fire big time!

Johnny - posted on 04/08/2011




My school was pretty laid back. No one would have got detentions for excessive make-up, chewing gum or anything like that. But the other stuff? Smoking, insubordination, carrying mobile phones. Yep. I can't believe a school would let kids get away with that stuff. If I was a parent I'd be pleased. I think that woman is nuts for removing her kids. I guess she prefers them to be disrespectful twits?

Amber - posted on 04/08/2011




We got detention for all of these things at my high school too...I'm not sure what the problem is, aside from letting them get away with these things before.

Some things should be warnings first. We would be given warnings for things like gum and food outside the cafeteria.

At my school, as soon as the bell rang all classroom doors were closed. If you were tardy, you went straight to a "sweep room". Three times in the sweep room and you got a detention, seven times and you got suspended. Plus, it was at your teachers discretion as to the make up work you would be allowed to do. Tardy's had gotten out of hand and so had people arguing in the hallways. It was an effective policy.

And phones...if we had our phones out of our lockers and they were seen, they were taken and our parents would have to come to the school to pick them up.

Esther - posted on 04/08/2011




I personally would not have a problem with it as a parent. The kids know the rules, they know there's a crack-down and if they break the rules anyway, they can suffer the consequences. It's not like they're being waterboarded. I think they'll survive detention without too much psychological damage.

Bonnie - posted on 04/08/2011




Holy Moly that is a lot of detentions. Seems like they just waited way too long to put their foot down.

Jenni - posted on 04/08/2011




"Excessive make-up"?
Oh. Those poor scene, emo and goth kids. How will they show everyone how totally, unique individuals they are now?

LaCi - posted on 04/08/2011




Well, that's worse than the news story I just heard about JCPS (louisville area) schools suspending 15000 students last year. That's only about 93 suspensions... every day.

Of course I didn't factor in holidays.

Krista - posted on 04/08/2011




I'm with April -- I can see giving detentions for SOME of those things -- lateness, disruptive behaviour, anything that is detracting from the education of that student or the other students. But, I think some of the other things would only warrant a warning (and then perhaps a detention after three warnings have been accrued). Detention for getting caught chewing gum ONCE seems pretty excessive.

Sal - posted on 04/08/2011




i know a school she can come to next, kids in uniform, no smoking, no makeup, no mobile phones..... kids on time for classes, love it, the kids now know exactly where they stand and get on with what they have to do...learn

April - posted on 04/08/2011




I'm used to that kid of policy. That's what my high school was like, you couldn't even fart without getting into trouble :/ i hated it but then again i was a teenager and i hated a lot of stuff LOL

IMO they should get detention for the big things and have warnings for the small things, if they do it more than once thats when they should get detention. Reason being i don't see how they can put all those kids in detention, how will they do that? At that rate, one day the whole school will be in detention then what? but thats just my opinion.

[deleted account]

"smoking, chewing gum, eating between lessons, carrying mobile phones, applying excessive make-up and insubordination."

Excessive make-up? LOL

Sneaky - posted on 04/08/2011




evil genius maybe :o)

My husband, who is about to be a teacher, thinks that the policy should have already in place instead of letting the kids get away with so much for so long - but then, he spends more time with teenagers than I do.

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