By law does a school have to give a set notice period for detention or is it at their discretion?

(46 Posts)
sicily1921 Sat 07-Sep-13 15:38:00

I had a foggy idea it was 24 hours but is this right?

BeenFluffy Sat 07-Sep-13 15:42:24

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

TeamEdward Sat 07-Sep-13 15:43:12

It's discretionary now.

And parents don't need to be informed in advance either.

They never did when I was at school unless it was for a school detention which was 1hr long after school. I left 9 years ago b


ReallyTired Sat 07-Sep-13 15:44:50

Surely a school would have to tell the parents otherwise it would be a safeguarding issue. I would be worried sick if my son got home an hour late without explanation. I am sure that most schools will give 24 hours notice out of plain curtsey. It if the child being punished not the parent.

Most schools will not be inconsiderate just becuase Gove has changed the law to allow them to be gits.

ReallyTired Sat 07-Sep-13 15:48:05
BeenFluffy Sat 07-Sep-13 15:49:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

BeenFluffy Sat 07-Sep-13 15:50:38

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

sicily1921 Sat 07-Sep-13 15:51:35

Been thanks for reply but are you sure about this :- ^ They can do same day without telling parents in advance.^ shock it doesn't seem quite right to me, parents should at least be texted surely?

sicily1921 Sat 07-Sep-13 15:53:24

They can do same day without telling parents in advance yes I meant itallics above not ^^

BeenFluffy Sat 07-Sep-13 15:59:31

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

BeenFluffy Sat 07-Sep-13 16:03:56

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

OddBoots Sat 07-Sep-13 16:08:19

I know ds's school don't notify parents but no-one buses in and out, if they did then I hope they would call/text parents to let them know.

tiggytape Sat 07-Sep-13 16:16:38

Beenfluffy - that applies to all schools now. Schools now have a lot more powers regarding discipline and safety. From the DfE website:

"Schools don’t have to give parents notice of after school detentions or tell them why a detention has been given"

The school doesn’t need your child’s consent to search them if they think your child has prohibited items:
weapons, eg knives
illegal drugs
stolen goods
tobacco products, eg cigarettes
pornographic images (of any kind)
anything that has been, or is likely to be, used to cause injury or commit an offence
anything banned in the school rules
These things can be confiscated.

There should normally be 2 members of staff present during the search - the person doing the search and the search witness. Searches should normally be done by someone the same sex as your child.

The search witness must also be the same sex as your child if possible. Your child must not be asked to remove clothes, other than outer clothing like a coat.

If there’s a risk of serious harm to a person if the search is not conducted immediately, a child may be searched by a person of the opposite sex and without another member of staff present.

"School staff can use reasonable force to control and restrain pupils. This could include leading a pupil by the arm into a classroom."

tiggytape Sat 07-Sep-13 16:20:45

Head Teachers also have the power to dicipline pupils for things that happen off school property eg on the journey to or from school (that has been the case since at least 2006 as it is included in the Education and Inspections Act 2006)

tiggytape Sat 07-Sep-13 16:24:19

So in answer to OP's question (deviated a lot there!) the Head is not legally obliged to tell the parents about detentions in advance or even what they're for.
In reality though, for anything more than a 15 minute detention, the school probably would choose to inform the parents.

BeenFluffy Sat 07-Sep-13 16:26:43

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

BellaVita Sat 07-Sep-13 16:27:44

Pupils in the school I work at can be kept behind for 20 mins without notifying parents, any more and a text is sent out.

DioneTheDiabolist Sat 07-Sep-13 16:31:08

My parents were never told when I got detentions over 20years ago. We were expected to call from the payphone and inform them ourselves. Surely this is much easier now that most secondary school children have mobile phones.confused

OddBoots Sat 07-Sep-13 16:42:53

There are no mobile phones allowed at ds's school. In theory they can have them on the journey to and from but most don't bother as they have to then sign them in and out and it's a faff.

tiggytape Sat 07-Sep-13 16:44:15

Beenfluffy - the outside school rules apply more to bullying on the way to school, standing at the end of the road smoking or bad behaviour on the bus - that sort of thing. It doesn't mean children are under the school's power at all times!

Madmog Sat 07-Sep-13 17:04:16

Not sure what the law is, but a minor offence at my daughter's school can be given the same day and is at lunchtime. Anything a little more serious, notice is served on the child and also the parents by post. The child has to take the parents copy signed by them to the detention. Think they do this so they can be sure the parents know their child will be late and also so they know why!

clam Sat 07-Sep-13 17:14:32

Surely more of a concern ought to be why one's child has been given a detention in the first place?

JenaiMorris Sat 07-Sep-13 18:57:58

I was thinking the same, clam!

After school detentions are rare at ds's school - maybe because a lot of pupils come from villages with crap public transport. I know they're rare because ds has only had one grin

We get a note in their planner informing us a day or two in advance.

HmmAnOxfordComma Sat 07-Sep-13 19:05:31

80% of the children at our school come on buses - council provided ones; there are not many villages served by public transport more than once a day.

After school detention is on a Friday and parents are given at least 24 hours notice and asked to collect their children.

I'm sure same day detention is more appropriate in an urban setting where the students can walk home. But there are lots of schools that ban mobile phones so I'm not sure how the children are supposed to let their parents know?

DioneTheDiabolist Sat 07-Sep-13 19:11:52

They could use the payphone. That's what we had to do.

HmmAnOxfordComma Sat 07-Sep-13 21:41:07

There's no payphone in the school. And they're not allowed out during the school day.

clam Sat 07-Sep-13 23:22:58

Then they'd at surely be able to use a landline on the school premises - student services or the office.

Detentions did exist before the invention of the mobile phone. And whilst most schools officially ban them, I bet there are very few teenagers who don't have one hidden in their bag for home time! It's long as they're switched off and don't make their presence known to staff then a blind eye is turned.

DioneTheDiabolist Sat 07-Sep-13 23:24:36

How are you informed of your DCs detentions Hmm?confused

cory Sun 08-Sep-13 10:22:10

The rule in ds' school is that the school will not give notice for a short detention (can't remember if it's 15 minutes or up to 30 mins) but will for a longer one. This is an urban school which makes it easier: anyone who missed the bus could just catch the next one, and the majority of students walked.

It would have caused massive problems for my dd who used disabled transport. Solution fairly simple though: I just told her she mustn't get detentions. wink

As for informing parents, school did not allow mobile phones in the classroom but you could take a mobile phone and hand it in at reception during the day and then retrieve it and make a penitent phone call to your parents at home time. Not that ds does: he knows that I won't get anxious if he is 20 minutes late; I'll just assume that he has either forgotten to do his homework and is in detention or is deep in conversation somewhere along the road.

HmmAnOxfordComma Sun 08-Sep-13 10:24:46

I was talking about the school I work in. It's 24 hours notice from the school office to the parent.

My ds hasn't had a detention, so I wouldn't know how his school works.

scaevola Sun 08-Sep-13 10:39:47

It's discretionary.

But a good school will realise that keeping a pupil after normal hours can have an impact on the wider family and will work with them in solving behaviour issues. Giving notice of detentions is one way to achieve this - also a conversation with the family can help uncover if there are any unusual circumstances which underlie the transgressions. If your aim is to teach and guide to acceptable behaviour, rather than exercise punitive measures without full context, that is an important step.

morry1000 Sun 08-Sep-13 13:49:18

One of the conditions for allowing my DD to repeat Yr11 was that i allowed the SENCO the sanction of immediate detention. I have said all they need to do is just text my mobile phone to let me know that DD has been kept in detention and i will arange transport for her.

Those who have read previous posts from me will know that DD despite having an IQ of 138 is STATEMENTED and suffers from ADHD among other things like emontional problems. For my DD this is a good solution in helping her get to grips with her problems and helping her eventually reach her potential.

On a separate issue has it become beneficial for a school to get a statemented pupil to University because after 5 years of lack of help with DD the school are now failling over themselves.

DioneTheDiabolist Sun 08-Sep-13 14:44:21

Hmm, so it isn't an issue for the school that you work in. Re. The school the OP works in, we don't know what provision is made for informing parents. I very much doubt that schools will detain a child without having measures in place that allow the parent to be informed either by mobile, payphone or office phone.

MadeOfStarDust Sun 08-Sep-13 15:53:37

I presume our school would let us know since 90% of the kids rely on school buses.

If they didn't let us know then it might be fun not trying to get the kids home...

Ragwort Sun 08-Sep-13 16:00:47

I agree with clam - if my child receives a detention (and he does grin) I want to know why and to make sure he understands why his behaviour is unacceptable.

When I was at school (a long time ago) we were regularly told off for not wearing the correct uniform to and from school and - worse crime ever - eating in public and talking to boys out of school grin.

ohtowinthelottery Sun 08-Sep-13 18:30:01

24hrs notice has always been given at DSs school, and I have not seen anything written to say that has changed. But we are in a rural area where 70% of pupils are bussed in, so keeping them behind for an hour (or even 20mins) after the end of the school day would be a massive pain for parents. I sometimes wonder who is the most inconvenienced by this punishment - it certainly seemed to put me out more than DS hmm.

In the old days when I was at school, there would have been no notice given about detention and you would have had no way of contacting your parents to tell them you would be late (we didn't even have a land line until I was 13) but then I guess parents didn't panic so much then as they weren't used to knowing where their offspring are every minute of the day.

EvilTwins Sun 08-Sep-13 19:19:21

Where I teach, detentions take place after school on the day on which they are given. This is a fairly recent thing, and has made a difference to the impact of detentions. Previously, when 24 hours notice was given, quite a lot of parents would refuse permission. Now, parents are informed by lunchtime at the latest, by phone or text, and then the students are collected from their last lesson and taken to the hall. It's made a difference because a disruptive student knows that they will not be able to get out of detention by getting their mum to write a note.

prh47bridge Sun 08-Sep-13 19:35:14

That is part of the reason the government made the change. Many schools found that, in many cases, informing parents of an impending detention resulted in parents refusing permission so the child went unpunished. The other reason for the change is that the government believe that a detention on the day of the offence is more effective than a detention a day or two later.

clam Sun 08-Sep-13 20:15:49

So really, before they phone the police in a mad panic because their pfb hasn't returned home from school on time, parents need to factor in the fact that they might have a detention!

Problem solved! grin

OddBoots Sun 08-Sep-13 20:23:25

Surely any parent would phone the school before phoning the police, even putting to one side the fact many secondary aged children don't always head straight home.

clam Sun 08-Sep-13 21:42:12

Although it's not absolutely clear what the OP's motivation was in posing this question, I have to say that although neither of mine have ever had a detention, if they did, and I was worried, it's them I'd be having a go at subsequently, not the school.

teacherandguideleader Tue 10-Sep-13 21:14:10

We don't have to get permission to keep them for 15 minutes or less - any longer and parents need to be notified. We don't have to get permission - it is just a notification. I wasn't aware there had been a change from Gove - I just follow the school policy.

pinksancerre Tue 10-Sep-13 21:21:30

We get a letter home with the date and the reason., usually 3 -5. Days notice. Slightly off tack but I object to them giving dd after school detentions, because all it means is I have to leave work to pick her up and drive her home, she loves it, means she doesn't have to get the bus! She's only had 2 but it feels like its my punishment. A lunchtime detention gets her grumpy!

Bunbaker Tue 10-Sep-13 21:37:58

They get notice at DD's school because it has pupils from a wide rural area. Once the school buses have left the premises at 3 pm many children have no other way of getting home.

"Actually I think what worries me more is that DD's school states that they can search children without consent."

It doesn't worry me. The school has found and confiscated illegal drugs from pupils on a number of occasions.

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