Disability Royal Commission exposes outdated and flawed behaviour management methods

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Photo courtesy of the DRC Media Team

Last week the Royal Commission into Violence, Abuse, Neglect and Exploitation of People with Disability undertook its seventh public hearing in Brisbane, which looked at barriers in accessing a safe, quality and inclusive education and life course impacts.

Up to 23 witnesses spoke at the hearing, revealing multiple incidents of funding support irregularities and complications, lack of flexible training for teachers to handle ‘disruptive’ behaviour in classrooms, severe bullying and devolution of decision-making authority to local levels within all mainstream, independent and private schools.

Dr David Armstrong, who is a international expert on behaviour, disability and mental health in education told the commission that controlling disabled students with punitive behaviour management approaches, including applying the ‘manage-and-discipline’ model, could lead them to become disengaged and demotivated with their schooling.

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