Magazine article Times Educational Supplement

From the Archive - 07.10.1983: News

Magazine article Times Educational Supplement

From the Archive - 07.10.1983: News

Article excerpt

A case of follow my leader for tough heads

Mrs Thatcher's tough image is seen to have inspired many independent school headmasters to take a much firmer line on school discipline.

Christopher Turner, headmaster of Stowe School, which expelled 12 of its 650 boarders last term for taking drugs, said that heads were no longer afraid to be "authoritarian" and to insist that boys stuck to the rules.

Some of the credit for this shift in attitude should go to the prime minister, he said. "You may not like her policies, but people have responded to her tough line. It has been a success, and that's had an effect on schools."

Headmasters had generally cast off the permissive legacy of the 1960s, when "dangerous and destructive influences", notably the drug culture, had penetrated schools.

Mr Turner added: "At that time, there was the theory you should not overfill an adolescent's time, because you had to let him develop in his own way. …

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