Bad Attitudes Get a Good Foot Bending
Badly behaved schoolchildren are set to face alternative punishment in the form of foot and head messages as a means of controlling bad behaviour. A London-run company called Bud-Umbrella will work in 60 primary and 14 secondary schools, offering the alternative therapy to improve unruly children’s behaviour.
Lambeth Council in south London is to reportedly spend £90,000 next year sending the reflexologists into the schools – despite the fact there is little evidence such treatment improves behaviour.
The company’s website says reflexology may be beneficial in a number of ways.
It says: “It can calm aggressive feelings, improve listening skills, concentration and focus. It can relieve anxiety and stress, and improve confidence and self esteem.”
The move has attracted criticism however. Tory MP John Penrose dismissed the alternative therapy, saying: “Experienced teachers have a range of ways of dealing with badly behaved pupils and stroking their feet is not one of them.”
Mark Wallace, from the TaxPayers’ Alliance, said: “How on earth is the education system going to succeed if there are luxuries given out for naughty children and nothing at all given to those who work hard and do well? With everyone struggling in the financial crisis, this is crazy money being paid out on a crazy scheme.”