Findern Primary School has noticed behavioural improvements since the policy was introduced
Children are adopting the relaxed footwear following a worldwide experiment by university boffins into the effects of footwear on learning.
The 10-year long study found that children who sit in class with no shoes on at all are more likely to behave better and obtain good grades compared to those wearing traditional outdoor footwear.
Because of health and safety issues it is hard for UK schools to allow children to remove all footwear.
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But now Findern Primary School in Derby has adopted the approach to include slippers and staff say after introducing the rule at the start of term they have already noticed a big improvement.
Deputy headteacher Michelle Hall said: “One of the teachers suggested the idea after seeing some research, and when we pitched the idea to the children they were very excited.
“It has been a success so far, most of the children and even some members of staff are wearing slippers now.
The study found that children who wore no shoes performed better than those in school shoes
“Our pupils are already very well behaved but there have been some changes.
When we found out it was going to happen everyone shouted ‘yes!’
10-year-old Maisie Futcher
“There is less stomping around and the pupils are a lot calmer and seem very relaxed.
“The children love it and that’s why we do our jobs, with them at the heart of everything.”
One of the converts to wearing school slippers is 10-year-old Maisie Futcher.
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She said: “I think it’s a great idea because I love wearing my slippers at home, so wearing them at school makes me feel relaxed and helps me to learn.
“When we found out it was going to happen everyone shouted ‘yes!’ and we all love it.”
The study by Bournemouth University completed over a decade in 25 different countries found that when students removed their shoes at school, it created a calmer and quieter environment. Some school also reported a reduction in incidents of bullying.
They also found that children are more likely to get to school earlier, leave later and read more.
The 10-year long study includes research from 25 different countries
As well as visiting schools in New Zealand and Australia for the project, researchers studied children’s attainment at a school in west London after the habit was introduced, analysing the pupils’ academic results all the way up through to university.
Experts found that by removing shoes pupils were more willing to engage in learning activities.
The system is also practiced in Scandinavia, as cold weather means that children take their snow boots off before entering the classroom.
Traditionally many British primary school children have worn pumps as indoor shoes but this has become less common in recent years prompting the study to explore wearing slippers instead.
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