Parents with children at a Suffolk school which has called in "Britain's strictest headteacher" say they have considered taking their children out of the school due to "army-like" behaviour.

Barry Smith, known for his unconventional teaching methods, has been working in a coaching role to support Stowupland High School, near Stowmarket.

The school, which is part of the John Milton Academy Trust, received a 'Requires Improvement' Ofsted rating in December after an inspection last January found that behaviour issues were not consistently addressed. 

Parents have said children have been told they should go into school even if they were ill for staff to make the decision whether they were healthy or not, and a militant approach towards pupil-staff interactions.

A spokesperson for the John Milton Academy Trust said there have been no changes to school policy on illness.

Parent Toni Wasag said that children were told in an assembly that they would have to say good morning to every member of staff they walked past, shake hands and give eye contact.

"What about children with special educational needs who can't do this?" Ms Wasag said.

"I have made a formal complaint to the school. We understand he has said that there is no such thing as SEND needs."

Marcus Green, another concerned parent at the school, added: "This is not the way to tackle behaviour issues. They need to work out how to improve the school.

"I feel really worried. I debated taking my son out of the school. We want to give them the best possible education and there's someone treating them like they are in the army."

READ MORE: Ofsted issues 'genuine apology' after school's inspection concerns six months ago

East Anglian Daily Times: The school received a Requires Improvement rating last year.The school received a Requires Improvement rating last year. (Image: Newsquest)

Shaun Common, interim CEO of the John Milton Academy Trust, added: “The Trust are aware of concerns surrounding the work at Stowupland High School to address behaviour and create a polite and welcoming environment for learning.

“In particular, concerns have been raised over how this programme of improvement will affect our students with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND).

“The school is taking great care to ensure students with SEND are not disrupted by our efforts to improve the school and will instead benefit greatly from the calm and polite learning environment we look to foster.

“We take our responsibility to care for our SEND students extremely seriously and would always make appropriate concessions regarding behaviour.

“We have already seen improvement in student behaviour across the school and are confident we will continue to see the benefits as our work continues.

“Mr Smith is working with school staff in a coaching capacity and to support the school with its modelling. He is not part of the teaching staff and cannot give pupils detentions or suspensions.

“We will be happy to meet with individual parents and carers to discuss their concerns.”