School kids conduct so bad NSW appoints behaviour boss

NSW has appointed a chief behaviour advisor to help schools across the state deal with deteriorating behaviour amongst students.

Education Minister Sarah Mitchell says Donna Cross will help ensure a consistent, evidence-led approach is taken to improving student behaviour.

"Professor Cross is a leader in the field of children's mental health and brings with her decades of experience in education, public health and research, having worked with governments at a state, local and international level, including with the UN," Ms Mitchell said on Thursday.

"Her appointment as a specialist advisor on student behaviour is a proactive and necessary step in addressing existing, as well as new and emerging, issues in our schools," she said.

"These are complex issues that school and broader communities are dealing with, and while we need a whole-of-community approach."

Public, Catholic and independent schools are dealing with disruptive behaviour in the classroom, which has spiked since the pandemic when schools were forced to implement sporadic periods of remote learning.

The new approach aims to support teachers in the classroom and improve student learning.

"We do not want a child's behaviour in class holding them or their peers back from learning," Ms Mitchell said.

Professor Cross says her career has been dedicated to improving the health, behavioural development and learning outcomes for children and young people.

"There are many ongoing and emerging behavioural challenges for students - especially as they grow up in a digital world," she said.

"We need to use the best quality evidence to ensure we are at the forefront of actions to equip our students, their schools and families with the skills and tools to optimise their life outcomes."

Catholic Schools NSW CEO Dallas McInerney welcomed the appointment saying it was "an important cross-sectoral initiative that will help improve behaviour in our schools".