***THIS IS A DRAFT***

Code of Behaviour for St. Aengus N.S.

Every child has the right to learn and develop to his/ her full potential in a safe, caring environment where he/she can feel happy.

With this in mind, this policy is created to lay down agreed guidelines which promote positive behaviour and allow the school to function in an orderly and harmonious way.

Why is it necessary to devise a Code of Behaviour and what will it contain?

  1. the standards of behaviour that shall be observed by each pupil attending St. Aengus N.S.;
  2. the measures that shall be taken when a child fails to observe these standards;
  3. the procedures to be followed before a student may be suspended or expelled from school;
  4. the grounds for removing a suspension;
  5. procedures to be followed in relation to a child’s absence from school.

Those involved in drawing up the policy

Parents, teachers, Board of Management and pupils, as appropriate, are involved in compiling the document. Views are gathered by questionnaire from parents. Teachers discuss views and ideas at a special staff meeting and a draft copy is presented to the Board of Management.

If approved by the Board a draft copy, including any amendments made by the board, is left on view in the school website for a period of 3 weeks where parents are welcomed to examine and comment through telephone, visit or email. Any further amendments are made and a copy is circulated to parents via the website. You will be notified of this on the school newsletter. The policy will be sent to all families and later posted on the school website. In future years only new entrants to the school will receive a copy. Parents will be required to sign a letter saying that they have read and wish to comply with the code.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Discipline Policy: Key for Discipline (KFD)

Introduction

Key for Discipline is a planned strategy for managing behaviour; it is a school wide approach that rewards effort, work and social behaviour. It is consistent and predictable. Limits are known and enforced fairly. It promotes the quality of relation within the school community. It promotes a positive atmosphere in the classroom and is a means of managing low-level unwanted behaviour.

The Charter

KFD involves the design of a charter visible in each classroom.

The charter contains rules, which communicates clearly, the expectations we have for our pupils. They circumvent second-guessing.

The rules are, realistic, few in number, positively phrased, relevant, and all encompassing. They are based on themes; talk, time, movement, interaction, schoolwork activities and class routines. The charter also contains rewards, which positively reinforce, through feedback, wanted or desired behaviour. Rewards are the key to success. They are tangible, graded, earned on merit, easily administered and desirable. The desired behaviour is promoted, and the unwanted behaviour marginalised with the assistance of rewards, the school has a structured system of tangible rewards. From Senior Infants to 6th Class this consists of a Dojo Grid on the IWB with every child’s name. When children follow the rules they are given a Dojo point. Points are collected over a period of time and lead to the awarding of an agreed reward (e.g. after 20 points the child gets a lucky dip prize and after 40 points a Homework Pass). Points awarded cannot be taken away. Behaviour Checks are the final part of the Charter. These are also part of the planned strategy and the aim is to ensure that they are applied consistently. Children will know what happens when they don’t follow the rules. Behaviour checks are negative consequences; they are graded and allow the child opportunities to choose appropriate behaviours.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rules to be taught to the Children

These rules need to be explicitly taught to the children.

Rules for the Classroom

  1. Do your work and do it well.
  2. Know when and how to leave you place.
  3. Speak to teacher at the right time.
  4. Do as you are told (by all staff). Follow instructions straight away.
  5. Keep unhelpful hands, feet, objects and comments to yourself.
  6. Be prepared, be tidy, be on time.

 

Rules for the Yard

  1. Play preferred games.
  2. Keep unhelpful hands, feet, objects and comments to yourself.
  3. Be in the right place at the right time.
  4. Be prepared for yard.
  5. Walk to and from the yard.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Reward System

Non-tangible rewards. The most important rewards are non-tangible, for example verbal recognition of good behaviour, (well done, thank you) and non-verbal actions (shake hands, applause, a smile).

Tangible rewards. This consists of a Class Dojo. Points are collected over a period of time by the child and lead to the awarding of stickers, lucky dip e.g. homework pass, treat pass etc.

Consistency between class groupings is essential.

Class rewards

This rewards group behaviour, typically for yard behaviour but also for appropriate classroom behaviour. A grid is displayed in the classroom, and the teacher decides the allocation of stamps.

If the grid is completed within the agreed timeframe the class can select from an agreed list of rewards. 2 stamps are gives per day.

If a pupil has been made to stay with the teacher during break, their name goes on a grid – if twice the child is excluded from class reward.

The class reward should ideally be renewed every two weeks. *Junior Infants have a different reward system involving a variety of charts, stickers etc.

Examples of Appropriate Tangible Rewards • Home Work Pass • Subject Pass • Treat Pass • Whiteboard Pass • Seat Pass • Toy Pass • Lucky Dip • Stickers • Golden Time • Extra yard time • Game Pass • Disco Pass

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Behaviour Checks:

Classrooms

Stage 1. Oral Warning

Child is reminded of the appropriate expectation and asked to stay on-task.

Stage 2. Written Warning

If the behaviour continues the child’s name is recorded on a recording sheet.

Stage 3. Thinking Chair

Child is sent to work in a separate area in the classroom for a short period of time (no more than 10 minutes eg 5 minutes for five year old, six minutes for six year old etc.) and continue with classwork.

Stage 4. Teacher Partner

Child is sent to work in another teacher’s classroom for a short period of time (Until the next break in the day). Parents are informed by standard note. At the class teacher’s discretion, the Principal may be informed.

Stage 5. Office

Child is sent to the office for repeated or serious inappropriate behaviour.

This is recorded in “The Office Book” by the Principal and parents are informed.

Stage 6. Parents

Two recordings within a month and the parents are sent for. A range of outcomes will be discussed and agreed with the parents, in consultation with the Board of Management.

 

 

 

Behaviour Checks: Yard

Stage 1. Oral Warning

Child is reminded of the appropriate expectation and asked to behave appropriately.

Stage 2. Stay with teacher for 5 Minutes

Serious misbehaviour results in having to stay with the teacher and bypassing the oral warning.

Stage 3. Stay with teacher for the remainder of Break.

If the child continues to act inappropriately their name is recorded in the “Yard Book” by the supervising teacher. The child will remain with the teacher for the remainder of the break. If the incident is of a serious nature the child will be sent straight to the office and parents informed.

Stage 4. Office.

If the child’s name is in the yard book twice in one month the child will be sent to the office. Their names will be recorded in the office book.

Stage 5. Parents.

A range of outcomes will be discussed and agreed with the parents, in consultation with the Board of Management. In very rare circumstances a child may be suspended from yard for a period of time.

 

 

Class Rewards for Yard: This rewards group behaviour, typically for yard behaviour but also for appropriate classroom behaviour. A grid is displayed in the classroom, and the teacher decides the allocation of stamps. If the grid is completed within the agreed timeframe the class can select from an agreed list of rewards.

 

 

Games/Behaviour Not acceptable on Yard.

Rough Play, e.g. “mess” fighting, kicking, punching, wrestling, head locks. Piggy backs, lifting other children.

Hat throwing, pulling hoods, scarves around waists and necks.

Throwing stones, pulling hair, biting, spitting

Excluding children from games.

Use of bad language and name calling.

 

 

Policies Relevant to Yard

Sick Children. The only children permitted to sit outside the office due to illness are those with a letter from their parents. Anew letter must be provided for each day the child is allowed to stay in. This is to be discouraged as children must be supervised during this time.

Accidents and injuries on Yard. Children who get injured on yard are assessed by the teacher on yard.

Children with bleeding, knocks to the head, suspected sprains or fractures are sent to the office in the company of a Yard Buddy or class mate for First Aid or further medical assistance.

The accident should be recorded (if serious) and parents informed, even of minor injuries, particularly in the Junior Classes.

The Yard Teacher should inform the Class Teacher of accidents/injuries.

Being Prepared: Children should use the toilet before going out on yard. This requires a few minutes’ preparation by Class Teachers before the bell rings.

In the case of an emergency, a child can use a toilet closest to the yard.

The Teacher needs to ensure coats are on in cold weather etc.

No food is permitted on the yard.

Assigned Yards • Junior, Senior Infants, 1st class and second class yards are on the top yard of the school. – 3rd,4th, 5th & 6th Class – are on the car park

Role of Personnel Teachers – One teachers per yard. Their role is to consistently apply the yard rules and follow the agreed Behaviour Checks.

SNA’s – The role of the SNA on yard is the child they’ve been assigned to. They also act as a support to the teacher on yard. Their role shouldn’t require them to get involved in matters of yard discipline. However, a common sense approach needs to be taken if they are the nearest adult to an incident that needs immediate action.

Yard Buddies – The Yard Buddies are 6th Class children who volunteer for the role4 They give guidance to their younger peers, help play or guide play with smaller pupils and assist the Yard Teacher by accompanying children to the

Lining Up – When the bell rings all children walk to and line up at their designated spot. They wait there till the Class Teacher collects them. Teachers on yard wait till all classes have been collected. Teachers assign places to children in the line. Leaders can be rotated.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rules for the Classroom

  1. Do your work and do it well.
  2. Know when and how to leave you place.
  3. Speak to teacher at the right time.
  4. Do as you are told (by all staff). Follow instructions straight away.
  5. Keep unhelpful hands, feet, objects and comments to yourself.
  6. Be prepared, be tidy, be on time.

 

 

Behaviour Checks: Classrooms

 

Stage 1. Oral Warning

 

Stage 2. Written Warning

 

Stage 3. Thinking Chair

 

Stage 4. Teacher Partner

 

Stage 5. Office

 

Stage 6. Parents

 

Rules for the Yard

 

  1. Play preferred games.

 

  1. Keep unhelpful hands, feet, objects and comments to yourself.

 

  1. Be in the right place at the right time.

 

  1. Be prepared for yard.

 

  1. Walk to and from the yard.

 

Behaviour Checks: Yard

 

Stage 1. Oral Warning

 

Stage 2. Stay with teacher for 5 Minutes

 

Stage 3. Stay with teacher for the remainder of Break.

 

Stage 4. Office.

 

Stage 5. Parents.

 

 

 

 

Code of Behaviour for St. Aengus N.S.

Every child has the right to learn and develop to his/ her full potential in a safe, caring environment where he/she can feel happy .

With this in mind ,this policy is created to lay down agreed guidelines which promote positive behaviour and allow the school to function in an orderly and harmonious way.

Why is it necessary to devise a Code of Behaviour and what will it contain?

The existing policy is in need of renewal and it is required by law since 2007.This document must be in place by 2010.

It should specify the following :

a. the standards of behaviour that shall be observed by each pupil attending St. Aengus N.S.;

b. the measures that shall be taken when a child fails to observe these standards;

c. the procedures to be followed before a student may be suspended or expelled from school ;

d. the grounds for removing a suspension;

e. procedures to be followed in relation to a child’s absence from school.

Those involved in drawing up the policy

Parents , teachers , Board of Management and pupils ,as appropriate, are involved in compiling the document. Views are gathered by questionnaire from parents. Teachers discuss views and ideas at a special staff meeting and a draft copy is presented to the Board of Management.

If approved by the Board a draft copy , including any amendments made by the board, is left on view in the school foyer for a period of 3 weeks where parents are welcomed to examine and comment . Any further amendments are made and a copy is circulated to each family . The policy will be sent to all families and later posted on the upcoming school website. In future years only new entrants to the school will receive a copy. Parents will be required to sign a letter saying that they have read and wish to comply with the code .

Promotion of a positive ethos in the school

In our school we treat all children with respect and dignity. There is a strong sense of community and cooperation among staff, pupils and parents and all are agreed that emphasis is placed on a system which rewards the positive rather than sanctioning the negative.

Parents have a pivotal role in the formation of their child’s attitude and relationships with others¦.This relates to life inside and outside school.

Parents are made aware of what is expected of their child in school , the reward system in place and sanctions which are used when necessary. They are assured that this system is used with complete fairness and regard to the dignity of every child.

Pupils are consulted in drafting of rewards and sanctions within the classroom and are taught expected behaviour with care.

The Code

Four important rules to remember always :

1. Follow directions of teacher.

2. Keep hands ,feet and objects to yourself.

3. Name calling, teasing and bad language are not allowed.

4. Bullying is not tolerated.

Examples of the above rules are discussed in class and everyone is reminded of them on an ongoing basis. Teachers will ensure that every child understands behaviour expected and will encourage kindness and consideration of others.

Consideration will be given to children with special needs and any specific behaviour targets will be mentioned in their individual education plan.

Rewards for expected behaviour

The most common reward is oral i.e. teachers frequently draw attention to good behaviour and praise the child.

In class system :

Stickers , First in line,

pupil of the week, Positive note to parent,

night off homework.

Points system ( children can gather points during the week for which certain benefits can be awarded to the whole class e.g. golden time on Friday or extra sports time.)

In the case of older classes, points may be lost if a member of the class or a team misbehaves.

In other areas of school

In the playground and other areas of the school children are “caught being good “ and rewarded by a smiley face. This involves children being polite and helpful to adults and other children .

Assembly

The principal , who is responsible for discipline in the school as a whole, leads assembly on Friday mornings in the hall. Children are reminded of acceptable behaviour in St. Aengus’ National School. Any areas of weakness are focused upon and improvements recognised.

Pupils of the week certificates , bookmarks for smiley faces and extra play time for best line are given.

Any child who has gained 3 smiley faces and has worked well at class and homework will be eligible for a prize. If ,however, he/she has broken any of the 4 rules the prize will be postponed for another week for that child.

Also any efforts e.g. sporting achievements, school or dancing competitions or class project winners are acknowledged.

One class will recite a favourite poem , song or give an account of work they have done lately to give a few minutes of entertainment and a prayer is offered. Assembly songs are sung.

Sanctions

The necessity for corrective action is explained to children as their understanding is very important. The 4 rules of the code are given in detail in class and when a child fails to follow these the following will happen :

1. Child is given a reminder.

2. A second reminder is given.

3. Time out – the child is kept back for 1 -5 minutes at next break time (depending on age of the child). Older children may also get detention at lunch or break time.

4. Child may be sent to another class for short time.

5. The child is sent to the principal where she /he will explain his/her actions and a call may be made to the parent or a letter may be sent. Following this the parent may be asked to come to school so that all parties involved can set behavioural goals for the pupil.

This measure will be recorded.

In the event of severe misbehaviour at no.1 above , a child will be sent straight to the principal.

Procedures in respect of Suspension. (as per page 77 of the NEWB Guidelines)

While the BOM has the authority to suspend, they may delegate this authority to the principal, for periods of up to three days.

  • Investigation of the facts to confirm serious misbehaviour.
  • Parents will be informed by phone or in writing about the incident.
  • Parents will be given an opportunity to respond.

If suspension is still decided upon

  • Principal notifies parent in writing of the decision to suspend. The letter should confirm:
  • The period of the suspension and the dates on which the suspension will begin and end.
  • The reasons for the suspension.
  • Any study programme to be followed.
  • The arrangements for returning to school, including any commitments to be entered into by the student and the parents.
  • The provision for appeal to the Board of management
  • The provision for appeal to the Secretary General of the DES. (Only where the total number of days for which the student has been suspended in the current school year reaches 20 days.)
  • Where the cumulative total of days reached 6, the NEWB will be notified.

Records and reports.

Formal written records will be kept of:

  • The investigation (including notes of all interviews held)
  • The decision-making process.
  • The decision and rationale for the decision.
  • The duration of the suspension and any conditions attached to the suspension.

Expulsion.( As per page 82 of the NEWB Guidelines)

Procedures in respect of expulsion.

  • Detailed investigation carried out under the direction of the principal.
  • Inform parents in writing of alleged misbehaviour, how it will be investigated and that it could result in expulsion.
  • Give parents and students the opportunity to respond before a decision is made.
  • A recommendation to the BOM by the principal( see page 84 NEWB guidelines)
  • Consideration by the BOM of the principal’s recommendations and the holding of a hearing. (see page 84 NEWB Guidelines)
  • BOM deliberations and actions following the hearing. ( page 85 NEWB Guidelines)
  • If BOM is of the opinion that the student should be expelled, the Board must notify the Educational Welfare Officer (EWO) in writing, of its opinion and the reasons for this opinion. The intention to expel a student does not take effect until 20 school days have elapsed after NEWB have received written notification. The NEWB should be notified using a Notice of Intention to Expel form which is available on www.schoolreturn.ie or from our helpline (1890 36 3666). This form should be completed and sent to School Return Section, National Educational Welfare Board, 16-22 Green St, Dublin 7.
  • Consultations arranged by the EWO.
  • Confirmation of the decision to expel.

Appeals.

  • A parent may appeal a decision to expel to the Secretary General of the Department of Education and Science ( Education Act 1998 section 29)

Expulsion

The Board of Management has the authority to expel a pupil. Expulsion should be proportionate to a pupils behaviour and would only be invoked in extreme cases of unacceptable behaviour when all other possible remedial steps have been taken.

Steps taken in event of possible expulsion

1. A detailed investigation is carried out under the direction of the principal.

2. A recommendation is made to the Board of Management by the principal.

3. The Board considers the recommendations and the holding of a hearing.

4. The Board of Management ,if it concurs with the recommendation to expel, informs the National Education and Welfare Board in writing. (Expulsion can only take place after 20 days have passed since the receipt of that letter by the NEWB.)

5. Consultations are arranged by the Education Welfare Officer.

6. Confirmation of the decision to expel.

Decisions to expel are subject to appeal under S. 29 of the Education Act.

Attendance

The principal is required to inform the National Education and Welfare Board of the names of any child who has been absent from school for 20 days or more . He/she is also required to give reasons for the absences. Parents should therefore send a note on the reason for a child’s absence on his/her return to school.

 

 

 

Anti-Bullying Policy

  1. In accordance with the requirements of the Education (Welfare) Act 2000 and the code of behaviour guidelines issued by the NEWB, the Board of Management of St. Aengus National school has adopted the following anti-bullying policy within the framework of the school’s overall code of behaviour. This policy fully complies with the requirements of the Anti-Bullying Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools which were published in September 2013.
  2. The Board of Management recognises the very serious nature of bullying and the negative impact that it can have on the lives of pupils and is therefore fully committed to the following key principles of best practice in preventing and tackling bullying behaviour:

(a) A positive school culture and climate which

  • is welcoming of difference and diversity and is based on inclusivity;
  • encourages pupils to disclose and discuss incidents of bullying behaviour in a non-threatening environment; and
  • promotes respectful relationships across the school community;

 

(b) Effective leadership

(c)  A school-wide approach

 (d) A shared understanding of what bullying is and its impact

(e) Implementation of education and prevention strategies (including awareness raising measures) that

  • build empathy, respect and resilience in pupils; and
  • explicitly address the issues of cyber-bullying and identity-based bullying including in particular, homophobic and transphobic bullying;
  • effective supervision and monitoring of pupils;

(f) Effective supervision and monitoring of pupils

(g) Supports for staff

(h) Consistent recording, investigation and follow up of bullying behaviour (including use of established intervention strategies); and

(i) On-going evaluation of the effectiveness of the anti-bullying policy.

 

  1. In accordance with the Anti-Bullying Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools bullying is defined as follows:

Bullying is unwanted negative behaviour, verbal, psychological or physical conducted, by an individual or group against another person (or persons) and which is repeated over time.

The following types of bullying behaviour are included in the definition of bullying:

  • deliberate exclusion, malicious gossip and other forms of relational bullying,
  • cyber-bullying and
  • identity-based bullying such as homophobic bullying, racist bullying, bullying based on a person’s membership of the Traveller community and bullying of those with disabilities or special educational needs.

Isolated or once-off incidents of intentional negative behaviour, including a once-off offensive or hurtful text message or other private messaging, do not fall within the definition of bullying and should be dealt with, as appropriate, in accordance with the school’s code of behaviour.

However, in the context of this policy, placing a once-off offensive or hurtful public message, image or statement on a social network site or other public forum where that message, image or statement can be viewed and/or repeated by other people will be regarded as bullying behaviour.

Negative behaviour that does not meet this definition of bullying will be dealt with in accordance with the school’s code of behaviour.

Additional information on different types of bullying is set out in Section 2 of the Anti-Bullying Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools.

 

Examples of bullying behaviours

 

General  behaviours which apply to all types of bullying

 

·          Harassment based on any of the nine grounds in the equality legislation e.g. sexual harassment, homophobic bullying, racist bullying etc.

·          Physical aggression

·          Damage to property

·          Name calling

·          Slagging

·          The production, display or circulation of written words, pictures or other materials aimed at intimidating another person

·          Offensive graffiti

·          Extortion

·          Intimidation

·          Insulting or offensive gestures

·          The “look”

·          Invasion of personal space

·          A combination of any of the types listed.

 

 

Cyber

 

·          Denigration: Spreading rumors, lies or gossip to hurt a person’s reputation

·          Harassment: Continually sending vicious, mean or disturbing messages to an individual

·          Impersonation: Posting offensive or aggressive messages under another person’s name

·          Flaming: Using inflammatory or vulgar words to provoke an online fight

·          Trickery: Fooling someone into sharing personal information which you then post online

·          Outing: Posting or sharing confidential or compromising information or images

·          Exclusion: Purposefully excluding someone from an online group

·          Cyber stalking: Ongoing harassment and denigration that causes a person considerable fear for his/her safety

·          Silent telephone/mobile phone call

·          Abusive telephone/mobile phone calls

·          Abusive text messages

·          Abusive email

·          Abusive communication on social networks e.g. Facebook/Ask.fm/ Twitter/You Tube or on games consoles

·          Abusive website comments/Blogs/Pictures

·          Abusive posts on any form of communication technology

Identity Based Behaviours

Including any of the nine discriminatory grounds mentioned in Equality Legislation  (gender including transgender, civil status, family status, sexual orientation, religion, age, disability, race and membership of the Traveller community).

 

Homophobic and Transgender

 

·          Spreading rumours about a person’s sexual orientation

·          Taunting a person of a different sexual orientation

·          Name calling e.g. Gay, queer, lesbian…used in a derogatory manner

·          Physical intimidation or attacks

·          Threats

 

Race, nationality, ethnic background and membership of the Traveller  community

 

·          Discrimination, prejudice, comments or insults about colour, nationality, culture, social class, religious beliefs, ethnic or traveller background

·          Exclusion on the basis of any of the above

 

 

 

Relational

 

This involves manipulating relationships as a means of bullying. Behaviours include:

·          Malicious gossip

·          Isolation & exclusion

·          Ignoring

·          Excluding from the group

·          Taking someone’s friends away

·          Giving out about someone

·          Spreading rumours

·          Breaking confidence

·          Talking loud enough so that the victim can hear

·          The “look”

·          Use or terminology such as ‘nerd’ in a derogatory way

Sexual ·          Unwelcome or inappropriate  sexual comments or touching

·          Harassment

 

Special Educational Needs,

Disability

·       Name calling

·       Taunting others because of their disability or learning needs

·       Taking advantage of some pupils’ vulnerabilities and limited capacity to recognise and defend themselves against bullying

·       Taking advantage of some pupils’ vulnerabilities and limited capacity to understand social situations and social cues.

·       Mimicking a person’s disability

·       Setting others up for ridicule

 

 

 

 

  1. The relevant teacher(s) for investigating and dealing with bullying is (are) as follows: (see Section 6.8 of the Anti-Bullying Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools):

Refer to section 6.8.3. and 6.8.4 in the Procedures.

 

 

The Relevant Teachers in this school are: Séamus McGowan (Principal), Orla Monaghan (Deputy Principal), Caolan Kelly, (Assistant Principal), Caitríona O’Murchu (Assistant Principal)

 

 

Any teacher may act as a relevant teacher if circumstances warrant it.

 

 

 

 

  1. The education and prevention strategies (including strategies specifically aimed at cyber-

bullying, homophobic and transphobic bullying) that will be used by the school are as follows (see Section 6.5 of the Anti-Bullying Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools):

 

Education and prevention strategies

School-wide approach

·       A school-wide approach to the fostering of respect for all members of the school community.

·       The promotion of the value of diversity to address issues of prejudice and stereotyping, and highlight the unacceptability of bullying behaviour.

·       The fostering and enhancing of the self-esteem of all our pupils through both curricular and extracurricular activities. Pupils will be provided with opportunities to develop a positive sense of self-worth through formal and informal interactions.

·       Whole staff professional development on bullying to ensure that all staff develops an awareness of what bullying is, how it impacts on pupils’ lives and the need to respond to it-prevention and intervention.

·       An annual audit of professional development needs with a view to assessing staff requirements through internal staff knowledge/expertise and external sources

·       Professional development with specific focus on the training of the relevant teacher(s)

·       School wide awareness raising and training on all aspects of bullying, to include pupils, parent(s)/guardian(s) and the wider school community.

·       Supervision and monitoring of classrooms, corridors, school grounds, school tours and extra- curricular activities. Non-teaching and ancillary staff will be encouraged to be vigilant and report issues to relevant teachers. Supervision will also apply to monitoring student use of communication technology within the school.

·       Involvement of the student council in contributing to a safe school environment e.g.  Buddy system, mentoring, Lunchtime Pals and other student support activities that can help to support pupils and encourage a culture of peer respect and support.

·       Development and promotion of an Anti-Bullying code for the school-to be included in student journals and displayed publicly in classrooms and in common areas of the school.

·       The school’s anti-bullying policy is discussed with pupils and all parent(s)/guardian(s)s are given a copy as part of the Code of Behaviour of the school (every year).

·       The implementation of regular (e.g. per year/per term/per month/per week) whole school awareness measures e.g. a dedicated notice board in the school and classrooms on the promotion of friendship, and bullying prevention; annual Friendship Week and parent(s)/guardian(s) seminars; annual or term or monthly student surveys; regular school or year group assemblies by principal, deputy principal, year heads etc.

·       Encourage a culture of telling, with particular emphasis on the importance of bystanders. In that way pupils will gain confidence in ‘telling’. This confidence factor is of vital importance. It should be made clear to all pupils that when they report incidents of bullying they are not considered to be telling tales but are behaving responsibly.

·       Ensuring that pupils know who to tell and how to tell, e.g.:

o   Direct approach to teacher at an appropriate time, for example after class.

o   Hand note up with homework.

o   Make a phone call to the school or to a trusted teacher in the school.

o   Anti-bully or Niggle box?

o   Get a parent(s)/guardian(s) or friend to tell on your behalf.

o   Administer a confidential questionnaire once a term to all pupils.

o   Ensure bystanders understand the importance of telling if they witness or know that bullying is taking place.

 

 

·       Identify clear protocols to encourage parent(s)/guardian(s) to approach the school if they suspect that their child is being bullied. The protocol should be developed in consultation with parents.

·       The development of an Acceptable Use Policy in the school to include the necessary steps to ensure that the access to technology within the school is strictly monitored, as is the pupils’ use of mobile phones.

·       The listing of supports currently being used in the school and the identification of other supports available to the school e.g. GLEN www.glen.ie, BeLonGTo www.belongto.org

 

 

Implementation of curricula

·       The full implementation of the SPHE and CSPE curricula and the RSE and Stay Safe Programmes.

·        Continuous Professional Development for staff in delivering these programmes.

·       School wide delivery of lessons on bullying from evidence based programmes, e.g. Cool School Lessons, #UP2US, Stay Safe Programme, The Walk Tall Programme, On My Own Two Feet.

·       School wide delivery of lessons on Relational aggression (Cool School Programme: A Friend in Deed), Cyber Bullying (#UP2US, Be Safe-Be Web wise, Think Before you Click, Let’s Fight it Together, Web wise Primary teachers’ resources), Homophobic and Transphobic Bullying (Growing up LGBT, Stand Up Programme, The Trust pack ) Diversity and Inter-culturalism, Yellow Flag Programme. The school should list every resource related to the SPHE curriculum, and make a list of supports.

·       Delivery of the Garda SPHE Programmes at primary level. These lessons, delivered by Community Gardai, cover issues around personal safety and cyber-bullying

·       The school will specifically consider the additional needs of SEN pupils with regard to programme implementation and the development of skills and strategies to enable all pupils to respond appropriately.

·       The school will implement the advice in “Sexual Orientation advice for schools” (RSE Primary, see booklet).

 

               Links to other policies

·       List school policies, practices and activities that are particularly relevant to bullying, e.g. Code of Behaviour, Child Protections policy, Supervision of pupils, Acceptable Use policy, Attendance, Sporting activities.

 

 

  1. The school’s procedures for investigation, follow-up and recording of bullying behaviour and the established intervention strategies used by the school for dealing with cases of bullying  behaviour are as follows

 

6.8.9.      Procedures for Investigating and Dealing with Bullying

 

The primary aim in investigating and dealing with bullying is to resolve any issues and to restore, as far as is practicable, the relationships of the parties involved (rather than to apportion blame);

 

The school’s procedures must be consistent with the following approach.

Every effort will be made to ensure that all involved (including pupils, parent(s)/guardian(s)) understand this approach from the outset.

 

 

 Reporting bullying behaviour

 

·       Any pupil or parent(s)/guardian(s) may bring a bullying incident to any teacher in the school.

·       All reports, including anonymous reports of bullying, will be investigated and dealt with by the relevant teacher.

·       Teaching and non-teaching staff such as secretaries, special needs assistants (SNAs), bus escorts, caretakers, cleaners must report any incidents of bullying behaviour witnessed by them, or mentioned to them, to the relevant teacher;

 

Investigating and dealing with incidents: Style of approach (see section 6.8.9)

·       In investigating and dealing with bullying, the (relevant)teacher will exercise his/her professional judgement to determine whether bullying has occurred and how best the situation might be resolved;

·       Parent(s)/guardian(s) and pupils are required to co-operate with any investigation and assist the school in resolving any issues and restoring, as far as is practicable, the relationships of the parties involved as quickly as possible;

·        Teachers should take a calm, unemotional problem-solving approach.

·       Where possible incidents should be investigated outside the classroom situation to ensure the privacy of all involved;

·        All interviews should be conducted with sensitivity and with due regard to the rights of all pupils concerned. Pupils who are not directly involved can also provide very useful information in this way;

·       When analysing incidents of bullying behaviour, the relevant teacher should seek answers to questions of what, where, when, who and why. This should be done in a calm manner, setting an example in dealing effectively with a conflict in a non-aggressive manner;

·        If a group is involved, each member should be interviewed individually at first. Thereafter, all those involved should be met as a group. At the group meeting, each member should be asked for his/her account of what happened to ensure that everyone in the group is clear about each other’s statements;

·        Each member of a group should be supported through the possible pressures that may face them from the other members of the group after the interview by the teacher;

It may also be appropriate or helpful to ask those involved to write down their account of the incident(s)

·        In cases where it has been determined by the relevant teacher that bullying behaviour has occurred, the parent(s)/guardian(s) of the parties involved should be contacted at an early stage to inform them of the matter and explain the actions being taken (by reference to the school policy). The school should give parent(s)/guardian(s) an opportunity of discussing ways in which they can reinforce or support the actions being taken by the school and the supports provided to the pupils;

·        Where the relevant teacher has determined that a pupil has been engaged in bullying behaviour, it should be made clear to him/her how he/she is in breach of the school’s anti-bullying policy and efforts should be made to try to get him/her to see the situation from the perspective of the pupil being bullied;

·        It must also be made clear to all involved (each set of pupils and parent(s)/guardian(s)) that in any situation where disciplinary sanctions are required, this is a private matter between the pupil being disciplined, his or her parent(s)/guardian(s) and the school;

 

Follow up and recording

 

·       In determining whether a bullying case has been adequately and appropriately addressed the relevant teacher must, as part of his/her professional judgement, take the following factors into account:

– Whether the bullying behaviour has ceased;

– Whether any issues between the parties have been resolved as far as is practicable;

-Whether the relationships between the parties have been restored as far as is practicable;

-Any feedback received from the parties involved, their parent(s)/guardian(s)s or the school Principal or Deputy Principal

·        Follow-up meetings with the relevant parties involved should be arranged separately with a view to possibly bringing them together at a later date if the pupil who has been bullied is ready and agreeable.

·       Where a parent(s)/guardian(s) is not satisfied that the school has dealt with a bullying case in accordance with these procedures, the parent(s)/guardian(s) must be referred, as appropriate, to the school’s complaints procedures.

·       In the event that a parent(s)/guardian(s) has exhausted the school’s complaints procedures and is still not satisfied, the school must advise the parent(s)/guardian(s) of their right to make a complaint to the Ombudsman for Children.

 

Recording of bullying behaviour

 

It is imperative that all recording of bullying incidents must be done in an objective and factual manner.

 

The school’s procedures for noting and reporting bullying behaviour are as follows:

 

       Informal- pre-determination that bullying has occurred

·       All staff must keep a written record of any incidents witnessed by them or notified to them. Consideration needs to be given to where the records will be made e.g. incident book. All incidents must be reported to the relevant teacher

·       While all reports, including anonymous reports of bullying must be investigated and dealt with by the relevant teacher, the relevant teacher must keep a written record of the reports, the actions taken and any discussions with those involved regarding same

·       The relevant teacher must inform the principal of all incidents being investigated.

 

       Formal Stage 1-determination that bullying has occurred

·       If it is established by the relevant teacher that bullying has occurred, the relevant teacher must keep appropriate written records which will assist his/her efforts to resolve the issues and restore, as far as is practicable, the relationships of the parties involved.

·       The school in consultation with the relevant teacher/s should develop a protocol for the storage of all records retained by the relevant teacher.

 

         Formal Stage 2-Appendix 3

The relevant teacher must use the recording template at Appendix 3 to record the bullying behaviour in the following circumstances:

 

a) in cases where he/she considers that the bullying behaviour has not been adequately and appropriately addressed within 20 school days after he/she has determined that bullying behaviour occurred; and

b) Where the school has decided as part of its anti-bullying policy that in certain circumstances bullying behaviour must be recorded and reported immediately to the Principal or Deputy Principal as applicable.

The school should list behaviours that must be recorded and reported immediately to the principal. These should be in line with the school’s code of behaviour.

 

When the recording template is used, it must be retained by the relevant teacher in question and a copy maintained by the principal. Due consideration needs to be given to where these records are kept, who has access to them, and how long they will be retained. Decisions around record keeping should be noted in this policy.

 

Established intervention strategies

·       Teacher interviews with all pupils

·       Negotiating agreements between pupils and following these up by monitoring progress. This can be on an informal basis or implemented through a more structured mediation process

·       Working with parent(s)/guardian(s)s to support school interventions

·       No Blame Approach

·       Circle Time

·       Restorative interviews

·       Restorative conferencing

·       Implementing sociogram questionnaires

·       Peer mediation where suitable training has been given

 

The Procedures mention the following intervention strategies and reference Ken Rigby;

www.bullyingawarenessweek.org/pdf/BullyingPreventionStrategiesinSchools Ken Rigby.pdf

·       The traditional disciplinary approach

·       Strengthening the victim

·       Mediation

·       Restorative Practice

·       The Support Group Method

·       The Method of Shared Concern

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  1. The school’s programme of support for working with pupils affected by bullying is as follows

(see Section 6.8.16 of the Anti-Bullying Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools) :

 

 

·       All in-school supports and opportunities will be provided for the pupils affected by bullying to participate in activities designed to raise their self-esteem, to develop friendships and social skills and build resilience e.g.

– Pastoral care system

– Buddy / Peer mentoring system

– Tutor/Year head system

– Care team / Student Support Team

– Group work such as circle time

 

·       If pupils require counselling of further supports the school will endeavour to liaise with the appropriate agencies to organise same. This may be for the pupil affected by bullying or involved in the bullying behaviour.

·       Pupils should understand that there are no innocent bystanders and that all incidents of bullying behaviour must be reported to a teacher.

 

  1. Supervision and Monitoring of Pupils

The Board of Management confirms that appropriate supervision and monitoring policies and

Practices are in place to both prevent and deal with bullying behaviour and to facilitate early intervention where possible.

 

The following Prompt Questions may be useful in considering this aspect of the policy:

 

  • Are there agreed appropriate monitoring and supervision practices in the school?
  • Have bullying danger spots been identified?
  • Have parents and pupils been consulted in the identification of these danger spots?
  • How will the student support/care structures (including year heads, class tutors, SPHE, Guidance, RE, CSPE, HSCL, Learning Support teachers) support measures to counteract bullying behaviour?
  • How will pupils, in particular senior pupils, be involved as a resource to assist in counteracting bullying? In this regard, has a mentoring/buddy system been considered?
  • How will the student council and school clubs be involved?
  • In relation to Acceptable Use Policy in the school are the following issues addressed:
    • Are all Internet sessions supervised by a teacher?
    • Does the school regularly monitor pupils’ Internet usage?
    • Have pupils been instructed to use only approved class accounts for email purposes and to use these only under teacher supervision?
    • Have pupils been instructed to access only those chat rooms, discussion forums and messaging or other electronic communication fora that have been approved by the school?

(Note that the Schools Broadband Programme has blocked all social networking sites on the basis that they waste time and take up too much of the bandwidth which is been provided for educational purposes only).

 

 

  1. Prevention of Harassment

The Board of Management confirms that the school will, in accordance with its obligations under equality legislation, take all such steps that are reasonably practicable to prevent the  sexual harassment of pupils or staff or the harassment of pupils or staff on any of the nine  grounds specified i.e. gender including transgender, civil status, family status, sexual  orientation, religion, age, disability, race and membership of the Traveller community.

 

  1. This policy was adopted by the Board of Management on ________________ 7/11/19.

 

  1. This policy has been made available to school personnel, published on the school website (or where none exists, is otherwise readily accessible to parents and pupils on request) and provided to the Parents’ Association (where one exists). A copy of this policy will be made available to the Department and the patron if requested.

 

  1. This policy and its implementation will be reviewed by the Board of Management once in every school year. Written notification that the review has been completed will be made available to school personnel, published on the school website (or where none exists, be otherwise readily accessible to parents and pupils on request) and provided to the Parents’ Association (where one exists). A record of the review and its outcome will be made available, if requested, to the patron and the Department.

 

 

 

Signed: ____________________________________        Signed: ___________________________

(Chairperson of Board of Management)                                (Principal)

 

 

Date: ______________                                                              Date: __________________

 

 

Date of next review: Nov 2021