PARK PRIMARY SCHOOL
As a result of consultation with all members of the school community, the following definition of “Bullying” has been agreed:
At Park Primary School we define bullying as “ any action taken by one or more individuals, with the deliberate intention of hurting another, either physically or emotionally. Victims find it hard to defend themselves against such behaviour as it is repeated, often over a period of time.”
Examples of bullying include:
Physical aggression such as hitting, kicking, taking or damaging possessions.
Verbal aggression, such as name-calling, insulting, making offensive remarks. This can often link to individual characteristics of the victim, such as their ethnic origin, nationality, colour, size etc.
Indirect such as spreading nasty stories and rumours, exclusion from social groups and sending malicious e-mail and text messages.
Bullying may occur in or outside lesson time, either near the school or on the children’s journey to or from school.
When talking to the children, we use the mnemonic STOP meaning – “several times on purpose” to reinforce the difference between bullying and an isolated incident.
2. Equal Opportunities
The school accepts that bullying can occur in many forms and pupils may be targeted on the grounds of their gender, ethnicity or disability because they represent a group in society. This form of bullying is therefore likely to hurt not only the victim, but other pupils in the same group. Park Primary will not tolerate bullying of any kind. A record will be kept of any incidents of a racial nature.
3. Consultation Process
This policy was written by the Headteacher and PSHE Coordinator after a whole-school consultation. It was written in line with the Anti-bullying policy guidance from the Local Authority. All members of the school community including the PSHCE Coordinator,/ Healthy Schools’ Coordinator, governors, parents, pupils, teaching and non-teaching support staff and midday assistants were consulted through a series of questionnaires which were issued during the Spring Term 2006. The questionnaires sought a definition of bullying, personal experiences of bullying and the school’s response to these and suggestions for policy content. Staff INSET took place in the Spring Term to agree policy aims and procedures.
4. Aims and objectives
Bullying is wrong and damages individual children. We therefore do all we can to prevent it, by developing a school ethos in which bullying is regarded as unacceptable.
We aim, as a school, to produce a safe and secure environment where all can learn without anxiety.
This policy aims to produce a consistent school response to any bullying incidents that may occur.
We aim to make all those connected with the school aware of our opposition to bullying, and we make clear each person’s responsibilities with regard to the eradication of bullying in our school.
We aim to nurture the values of responsibility, duty and respect both for oneself and others.
We aim to minimise opportunities for bullying through consistent use of our behaviour policy. We also aim to identify any problem times and areas and increase supervision at these times.
The school has implemented a range of preventative strategies aimed at reducing incidents of bullying. These include the use of Active Playground Supervisors to encourage collaborative play, training older pupils to be play leaders and role models for younger children.
Planned work across the curriculum involves pupils in activities designed to promote positive relationships and co-operative behaviour. The school’s policy on bullying is reinforced through the PSHCE and SEAL curriculum with a separate SEAL unit of work on anti-bullying.
We have a ‘Wishes and Worries’ box where the children can confidentially report any issues. These will be followed up by the classteacher.
We maintain a list of any particularly vulnerable children so that their needs can be addressed.
We use our Teaching Assistants and our Family Support Worker to work with both victims and bullies to build self-esteem.
6.The role of governors
The governing body supports the headteacher in all attempts to eliminate bullying from our school. This policy statement makes it very clear that the governing body does not allow bullying to take place in our school, and that any incidents of bullying that do occur are taken very seriously and dealt with appropriately.
The governing body monitors the incidents of bullying that occur, and reviews the effectiveness of the school policy regularly. The governors require the headteacher to keep accurate records of all incidents of bullying and to report to the governors on request about the effectiveness of school anti-bullying strategies.
The governing body responds within ten days to any request from a parent to investigate incidents of bullying. In all cases, the governing body notifies the headteacher and asks him/her to conduct an investigation into the case and to report back to a representative of the governing body.
7 The role of the headteacher
It is the responsibility of the headteacher to implement the school anti-bullying strategy and to ensure that all staff (both teaching and non-teaching) are aware of the school policy and know how to deal with incidents of bullying. The headteacher ensures that all staff receive sufficient training to equip them for their role.
The headteacher reports to the governing body about the effectiveness of the anti-bullying policy on request, providing data for analysis if necessary.
The headteacher ensures that all children know that bullying is wrong, and that
it is unacceptable behaviour in this school
The headteacher sets the school climate of mutual support and praise for
success, so making bullying less likely. When children feel they are important and belong to a friendly and welcoming school, bullying is far less likely to be part of their behaviour.
8 The role of teaching and non-teaching staff
As part of their role of pastoral care, all staff are responsible for implementing the anti-bullying policy and should ensure that they are familiar with all procedures. Staff are able to access training which enables them to become equipped to deal with incidents of bullying and behaviour management.
Teachers should aim to create a climate of trust where pupils feel safe and secure, setting high standards of behaviour and encouraging pupils to demonstrate respect and tolerance for each other. By praising, rewarding and celebrating success, we aim to prevent incidents of bullying from occurring.
If staff witness an incident of bullying they should deal with the matter promptly, This may involve counselling and support for the victim of the bullying, and punishment for the child who has carried out the bullying.
Supporting the victim
· We give the victim an immediate opportunity to talk about the experience with their class teacher or another adult if they choose
· We inform the victim’s parent(s) / guardian(s)
· We offer continuing support and tell the child how to get immediate help should the bullying happen again.
Dealing with the bully
We spend time talking to the child who has bullied. We explain why the action of the child was wrong, and we endeavour to help the child change their behaviour in future. If a child is repeatedly involved in bullying other children, we inform the headteacher. We then invite the child’s parents into the school to discuss the situation. As well as working with any bully and their parents to try to stop them from bullying, we also take the following disciplinary steps to prevent any more bullying.
· Officially warn bully to stop bullying, being very specific about what they are not to do.
· Inform the bully’s parent(s) / guardian(s).
· Keep bully in at playtime and lunchtime for a period to be arranged.
· Debarment from school premises at lunchtime
· If the bullying carries on then the Headteacher will look at other options available to her such as exclusion.
Each classteacher has a critical incidents file in his/her room in which to record episodes of significance such as bullying. Staff who witness, or are made aware of, an incident of bullying should inform the classteacher who will note it in their critical incidents file. Where appropriate such records may follow the child upon transfer to the secondary school.
The six key points are:
· Never ignore suspected bullying
· Don’t make premature assumptions
· Listen carefully to all accounts
· Adopt a problem solving approach which moves pupils from justifying themselves
· Follow up incidents repeatedly, checking that the bullying has not resumed.
· Keep a record of the incidents that have occurred in order to establish whether a pattern is emerging.
If a child is repeatedly involved in incidents of bullying, staff should involve the Headteacher and the child’s parents. In extreme cases, where initial discussions have proven ineffective the Headteacher may involve external agencies such as the school’s Educational Psychologist.
Where a parent has made an allegation of bullying, staff need to
· Recognise that the parent may be angry or upset
· Keep an open mind and not make pre-judgements based on previous experiences
· Remain calm and understanding
· Make clear that the school does care and something will be done
· Explain the school policy and ensure procedures are followed
· Return to the parent promptly with the outcome of the investigation and the action taken.
Any incident of bullying reported to the Headteacher is recorded in the ‘Pupil File’ in the Head’s room. Incidents which occur at lunchtimes will be entered in the lunchtime behaviour books and will be copied to classteachers and/or the Headteacher’s file if appropriate.
Teachers attempt to support all children in their class and to establish a climate of trust and respect for all. By praising, rewarding and celebrating the success of all children, we aim to prevent incidents of bullying.
9 The role of parents
Parents have a responsibility to support the school’s anti-bullying policy and to actively encourage their child to be a positive member of the school community.
Parents’ views on the policy will be sought during the evaluation process and parents will be kept informed of changes to school policy.
Parents who are concerned that their child might be being bullied should contact the child’s teacher immediately. Details of the incident will be investigated promptly and parents will be informed of the outcome.
10. The role of pupils
At Park Primary school we do not tolerate bullying behaviour. Pupils who witness an incident of bullying should tell an adult straight away. They should be prepared to give details about who was involved so that the adult can investigate matters further. The adult can be a teacher, teaching assistant, midday assistant or a parent.
The message we give to our children is :’If you think you are being bullied, tell somebody straight away. You can tell any grown-up you trust. That person will help the behaviour to stop.’
The school will continue to raise awareness of the anti-bullying policy and procedures using a range of strategies. These include planned assemblies which may involve outside speakers such as the community police, PSHCE lessons and SEAL lessons specifically focussed on aspects of anti-bullying, related displays and posters and as agenda items at staff and school council meetings .
Every year, during ‘Anti-Bullying’ week ‘Stopping Bullies’ will be the theme for our assemblies. That month,The monthly newsletter for parents will also remind parents of the school’s policy on bullying. At other times if the headteacher deems it necessary she may use assemblies as a forum to remind the children about how wrong bullying is. The school has produced a pamphlet for parents and children called ‘Stop Bullying’. The aim of this is to tell all parents and children how, by working together, we can achieve our aim.
12. Monitoring and evaluation
This policy is monitored on a day-to-day basis by the headteacher, who reports to governors about the effectiveness of the policy on request.
This anti-bullying policy is the governors’ responsibility and they review it’s effectiveness annually. They do this by examining the Pupil File and by discussion with the headteacher. Where appropriate, governors may analyse information with regard to gender, age and ethnic background of all children involved in bullying incidents.