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Anti Bullying Policy

 

Statement of Intent

We are committed to providing a caring, friendly and safe environment for all of our pupils so they can learn in a relaxed and secure atmosphere.  Bullying of any kind is unacceptable at our school.  If bullying does occur, all pupils should be able to tell and know that incidents will be dealt with promptly and effectively.  We are a TELLING school.  This means that anyone who knows that bullying is happening is expected to tell a member of staff. This policy has been written in consultation with staff, governors, parents and children and with advice from the Local Authority and DfE 'Safe to Learn' publication. It has been based on the principles of 'Bullying': A Charter for Action'

 

Definition

Bullying is defined as deliberately hurtful behaviour, repeated over a period of time, where it is difficult for those being bullied to defend themselves. The four main types of bullying are:

 

  • Physical (hitting, kicking, theft)
  • Verbal (name calling, teasing, racist remarks)
  • Indirect (spreading rumours, excluding someone from social groups, tormenting).
  • Cyber (all areas of internet, such as  email and internet chat room misuse, mobile threats by text messaging and calls, misuse of associated technology, i.e. camera &video facilities)

 

Pupils who are being bullied may show changes in behaviour, such as becoming shy and nervous, feigning illness, taking unusual absences or clinging to adults. There may be evidence of changes in work patterns, lacking concentration or not wanting to come to school. Pupils must be encouraged to report bullying in school. Children with Special Educational Needs may be especially vulnerable and may find communication difficult. Staff must be aware of this and be more vigilant.

 

This policy is designed to ensure that as a school we are alert to signs of bullying and act promptly and firmly against it.

 

Bullying behaviour must be challenged to ensure the safety and happiness of the pupils.

 

Aims

  • To promote a secure and happy environment free from threat, harassment and any type of bullying behaviour
  • To take positive action to prevent bullying from occurring through our work in circle time, PSHCE, positive behaviour management, SEAL material, Collective Worship
  • To show commitment to overcoming bullying by practising zero tolerance
  • To inform pupils and parents of the school's expectations and to foster a productive partnership, which helps maintain a bully-free environment
  • To make staff aware of their role in fostering the knowledge and attitudes which will be required to achieve the above aims

 

Our Anti-Bullying Policy will build upon our Behaviour Policy. The Bullying Policy will provide a framework within which any actions against bullying can be implemented and their effectiveness reviewed. Bullying is unacceptable and no child should be subjected to it.

 

Procedures

All reports of bullying are to be taken seriously and should be investigated.

 

All members of the school community (children, parents, staff and Governors) have the responsibility of speaking out against bullying on every possible occasion.

 

The following steps should be taken when dealing with incidents:

 

If bullying is suspected or reported, the incident will be dealt with immediately by the member of staff who has been approached.

 

  • A clear account of the incident will be recorded in class behaviour books and given to the Headteacher
  • The Headteacher will interview all concerned and will record the incident.
  • Class teachers will be kept informed.
  • Parents will be kept informed.
  • Sanctions will be used as appropriate, including filling in an incident report form.

 

The majority of pupils in school may not be involved in bullying behaviour, but they are likely to know it is happening. It therefore becomes a collective responsibility.

 

When bullying situations arise in school, families are often the first to detect that a problem exists. Working with parents and sharing information and plans is the way forward, constructive help must be given to the bully and the bullied. Parental support is vital to tackling the problem. Parents will not be blamed for their child's behaviour; meetings should be constructive.

 

Children must have the confidence to report any incidence of bullying to an adult connected to the school, knowing that he/she will be listened to and taken seriously. The child should be told who their main point of contact is; usually this will be the class teacher. The matter then will be drawn to the attention of the Headteacher. Suffering in silence does not make the problem go away. The child should understand that if the adult does not know about it, they cannot help to sort it out.

 

When a concern has been identified a record needs to kept of the following:

 

  • How frequently has the pupil been bullied?
  • In what ways have they been bullied?
  • How often have they been bullied?
  • Where does bullying take place?
  • Who do they tell when they have been bullied?
  • What action has been taken and by whom?
  • What systems can be put in place for the future?

 

 

Interviews with children may be a useful way of getting detailed information about bullying behaviour.

 

A good relationship is needed between the interviewer and the child. The interview should be carried out in private. Children may not like to repeat nasty names they have been called or stories that have been told about them. Making notes is useful. Confidentiality is a difficult issue in interviews and sometimes interviewers may need to disclose information to others. They should make it clear to the pupils that they will discuss with them how and in what way they will use any information disclosed. Some children are prepared to write about personal bullying experiences in an anonymous questionnaire, but not to talk about it even in one-to-one interviews,

 

Method of Shared Concern

  1. This method starts with a series of brief individual chats with each pupil involved, in a room that is quiet and where there will be no interruptions.
  1. The pupils doing the bullying are seen first. The talks are non-confrontational, the premise is that there is a problem - it has been witnessed by others that the bullied pupil is unhappy and has experienced bullying. The teacher follows a calm but firm approach with each pupil, which leads to mutual agreement that the bullied pupil is unhappy at the present time, and is concluded by each pupil agreeing to help in some way.
  1. A chat with the bullied pupil then follows. This primarily involves being supportive but for those who do contribute to their own problems, it involves helping them understand that their behaviour too could change.
  1. The situation should be monitored daily by ALL staff.  A week later there are follow- up talks to check on progress.
  1. When ready, a final meeting is held (which could be in Class Circle Time) where a public agreement for reasonable behaviour is reached, and long-term strategies for maintaining co-operative behaviour are owned by the group.

 

 

Girls seem to find it harder to achieve a middle ground between 'best friends' and 'enemies'. Teachers need to point out that solutions do not have to involve becoming best friends with the bullied person.

 

Pupils who are being bullied need to be introduced to strategies to cope with their situation: who their first point of contact is, how to respond to situations, how to boost their self-esteem and how to remain calm in stressful situations. There are many techniques and one might be role-play. Rehearsal gives pupils confidence to use the technique outside.

 

 

Outside the Classroom

 

The teachers and midday supervisors need to work together and communicate on incidents, likely incidents or problem areas (school grounds).

 

When monitoring bullying, it is useful to observe the children at play.

 

Sometimes what looks like fighting or bullying can simply be rough and tumble play or play fighting. This is something that some children usually enjoy.

 

Children in play fights often:

 

  • Are smiling or laughing;
  • Make mock blows or kicks, which do not connect or do so softly;
  • May take turns in being on top, or chasing each other;
  • Do so openly but are ignored by other pupils.

 

Pupils who are being attacked or physically bullied often:

 

  • Frown or look unhappy or angry;
  • Try to move away from the aggressor;
  • Do not take turns, the aggressor maintaining the dominant role;
  • Get considerable attention if in view of other pupils.

 

Knowledge of pupils who have been persistently involved in bullying or being bullied can help supervisors be more vigilant. They also need to watch for pupils being isolated whilst recognising that some pupils are quite happy being by themselves.

 

Pupils who have been bullied will be supported by:

 

  • Being offered an immediate opportunity to discuss the experience with a member of staff
  • Reassuring the pupil
  • Offering continuous support
  • Restoring self-esteem and confidence
  • Discussing what happened

 

Pupils who have carried out the bullying will be supported by:

 

  • Discovering why the pupil became involved
  • Establishing the wrong doing and need to change
  • Teaching them more appropriate forms of behaviour.
  • Being asked to fill in a 'Behaviour Report' (See copy in appendix)
  • Informing parents or guardians to share concerns and help change the attitude of the pupil.

                       

Within the curriculum, the school will raise the awareness of the nature of bullying through inclusion in circle time, PSHE, assemblies and subject areas, as appropriate, in an attempt to eradicate such behaviour.

 

 

Staff Responsibilities

 

  • To implement procedures to confront bullying in any form.
  • To listen to all parties involved in incidents.
  • To investigate as fully as possible.
  • To take appropriate action, or refer the matter to the Headteacher for further action.
  • To record and inform parents of bullying incidents.
  • To promote the use of a range of teaching and learning styles and strategies which challenge bullying. These may include the Behaviour Report, use of Circle Time, PSHCE, buddies etc.
  • To foster by example the values we as a school believe in.
  • To promote the use of interventions which are least intrusive and most effective.
  • To record incidents of bullying in class behaviour books.
  • To retain records for monitoring purposes.

 

Concerns need to be shared and recorded so that emerging patterns can be investigated. Incidents will be dealt with on an individual basis and related to emerging patterns.

 

Serious incidents will be communicated to the Governors.

 

The school and Governing Body retain the right, as the final resort, to suspend and, if necessary, exclude a child who does not respond to efforts to rectify his/her anti-social behaviour and hence continues to present a danger to other children.

 

 

Monitoring, Evaluation and Review

 

The school will review this policy annually and assess its implementation and effectiveness.

The policy will be promoted and implemented throughout the school.

 

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