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Anti-Bullying Policy

Rationale

Bullying is defined as systematic abuse of power by individuals or groups in order to cause deliberate harm either physically or emotionally, or to intimidate others.  Bullying is different from other inappropriate behaviour in that the acts are repeated.

Bullying can be:

Emotional For example, excluding tormenting (e.g. hiding books,

threatening gestures).

 

Physical For example, pushing, kicking, biting, hitting, punching or any use of violence.

 

Racial For example, racial taunts, graffiti, gestures.

 

Sexual For example, unwanted physical contact or sexually abusive comments.

 

Transphobic and Homophobic For example, because of, or focussing on the issue of sexuality.

 

Direct or

Indirect Verbal

 

For example, name-calling, sarcasm, spreading rumours, teasing.

 

Cyber bullying For example, all areas of internet ,such as email and internet chat Twitter,

Facebook misuse, mobile threats by text messaging and calls

Misuse of associated technology , i.e. camera and video facilities, Ipad,

games consoles.

 

Aim

Through a whole school approach of staff training, clear behaviour policies and an effective PSHE teaching programme, we aim to eliminate bullying in our school.

Factors associated with Bullying

  • Children learn about social behaviour through observation so it is important that adults in school present good role models, showing respect for each other.
  • Children who are not used to any type of conflict situation may be more at risk from potential bullying.
  • If a child’s self esteem is low they are more likely to either be bullied or become a bully.
  • Bullying may include the exclusion of a child from play or a group name calling and making fun of someone, threatening behaviour and looks, physical aggression, spreading rumours, taking or damaging personal belongings.
  • Bullying is an aspect of social behaviour, which can occur in any setting and can involve children or adults.

Guidelines

  • Bullying is always dealt with seriously and promptly.
  • The children are taught to be assertive and confident through Personal, Social & Health Education and Circle Times so that they are more able to avoid and respond to inappropriate behaviour.
  • Children are also taught to be considerate towards each other and respectful of differences.
  • A preventative approach to all poor behaviour is used such as evolving positively phrased classroom rules and stressing the positive way to respond in a situation rather than the negative.
  • Positive behaviour will be recognised and rewarded.
  • If a child complains of being excluded from a game, staff should be aware that no one can be forced to play with another person, but that the excluded child should be paired with another friend.  If overt unkindness has been used this should be pointed out.  It may also be the case that the excluded child has behaved in a way that has caused this response.  This should also be investigated and the child supported and shown how changed behaviour could help.
  • ‘Gangs’ of any type are not allowed at this school as these may lead to inappropriate play.  If children are found to be operating ‘gangs’ they should be reminded of this ruling.
  • All staff should note changes in children’s behaviour that may be caused by bullying and monitor and investigate further.
  • Through our open door policy, parents and carers will always be encouraged to report changes in their child’s behaviour or the occurrence of suspected bullying to class teacher or Headteacher.
  • Children will be periodically taught about safety and cyber bullying/how to behave online through ICT lessons and through whole school assemblies.

Staff

  1. The incident must be investigated thoroughly without initial apportioning of blame.
  2. If the incident has occurred the bullied should be reassured that it was right to tell and that they will be supported.
  3. The bullied is encouraged to tell the bully, with staff member present, how the incident has made him/her feel in order that the effects of the actions are made clear.
  4. The bully should be asked to comment on the incident and should be asked how he/she/they are going to compensate the bullied e.g. doing a kindness or acting as a good friend.
  5. The bully must have his/her/their behaviour monitored.  He/she/they must be made aware of this and appropriate behaviour clarified.
  6. The class teacher or the Headteacher will inform parents, in order that their support is sought.
  7. The Headteacher must be informed of bullying incidents.
  8. All incidents will be logged in Incident logbook in Head’s office.
  9. The Headteacher will deal with severe or repeated cases of bullying and it may result in the bully/bullies being excluded subject to Children and Young People Department procedures.
  • If bullying involving adults has been reported or discovered, it will be dealt with promptly following standard grievance (complaints) and disciplinary procedures as outlined in South Gloucestershire Council Personnel Manual for schools.
  • Bullying of a pupil by school staff is professional misconduct and will be dealt with in the same way as for bullying involving adults.

Actions staff can take

  • Make sure you manage your relationships with students assertively rather than aggressively.
  • Always take bullying seriously.
  • Talk regularly and frequently with pupils about bullying and what action they can take if they encounter it.
  • Encourage pupils to tell an adult is they are being bullied or if they know someone is being bullied.
  • Be vigilant for signs of bullying.  Always investigate if you suspect a child may be being bullied, or refer concerns to line manager – class teacher, Headteacher.
  • Be prepared to respond quickly and appropriately when you find out that someone is being bullied.
  • When investigating a bullying situation, remember that bullying is usually carefully hidden and difficult to detect.  A pupil who is directly accused of bullying may vigorously deny their involvement.  It can be hard to establish facts.  A problem solving approach, which avoids blaming, can be more effective in clarifying the situation and in achieving change.  (See policy guidelines).
  • Take action if you know bullying is occurring.  Involve parents at an early stage.  Follow up to ensure the bullying has not resumed.

Actions parents can take (for children who are bullied or are bullies)

  • Find out about the school anti-bullying policy.
  • Talk to your child about school regularly.
  • Listen carefully to what your child tells you.
  • Be alert to changes in mood or behaviour to school.
  • Stay calm even if you are concerned.
  • Make an appointment to discuss any concern with the school as soon as possible.
  • Give the school time to address the concerns.
  • Reassure your child.

Debbie Dix

November 2015