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Anti-Bullying Policy

Anti-Bullying Policy

JOHN RUSKIN SCHOOL

ANTI – BULLYING POLICY

October 2016

 Statement of Intent

The school is committed to providing a caring, friendly and safe environment so that all students can enjoy and achieve during their time at this school and when they are travelling to and from school.

  • Bullying of any kind is unacceptable. Bullying hurts, threatens and frightens.  Everyone has the right to be treated with respect if they behave in a way that commands respect.
  • When bullying does occur, all students should be able to tell someone and know that incidents will be dealt with promptly and efficiently.

Objectives of this policy:

  • Bullying will not be tolerated.  Students and parents/carers should be assured that they will be supported when bullying is reported.
  • All governors, teaching and non-teaching staff, students and parents/carers should have an understanding of what bullying is, and the effect it can have on our young people.
  • All governors, teaching and non-teaching staff, students and parents/carers should know what the school policy is on bullying, and follow it when bullying is reported.

Definition of bullying:

Bullying is usually associated with any kind of behaviour which intimidates another person and is maintained over a period of time.  However, there may be one-off incidents which may result in hurting, threatening or frightening another person or group of people.  It may include physical attacks, swearing and insulting comments or deliberately excluding people out of things.  Other terminology may be used: taunting, tormenting or teasing for example.  These will all come under the umbrella of ‘bullying’. An increasing use of social media has highlighted the problem of bullying using, text, email or other social media. It is used to say hurtful things about someone. This can occur inside and outside school.

Bullying can be:

  • Emotional – being unfriendly, excluding, tormenting (hiding objects, threatening gestures)
  • Physical – pushing, kicking, hitting, punching or any use of violence
  • Rascist – racial taunts, graffiti, gestures
  • Sexual – taunts, unwanted physical contact or sexually abusive comments
  • Homophobic – because of, or focussing on the issue of sexuality
  • Verbal – name calling, sarcasm, spreading rumours, teasing
  • Cyber – all areas of the internet – e-mail, misuse of chat rooms, misuse of and creation spoof social networking sites; threats by text messaging and telephone  calls; misuse of technology, i.e. camera and video facilities.

 

Signs and symptoms of bullying:

A student may indicate by signs or behaviour that they are being bullied.  Adults should be aware of these possible signs and symptoms and they should investigate if a young person:

  • Is unwilling to go to school
  • Is frightened of walking to or from school
  • Does not want to go on the school bus
  • Begs to be driven to school
  • Changes their usual routine
  • Begins to truant
  • Becomes withdrawn anxious or lacking in confidence
  • Attempts or threatens suicide or runs away
  • Cries themselves to sleep or is frightened to go to sleep
  • Feels ill in the morning
  • Begins to do their school work poorly
  • Has possessions which are damaged or ‘go missing’
  • Asks for money or starts stealing money (to pay the bully)
  • Has unexplained cuts or bruises
  • Becomes aggressive, disruptive or unreasonable
  • Is bullying other children or siblings
  • Stops eating
  • Is frightened to say what is wrong
  • Is afraid to use the internet or a mobile phone
  • Is nervy and jumpy when a cyber message is received

These signs and behaviours could indicate other problems but bullying should be considered a possibility and be investigated.

There may be some instances when two young people of the approximately the same age and strength may have the occasional quarrel – usually this would not be considered as bullying, however all staff must be aware of peer on peer abuse, specifically when dealing with cyber bullying.

Procedures:

All bullying behaviour or threats of bullying must be investigated and the bullying stopped quickly.  The school can only do something if we know there is a problem.

If a student is being bullied or know of someone who is being bullied they MUST TELL SOMEONE.

If a parent finds out about bullying of their child in school they should inform the school immediately.

Students should:

¨      Report bullying incidents to any member of staff; your form tutor or any other member of staff you feel comfortable talking to.  If there is no member of staff readily available ask for a yellow statement sheet at the main office, complete it and ask the office staff to deliver it to the member of staff you wish to report to.

¨      If you prefer, speak to a prefect or any other student who you feel you can trust, who will then support you by helping you tell a member of staff or who will speak to a member of staff themselves.

¨     You will be asked to write a statement which identifies the bully/bullies and the nature of the bullying.  Witnesses to bullying will also be asked to produce a written statement.

Students who have been bullied will be helped by:

¨      Being given an opportunity to discuss the experience

¨      Being offered reassurance and support as an investigation begins

¨      Being asked to produce a written statement

¨      Witnesses who will be asked to produce a written statement

Students who have bullied will be helped by:

¨      Discussing what happened and why they became involved

¨      Establishing the wrong-doing and the need to change

¨      Providing a written statement about the incident(s)

¨      Witnesses who will be asked to produce a written statement

¨      Parents being informed if a sanction is put in place – if C4 or more.

The member of staff will make a judgement, based on the evidence, to take any one or more of the following courses of action:

¨      Mediation between the bullied and the bully

¨      Disciplinary action against the bully using school detention and mediation with the bullied and bullying student(s). If possible, the students will be reconciled.

¨      Inform a senior member of staff (usually Miss Flanagan) for further investigation.  In extreme cases the Headteacher or Deputy Headteacher, will take the decision to exclude a student for a fixed-term or recommend permanent exclusion.

¨      If necessary, the police will be consulted.

An attempt will be made to help the bully to understand and change their behaviour.

Support will be given to the bullied student by staff who will monitor the situation.  The decision may be taken to refer the student to a suitable Student Mentor for additional confidential support.

The bullying incident will be logged and reference may be made to previous situations if a student is involved in persistent episodes of bullying.  This may lead to school having to take previously unconsidered sanctions, such as fixed-term exclusion, into consideration.

 

Bullying outside the school’s premises:

No student should suffer in silence.  Where a student or parent report bullying off the school premises, a range of steps will be taken:

Þ    Talk to the police about problems in the area and involve them if necessary.

Þ    Advise parents to involve the police if they wish.

Þ    Possible ban from being transported to school by bus, either for a fixed-term or permanently.  It then becomes the responsibility of parents to transport their son/daughter to school.

Þ    Fixed-term or permanent exclusion from school

 

Prevention of bullying:

The school will promote and develop a culture of zero tolerance towards bullying.  This will be achieved by:

  • The PHSE/Citizenship programme for each year group will investigate the possible repercussions of bullying and how it can be prevented.
  • Cyber bullying will be focused on through PSHE, ICT, form time, assemblies, pastoral work and through school council meetings.
  • The Anti-bullying policy will be made available to all parents either via the school website (www.jrs.org.uk) or as a hard copy on request.  An abridged version of the Anti-Bullying Policy will be included in Student Planners.
  • Each year the school will acknowledge and participate in National Anti-Bullying Week using assembly time to address the issue of bullying with the whole school.
  • School has adopted the Anti-Bullying Charter.
  • Students (by School Council) and Parents (at Parents’ Evenings) will be audited once a year about bullying.  Feedback will be monitored by Senior Management and Governors.
  • As part of their induction programme all new staff to the school will be made aware of the Anti-Bullying Policy, its procedures and their role in dealing with incidents of bullying and their prevention.

 

Policy last reviewed:     October 2016

 

Governors’ Approval:    October 2016

 

Signed: John Murray 18 October 2016

 

 

 

RELATED POLICIES:

Behaviour Policy

Child protection/Safeguarding Policy

Exclusion Policy

 

APPENDIX:   USEFUL WEBSITES

www.teachers.tv/bullying

www.anti-bullyingalliance.org.uk

www.kidscape.org.uk

‘Lets fight it together’ – video resource about cyber-bullying

Provides useful information for teachers, parents of a bullied child, parents of a child who is bullying other students.

 

www.direct.gov.uk/en/Parents/WorriedAbout/DG 10015758

 


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