Anti bullying policy

Our school code of conduct is:

“Try, Grow, Achieve”

 

The integrity of this Code of Conduct is compromised by incidents of bullying behaviour.

What is bullying behaviour? Two definitions

‘Bullying is a way of being cruel to another person.  It can involve: calling names, making fun of someone in a nasty way, stealing or breaking someone’s things, pushing someone or hitting them, frightening someone into doing things they don’t want to do.’

Rosemary Stones  ‘Bullying at School’ Blackwell 1993

‘A student is being bullied or victimised when he or she is exposed, repeatedly and over time, to negative actions on the part of one or more other students.’

Dan Olweus ‘Bullying at School’ Blackwell 1993

Link to most recent guidance:

Preventing and tackling bullying advice

With the advances in technology it is now possible for long distance bullying to take place using email, texting and other forms of communication. Temple Grove will deal with the situation in the same way as examples of face-to-face bullying and in addition has the support of the LA to trace the perpetrator and to block the use of school email system should it be found to be the origin of the message.

Why have a policy?

Bullying behaviour occurs in every school in the country and our school is no exception.

We wish to reduce the number of incidents of bullying at our school.

When someone is subjected to bullying behaviour their self-esteem is diminished and their ability to learn is impaired.

Victims of bullying behaviour need to know what to do when it occurs.

Victims of bullying can become perpetrators of bullying.

What should staff do when a bullying incident arises?

Reassure the victim so that they know that you are taking the problem seriously.

Assess the seriousness of the situation and decide on the level of intervention required.  Do you need to involve the Head Teacher, or Assistant Head?  Incidents involving children within the same class are often best resolved by the adult who knows them best – the class teacher.

Remain calm and avoid getting personally drawn into the problem.

Make it clear that you disapprove of the unacceptable behaviour and not the perpetrator as a person.

Encourage the perpetrator to see the recipient’s point of view and to apologise in your presence.

Monitor the situation, establishing whether the concerns of the victim have been allayed.

NB. A more complete set of guidelines governing what to say and do appears in the section about the ‘no blame approach’.

What if it is a serious incident?

Alert the Head Teacher or Assistant Head Teacher.

An Incident Record Sheet is to be completed by the Head or Assistant Head Teacher assisted by the adult who was first alerted. (See Appendix 1)

The Head Teacher or Assistant Head Teacher is to inform the parents of the perpetrator and the recipient to explain any action taken, if deemed necessary.  (The ultimate punishment is exclusion of the perpetrator – temporarily or permanently).

The Head Teacher or Assistant Head Teacher should follow up each serious incident to ensure that the victim is supported and to prevent recurrence of the behaviour.

Having met with the victim’s parents, a follow up appointment should be arranged by the Head Teacher or Assistant to ensure a satisfactory resolution.

Incidents of Racial Harassment should be reported to the teacher responsible who will complete the appropriate LA forms.

How can teaching staff help to challenge the prevalence of bullying?

Teach your children about bullying, stressing that it is more complex than merely violent behaviour.

Encourage your children to break the silence about bullying behaviour, including this in your list of classroom rules.

Explain that the bystander is actually reinforcing the bullying process and has the power to stop or report the behaviour.

Teach your children to talk through their disputes rather than resorting to aggression.  This is an ideal subject for Circle Time discussions.

Invite your children to design posters to highlight and alleviate the problem.

Use non-bullying methods of teaching.

Never forget that bullying behaviour is learned and can therefore be unlearned.

How can the victim’s parents help?

By listening, believing, and supporting their child.

By encouraging their own children – and children whom they know are being bullied – to tell a teacher.

By encouraging victims not to fight back.

How can mid-day supervisors help?

Intervene positively when behaviour is unacceptable.

Talk calmly and rationally to children displaying aggressive and bullying behaviour.

Help children to find an interest in the playground – individually or in a group, playing a game or talking.

The No Blame Approach

When dealing with a bullying incident it may be appropriate to meet the perpetrator and the recipient independently before attempting to bring them together.  The aim should be to reassure the recipient and to show the perpetrator that their actions have caused distress and are therefore unacceptable.  The ideal framework for such negotiations is the ‘no blame approach’.  The following guidelines are adapted from Anatol Pikas ‘The common concern method for the treatment of mobbing’, in Roland & Munthe (eds).  ‘Bullying: An International Perspective’, David Fulton 1989.

The Perpetrator

When dealing with the perpetrator:

Attempt to diffuse the situation.  Do not exacerbate it by becoming angry, sarcastic or indignant.

Accept the perpetrator’s account initially to keep them talking.

Try the following statements/questions – ‘I would like to talk to you because I’ve heard that Robin has been having rather a hard time’.  ‘I need your help.  Robin has been rather upset lately’.  ‘What do you know about all this?’ or ‘What have you seen?’  After you have made the first couple of statements remain silent and wait for the perpetrator to respond.  This may seem to take forever but, wherever possible, don’t rescue them by talking to ease the tension.

Try not to interrupt.

When you detect in the perpetrator a note of concern for the recipient stop the conversation.  Reinforce the notion that you both agree that there is something wrong with Robin.

Elicit constructive solutions – ‘What shall we do about it?’

Aim to bring the perpetrator and recipient together for a constructive talk.

The Victim

When dealing with the victim:

Reassure them that they have acted correctly in coming to you.

Actively listen to them – eye-contact, nodding, making supportive sounds.

Ask neutral questions such as – ‘Who was involved?’  ‘When and where did this happen?’  ‘What did you say or do at the time?’  ‘How often has this happened or is this the first time?’  ‘Was there anyone who saw or heard this?’  ‘Have you spoken to anyone else about this incident?’  ‘How have you been affected by this behaviour?’

Do not convey the impression that the recipient should feel guilty about being bullied and needing to seek help.  It is not helpful if you conduct an interrogation or if you make comments or ask questions that make them feel that in some way they were responsible for the behaviour or that their complaint is trivial or time wasting.

A pupil who is being bullied does not have equal opportunities.