Anti-Bullying Policy

Anti-bullying Policy Jan 2019 (pdf)

 

Title of Policy Anti-bullying policy
Policy Type School
Review Cycle 1 year Review Cycle 1 year
Policy prepared by Vicky Gregory Assistant Headteacher
Committee responsible Student development group
Date of review by committee January 16th 2019
Date of approval or submission to governing body January 2019
Next Review Summer 2019 Next Review January 2020

 

The Purbeck School is a community that promotes ‘Respect, Aspiration, and Perseverance’ as its’ core values. All of these values are important to enable the development of happy, fulfilled pupils who will contribute positively to our own community and beyond. The student ‘Teaching and Learning’ document that has been developed with parents, students, and staff illustrates this ethos.

The Purbeck School ‘Student Teaching and Learning’ document

As part of this commitment, we strive to provide a safe and caring environment for everyone. We believe that every member of the Purbeck community deserves to be treated equally. Bullying, of any type, will not be tolerated and will be dealt with accordingly.

Contents:

Section 1: A definition and outline of bullying

Section 2: Tackling bullying – recognising the signs and reporting

Section 3: Roles and responsibilities

Section 4: Links and references

 

This policy aims to:

  • ensure all members of the school community have a common understanding of what constitutes bullying
  • support all members of the Purbeck community to understand how to tackle and prevent bullying
  • make staff, students’ parents and carers aware that we all have a responsibility to ensure that each member of the school, regardless of their role, promotes respect for others at all times.

 

Section 1: A definition and outline of bullying

What is Bullying?

The Anti-Bullying Alliance defines bullying as ‘the repetitive, intentional hurting of one person or group by another person or group, where the relationship involves an imbalance of power. Bullying can be physical, verbal or psychological. It can happen face-to-face or online.’

There are four key elements to this definition:

  • hurtful
  • repetition
  • power imbalance
  • intentional

Bullying can be:

  • Emotional – for example being unfriendly, excluding, tormenting (e.g. hiding books, threatening gestures)
  • Physical – for example pushing, kicking, hitting, punching or any use of violence
  • Verbal – for example name-calling, sarcasm, spreading rumours, teasing because of size
  • Online – for example the use of electronic communication to bully a person, typically by sending messages of an unpleasant, intimidating or threatening nature includes all areas of internet, such as email & internet chat room misuse

Bullying can include discrimination based on:

  • Race
  • Faith
  • Gender
  • Ability
  • Appearance
  • Sexuality
  • Socio-Economic Background

Bullying can take place at any age and in any place. Section 89 of the Education and Inspections Act gives the headteacher the right to regulate students’ conduct when they are not on school premises. This can relate to bullying incidents occurring on school or public transport, outside local shops or in any other public place when students are in school uniform.

Bullying can take place beyond school via social media. The school expects parents and carers to monitor their child’s access to social media and ensure that such access is age-appropriate. Educating young people on both the advantages and risks involved with social media is the joint responsibility of parents and carers and the school community.

Where online bullying is affecting young people’s experience of school, we will seek to investigate, sanction and educate as far as possible. Parents and carers may also report concerns to the police, and restrict or cease their child’s access to social media. In line with its behaviour policy, the school expects the full support of parents and carers in managing their child’s behaviour, including online.

Some forms of bullying are illegal and should be reported to the police. These include:

  • violence or assault
  • theft
  • repeated harassment or intimidation, for example name calling, threats and abusive phone calls, emails or text messages
  • hate crimes

The difference between Bullying and Relational Conflict:

Conflict is a disagreement or a difference of opinion or interests between equals. The people involved in a conflict may disagree strongly and emotions may run high. When conflict is badly managed, it may result in aggression. In a conflict, both parties have power to influence the situation. Students exchanging unpleasant comments via social media is an example of such conflict, and may not represent an instance of bullying.

Conflict may be an inevitable part of group dynamics, but bullying is not. Both relational conflict and bullying require intervention, however they will often take different forms. For example, while peer mediation might be appropriate for relational conflict it may not be for issues of bullying.

 

Section 2: Tackling bullying

Students who are being bullied may not always report it. However, there may be changes in their behaviour, such as becoming shy and nervous, feigning illness or unexplained injuries. To those who know the child it may simply be a feeling that ‘things aren’t quite right’. All school staff will be alert to the signs of bullying and act promptly and firmly against it in accordance with this policy.

The school will take all reasonable steps to investigate the allegations of bullying thoroughly.  The school does not have the powers of the police, and does not operate in the same way.  Conclusions are reached on the balance of probabilities.

Parents and carers should encourage their child to talk to their tutor or other member of staff.

 

Response to a report of bullying by a child:

Student reports incident of bullying
Information is passed to the Nest team
The Nest team investigate and collect statements as appropriate
Parents of victim and perpetrator contacted where appropriate
Incident is sanctioned in line with the school behaviour policy
If further incidents of bullying are reported, incident will be escalated, using the school behaviour policy

 

Section 3: Roles and Responsibilities

It is the role of every member of the school community to promote, create and maintain a respectful environment, free from any form of bullying.

Schools have statutory responsibilities in relation to safety and wellbeing. This policy is written in conjunction with:

  • A Duty to Safeguard and Promote the Welfare of Children (The Education Act 2002).
  • Keeping Children Safe in Education, September 2018.
  • Working Together to Safeguard Children (2018).
  • The Children Act (1989) makes clear the expectation that bullying incidents should be addressed as a child protection issue where there is ‘reasonable cause to suspect that a child is, or is likely to suffer, significant harm.’
  • The Equality Act (2010) which outlines the responsibilities of schools to respond to discrimination and promote equality.
Role Responsibility
Teaching staff: Promote, through the curriculum and tutor time, mutual respect and the creation of a safe environment for all to enjoy.

 

Be sensitive. Be prepared to listen. Be supportive. Be proactive.

Actively seek advice and guidance, and refer on to the appropriate colleagues (the pastoral team – contact the Nest).

Where appropriate, feedback to the parents or carers – of both the victim and the bully.

Support staff: Create a welcoming environment. Be vigilant and aware of any signs that bullying may be occurring. Be sensitive. Be prepared to listen. Be supportive. Be proactive.

Actively seek advice and guidance, and refer on to the appropriate colleagues (the pastoral team – contact the Nest).

Students: Be respectful of difference and mindful of how behaviour and actions can affect others. Promote a positive environment. Report any incident of bullying to, a member of staff, or the Nest team.

Have confidence in the support and action that will follow.

Parents and carers: Support the education process about the prevention of bullying. Assist the school in the promotion of an ethos of respect. Discuss the issues that may occur with your child. Report any incident that has been brought to your attention by your son or daughter, or their peers.

The first point of contact is your child’s tutor.

Parents and carers must leave the initial investigation to the school. Any attempt to resolve the issue themselves may make the matter worse. Parents and carers must understand that the school may have access to information that they do not have.

Governors: Work in support of all staff to successfully implement the Anti-Bullying Policy. Ensure the policy reflects the ethos and mission of the school and promotes the wellbeing of all members of the community. Review the policy and related data, annually. Interrogate any patterns of behaviour. Be sensitive. Be prepared to listen. Be supportive. Be proactive. Actively seek advice and guidance. Respond to any causes for concern that are brought to your attention.

Bullying of Adults within the school environment:

Our school takes measures to prevent and tackle bullying among students; however, it is equally important to recognise that bullying of staff and parents or carers, whether by students, parents or carers, or other staff members, within the school environment is unacceptable.

 

Section 4: Links and references

  • The Purbeck School Behaviour Policy
  • The Purbeck School Child Protection Policy
  • The Purbeck School E Safety Policy
  • Preventing and tackling bullying DFE 2017
  • Equality Act 2010 Anti-discrimination law
  • Keeping Children Safe in Education 2018
  • A Duty to Safeguard and Promote the Welfare of Children (The Education Act 2002).
  • Working Together to Safeguard Children (2018).
  • The Children Act (1989)