It is a government requirement that all schools have an anti-bullying policy. DfES guidance defines bullying as actions that are meant to be hurtful, and which happen on a regular basis. Bullying can be direct (either physical or verbal) or indirect (e.g. being ignored or not spoken to).
Bullying can be described as being ‘a deliberate act done to cause distress solely in order to give a feeling of power, status or other gratification to the bully. It can range from ostracising, name calling, teasing, threats and extortion through to physical assault on persons and/or their property’
At Wrenthorpe Primary School staff, parents and children work together to create a happy, caring learning environment. Bullying, whether mental, physical or indirect will not be tolerated. It is everyone’s responsibility to aim to prevent occurrences of bullying and to deal with any incidents quickly and effectively.
2 Aims and objectives
Bullying is wrong and damages individual children. We therefore do all we can to prevent it, by developing a school ethos in which bullying is regarded as unacceptable.
We aim, as a school, to produce a safe and secure environment where all can learn without anxiety, and measures are in place to reduce the likelihood of bullying.
This policy aims to produce a consistent school response to any bullying incidents that may occur.
We aim to make all those connected with the school aware of our opposition to bullying, and we make clear each person’s responsibilities with regard to the eradication of bullying in our school.
3 The role of governors
The governing body supports the headteacher in all attempts to eliminate bullying from our school. The governing body will not condone any bullying at all in our school, and any incidents of bullying that do occur will be taken very seriously, and dealt with appropriately.
The governing body monitors incidents of bullying that do occur, and reviews the effectiveness of this policy regularly. The governors require the headteacher to keep accurate records of all incidents of bullying, and to report to the governors on request about the effectiveness of school anti-bullying strategies.
A parent who is dissatisfied with the way the school has dealt with a bullying incident can ask the chair of governors to look into the matter. The governing body responds within ten days to any request from a parent to investigate incidents of bullying. In all cases, the governing body notifies the headteacher, and asks her to conduct an investigation into the case, and to report back to a representative of the governing body.
4 The role of the headteacher
It is the responsibility of the headteacher to implement the school anti-bullying strategy, and to ensure that all staff are aware of the school policy, and know how to identify and deal with incidents of bullying. The headteacher reports to the governing body about the effectiveness of the anti-bullying policy on request.
The headteacher ensures that all children know that bullying is wrong, and that it is unacceptable behaviour in this school. The headteacher draws the attention of children to this fact at suitable moments. For example, if an incident occurs, the headteacher may decide to use an assembly as the forum in which to discuss with other children why this behaviour was wrong, and why a pupil is being punished.
The headteacher ensures that all staff, including lunchtime staff, receive sufficient training to be equipped to identify and deal with all incidents of bullying.
The headteacher sets the school climate of mutual support and praise for success, so making bullying less likely. When children feel they are important and belong to a friendly and welcoming school, bullying is far less likely to be part of their behaviour.
5 The role of the staff
All the staff in our school take all forms of bullying seriously, and seek to prevent it from taking place.
Teachers keep their own records of all incidents that happen in their class, and that they are aware of in the school. If teachers witness an act of bullying, they will either investigate it themselves or refer it to the headteacher. Teachers and support staff do all they can to support the child who is being bullied. If a child is being bullied over a period of time, then, after consultation with the headteacher, the teacher informs the child’s parents or carers.
When any bullying has taken place between members of a class, the teacher will deal with the issue immediately. This may involve counselling and support for the victim, and punishment for the offender. Time is spent talking to the child who has done the bullying, explaining to them why their action was wrong and how they should change their behaviour in future. If a child is repeatedly involved in bullying, we inform the headteacher and the special needs coordinator. We then invite the child’s parents or carers into the school to discuss the situation. In more extreme cases, e.g. where these initial discussions have proved ineffective, the headteacher may contact external support agencies, such as the social services.
Teachers use a range of methods to help prevent bullying and to establish a climate of trust and respect for all. They use drama, role-play, stories etc., within the formal curriculum, to help pupils understand the feelings of bullied children, and to practise the restraint required to avoid lapsing into bullying behaviour. Circle time is used to praise, reward and celebrate the success of all children, and thus to help create a positive atmosphere.
Sanctions for the bully may include:
- Withdrawal from activities ie extra curricular, loss of privileges and responsibilities
- Loss of playtime
- Exclusion from school during lunchtimes
- Exclusion from school
6 The role of parents and carers
Parents and carers who are concerned that their child might be being bullied, or who suspect that their child may be the perpetrator of bullying, should contact their child’s class teacher immediately. If they are not satisfied with the response, they should contact the headteacher. If they remain dissatisfied, they should follow the school’s complaints procedure, as detailed in the school Prospectus.
Parents and carers have a responsibility to support the school’s anti-bullying policy, actively encouraging their child to be a positive member of the school.
7 The role of pupils
Pupils are encouraged to tell anybody they trust if they are being bullied, and if the bullying continues, they must keep on letting people know.
Pupils are invited to tell us their views about a range of school issues, including bullying, in the annual pupil questionnaire.
Our School Council has developed its own anti-bullying code, which is displayed in each class and around school. (See Appendix 1)
Last review – September 2016