Anti Bullying

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Rationale:

We seek to create a climate within the school whereby bullying behaviours are not accepted by any member of the school community. Bullying is repeated behaviour which makes other people feel uncomfortable or threatened, whether this is intended or not.

There are different sorts of bullying, but the three main types are:

PHYSICAL – hitting, kicking, taking or hiding belongings including money.
VERBAL – name-calling, teasing, insulting, writing unkind notes/text messages/emails, eg cyber bullying.
EMOTIONAL – being unfriendly, excluding, tormenting, spreading rumours, looks.

Purposes:
  1. All students should feel safe and secure at school.
  2. All parents should feel confident that their children are in a safe environment and shall be protected from bullies.
  3. All staff have the right to work in an atmosphere of cooperation and trust.
  4. All members of the school community shall feel able to report incidents of
    bullying in the knowledge that it will be dealt with sensitively. The school will encourage a culture of “telling”.
  5. Nobody should be a passive bystander to bullying.
Broad Guidelines:
  1. All reports and incidents of bullying should be acted on. To ignore is to condone.
  2. People react differently. It is not always possible to tell if someone is hurt or upset. Students who are being bullied may show changes in behaviour,such as becoming shy and nervous, feigning illness or clinging to adults. They may show changes in their work patterns, may lack concentration or may even truant from school.
  3. It is important that we create an atmosphere in school where students who are being bullied, or others who know about it, feel that they will be listened to and believed, and that action will be swift but sensitive to their concerns. Not telling protects the bully or bullies, and gives the message that they can continue, perhaps bullying others too.
  4. Posters encouraging students to tell, and posters displaying the Anti bullying Charter, are on display around the school, and there is a reduced version in student planners.
  5. The school’s stance on bullying, as part of its general expectations on behaviour will be made clear to all students at the start of each school year, and repeated when necessary.
  6. Parents will be encouraged to notify the Head of House or any suspicions of bullying. Parents will be informed when we are told of bullying, and involved in subsequent discussions.
  7. The school will investigate different ways of treating the topic of bullying,through assemblies, tutorial work, PSHE lessons, and other subjects of the taught curriculum. Curriculum work can enhance this policy in two ways:a.) By dealing with the topic of bullying, in a way which explores why it happens and which gives alternative ways of behaving, and dealing with difficulties.b.) By using teaching methods which encourage cooperative work and a variety of groupings so that students extend their relationships beyond a small group of friends.
  8. Staff are requested to be vigilant for early signs of bullying, to respond appropriately when approached by a student, to respond to incidents of bullying as for any misbehaviour, and to report incidents in line with school procedure.
  9. Staff need to be particularly vigilant at breaks and lesson changes, around corridors and in the area of toilets, lockers or outside. These are times where victims are more vulnerable, and bullying is not easily seen. Incidents should be reported to the Head of House.
  10. Staff will use their judgement as to the immediate reaction to any bullying incident, using the sanctions available. For minor incidents within the classroom, staff should also consider varying classroom strategies, eg modifying the learning environment, changing student groupings, target setting with students. Major incidents must be referred to the Head of Faculty/Department. All incidents should be recorded.
  11. Where students have reported bullying or been involved in a bullyingincident, they should write down the details on the school’s IncidentReport form.
  12. For minor incidents, Heads of House may choose to use the “No Blame”approach.
  13. Serious and/or persistent bullying will normally result in exclusion fromschool.
  14. The school will work to achieve common policy and procedures with firstand middle schools in the East Dorset Education Partnership (EDEP).
Conclusions:

Bullying is always unacceptable. We wish to encourage an environment where independence is celebrated and individuals can flourish without fear. We work to build the self-esteem and self-confidence of students, so  that they can be strong enough to cope with challenges. We also encourage an ethos of “no put-downs”; denigration and abuse are not tolerated. Every member of the school community has the right to be safe and happy in school, and to be protected when s/he is feeling vulnerable.