Anti-Bullying Policy

Introduction

At Educate U our core values are that every child should feel safe, valued, supported and happy in school.  We further aim to achieve this by providing opportunities to develop each child’s self-confidence and pride.  As a consequence of our values, we aim to provide a safe, caring and friendly environment for learning for all our students to allow them to improve their life chances and help them maximise their potential. The children placed at our school may come with negative experiences of being bullied or may have difficulties with understanding or showing emotions, therefore anti bullying can be a difficult concept for them to understand or respond to. We work hard with our students to support them and to encourage them to understand different situation and how some behaviours or responses can be understood differently by others,

We would expect students to act safely and feel safe in school, including that they understand the issues relating to all forms of bullying and that they feel confident to seek support from school should they feel they or others are unsafe. We would also want parents/carers to feel confident that their children are safe and cared for in school and that incidents when they do arise, are dealt with promptly and well. As a school committed to Rights Respecting values, we work to promote a rights ethos where children are safe, can express their opinions and realise their potential.  The school is aware of its legal obligations including the Equalities Act 2010. We are aware of our role within the local community supporting parents/carers and working with other agencies outside the school where appropriate.

The Head teacher – Has overall responsibility for the policy and its implementation and liaising with the company board of Directors, parents/carers, LA and outside agencies and appointing an Anti-bullying coordinator who will have general responsibility for handling the implementation of this policy.

Definition of Bullying

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 through cyberspace.

http://www.anti-bullyingalliance.org.uk/about-us.aspx

How does bullying differ from teasing/falling out between friends or other types of aggressive behaviour?

  • There is a deliberate intention to hurt or humiliate.
  • There is a power imbalance that makes it hard for the victim to defend themselves.
  • It is usually persistent.
  • Occasionally an incident may be deemed to be bullying even if the behaviour has not been repeated or persistent – if it fulfils all other descriptions of bullying. This possibility should be considered, particularly in cases of hate crime related bullying and cyberbullying.  If the victim might be in danger, then intervention is urgently required.

Bullying behaviour can be physical, verbal or emotional and includes:

  • physical assault
  • taking or damaging belongings
  • name calling
  • taunting
  • mocking
  • making offensive comments
  • cyber bullying – inappropriate text messaging or e-mailing; sending offensive or degrading images, impersonating and hacking into accounts online using internet enabled devices
  • producing offensive graffiti
  • gossiping and spreading hurtful and untruthful rumours
  • excluding people from groups.

Although bullying can occur between individuals it can often take place in the presence (virtually or physically) of others who become the ‘bystanders’ or ‘accessories.

  • Prejudice Related Bullying
  • Under the Equalities Act 2010 it is against the law to discriminate against anyone because of:
  • age
  • being or becoming a transsexual person
  • being married or in a civil partnership
  • being pregnant or having a child
  • Disability
  • race including colour, nationality, ethnic or national origin including Gypsy Roma, Travellers
  • religion, belief or lack of religion/belief
  • sex / gender
  • sexual orientation

 

As part of the requirement on schools to promote fundamental British Values, we will proactively challenge derogatory and discriminatory language and behaviour including that which is racist, homophobic, biphobia, transphobic and disablist in nature. We will record these types of bullying, even that which represents a one-off incident, and report them to the local authority for monitoring purposes.

  • bullying related to appearance or health
  • bullying of young carers or looked after children or otherwise related to home circumstances.

Although the above do not currently receive protection under the Equality Act 2010, bullying for these reasons is just as serious. There is no hierarchy of bullying – all forms should be taken equally seriously and dealt with appropriately.

Racist, homophobic, biphobic, transphobic and disablist language includes terms of abuse used towards people because of their race/ethnicity/nationality; because they are lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transsexual, or are perceived to be, or have a parent/carer or sibling who is; because they have a learning or physical disability. Such language is generally used to refer to something or someone as inferior.  This may also be used to taunt young people who are different in some way or their friends, family members or their parents/carers.

In the case of homophobic, biphobic and transphobic language particularly, dismissing it as banter is not helpful as even if these terms are not referring to a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity, they are using the terms to mean inferior, bad, broken or wrong.  We will challenge the use of prejudice related language in our school even if it appears to be being used without any intent.  Persistent use of prejudice related language and/or bullying will be dealt with as with any other form of bullying.

Bullying is not confined to the school premises. It also persists outside school, on the journey to and from school and in the local community and may continue into Further Education.
The school acknowledges its responsibilities to support families if bullying occurs off the premises.

  • The increasing use of digital technology and the internet has also provided new and particularly intrusive ways for bullies to reach their victims.
  • Cyberbullying can take many forms and bullying online can often start in school and then be progressed online or start online and influence behaviour in school.
  • Whilst most incidents of Cyberbullying occur outside school, we will offer support and guidance to parents/carers and their children who experience online bullying and will treat Cyberbullying with the same severity as any other forms of bullying.
  • hacking into someone’s accounts/sites.
  • Posting prejudice/hate messages
  • Impersonating someone online
  • Public posting of images
  • Exclusion
  • Threats and manipulation
  • Stalking

We will ensure that our children are taught safe ways to use the Internet we talk with our children and advise on safe ways of using the internet on a daily basis. We work closely with our families to support them and hold open dialogue with our students if any issues arise.

  • young people
  • young people and staff
  • between staff
  • individuals or groups

We have clear systems to report bullying for the school community (including staff, parents/carers, children and young people) this includes those who are the victims of bullying or have witnessed bullying behaviour (bystanders). Parents, children and visitors to the school are encouraged to be alert to issues of bullying and report them to school staff immediately.  When incidents are brought to the attention of staff, they are asked to complete a ‘My Concern’ entry which is passed on to the Headteacher. Parents are contacted accordingly.

All reported incidents will be taken seriously and investigated, involving all parties.  The staff is aware of and follows the same procedures.

  • All parties will be spoken to
  • Parents will be informed
  • A mediation plan will be introduced
  • Follow up conversations will take place, in particular keeping in touch with the person who reported the situation, parents/carers
  • A clear complaints procedure is in place for parents/carers who are not satisfied with the school’s actions
  • A range of follow-up responses and support is appropriate to the situation for all involved eg solution focused, restorative approach, circle of friends, individual work with victim, perpetrator and bystanders, referral to outside agencies if appropriate
  • Liaising with the wider community will be undertaken if the bullying is taking place off the school premises i.e. in the case of cyberbullying or hate crime.
  • Bullying incidents will be recorded by the member of staff who deals with the incident, and this will be monitored by the Headteacher who will ensure that individual incidents are followed up.
  • Prejudice related bullying/incidents are reported to the local authority using the guidelines set out in West Sussex guidelines for schools: Bullying and Prejudiced–related incidents.
  • As part of our ongoing commitment to the safety and welfare of our pupils at Educate U we have developed the following strategies to promote positive behaviour and discourage bullying behaviour:
  • Each class develops a class charter which is agreed by staff and pupils; it displays the articles the children deem important and ways we respect those rights
  • Celebration of good behaviour
  • Involvement in anti-bullying lessons and workshops
  • Anti-Bullying week annually in November
  • Specific curriculum input on areas of concern such as cyber bullying and internet safety
  • Student voice
  • Peer mentoring schemes and/or Playground Buddying and other student lead initiatives
  • Reactive programmes for vulnerable groups or groups involved in bullying, eg:
  • Restorative Justice
  • Counselling and/or Mediation schemes
  • Small group work
  • Parent groups
  • Parent information events/information
  • Therapeutic parenting training

We are a Rights Respecting school and our approach to anti-bullying supports the following articles from the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child:

  • Article 12 –     Every child has the right to say what they think in all matters affecting them, and to have their views taken seriously.
  • Article 19 –     Governments must do all they can to ensure that children are protected from all forms of violence, abuse, neglect and mistreatment by their parents or anyone else who looks after them.
  • Article 28 –     Every child has the right to an education. Primary education must be free. Secondary education must be available to every child. Discipline in schools must respect children’s human dignity. Wealthy countries must help poorer countries achieve this.
  • Article 29 –     Education must develop every child’s personality, talents and abilities to the full. It must encourage the child’s respect for human rights, as well as respect for their parents, their own and other cultures, and the environment.
  • Article 30 –     Every child has the right to learn and use the language, customs and religion of their family whether or not these are shared by the majority of the people in the country where they live.
  • Article 31 –     Every child has the right to relax, play and join in a wide range of cultural and artistic activities.
  • Anti-bullying Alliance (ABA) – www.anti-bullying.org
  • Mencap – www.mencap.org
  • The lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender charity – Educational Action Challenging Homophobia (EACH) – www.eachaction.org.uk
  • Educational Action Challenging Homophobia (EACH) is a charity and training agency helping people and organisations affected by homophobia. The website gives guidance, contact details and a freephone helpline.
  • School’s Out – www.schools-out.org.uk
  • Childnet International – www.childnet-int.org
  • Childnet International – The UK’s safer internet centre
  • NSPCC/ChildLine- www.nspcc.org.uk, childline.org.uk
  • ChildLine is a private and confidential service for children and young people up to the age of 19. NSPCC run several campaigns to support young people around bullying and internet safety
  • Show Racism the Red Card – www.theredcard.org.uk
  • On the school’s website: www.EducateU
  • From the school office
  • Child friendly versions are on display and in the children’s guide
  • As a shorter version for all parents/carers.