Our anti-bullying policy is part of our whole school behaviour policy.
Aims and Objectives
At St. Ebbe’s, we believe every child has a right to feel safe and happy at school. We are committed to providing a caring, friendly and safe environment for all of our pupils so they can learn in a relaxed and secure atmosphere. Bullying of any kind is unacceptable at our school. If bullying does occur, all pupils will be able to tell a member of staff and know that incidents will be dealt with promptly and effectively.
Definition of Bullying
Bullying is unacceptable behaviour which is systematic, unwelcome, intimidating and a repetitive abuse of power. It results in somebody feeling unhappy, hurt, threatened or frightened. It is humiliating and causes suffering, distress and isolation.
Bullying can be:
- Emotional - being unfriendly, excluding, tormenting (e.g. hiding books, threatening gestures)
- Physical - pushing, kicking, hitting, punching or any use of violence
- Racist - racial taunts, graffiti, gestures
- Sexual - unwanted physical contact or sexually abusive comments
- Homophobic - because of, or focussing on the issue of sexuality
- Verbal name calling - sarcasm, spreading rumours, teasing
- Cyber - all areas of internet, such as email and internet chat room misuse, mobile threats by text messaging and calls misuse of associated technology , i.e. camera and video facilities
Why is it Important to Respond to Bullying?
Bullying hurts. No one deserves to be a victim of bullying. Everybody has the right to be treated with respect. Pupils who are bullying need to learn different ways of behaving.
- All members of our school community have the right to feel safe and secure. They need to feel free from any threat of bullying. They will be told where to go and who to speak to if bullying occurs.
- All complaints of bullying will be treated seriously and will be acted upon in accordance with practice agreed by the school.
- No complaints of bullying will be regarded as “telling tales.”
- When bullying occurs, we will act promptly and records will be kept of incidents.
- Wherever possible and when appropriate we will develop children’s awareness of issues relating to bullying through the curriculum (e.g. use of language).
- Assemblies will be used to reinforce the fact that bullying will not be tolerated.
- The school will participate in the annual national anti-bullying week
- All members of the school community will be informed what to do and who to go to should they observe incidents of bullying or have it reported to them.
- Adults can be bullies. All staff will ensure that they provide good role models in their every day work with colleagues and children.
Signs and Symptoms
A child may indicate by signs or behaviour that he or she is being bullied. These signs and behaviours could indicate other problems, but bullying should be considered a possibility and should be investigated. Adults should be aware of these possible signs and that they should investigate if a child:
- is frightened of walking to or from school
- begs to be driven to school
- changes their usual routine
- is unwilling to go to school (school phobic)
- begins to truant
- becomes withdrawn anxious, or lacking in confidence
- starts stammering
- attempts or threatens suicide or runs away
- cries themselves to sleep at night or has nightmares
- feels ill in the morning
- begins to do poorly in school work
- comes home with clothes torn or books damaged
- has possessions which are damaged or " go missing"
- asks for money or starts stealing money (to pay bully)
- has dinner or other monies continually "lost"
- has unexplained cuts or bruises
- comes home starving (money / lunch has been stolen)
- becomes aggressive, disruptive or unreasonable
- is bullying other children or siblings
- stops eating
- is frightened to say what's wrong
- gives improbable excuses for any of the above
- is afraid to use the internet or mobile phone
- is nervous & jumpy when a cyber message is received
When Bullying has been identified
- The child is interviewed by a member of staff. This may be with a parent.
- The alleged bully or bullies are interviewed. If there is more than one, then they are interviewed separately. Parent may be present.
- The child who has been bullied is supported by the whole school.
- Parents are informed.
- It may be necessary to interview the parents of the bully and explain fully the seriousness of the offence and what might happen if it should continue.
- The bully is also supported.
- If the bullying is violent and constitutes an assault, and then after investigation other measures may be taken e.g. the police may be informed, the perpetrator may be excluded, Social Services and/or counselling may be sought.
Guidelines for Staff
- Be vigilant and seek out those children who you feel are showing signs of being bullied.
- Be firm and consistent.
- Listen to children and act promptly on what they say, in accordance with our behaviour policy.
- Act as a role model for children in interactions with others.
- Discuss feelings and emotions with the children.
- Challenge all racist, sexist, homophobic, antisocial or discriminatory language and behaviour.
- Record all incidents and interventions used and discuss with Headteacher.
- Make all staff aware of any concerns through weekly ‘Special Children’ item in staff meetings.
- Supervise children positively making reference to good social behaviour.
Staff will add all instances of bullying to the behaviour book that is held in the staff room. The head teacher will monitor the behaviour book on a monthly basis and report to the personnel and welfare committee five times annually.
KIDSCAPE Parents Helpline (Mon-Fri, 10-4) 0845 1 205 204
Primary Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service
(PCAMHS) 01865 396 369
Oxfordshire Children’s Information Service
(OCIS) 08452 26 26 36
Parentline Plus 0808 800 2222
Bullying Online http://www.childnet.com/parents-and-carers