Anti-Bullying Policy

1. In accordance with the requirements of the Education (Welfare) Act 2000 and the code of behaviour    guidelines    issued    by    the    NEWB,    the    Board    of    Management of Presentation Secondary School  Castleisland, has adopted the following anti-bullying policy within the framework of the school’s overall code of behaviour. This policy fully complies with the requirements of the Anti-Bullying Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools which were published in September 2013.

2. The Board of Management recognises the very serious nature of bullying and the negative impact that it can have on the lives of pupils and is therefore fully committed to the following key principles of best practice in preventing and tackling bullying behaviour:

A positive school culture and climate which-

  • is welcoming of difference and diversity and is based on inclusivity;
  • encourages pupils to disclose and discuss incidents of bullying behaviour in non-threatening environment; and
  • promotes respectful relationships across the school community;
  • Effective leadership;
  • A school-wide approach;
  • A shared understanding of what bullying is and its impact;
  • Implementation  of  education  and  prevention  strategies  (including  awareness raising measures) that-
  • build empathy, respect and resilience in pupils; and
  • explicitly address the issues of cyber-bullying and identity-based bullying including in particular, homophobic and transphobic bullying.
  • Effective supervision and monitoring of pupils;
  • Supports for staff;
  • Consistent recording, investigation and follow up of bullying behaviour (including use of established intervention strategies); and
  • On-going evaluation of the effectiveness of the anti-bullying policy.

3.   In accordance with the Anti-Bullying Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools bullying is defined as follows:

Bullying is unwanted negative behaviour, verbal, psychological or physical conducted, by an individual or group against another person (or persons) and which is repeated over time.

The following types of bullying behaviour are included in the definition of bullying:

  • Deliberate exclusion, malicious gossip and other forms of relational bullying,
  • Cyber-bullying
  • Identity-based bullying such as homophobic bullying, racist bullying, bullying based on a person’s membership of the Traveller community and bullying of those with disabilities or special educational needs.

Isolated or once-off incidents of intentional negative behaviour, including a once-off offensive or hurtful text message or other private messaging, do not fall within the definition of bullying and should be dealt with, as appropriate, in accordance with the school’s code of behaviour.

However, in the context of this policy, placing a once-off offensive or hurtful public message, image or statement on a social network site or other public forum where that message, image or statement can be viewed and/or repeated by other people will be regarded as bullying behaviour.

Negative behaviour that does not meet this definition of bullying will be dealt with in accordance with the school’s code of behaviour.

Types of bullying

The following are some of the types of bullying behaviour that can occur amongst pupils:

o Physical aggression: This behaviour includes pushing, shoving, punching, kicking, poking and tripping people. It may also take the form of severe physical assault. While pupils often engage in ‘mess fights’, they can sometimes be used as a disguise for physical harassment or inflicting pain.

o Intimidation: Some bullying behaviour takes the form of intimidation: it may be based on the use of very aggressive body language with the voice being used as a weapon. Particularly upsetting can be a facial expression which conveys aggression and/or dislike.

o Isolation/exclusion and other relational bullying: This occurs where a certain person is deliberately isolated, excluded or ignored by some or all of the class group. This practice is usually initiated by the person engaged in bullying behaviour and can be difficult to detect. It may be accompanied by writing insulting remarks about the pupil in public places, by passing around notes about or drawings of the pupil or by whispering insults about them loud enough to be heard. Relational bullying occurs when a person’s attempts to socialise and form relationships with peers are repeatedly rejected or undermined. One of the most common forms includes control: “Do this or I won’t be your friend anymore”(implied or stated); a group ganging up against one person (girl or boy); non-verbal gesturing; malicious gossip; spreading rumours about a person or giving them the “silent treatment”.

o Cyber-bullying: This type of bullying is increasingly common and is continuously evolving. It is bullying carried out through the use of information and communication technologies such as text, social network sites, e-mail, instant messaging (IM), apps, gaming sites, chat-rooms and other online technologies. Being the target of inappropriate or hurtful messages is the most common form of online bullying. As cyber-bullying uses technology to perpetrate bullying behaviour and does not require face to face contact, cyber-bullying can occur at any time (day or night). Many forms of bullying can be facilitated through cyber-bullying. For example, a target may be sent homophobic text messages or pictures may be posted with negative comments about a person’s sexuality, appearance etc.

o Name calling: Persistent name-calling directed at the same individual(s) which hurts, insults or humiliates should be regarded as a form of bullying behaviour. Often name-calling of this type refers to physical appearance, e.g., size or clothes worn. Accent or distinctive voice characteristics may attract negative attention. Academic ability can also provoke name calling. This tends to operate at two extremes. There are those who are singled out for attention because they are perceived to be weak academically. At the other extreme there are those who, because they are perceived as high achievers, are also targeted.

o Damage to property: Personal property can be the focus of attention for bullying behaviour. This may result in damage to clothing, mobile phone or other devices, school books and other learning material or interference with a pupil’s locker or bicycle. The contents of school bags and pencil cases may be scattered on the floor. Items of personal property may be defaced, broken, stolen or hidden.

o Extortion: Demands for money may be made, often accompanied by threats (sometimes carried out in the event of the targeted pupil not delivering on the demand). A pupil may also be forced into theft of property for delivery to another who is engaged in bullying behaviour.

IMPACT AND INDICATORS OF BULLYING BEHAVIOUR
Impacts of bullying behaviour
  • Pupils who are being bullied may develop feelings of insecurity, humiliation and extreme anxiety and thus may become more vulnerable. Self-confidence may be damaged with a consequent lowering of self-esteem. While they may not talk about what is happening to them, their suffering is indicated through changes in mood and behaviour. Extreme cases of bullying may result in suicide. It is, therefore, essential to be alert to changes in behaviour as early intervention can be very effective.
  • Pupils who witness bullying may also be affected and may suffer in similar ways to those who are bullied. For example, pupils who witness identity-based bullying and share that identity can experience anxiety and feel under threat themselves. Pupils can also feel guilt or distress at not being able to help the person being bullied.
  • There are also consequences for individuals who engage in bullying behaviour. Pupils who become involved in such behaviour can be at higher risk of depression. Other possible long-term consequences may include an increased risk of developing an anti-social personality, anxiety disorders, a likelihood of substance abuse and law-breaking behaviour in adulthood and decreased educational and occupational attainment.
Indicators of bullying behaviour

The following signs and symptoms may suggest that a pupil is being bullied:

  1. Anxiety about travelling to and from school e.g. requesting parents to drive or collect him/her, changing travel routes, avoiding regular times for travelling to and from school;
  2. Unwillingness to go to school, refusal to attend, truancy;
  3. Deterioration in educational performance, loss of concentration and loss of enthusiasm and interest in school;
  4. Pattern of physical illnesses e.g. headaches, stomach aches;
  5. Unexplained changes either in mood or behaviour which may be particularly noticeable before returning to school after weekends or more especially after longer school holidays;
  6. Visible signs of anxiety or distress e.g. stammering, withdrawing, nightmares, difficulty in sleeping, crying, not eating, vomiting, bedwetting;
  7. Spontaneous out-of-character comments about either pupils or teachers;
  8. Possessions missing or damaged;
  9. Increased requests for money or stealing money;
  10. Unexplained bruising or cuts or damaged clothing; and
  11. Reluctance and/or refusal to say what is troubling him/her.

There may be other signs depending on the individual and his/her circumstances. The above signs do not necessarily mean that a pupil is being bullied but if repeated or occurring in combination, these signs do warrant investigation in order to establish what is affecting the pupil.

4.   The relevant teacher(s) for investigating and dealing with bullying are as follows:  (see Section 6.8 of the Anti-Bullying Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools):

First Year:                 Mr. Padraig Kelliher   Deputy Principal.

Second Year:           Ms. Eileen Kennelly    Principal

Third Year:              Ms. Anne Prendiville  Year Head

TY & Fifth Year:      Ms. Liz Cosgrave        Year Head

Sixth Year:               Ms. Maria Kennelly    Year Head

5.   The education and prevention strategies (including strategies specifically aimed at cyber- bullying and identity-based bullying including in particular, homophobic and transphobic bullying) that will be used by the school are as follows (see Section 6.5 of the Anti-BullyingProcedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools):

Measures to be undertaken
  • A cross-curricular approach will be adopted especially in the following subject areas – RE. SPHE. I.T. C.S.P.E.
  • Class Charter will be created for each class.
  • The following programmes will be used to address the issue of bullying – Kerry Life Education, Mentor Programme, Orientation Day, Students Council, Pastoral Care Team, Year Heads, Individual Teachers, Guidance Counsellor, First Year Induction Day. In September 2013 the creation of Base Groups shall be undertaken.
  • Content of Bullying Programme (Green sheet from NEPS)
  • Model respectful behaviour to all members of the school community at all times.
  • Explicitly teach students what respectful language and respectful behaviour looks like; acts like; sounds like; feels like in class and around the school.
  • Display key respect messages in classrooms, in assembly areas and around the school. Involve students in the development of these messages.
  • Positive Behaviour strategies shall be encouraged through initiatives such as „Catch them being good‟ – notice and acknowledge desired respectful behaviour by providing positive attention.
  • Consistently tackle the use of discriminatory and derogatory language in the school – this includes homophobic and racist language and language that is belittling of children with a disability.
  • Teachers will give constructive feedback to students when respectful behaviour and respectful language are ignored by students.
  • Have a system of encouragement and rewards to promote desired behaviour and compliance with the school rules and routines.
  • Explicitly teach students about the appropriate use of social media.
  • Positively encourage students to comply with the school rules on mobile phone and internet use. Follow up and follow through with students who ignore the rules.
  • Actively involve parents / Parents’ Association in awareness raising campaigns around social media.
  • Actively promote the right of every member of the school community to be safe and secure in school.
  • Actively watch out for signs of bullying behaviour.
  • Ensure there is supervision before and after school (as specified in S&S scheme)  as well as at break lunch and school trips. Danger areas tend to be in the school yard/outdoor areas, changing rooms, corridors and other areas of unstructured supervision.
  • Support the establishment and work of the Student Council.
  • Student Council Suggestion Box.

6. The school’s procedures for investigation, follow-up and recording of bullying behaviour and the established intervention strategies used by the school for dealing with cases of bullying behaviour are as follows (see Section 6.8 of the Anti-Bullying Procedures for Primary and Post- Primary Schools)

Agreed Procedures:

All reports of bullying behaviour will be noted, investigated and dealt with sensitively. In this way it is hoped that pupils will gain confidence in disclosing bullying behaviour.

We recognise that there are many different types of bullying behaviour and each situation will be evaluated on an individual basis. In each reported case, however, the following will apply:

  • The person to whom the report of alleged bullying is made will make a formal report to the Year Head giving her/him in writing a copy of all the known information surrounding the incident(s). (Use Standard School Reporting Form)
  • The date of the report will be noted.
On receiving the report of alleged bullying the Year Head will:
  • Speak to the student against whom the allegation has been made and give her the opportunity to respond to them. She will be informed that the situation is being monitored and that further incidents will be formally noted by the student who is alleging the bullying.
  • Encourage the student who reported the alleged bullying to keep a record, to include times, dates and description of any further incidents which may occur for a period of time agreed.
  • Meet with the students involved as often as is necessary to monitor the situation.
  • Invite both parties to tell their own parents/guardians about the incidents/allegations informally. The Year Head may choose to inform the parents of those involved depending on the circumstances of the particular case.
  • The Principal and/or Deputy Principal will be informed and regularly updated regarding the case as appropriate the Year Head will complete the Management Tracking of Bullying Incident Form.
  •  The co-operation of all parties involved, students and parents/guardians is essential in resolving incidences of bullying.
  • Should the student who made the allegations report to the Year Head that the incidents have stopped, the student against whom the allegation was made will be informed by the Year Head and the matter closed.
  • Should incidents continue or recur the parent(s)/guardian(s) of the alleged bully will be formally notified and invited to the school to meet the Year Head and where appropriate the Deputy Principal or Principal. Parents/guardians of the alleged victim will be formally notified of the allegations brought by their daughter and given the opportunity to meet with the Year Head and the Deputy Principal or Principal also.

System of Reporting

By students

Students should report any incidents and allegations of bullying to any Teacher/SNA/Ancillary Staff, who in turn will inform the Year Head. The subject teacher/Year Head/Deputy Principal will record the details on the Standard School Form which will be given to the Year Head/Deputy Principal (See attached incident sheet)

By Parents

Parents will be informed that they should report any incident of bullying to the Principal. The Principal shall then inform the Year Head who will follow the agreed procedures for dealing with the complaint.

By Subject Teachers and Ancillary Staff

Incidents of bullying reported to Teacher/SNA/Ancillary Staff should be forwarded to the Year Head and the Standard School Form completed as previously stated.

Any bullying issue not resolved after twenty days must be recorded by the Year Head in the Recording Bullying Behaviour Form (20 Day Form)

The Recording Bullying Behaviour Form (20 Day Form) is then given to the Principal

The role of the Principal and Deputy Principal.

At Year Head and management meetings the Year Head should make the Principal and Deputy Principal aware of ongoing incidents and any serious incidents will be notified. The Principal and Deputy Principal will therefore be aware of all serious incidents of bullying in the school and be in a position to co-ordinate the school response. The Principal should report all serious incidents of bullying to the Board of Management

Once in every school term, the Principal will provide a report to the Board of Management setting out the overall number of bullying cases reported (by means of The Recording Bullying Behaviour Form (20 Day Form)  to the Principal or Deputy Principal

Role of the Board of Management

The Board of Management must undertake an annual review of the school’s anti-bullying policy and its implementation by the school.

Written notification that the review has been completed must be made available to school personnel, published on the school website (or where none exists, be otherwise readily accessible to parents and pupils on request) and provided to the Parents’ Association. A standardised notification is provided for this purpose.

A record of the review and its outcome must be made available, if requested, to the patron and the Department.

Investigation

In accordance with our policy, all allegations of bullying will be investigated thoroughly. This is necessary if students are to feel secure that their reporting of an incident will achieve results.

The investigation of incidents will be done by the Year Head and the Principal/Deputy Principal.

Procedure
  • The veracity of the complaint should be established.
  • All reports, including anonymous reports of bullying will be investigated and dealt with by the Year Head. In that way pupils will gain confidence in ‘telling’. This confidence factor is of vital importance. It will be made clear to all pupils that when they report incidents of bullying they are not considered to be telling tales but are behaving responsibly
  • Separate interviews should be held with both parties and with any witnesses. These interviews should be held outside the classroom in a quiet, private area. Both Year Head and Principal/Deputy Principal should attend.
  • In the case of group bullying, each member will be interviewed separately taking an account of the individual versions. This should be followed by an interview of the group in order to verify the various accounts – as required.

If a group is involved, each member will be interviewed individually at first. Thereafter, all those involved will be met as a group. At the group meeting, each member will be asked for his/her account of what happened to ensure that everyone in the group is clear about each other’s statements;

Each member of a group will be supported through the possible pressures that may face them from the other members of the group after interview by the teacher;

  •  It may also be appropriate or helpful to ask those involved to write down their account of the incident(s);

An account of all interviews should be kept. Separate accounts of the events can be made by any or all of the parties involved.  All efforts will be made to advance the investigation, but account must be taken of the complexity of some situations. It may take several days to properly uncover the complexity of some situations.

Any bullying issue not resolved after twenty days must be recorded by the Year Head in the Recording Bullying Behaviour Form (20 Day Form)

The Recording Bullying Behaviour Form (20 Day Form) is then given to the Principal

Responding to the Incident
Principles underlying our Response.

We work with both the student engaged in bullying behaviour and the students victimised separately establishing for each that the behaviour is unacceptable. It is important for the student who has been victimised that the unacceptable nature of the behaviour is brought to understand the hurtful nature of that behaviour and the necessity to change it.

We try not to label either student as a bully or a victim, since this is to reduce the individual to a behaviour or a state and they are more than this.

We work with the belief in the capacity of each individual to change and adapt behaviour to live a freer and fuller life.

We work on the belief that both the student who has been victimised and the student who has engaged in the bullying behaviour are hurt and have a grievance that needs to be listened to.

We believe that both students require help to move on.

We work to establish a working peace between both parties – to give each the space to lead their separate lives within the school in safety and without fear.

We work to help both parties to improve their self-esteem so that the student engaged in bullying does not need to bully and the student victimised learns to stand up for themselves.

We believe that there must be consequences for behaviour which breaks the behaviour code.

Strategy of Response

We adopt a two-way approach in our response:

(i)                A pastoral approach.

(ii)               A behaviour management approach/ Restorative Justice

The response strategy is determined by the seriousness of the situation and by the stage in the bullying process at which we have become aware of it. If the process of bullying is identified early enough, a resolution may be arrived at quite easily and quickly. However, if the incident is very serious or the pattern is well established by the time it is unearthed or reported, it takes longer to unravel and to move to a resolution.

(i)                 The Pastoral Approach

In general we take the pastoral approach first giving help and understanding to both parties in order to establish peace. Both parties may be seen separately by different members of the Pastoral Care Team or the Year Heads. An account of all offers of help and the progress of such interventions will be held by the school.

Towards Resolution – Resolution will mean different things in different situations : (for some it may be reconciliation between friends, for others, it may be an agreement to go their separate ways and to tolerate each other). We proceed with the understanding that the student who has been victimised must be consulted on the desired outcome in order to redress the imbalance of power. In general, interventions will only be made with the prior knowledge of the student who has been victimised. However an on occasion it may be necessary for the school authority to intervene unilaterally, if it is judged necessary in the best interests of health and safety and the well being of individuals.

Both parties will only be brought together in order to establish an agreement when things have moved on sufficiently and when the student who has been victimised is ready for such a meeting. A follow-up meeting between both parties may be desirable to assess progress. It is important for both to see that the dynamic between them is being monitored.

(ii)               The Behaviour Management Approach

Any consequences to be imposed are generally held over until the situation is moved on significantly in terms of resolution. If it is appropriate, the student involved in bullying should be made aware of how he/she has breached the code of behaviour and what sanctions will be enforced according to the seriousness of the issue. As in the normal course of behaviour management in the school, this a matter for the Year Heads of each year in conjunction with the Deputy Principal/Principal.

On occasion it may be more appropriate to adopt an approach akin to community service where those involved in bullying behaviour undertake a service to the school community – or to individuals – which encourages and promotes a more positive attitude and builds towards greater reconciliation in specific situations. On occasion in the interests of reconciliation a probationary period may be introduced and the sanctions held over in order promote an improvement in behaviour. Such decisions are the remit of the Year Heads, Deputy Principal/ Principal. The student victimised should also be apprised of the action to be taken in relation to those who have bullied.

In each case the student involved in bullying should acknowledge their role and that hurtful nature of the behaviour and apologise to the victim. The format of this apology may change from situation to situation but in each case should be witnessed and noted by at least one of the following the Year Head Deputy Principal and Principal.

Monitoring and Evaluation

Heightened awareness within the school community and the school environment regarding bullying behaviour should be encouraged and promoted.

Continuous consultation with the following school bodies is important:

  • Students Council
  • Parents Association
  • Pastoral Care Meetings
  • Year Head Meetings
  • Daily Management Meetings
  • Staff Meetings
  • Mentoring Initiative
  • Board of Management
Evaluation
  • Questionnaires of students.
  • Questionnaires to Parent body
  • Consultation with
  • Students Council
  • Parents Association
  • Pastoral Care Team
  • Year Head Team
  • Daily Management Team
  • Staff Meetings
  • Mentoring Initiative Team
  • Board of Management
Circulating and Publicising the Anti-Bullying Policy
  • Posters
  • SPHE Classes
  • RE Classes
  • Year Heads
  • Prospectus
  • Subject Teachers.
  • Theme weeks.
  • School diary.
  • School Assemblies /Year Assemblies
  • Parents Association
  • Kerry Life Education
  • Students’ Council
  • School Retreats
Sanctions
  • When bullying is established sanctions must be invoked in line with the Code of Behaviour.
  • The bully should be made aware of how she/he has breached the Code of Behaviour and what sanctions are to be enforced.
  • In accordance with the Code of Behaviour, sanctions will be enforced according to the seriousness of the issue.
  • Possible sanctions include: (i) Loss of privileges, (ii)Detention,  (iii)Suspension.
  • The victim(s) should be made aware of the action to be taken against the bully/bullies.

7.   The school’s programme of support for working with pupils affected by bullying is as follows: (see Section 6.8 of the Anti-Bullying Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools) :

Care for the Students Concerned

Helping a student who is a victim

It is part of the Pastoral Care Programme in the school to provide a support service to those students who may be suffering from bullying.

Initial care
  • It is very important in the initial stages of the intervention that the student who has been victimised is given the support necessary to weather the initial changes in dynamics. They require validation of the hurt and powerlessness they have suffered and encouragement and support to face those who have bullied them.
  • This calls for a supportive pastoral role in the school. The student who is victimised will be consulted on whom they would feel comfortable talking with and if possible this will be facilitated.
  • It is important that those involved in this role are not involved in the investigation or resolution process. Their independence is necessary for the success of their role. Recommendations from these staff members regarding the strategies adopted in resolution are listened to.
Continuing Care – towards resolution
  • In this context it is important to distinguish the type of victim involved since the type of intervention required will be different depending on the pattern e.g. the passive victim (who tends to have poor self-esteem) or the victim who is easily provoked and rises to the bait. The strategies required enabling each individual to manage the challenges of the rough and tumble of social interaction better are different in each case.
  • The initial work done by the Pastoral Care Team will allow determination of whether a more involved and professional intervention is required to restore self-esteem and learn new behaviours. Such referral will be made through the student’s parents.
Helping a student involved in the action
  • It is important to realise that the student who bullies, though engaged in destructive and hurtful behaviour is herself/himself acting out of hurt and therefore needs support to find more socially acceptable ways to fulfil her/his needs.
  • There are three different categories of bully:
  1. Those who have learned an aggressive behaviour pattern outside school and possibly have poor social skills – Work here needs to be on developing self-esteem by developing interests, hobbies and talents. Work also needs to be done on developing empathy for the feelings of others so that the student in question realises the pain they are causing.
  2. The former victim who has started to bully – Work can be done on reminding the former victim of the feelings they themselves experienced while being bullied. The development of empathy is vital in deterring further episodes. Work needs to be done on uncovering the reasons for having started to bully now, so that root causes can be addressed.
  3. The student who has started to bully as a result of some traumatic event. –  Work here needs to be centre on identifying the underlying cause and helping the student to handle the pain in a more mature way.
Follow-up

We recognise that the final resolution of addressing a problem under the Anti-Bullying Policy for students should not necessarily end with the punishment of the guilty party. Both sides may be in need of healing, rehabilitation and reconciliation. Both parties may need counselling and opportunities to participate in activities designed to raise self esteem and to develop their friendship and social skills. The school will endeavour to assist in any follow-up.

8.   Supervision and Monitoring of Pupils

The Board of Management confirms that appropriate supervision and monitoring policies and practices are in place to both prevent and deal with bullying behaviour and to facilitate early intervention where possible.

9.   Prevention of Harassment

The Board of Management confirms that the school will, in accordance with its obligations under equality legislation, take all such steps that are reasonably practicable to prevent the sexual harassment of pupils or staff or the harassment of pupils or staff on any of the nine grounds specified i.e. gender including transgender, civil status, family status, sexual orientation, religion, age, disability, race and membership of the Traveller community.

10.  This policy was adopted by the Board of Management on December 9th, 2013.

11. This policy has been made available to school personnel, published on the school website (or where none exists, is otherwise readily accessible to parents and pupils on request) and provided to the Parents’ Association (where one exists). A copy of this policy will be made available to the Department and the patron if requested.

12. This policy and its implementation will be reviewed by the Board of Management once in every school year. Written notification that the review has been completed will be made available to school personnel, published on the school website (or where none exists, be otherwise readily accessible to parents and pupils on request) and provided to the Parents’ Association (where one exists). A record of the review and its outcome will be made available, if requested, to the patron and the Department.

Practical tips for building a positive school culture and climate

The following are some practical tips for immediate actions that can be taken to help build a positive school culture and climate and to help prevent and tackle bullying behaviour.

  • Model respectful behaviour to all members of the school community at all times.
  • Explicitly teach pupils what respectful language and respectful behaviour looks like, acts like, sounds like and feels like in class and around the school.
  • Display key respect messages in classrooms, in assembly areas and around the school. Involve pupils in the development of these messages.
  • Catch them being good – notice and acknowledge desired respectful behaviour by providing positive attention.
  • Consistently tackle the use of discriminatory and derogatory language in the school – this includes homophobic and racist language and language that is belittling of pupils with a disability or SEN.
  • Give constructive feedback to pupils when respectful behaviour and respectful language are absent.
  • Have a system of encouragement and rewards to promote desired behaviour and compliance with  the school rules and routines.
  • Explicitly teach pupils about the appropriate use of social media.
  • Positively encourage pupils to comply with the school rules on mobile phone and internet use.  Follow up and follow through with pupils who ignore the rules.
  • Actively involve parents and/or the Parents’ Association in awareness raising campaigns around  social media.
  • Actively promote the right of every member of the school community to be safe and secure in school.
  • Highlight and explicitly teach school rules in pupil friendly language in the classroom and in common areas.
  • All staff can actively watch out for signs of bullying behaviour.
  • Ensure there is adequate playground/school yard/outdoor supervision.
  • School staff can get pupils to help them to identify bullying “hot spots” and “hot times”  for  bullying in the school.

o   Hot spots tend to be in the playground/school yard/outdoor areas, changing rooms, corridors and other areas of unstructured supervision.

o   Hot times again tend to be times where there is less structured supervision such as when pupils are in the playground/school yard or moving classrooms.

  • Support the establishment and work of student councils.

________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Appendix 2

Recording bullying behavior   20 Day Form

1. Name of pupil being bullied and class group

Name                                                                                  

Class                

2. Name(s) and class(es) of pupil(s) engaged in bullying behaviour

3. Source of bullying concern/report

(tick relevant box(es))*

 

4. Location of incidents (tick relevant box(es))*

Pupil concerned
Other Pupil
Parent
Teacher
Other

 

Playground
Classroom
Corridor
Toilets
School Bus
Other

 

5. Name of person(s) who reported the bullying concern

 

6. Type of Bullying Behaviour (tick relevant box(es)) *

 

Physical Aggression Cyber-bullying
Damage to Property Intimidation
Isolation/Exclusion Malicious Gossip
Name Calling Other (specify)

 

7. Where behaviour is regarded as identity-based bullying, indicate the relevant category:

 

Homophobic Disability/SENrelated Racist Membership ofTraveller community Other (specify)

 

8. Brief Description of bullying behaviour and its impact

 

 

 

9.    Details of actions taken

 

 

Signed                                                              (Relevant Teacher)   Date                                      

 

Date submitted to Principal/Deputy Principal                                      

* Note: The categories listed in the tables 3, 4 & 6 are suggested and schools may add to or amend these to suit their own circumstances.

 

Appendix 3  Checklist for annual review of the anti-bullying policy and its implementation

The Board of Management (the Board) must undertake an annual review of the school’s anti-bullying policy and its implementation. The following checklist must be used for this purpose. The checklist is an aid to conducting this review and is not intended as an exhaustive list.  In order to complete the checklist, an examination and review involving both quantitative and qualitative analysis, as appropriate across the various elements of the implementation of the school’s anti-bullying policy will be required.

Yes /No

Has the Board formally adopted an anti-bullying policy that fully complies with the requirements of the Anti-Bullying Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools?
Has the Board published the policy on the school website and provided a copy to the Parents’ Association?
Has the Board ensured that the policy has been made available to school staff (including new Staff?new staff)?
Is the Board satisfied that school staff are sufficiently familiar with the policy and procedures to enable them to effectively and consistently apply the policy and procedures in their day to day work?
Has the Board ensured that the policy has been adequately communicated to all pupils?
Has the policy documented the prevention and education strategies that the school applies?
Have all of the prevention and education strategies been implemented?
Has  the  effectiveness  of  the  prevention  and  education  strategies  that  have  been implemented been examined?implemented been examined?
Is  the  Board  satisfied  that  all  teachers  are  recording  and  dealing  with  incidents  in accordance with the policy?accordance with the policy?
Has the Board received and minuted the periodic summary reports of the Principal?
Has the Board discussed how well the school is handling all reports of bullying including those addressed at an early stage and not therefore included in the Principal’s periodic?report to the Board?
Has the Board received any complaints from parents regarding the school’s handling of bullying incidents?bullying incidents?
Have any parents withdrawn their child from the school citing dissatisfaction with the school’s handling of a bullying situation?school’s handling of a bullying situation?
Have any Ombudsman for Children investigations into the school’s handling of a bullying case been initiated or completed?case been initiated or completed?
Has the data available from cases reported to the Principal (by the bullying recording template) been analysed to identify any issues, trends or patterns inbullying behaviour?
Has the Board identified any aspects of the school’s policy and/or its implementation that requires further improvement?require further improvement?
Has the Board put in place an action plan to address any areas for improvement?

 

Signed

                                                                              

Chairperson, Board of Management

 

Signed                                                                     Principal


Date                              Date            


Appendix 4

Notification regarding the Board of Management’s

annual review of the anti-bullying policy

To:                                                                  

 

The Board of Management of                                          wishes to inform you that:

o    The Board of Management’s annual review of the school’s anti-bullying policy and its implementation was completed at the Board meeting of                               [date].

o This review was conducted in accordance with the checklist set out in  Appendix 4 of the Department’s

Anti-Bullying Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools.

 

Signed                                                                     Chairperson, Board of Management

 

Signed                                                                     Principal

 

Date                                                                        Date                  

 

 

 

 

Appendix 6            Standard School Investigation Form

Student(s) Name   
Report compiled by    
Date and Time of Interview/Investigation    
Details of Interview (please give as much detail as possible e.g. times, dates, names, previous history, reason for concern, possible witnesses)       

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Interventions taken       

 

 

 

Referrals to outside agencies       

 

 

Signed  
Date  

 

Appendix 7       Management Tracking of the Bullying Incident

Student Name  
Date of initial report  
Details of issue involved       

 

Referring Year Head  
Date and Time Name of persons concerned (eg parents, teachers, students, outside agencies) Telephone/Meeting Details of matters discussed

 

Appendix 8     Resources

Appendix 4: Existing supports for schools

in their efforts to prevent and manage bullying

A range of services can provide support to schools in their efforts to prevent and manage bullying. While access to services may vary from region to region, the services and supports identified are currently available to most schools. It is necessary, therefore, for schools to identify the range of services available locally, and to build networks and relevant contacts.

Services under the aegis of the Department of Education and Skills:

The Professional Development Service for Teachers (PDST) – www.pdst.ie

The PDST provides continuing professional development for teachers to improve the quality of teaching and learning in schools. Support is provided across a range of areas, both at primary and post-primary levels. Agreed priorities inform annual programmes of work. PDST now incorporates support for the Stay Safe Programme and Webwise – www.webwise.ie.

The Social, Personal and Health Education (SPHE) Support Service – www.sphe.ie

The SPHE Support Service provides support for post-primary schools with all aspects of the implementation of SPHE and RSE in a whole school context. This includes provision for: whole-staff seminars on, for example, bullying prevention and intervention; in-school meetings on, for example policy review and development; school-based anti-bullying support to include, for example, administration of a student survey and provision of a parent evening. In addition the SPHE Support Service offers Continuing Professional Development for Teachers of SPHE, on a wide range of topics including, for example: sexual orientation and homophobia; mental health; and strategies for resolving bullying issues.

National Education Centres – www.ateci.ie

Education centres support the in-service needs of local teachers, support locally identified needs and provide a range of activities for the educational community at primary and post-primary level. There are 21 full time and 9 part time centres nationwide, supported principally by the Department of Education and Skills. Anti-Bullying Action Plan – Design Template

The National Induction Programme for Teachers (NIPT) – www.teacherinduction.ie

The NIPT aims to support the induction of newly qualified teachers (NQTs) into the teaching profession in primary and post-primary schools over the course of their first year. Professional development for NQTs is provided in areas such as, for example, Child Protection and Behaviour Management.

Special Education Support Service (SESS) – www.sess.ie

The SESS coordinates, develops and delivers a flexible range of professional development initiatives for primary and post-primary school personnel working with young people with special educational needs.

National Educational Psychological Service (NEPS) – www.education.ie

The NEPs is identified as a potential support to both primary and post-primary schools in the management of bullying in light of the support that the service can provide in relation to: dealing with social, emotional and learning needs; managing critical incidents; and liaising with social services, CAMHS, relevant HSE and voluntary services, other professionals, and services and agencies of the Department of Education and Skills,

The National Centre for Guidance in Education (NCGE) – www.ncge.ie

The NCGE plays a key role in supporting, developing and disseminating good practice in guidance for all areas of education at post-primary level. In recent times, for example, the NCGE, in conjunction with the Gay and Lesbian Equality Network (GLEN), provided schools with a publication entitled „Supporting LGBT Students: The Role of the Guidance Counsellor‟.

National Behaviour Support Service (NBSS) – www.nbss.ie

The NBSS provides a whole-school consultative service to self-selected post-primary schools. Continuing professional development is provided for staff on: the Anti-Bullying Action Plan – Design Template

– 125 – development of structures; targeted intervention behaviour support; and intensive individualised and/or small group support for students.

The National Council for Special Education (NCSE) – www.ncse.ie

The NCSE has statutory responsibility for the provision of a service to young people with special educational needs through a network of special educational needs organisers (SENOs). SENOs provide advice and support to primary and post-primary schools.

Existing guidelines

The DES, often in collaboration with other bodies, provides a range of guidelines to advise and guide schools in relation to countering bullying. This includes, for example: Planning the School Guidance Programme; Guidelines for Second-level Schools on Embedding Equality in School Development Planning; and Schools and the Equal Status Act. These are available to download on the Department‟s website www.education.ie

Other relevant supports and programmes:

  • National Education Welfare Board (NEWB) www.newb.ie
  • Children‟s Services‟ Committees
  • Child and Family Support Agency
  • Health Promotion Officers
  • HSE Resource Officers for Suicide Prevention
  • HSE Schools‟ Liaison Person
  • Garda Primary and Post primary School programmes

Appendix 9

This is a suggested template which schools may adapt and use when engaging with external agencies.

It will help in the development of an action plan to support a young person who has significant and ongoing needs.

Student
Year
Date
Agency
Agency
Agency
School
Parent/Guardian
Contact Number
Other
Date of discussion: Matters discussed:

 

Action Plan
Review date:
Date of next review:
Attendance:

 

APPENDIX 10:

INTERAGENCY STUDENT SUPPORT ACTION PLAN: SUPPORT FOR A FEW TEMPLATE FOR SCHOOL CONTACTS: RELEVANT LOCAL SERVICES AND SUPPORTS

This sample contact list template will be a useful resource for schools. It should be prepared as part of the whole-school guidance plan and be easily available for access by all school staff. Additional contacts may be added, as appropriate. This contact list should be reviewed annually. A copy may be displayed on the Staff Notice Board.

School Name: __________________________ Roll Number: _______________

Date: _______________

Support/Agency Contact name if available Contact Details

Ambulance Service
Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service(CAMHS)
HSE Primary Care Psychology Service
Child and Family Support Agency/Social Worker
Chairperson, Board of Management
Department of Education and Skills www.education.ie
Employee Assistance Service 180041105
Fire Brigade
Garda
General Practitioner/s
Hospital
HSE, Local Contact Person/Office 1850241850
HSE Health Promotion Officer 1850241850
HSE Local Counselling Service/s
National Council for Special Education/SpecialEducation/Needs Officer
NEPS Psychologist www.education.ie
NEWB Educational Welfare Officer www.newb.ie
Parish Priest/Clergy
Professional Development Service for Teachers www.pdst.ie
Parents’ Association
SPHE Support Service www.sphe.ie
Special Education Support Service www.sess.ieE Suicide Prevention Officer 1850241850

 

 

Appendix 11

Mental Health Promotion Self-evaluation QUESTIONNAIRE for young people

1 (low)2 3 4 5(high)

 

1 2 3 4 5
1. I feel that my school is happy and welcoming
2. The physical environment is well kept and bright
3. The school provides adequate space for classes,social,interaction and quiet time
4. I feel respected and valued when I am in school
5. My school values health and well-being and it isrecognised as a priority in the school
6. I feel connected to my school
7. I feel safe when I am in school
8. I am encouraged to participate at school
9. There are structures in the school which allow students to have a voice (eg, Student Council)
10. My school implements mental and emotional healtheducation as part of the SPHE curriculum
11. I am informed about the policies related to mentalhealth and well-being in my school
12. I am informed about the policies related to antibullyingin my school
13. I know how student support structures work inmy school and who to contact if I have a worry orconcern
Answer if relevant: X X X X X
14. When I have made use of the student supportstructures in my school, I have found them to beeffective and supportive
15. If I share a worry or concern with a staff member, Iknow that my concern will be kept confidential (as long as my safety or the safety of others is not at risk)
16. I know my school will support me if I am stressed
17. My school communicates well with my parents/Guardians
18. My teachers think well of me in school
19. Young people who have difficulties are wellsupported in my school
20. Students are listened to in my school
21. My school is proactive and effective in tackling bullying

 

APPENDIX 12:

MENTAL HEALTH PROMOTION: SELF-EVALUATION CHECKLIST AND

QUESTIONNAIRE (YOUNG PEOPLE)

As part of the self-evaluation process, the opinions of young people may also be accessed through use

of the My Thoughts About School Checklist from the NEPS Continuum of Support (2010b) or the Mental

Health Promotion Self- Evaluation Questionnaire for Young People, both of which are included below.

My Thoughts about School Checklist

Name
Class
Date
The things I like best at school are:
The things I don’t like about school are:
The things that I am good at are:
The things I find hard are:
I am happy in class when:
I am happy during break and lunch times when:
My friends are:
I need help with:
Teachers in school can help me by:

 

 

 

Teachers would describe me as:
My parents/guardians would describe me as:
Adults I get on best with in school are:

 

 

KEY AREA 4 Partnerships (Family and Community Links)

How are we doing? (Apply rating 1-5 taking account of criteria listed in second column)

1(low) 2 3 4 5

Internal School Reports

a)      There is a Student Support Team (Care Team) in place which consists of staff members such as Year Heads, the Guidance Counsellor, and the Learning Support Coordinator 1 2 3 4 5
b)      The Student Support Team feels supported in its role
c)      Staff, students and parents/guardians are familiar with the working of the Student Support Team
d)     The Student Support Team consults with students who are presenting with concern, and with their parents/guardians
e)      All school staff are fully aware of the DES, Child Protection Procedures and have received up-to-date training on the Guidelines
f)       All teaching staff are encouraged and supported to attend continuing professional development on mental health promotion and suicide prevention
g)      Members of the Student Support Team have completed ASIST training

 

External school supports

a)      The Student Support Team has developed good links with external agencies involved in supporting the mental health of students (NEPS; HSE; Social Services) 1 2 3 4 5
b)      The Student Support Team has developed good links with local agencies/services which support youth mental health
c)      Referral procedures to external agencies are clearly established and agreed
d)     A member of staff has been identified as a link person with responsibility for liaising with external agencies
e)      Roles, responsibilities and expectations of external agencies are clearly negotiated and defined

 

Partnership with Parents/Guardians

1 2 3 4 5
a)      The school takes a systematic approach to screening for social, emotional and behavioural difficulties, for example by using the ‘Screening for Behaviour Framework’ from the NEPS Continuum of Support Resource Pack (pages 46 – 50).
b)      The school discusses the outcomes of screening with the NEPS Psychologist when appropriate.

 

APPENDIX 13:

TEN ACTIONS THAT SCHOOLS CAN UNDERTAKE TO PROMOTE THE

EMOTIONAL HEALTH AND WELL-BEING OF A SCHOOL COMMUNITY

Within the school context, positive mental health promotion should focus on enhancing

protective factors that contribute to the social and emotional growth and general well-being of young people.

Key strategic actions for positive mental health promotion include:

1. Developing and maintaining a safe and caring environment within the school where a sense of belonging and connectedness is fostered

2. Building positive teacher-student and student-student relationships to promote participation, social interaction and pro-social behaviour

3. Actively involving young people and their parents/guardians in developing and implementing school policies to support mental health and health promotion

4. Adopting a whole-school approach to health promotion, where health is promoted by all and not just by a few members of staff

5. Supporting and implementing a well-planned, consistent and integrated SPHE/RSE curriculum to enable young people enhance their coping, resilience, communication, conflict resolution and problem-solving skills

6. Developing whole-school systems and structures to support the early identification of young people experiencing learning, social, emotional or behavioural difficulties

7. Actively involving, supporting and encouraging young people’s participation in extra-curricular activities

8. Fostering a whole-school ethos that accepts and values diversity within the student and staff population

9. Providing easy access to information for students and staff on supports available to them within the school and wider community

10. Facilitating access to continuing professional development for school staff on the promotion of the mental health and well-being of young people.