This policy is written with reference to Prevent and Tackling Bullying, DfE 2011
Bullying is if someone does something unkind to you:
If someone does bully you, you must:
At Humphrey Perkins School we respect every child’s need for, and rights to, an environment where safety, security, praise, recognition and opportunity for taking responsibility are available. Bullying of any kind is unacceptable in our school. Our anti-bullying policy ensures that all our pupils can learn in a supportive, caring and safe environment without fear of being bullied. If bullying does occur, all pupils should be able to tell and know that incidents will be dealt with promptly and effectively. We expect that if anyone knows bullying is taking place to tell the staff, parents or a trusted adult.
This policy is supported by our policies for Behaviour, Safeguarding, Equality and Acceptable use of IT.
- To promote the well-being of all pupils.
- To prevent, reduce and eradicate all forms of bullying.
- To offer an environment free from all forms of abuse.
- To have a consistent approach, where signals and signs are identified and swift and effective action is taken.
- To ensure that all pupils and staff and parents are aware of this policy and their obligations.
What is bullying?
Bullying is behaviour by an individual or group, repeated over time, that intentionally hurts another individual or group either physically or emotionally.
The school uses this definition to help children understand the seriousness of bullying compared to other unacceptable behaviours.
Bullying can be
- Emotional – being unfriendly, excluding, tormenting, and threatening gestures
- Physical – pushing, kicking, hitting, punching or any use of violence.
- Sexual – unwanted physical contact or sexually abusive comments.
- Verbal – name-calling, sarcasm, spreading rumours, teasing.
- Cyber – All areas of internet, such as email, instant messaging and internet chat room misuse. Mobile threats by text messaging and phone call. Misuse of associated technology, camera and video facilities. It can also include material bullying which includes damage to belongings and extortion.
Perpetrators may use different pretexts as the basis of their bullying, basing their comments or actions on:
- The religious background or faith of the person bullied.
- A disability, perceived, physical or Special Educational Need.
- The race of the target: racist name calling, taunts, graffiti or gestures.
- The sexuality of the target: homophobic, biphobic
- Sexual bullying relates to the targets gender, including transphobic bullying.
- Home circumstances, appearance.
Bullying can also take place through third person involvement, i.e. another person being encouraged to take part in any of the behaviours above.
All staff should also be aware to the possibility of a member of staff bullying a child. Should anyone suspect that this is taking place this should be reported immediately to the Head. This also includes any incidents of adult bullying by staff or parents. If the Head is suspected of bullying, the matter should be reported to the Chair of the Governing body.
Bullying is not:
It is important to understand that bullying is not odd occasion falling out with friends, name calling, arguments or when the occasional ‘joke’ is played on someone. Pupils do sometimes fall out or say things because they are upset. When occasional problems of this kind arise it is not classed as bullying. It is an important part of a child’s development to learn how to deal with friendship breakdowns, the odd name calling or childish prank. We all have to learn how to deal with these situations and develop social skills to repair relationships.
Bullying is defined as Several Times on Purpose
Bullying Outside School Premises
Head teachers have a specific statutory power to discipline pupils for poor behaviour outside of the school premises. Section 89(5) of the Education and Inspections Act 2006 gives Head teachers the power to regulate pupils’ conduct when they are not on school premises and are not under the lawful control or change of a member of school staff. This can relate to any bullying incidents occurring anywhere off the school premises, such as on school or public transport, outside local shops, or in the town centre.
Where bullying outside school is reported to school staff, it will be investigated and acted on. The Head teacher will also consider whether it is appropriate to notify the police or anti-social behaviour coordinator in their local authority of the action taken against a pupil. If the misbehaviour could be criminal or poses a serious threat to a member of the public, the police will always be informed.
Why is it important to respond to bullying
- Bullying hurts.
- No ones deserves to be a target of bullying.
- Everybody has the right to be treated with respect.
- Pupils who are bullying need to learn different ways of behaving.
- School have a responsibility to respond promptly and effectively to issues of bullying.
Objectives of this policy
- All governors, teaching and non-teaching staff, pupils and parents should have an understanding of what bullying is.
- All governors, teaching and non-teaching staff should know what the school policy is on bullying, and follow it when bullying is reported.
- All pupils and parents should know what the school policy is on bullying, and what they should do if bullying arises.
- As a school we take bullying seriously. Pupils and parents should be assured that they will be supported when bullying is reported.
- Bullying will not be tolerated.
Procedure – Reporting
- Pupils are encouraged to tell somebody.
- They are encouraged to report possible bullying to any member of staff they trust, a friend, or a member of their family.
- Pupils may email a message to the bullying email address to voice concerns.
- Pupils who are ‘bystanders’ are encouraged to support their peers by reporting any suspected bullying.
- All incidents of suspected bullying will be dealt with initially by the member of staff it is reported to.
- All staff are responsible for the health and well being of the pupils and have a duty to respond seriously to any claim of bullying.
- If they are unable to investigate the matter must be referred immediately to the Anti Bullying coordinators.
- The Head will also be informed and, if bullying is confirmed it will be logged in the school Bullying Log which is kept in the Pastoral office. All instances of bullying will be recorded and monitored for patterns of behaviour.
- Incidents recorded on a Bullying Behaviour incident form are added weekly to HOY meetings. This is used to check for patterns of behaviour.
- Teaching assistants should report to a class teacher or the Anti Bullying coordinators if they have any concerns about potential bullying.
- Lunchtime Supervisors report to the lunchtime manager who in turn reports to the Anti bullying coordinators/Link Learning Managers where there are concerns about pupil’s behaviour.
- Parents are encouraged to share concerns with their child’s mentor or their Link learning managers.
- Parents/guardians will be informed and may be asked to come in to a meeting to discuss the problem.
- If necessary and appropriate, particularly if behaviour in school is repeated out of school, the police will be consulted.
Procedures – Outcomes
- The bullying behaviour or threats of bullying must be investigated immediately and the bullying stopped.
- Targets will be reassured that they have done nothing to deserve the bullying and that what may have happened is not their fault.
- The target will be consulted with on how to rebuild relationships with the perpetrator if they want to do this.
- Referral to a counsellor may be considered appropriate.
- Following investigations, staff will periodically ‘check in’ with pupils that have been the target of bullying to ensure that the child feels happy and secure at school.
- Most importantly the perpetrator should be helped to realise that bullying will not be tolerated, that it must stop immediately and that there can be no reoccurrence.
- Pupils are helped to reflect upon their actions and to empathise with how the bullied pupil may feel.
- Pupils that have bullied are supported to modify their behaviour – this may be through a report card, a written agreement put in place with the victim that they both sign, support of a buddy for break times and involvement of parents to reinforce the unacceptable nature of bullying.
- Other consequences may take place such as loss of ‘privileges’ in school.
- Temporary exclusion for one or more days may be considered if appropriate.
- After incidents have been investigated and dealt with, each case will be monitored to ensure repeated bullying does not take place.
- Parents/Carers of both target and perpetrator will be kept informed throughout the process.
- Close contact will be maintained with the target’s parents or carers to ensure that the target adjusts positively back to school life as quickly as possible.
- Parent views will always be considered but the school will stress that wherever possible reconciliation will be considered in order to provide clear resolution for all concerned while not condoning the bullying.
- The perpetrator will be asked at a suitable point to genuinely apologise, in writing or in person.
- Pupils will be encouraged to reconcile any issues over a period of time so that any injustice can be rectified.
Procedure – Recordings
- All serious behaviour incidents are recorded on incident forms. These are kept in the Bullying Behaviour folder and periodically checked to see if there are patterns of behaviour that may be regarded as bullying.
- Incidents recorded on a Bullying Behaviour Incident form are added each week to HOY meetings. This is used to check patterns of behaviour.
- Definite incidents of bullying are recorded in the ‘Bullying Log’ which is used to highlight repeated incidents.
- The Anti Bullying Coordinators are responsible for coordinating the recording system, liaising with Head of Years and other staff to ensure that incidents of bullying are not missed.
- Periodic analysis of incident forms i.e. number of incidents, numbers of pupils involved, analysis of sanctions etc. will help staff to measure the success of our policies of poor or challenging behaviour.
- Teacher may also consult the Anti Bullying Coordinators if they have any concerns about bullying behaviour. This will be noted and recorded an incident form as appropriate.
We aim to help pupils prevent bullying. As and when appropriate, pupils may:
- Sign a Home/School agreement contract when they start at Humphrey Perkins.
- Hold assemblies reaffirming our standing against bullying.
- Subject areas reinforce message through lesson activities.
- Use role play to help create feelings of empathy.
- Have discussions about bullying and why it shouldn’t happen.
The school has a range of strategies in place to help pupils work and behave co-operatively in order to minimise the possibility of bullying taking place.
- We take part in the National Anti-bullying week in November each year, involving all pupils in discussions about acceptable behaviours and ensuring all pupils know what procedures should be followed.
- We have regular school assemblies focused around Personal Development themes of bullying, friendship and expected behaviour.
- The school has a clear behaviour policy that rewards positive behaviour. The school rules are clear and straightforward and focus on positive attitudes.
- The school takes a pro-active stance towards challenging behaviour at lunchtime; we also have various activities at lunchtime for pupils to take part in to avoid unwanted behaviour.
- The school works closely with the local police to make sure that any incidents outside the school are reported to the school so that pupils involved can then be monitored inside school as appropriate.
- Pupils are encouraged to help perpetrators and targets reflect upon their actions.
- Both pupils and parents are made aware of how to use the internet safely and the possibilities of cyber bullying.
- All new families are given a home/school agreement which explains our rules, standards and expectations.
- Above all pupils are encouraged to tell any adult in school if they feel they are being bullied or think someone else is being bullied.
Signs and Symptoms
A child may indicate by signs or behaviour that he or she is being bullied. Adults should be aware of these possible signs and that they should investigate if a child:
- is frightened of walking to or from school
- doesn’t want to go on the bus
- 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 cloths torn or books damaged
- has possessions which are damaged or “go missing”
- asks for money or starts stealing money (to pay someone who has asked them for money)
- has dinner or other monies continually “lost”
- has unexplained bruises
- comes home hungry (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 and jumpy when cyber message is received
These signs and behaviour could indicate other problems, but bullying should be considered a possibility and should be investigated.
Bullying Support Co-Ordinators Mrs Val Hanford (Extension 231) or Mrs Fiona Smith (Extension 279)
Please click here for 'Tips for Children and Young People' - Anti-Bullying Alliance
Please click here for 'Tips for Parents and Carers' - Anti-Bullying Alliance