The aim of the anti-bullying policy is to ensure that students learn in a supportive, caring and safe environment without fear of being bullied. Bullying is anti-social behaviour and affects everyone; it is unacceptable and will not be tolerated. Only when all issues of bullying are addressed will students be able to fully benefit from the opportunities available at Colleges.
Bullying is defined as deliberately hurtful behaviour, repeated over a period of time, where it is difficult for those being bullied to defend themselves. The three main types of bullying are:
- physical (hitting, kicking, theft);
- verbal (name calling, racist remarks);
- indirect (spreading rumours, excluding someone from social groups)
Students who are being bullied may show changes in behaviour, such as becoming shy and nervous, feigning illness, taking unusual absences or clinging to adults. There may be evidence of changes in work patterns, lacking concentration or truanting from College. Students are encouraged to report bullying in College.
Teaching and ancillary staff must be alert to the signs of bullying and act promptly and firmly against it in accordance with College policy.
Statutory Duty of Schools
Headteachers have a legal duty under the School Standards and Framework Act 1998 to draw up procedures to prevent bullying among students and to bring these procedures to the attention of staff, parents and students.
Implementation at QEHC
The following steps may be taken when dealing with incidents:
- If bullying is suspected or reported, the incident will be dealt with immediately by the member of staff who has been approached.
- A clear account of the incident will be recorded and given to the Headteacher.
- The Headteacher or Head of Pastoral Care will interview all concerned and will record the incident.
- Form tutors will be kept informed and if it persists the form tutor will advise the appropriate subject teachers.
- Parents of both the bully and the bullied student will be kept fully informed.
- Every attempt will be made to help all parties concerned to discuss the situation in a secure environment, and thus to understand each other’s feelings.
- Racist bullying will be recorded on the appropriate LA document, and, if substantiated, will be notified to the appropriate LA officer.
- Punitive measures will be used as appropriate and in consultation with all parties concerned.
Students who have been bullied will be supported by:
- an immediate opportunity to discuss the experience with a form tutor or member of staff of their choice to reassure the student offering:
- continuous support restoring self-esteem and confidence.
- counselling if appropriate.
Students who have bullied will be helped by:
- discussing what happened;
- discovering why the student became involved;
- establishing the wrong doing and need to change;
- informing parents or guardians to help change the attitude of the student.
The following disciplinary steps may be taken:
- official warnings to cease offending;
- exclusion from certain areas of college premises;
- minor fixed-term exclusion;
- major fixed-term exclusion;
- permanent exclusion.
Within the curriculum the College will raise the awareness of the nature of bullying through inclusion in PSHE, form tutorial time, assemblies and subject areas, as appropriate, in an attempt to eradicate such behaviour.
Monitoring, Evaluation and Review
The Governing Body will review this policy annually and assess its implementation and effectiveness. The policy will be promoted and implemented throughout the College.