At Cotmanhay Infant and Nursery School we take bullying and its impact very seriously. Pupils and parents should be assured that known incidents of bullying will be responded to immediately. Bullying will not be tolerated. The school will seek ways to counter the effects of bullying that may occur within school or in the local community. The ethos of our school fosters high expectations of outstanding behaviour and we will consistently challenge any behaviour that falls below this.
What is bullying?
Bullying is unacceptable behaviour used by an individual or group, usually repeated over time, that intentionally hurts another individual or group either physically or emotionally.
In other words, bullying at Cotmanhay Infant and Nursery is considered to be:
“ unacceptable behaviour which occurs ‘lots of times, on purpose’.”
Bullying can be short term or continuous over long periods of time.
Bullying may be related to:
- SEN or disability
- Appearance or health condition
- Home circumstances
- Sexual orientation, sexism, or sexual bullying, homophobia
Bullying can take place in the classroom, playground, toilets, on the journey to and from school, on residential trips and online.
It can take place in group activities and between families in the local community.
Why is it Important to Respond to Bullying?
Bullying hurts. No one deserves to be a victim of bullying. Bullying has the potential to damage the mental health of a victim. Everybody has the right to be treated with respect, our British Values. Pupils who are bullying need to learn different ways of behaving.
How we will deal with bullying.
All known/reported incidences of bullying will be investigated by the class teacher and by senior leader.
Parents of the perpetrator may also be questioned about the incident or about any concerns that they may be having.
The child displaying unacceptable behaviour, may be asked to genuinely apologise (as appropriate to the child’s age and level of understanding) other consequences may take place. Eg a parent being informed about their child’s behaviour and a request that the parents support the school with any sanctions that it takes (See Behaviour Policy).
Wherever possible, the pupils will be reconciled. In some cases, outside agencies may be requested to support the school or family in dealing with a child continually demonstrating unacceptable behaviour towards others. e.g. police, counsellor, children's services.
In serious cases (this is defined as children displaying an on-going lack of response to sanctions, that is, no change in behaviour of the perpetrator and an unwillingness to alter their behaviour choices), support from behaviour outreach, counselling, reduced timetables, or even fixed or permanent exclusion will be considered.
During and after the incident(s) have been investigated and dealt with, each case will be recorded in the Bullying Log and monitored to ensure repeated bullying does not take place. The Safeguarding Governors will be informed of any incidents recorded in the log along with incidents, sanctions and reconciliation. ( See anti-bullying policy)
Prevention of bullying
At Cotmanhay Infant and Nursery we use a variety of methods to support children in preventing and understanding the consequences of bullying through class assemblies, PSHE and Citizenship lessons, our computing curriculum with online safety, the school Vision and Assembly Themes, Anti-bullying week and continued focus.
In our classrooms we have a thought box (worry box) and these are checked and then shared considerately in our circle time. In the Early Years children are also consulted through in-school pupil questionnaires every term and asked if there is anything that makes them feel sad at school.
The ethos and working philosophy of Cotmanhay Infants means that all staff actively encourage children to have respect for each other and for other people’s property. Good and kind/polite behaviour is regularly acknowledged and rewarded, we have Cotmanhay Champion Assemblies once a week, we have a list with kind children at lunch and then these children are celebrated in assembly. We have finer diner for those children who help others in the dinner canteen at lunch.
Teachers regularly discuss bullying, this will inform children that we are serious about dealing with bullying and leads to open conversations and increased confidence in children to want to discuss bullying and report any incidents and concerns about other children’s behaviour. Teachers also reinforce expectations of behaviour as a regular theme.
All staff in school follow the equality policy; supporting every child in our school.
Pupils involvement in anti-bullying
Children are involved in the prevention of bullying as and when appropriate, these include:
• writing a set of school or class rules
- writing stories or poems or drawing pictures about bullying
- reading stories about bullying or having them read to a class or assembly
- making up role-plays about what to do through scenarios of bullying
If a child feels that they are being bullied then there are several procedures that they are encouraged to follow:
• Tell a friend
• Tell your School Council rep
• Tell a teacher or adult whom you feel you can trust
- Write your concern and post it in the ‘worry box
- Tell a parent or adult at home whom you feel you can trust
- Discuss it as part of your PSHE time
Parental Advice if you are concerned about bullying
1. Always report bullying incidents to the class teacher
2. In cases of serious bullying, the incidents will be recorded by staff and the Headteacher notified. 3. In serious cases parents should be informed and will be asked to come in to a meeting to discuss the problem
4. If necessary and appropriate, police will be consulted
5. The bullying behaviour or threats of bullying must be investigated and the bullying stopped quickly
6. An attempt will be made to help the child using unacceptable behaviour towards others, to change their behaviour.
1. Attempt to sort the problem out yourself by speaking to the child or parent of the child whom you think may be behaving inappropriately towards your child.
2. Encourage your child to be ‘a bully’ back. Both of these will only make the problem much harder to solve.
Here are some useful websites that you may wish to explore for further advise: