Behaviour and Discipline Policy
1 Aims and expectations
It is a primary aim of our school that every member of the school community feels valued and respected, and that each person is treated fairly and well. We are a caring community, whose values are built on mutual trust and respect for all. The school’s behaviour policy is therefore designed to support the way in which all members of the school can live and work together in a supportive way. It aims to promote an environment where everyone feels happy, safe and secure. The school has a number of rules, but our behaviour policy is not primarily concerned with rule enforcement. It is a means of promoting good relationships, so that people can work together with the common purpose of helping everyone to learn. This policy supports the school community in aiming to allow everyone to work together in an effective and considerate way. The school expects every member of the school community to behave in a considerate way towards others. We treat all children fairly and apply this behaviour policy in a consistent way. This policy aims to help children grow in a safe and secure environment, and to become positive, responsible and increasingly independent members of the school community. The school rewards good behaviour, as it believes that this will develop an ethos of kindness and cooperation. This policy is designed to promote good behaviour, rather than merely deter poor behaviour.
2 Rewards and punishments
We praise and reward children for good behaviour in a variety of ways:
• Adults congratulate children. • Our Passport to Success, which is based on the School Rules ‘Learn, Care, Respect and Be Safe’, is completed by children every Friday. If teachers agree they have made good progress towards achieving or have achieved their targets, the children are given a raffle ticket. A prize draw then takes place at the beginning of each half term.
The school employs a number of sanctions to enforce the school rules, and to ensure a safe and positive learning environment. We employ each sanction appropriately to each individual situation.
We expect children to listen carefully to instructions in lessons. If they do not do so, we ask them either to move to a place nearer the teacher, or to sit on their own.
• We expect children to try their best in all activities. If they do not do so, we may ask them to redo a task. • We use a ‘traffic light’ system in groups and classes to encourage good behaviour. Children are promoted from green to gold when they show good attitudes and behaviours. Children who reach gold have demonstrated that they have achieved the target on the Passport to Success: ‘My behaviour in class is excellent. I have great attitude towards my learning’ for that week. • If a child is disruptive in class, the teacher reprimands the pupil, making it clear what is expected of them. If the behaviour continues, the child’s name is moved onto the orange traffic light and given opportunity to redeem themselves and return to the green. If the child misbehaves again, their name is moved onto red. At this stage we isolate the child from the rest of the class until s/he calms down, and is able to work sensibly again with others. If there are further issues, a yellow card is issued and they are either sent to a year group partner for a short period of ‘time out’ or miss part of their lunchtime or breaktime (whichever is more appropriate). • If the child’s misbehaviour is more serious, or a continuation of earlier misbehaviour then the teacher can write an orange card and send the child with an adult (or two sensible children if no adult is available) to the Assistant Head teacher (with responsibility for behaviour). The AHT will decide on the appropriate course of action and support that is needed. • For serious misbehaviour children will be escorted by the nearest available adult (this may mean sending two sensible children to another class to borrow an adult) to the AHT (with responsibility for behaviour) with an orange card that details why this might need to be a red card. The AHT will deal with the incident and write a red card if appropriate. They will then apply an appropriate sanction and inform parents if needed. • A list of behaviour that warrants yellow, orange or red cards is included in the front of the card folders in each class. Cards are passed on to the Year Group Leader and then at the end of each term they are given to the Assistant Head Teacher (with responsibility for behaviour). • The safety of the children is paramount in all situations. If a child’s behaviour endangers the safety of themselves or others, the class teacher stops the activity and prevents the child from taking part for the rest of that session. This may be within the teaching environment or with the appropriate card at the teacher’s discretion. • If a child repeatedly acts in a way that disrupts or upsets others, the school contacts the child’s parents and seeks an appointment in order to discuss the situation, with a view to improving behaviour.
The class teacher discusses the school rules with each class. In addition to the school rules, each class also has its own classroom code, which is agreed by the children and displayed on the wall of the classroom. In this way, every child in the school knows the standard of behaviour that we expect in our school. If there are incidents of anti-social behaviour, the class teacher discusses these with the whole class during circle time.
The school does not tolerate bullying of any kind. If we discover that an act of bullying or intimidation has taken place, we act immediately to stop any further occurrences of such behaviour. While it is very difficult to eradicate bullying, we do everything in our power to ensure that all children attend school free from fear.
All members of staff are aware of the regulations regarding the use of force by teachers, as set out in DfES Circular 10/98, relating to section 550A of the Education Act 1996: The Use of Force to Control or Restrain Pupils. Teachers in our school do not hit, push or slap children. Staff only intervene physically to restrain children or to prevent injury to a child, or if a child is in danger of hurting him/herself. The actions that we take are in line with government guidelines on the restraint of children.
3 The role of the class teacher and all staff
It is the responsibility of class teachers to ensure that the school rules are enforced in their classes, and that their classes behave in a responsible manner during lesson time.
All staff in our school have high expectations of children with regard to behaviour, and they strive to ensure that all children work to the best of their ability. Staff treat each child fairly, and enforce the classroom code consistently. Children are treated with respect and understanding by all adults.
Teachers liaise with external agencies, as necessary, to support and guide the progress of each child. E.g. to discuss the needs of a child with the education social worker or LA behaviour support service.
Teachers reports to parents about the progress of their child, in line with the whole-school policy. Teachers may also contact a parent if there are concerns about the behaviour or welfare of a child.
All staff should ensure pupils behave responsibly throughout the school day. This includes times of collective responsibility e.g. pupil break times.
All staff are responsible for the safety and well-being of pupils.
4 The role of the head teacher and senior staff
It is the responsibility of the head teacher, under the School Standards and Framework Act 1998, to implement the school behaviour policy consistently throughout the school, and to report to governors, when requested, on the effectiveness of the policy. It is also the responsibility of the head teacher to ensure the health, safety and welfare of all children in the school.
The head teacher supports the staff by implementing the policy, by setting the standards of behaviour, and by supporting staff in their implementation of the policy. It is the role of the Assistant Head Teacher (with responsibility for behaviour) to assist the head teacher in this duty. Other senior staff will assist throughout the course of the day (e.g. lunchtimes) and will be available to support if the AHT (with responsibility for behaviour) is not available. The Assistant Head Teacher (with responsibility for behaviour) keeps records of all reported serious incidents of misbehaviour including bullying and racist incidents. The head teacher has the responsibility for giving fixed-term suspensions to individual children for serious acts of misbehaviour. For repeated or very serious acts of anti-social behaviour, the head teacher may permanently exclude a child. These actions are taken only after the school governors have been notified.
5 The role of parents
The school works actively with parents, so that children receive consistent messages about how to behave at school. We explain the school rules in the school prospectus, and we expect parents to read and support them.
We expect parents to support their child’s learning, and to cooperate with the school, as set out in the home-school agreement. We try to build a supportive dialogue between the home and the school, and we inform parents immediately if we have concerns about their child’s welfare or behaviour.
If the school has to use reasonable sanctions to punish a child, we expect parents to support the actions of the school. If parents have any concerns about the way that their child has been treated, they should initially contact the class teacher. If the concern remains, they should contact the school governors. If these discussions cannot resolve the problem, a formal grievance or appeal process can be implemented.
6 The role of governors
The governing body has the responsibility of setting down these general guidelines on standards of discipline and behaviour, and of reviewing their effectiveness. The governors support the head teacher in adhering to these guidelines.
The head teacher has the day-to-day authority to implement the school’s policy on behaviour and discipline, but governors may give advice to the head teacher about particular disciplinary issues. The head teacher must take this into account when making decisions about matters of behaviour.
7 Fixed-term and permanent exclusions
We do not wish to exclude any child from school, but sometimes this may be necessary. The school has therefore adopted the standard national list of reasons for exclusion, and the standard guidance, Improving Behaviour and Attendance: Guidance on Exclusion from School and Child Referral Units (DCFS, 2008). We refer to this guidance in any decision to exclude a child from school. Only the head teacher (or the acting head teacher) has the power to exclude a child from school. The head teacher may exclude a child for one or more fixed periods, for up to 45 days in any one school year. In extreme and exceptional circumstances the head teacher may exclude a child permanently. It is also possible for the HT to convert a fixed-term exclusion into a permanent exclusion, if the circumstances warrant this.
If the HT excludes a child, he informs parents immediately, giving reasons for the exclusion. At the same time, the HT makes it clear to the parents that they can, if they wish, appeal against the decision to the governing body. The school informs the parents how to make any such appeal.
The HT informs the LA and the governing body about any permanent exclusion, and about any fixed-term exclusions beyond five days in any one term.
The governing body itself cannot either exclude a child or extend the exclusion period made by the head teacher. The governing body has a discipline committee, which is made up of between three and five members. This committee considers any exclusion appeals on behalf of the governors.
When an appeals panel meets to consider an exclusion, they consider the circumstances in which the child was excluded, consider any representation by parents and the LEA, and consider whether the child should be reinstated.
If the governors’ appeals panel decides that a child should be reinstated, the HT must comply with this ruling.
8 Drug- and alcohol-related incidents
It is the policy of this school that no child should bring any drug, legal or illegal, to school. If a child will need medication during the school day the parent or guardian should notify the school and ask permission for the medication to be brought. This should be taken directly to the school office for safekeeping. Any medication needed by a child while in school must be taken under the supervision of a teacher or other adult worker.
The school will take very seriously misuse of any substances such as glue, other solvents, or alcohol. The parents or guardians of any child involved will always be notified. Any child who deliberately brings substances into school for the purpose of misuse will be punished by a fixed-term exclusion. If the offence is repeated, the child will be permanently excluded, and the police and social services will be informed.
If any child is found to be suffering from the effects of alcohol or other substances, arrangements will be made for that child to be taken home.
It is forbidden for anyone, adult or child, to bring onto the school premises illegal drugs. Any child who is found to have brought to school any type of illegal substance will be punished by a temporary exclusion. The child will not be readmitted to the school until a parent or guardian of the child has visited the school and discussed the seriousness of the incident with the head teacher.
If the offence is repeated the child will be permanently excluded.
If a child is found to have deliberately brought illegal substances into school, and is found to be distributing these to other pupils for money, the child will be permanently excluded from the school. The police and social services will also be informed.
9 Monitoring and review
The head teacher monitors the effectiveness of this policy on a regular basis. He also reports to the governing body on the effectiveness of the policy and, if necessary, makes recommendations for further improvements.
The school keeps a variety of records concerning incidents of misbehaviour. The mentors record minor classroom incidents. The Assistant Head Teacher (with responsibility for behaviour) records more serious incidents. We also keep a record of any incidents that occur at break or lunchtimes: lunchtime supervisors will use the card system as outlined.
The HT keeps a record of any child who is suspended for a fixed-term, or who is permanently excluded.
It is the responsibility of the governing body to monitor the rate of suspensions and exclusions, and to ensure that the school policy is administered fairly and consistently. The governing body will pay particular attention to matters of racial equality; it will seek to ensure that the school abides by the non-statutory guidance The Duty to Promote Race Equality: A Guide For Schools, and that no child is treated unfairly because of race or ethnic background.
The governing body reviews this policy periodically. The governors may, however, review the policy earlier if the government introduces new regulations, or if the governing body receives recommendations on how the policy might be improved.