- T. 028 9446 8556
- E. info@parkhallintegrated
Steeple Road, Antrim,
Co. Antrim, BT411AF
Parkhall Integrated College’s mission statement is "to provide a caring learning environment where each person feels valued and respected”. The pastoral and discipline structures of the school seek to serve these ends. It is an integral part of such an ethos that bullying will not be countenanced and will be discouraged. The school will seek to achieve this by an effective combination of support and sanction; by Intervention strategies (reactive) and Prevention strategies (proactive) drawn from existing pastoral and discipline structures.
The school will be better able to address the issue of bullying if:
there is a clear definition and awareness of what constitutes bullying.
there is a policy aimed at preventing or dealing with the same to which staff, pupils and parents are committed.
there is a consistent application of the policy in school, through the existing structures and programmes for pastoral care, personal and social education and discipline.
all involved, recognise it is everyone’s concern, not somebody else’s business.
" Bullying” relates to the intimidation of another person through verbal, emotional or physical attack by an individual or group. It is a wilful, conscious desire to hurt another individual(s) or place them under stress.
it may be short-term or prolonged
it may be physical, verbal or psychological
gesturing, extortion or exclusion may also occur
it may be subtle or overt intimidation
it may be a ‘one off ‘incident’ but more often is persistent and intentional.
Intervention Strategies (reactive)
All staff should:
be aware of potential bullying in classroom or whole school context
take incidents seriously and act promptly
react calmly so as not to "entertain” the bully
express support for victim and disapproval for action of the bully
keep a detailed record of the incident witnessed by them or reported to them
complete Bullying Incident Sheet and forward to appropriate staff, ie. relevant Year Head(s), Mr Harbinson (Pastoral SMT, Junior School) and Mrs Davidson Brown (Pastoral SMT, Senior School)
make use of School Referral System as follows: In cases where there is more than one year group involved Mr Harbinson (Pastoral SMT, Junior School) and Mrs Davidson Brown (Pastoral SMT, Senior School) should co-ordinate the relevant procedures.
Guidelines for listening to victims, witnesses and bullies:
hear all sides to the issue and endeavour to be non-emotive
have pupils record stories in writing where necessary/appropriate or record their version of events for them
support/advise the victim/give withdrawal or composure time
express disapproval of actions of the bully/isolate from pupil body
relevant Year Head(s) should ensure that the victim is counselled. The Year Head should report the incident to Mr Harbinson (Pastoral SMT Junior School) or Mrs Davidson Brown (Pastoral SMT Senior School) who should initiate further counselling as appropriate.
Prevention Strategies (proactive)
make all staff aware of what constitutes bullying
urge observation in classrooms and in general throughout school in the
keep records of incidents observed and informing colleagues through existing pastoral and discipline structures
having a whole school awareness of danger areas and times
recognising values we may display through the hidden curriculum and potential of subject content to promote positive behaviour or discourage aggression.
the issue of bullying is addressed through assemblies at regular intervals throughout the school year.
the issue of bullying is addressed through classroom activities and lesson content.
it is addressed further through Personal Development and positive behaviour encouraged e.g. discussions, role plays, defining behavioural expectations
Year Heads should be approachable and encourage pupils to share their concerns
pupils should be encouraged to make use of this avenue to redress problems: to know staff care and will act appropriately
Year Heads may address the issue through Year Assemblies, Class or Group Talks or individual counselling as appropriate
senior staff, parents and relevant outside agencies may be involved and records kept.
Suggested Levels of Response
Our response moves through existing structures and personnel while employing a combination of sanction and counselling. The needs, interests and rights of the victim should also be addressed and their parents informed/appraised of the issue as appropriate.
act within the context of the definition of bullying
individual circumstances need to be addressed
these are the guidelines and are not prescriptive
pupils should be aware of our intent e.g. through Personal Development and Year Assemblies.
sanctions operate alongside counselling through all staff and Personal Development
sanctions ought to be applied according to the scale of the bullying and not the type i.e. all forms of bullying should be addressed seriously, with our response measured against the scale of the incident.
the object in all reported cases of bullying is to ensure the future safety of the victim and the non re-occurrence of this behaviour by the offending pupil.
A Summary of Progression for Levels of Response
Use school referral system
Issue a stern verbal warning/counsel against repeat
Parents of all parties informed by relevant Year Head (s)
In some instances it may be appropriate to implement a conflict resolution meeting between both parties. This is determined by the pastoral staff involved.
In addition to Level 1 responses:
Set detention (relevant materials to be completed in detention)
Remove bully from peer contact as appropriate.
- Invite parents of bully to interview.
In addition to Level 1 and 2 responses:
Outside agencies involved as appropriate
e.g. Educational Psychologist Educational Welfare Services
Behavioural Support Unit Social Services
Professional Counselling Services PSNI Juvenile Liaison
In addition to Levels 1, 2 and 3 responses:
Pre Exclusion meeting with Board of Governors.
Meeting with Principal, NEELB and Board of Governors.
A Statement of Rights for the Whole School Community
Everyone who works in or visits our school community is entitled to respect and equal
Whether they are male or female
- Whatever their colour, race or nationality
- Whatever their language
- Whatever their religion
- Whatever their needs
- Whatever their social class or status
- Whatever their political or other opinion
- Wherever they were born
- Wherever they live
- However they speak
- However they look
(Note: This is not an exhaustive list, it merely offers some suggestions).
Bullying: Information for Parents
No school is immune from bullying and no school should be complacent. If bullying occurs at Parkhall Integrated College it is vitally important that all of us should know what action to take.
* Staff at Parkhall Integrated College recognise bullying behaviour as all forms of physical and psychological abuse systematically directed at victims who find this hurtful. We take responsibility for helping all pupils understand what bullying is and the harm it can do. We believe that adults can set an example in their own behaviour.
* We hope that the ethos of the school will help to instil mutual respect and civilised behaviour, but we recognise that in our preventive approach to bullying we should provide pupils with the opportunity to discuss the topic regularly.
* We will also ensure that every pupil knows where, when and to whom they can talk about any bullying incidents. This may be staff at school or parents at home. Pupils must feel confident that talking to adults is the proper course of action if they witness or experience bullying.
* Incidents of bullying should immediately reported. Senior staff may than be called in to help. Although the nature of the response will depend upon the circumstances, we have a standard procedure to follow which does not necessarily involve punishment in the first instance. Staff are experienced and use tact and discretion in their follow-up.
* The whole school community (parents, staff and ancillary staff) has a role to play in combating bullying. All pupils should be aware that there is no such thing as an innocent bystander and the school neither condones nor ignores bullying, whilst all adults should be familiar with this policy to avoid inappropriate action being taken. We should all be committed to ensuring that every pupil receives his or her education in a safe environment free from humiliation, oppression or harassment.
Signs and Symptoms of Bullying
Indications of those at risk from bullying may include:
- Lack of friends
- Poor communication and/or poor co-ordination
- Unusual physical characteristics
- Volatile, sulky or tearful behaviour
- Inexplicable behaviour
- Chooses to stay with adults
- Illness and absenteeism
- Unpopular families
- Accents or racial differences
The signs that may signify that a student is being bullied include:
- Being frightened of walking to and from school
- Being unwilling to come to school
- Beginning to do poorly in school work
- Displaying personality changes
- Complaining of feeling unwell (frequently)
- Having unexplained bruises and injuries
- Having possessions destroyed or go missing
- Showing reluctance to go into the playground
- Refusing to say what is wrong, or giving improbable excuses to explain
any of these above.
These signs and symptoms are for the whole school community of school staff, parents and students to act upon. All should be encouraged to respond and report where they have any misgivings about what they see.
These policy Guidelines are translated into action through other policies and procedures, for example:
The School Development Plan Child Protection Policy Pastoral Care Policy
Behaviour Policy Counselling Policy Teaching and Learning Policy
Special Educational Needs Policy