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Preventing Bullying Policy

Statement of Intent

We are committed to providing a nurturing, supporting, welcoming and safe environment for all of our pupils so they can learn in a relaxed and secure atmosphere. Bullying of any kind at The Albion Foundation School is unacceptable. If bullying does occur, all pupils should be able confident and comfortable to disclose this to staff and know that incidents will be dealt with promptly and effectively.

What is bullying?

Bullying is the use of aggression with the intention of hurting another person. Bullying results in pain and distress to the victim.

Bullying can be:

• Emotional – being unfriendly, excluding, tormenting (e.g. hiding possessions, threatening gestures etc)
• Physical – pushing, kicking, hitting, punching or use of any physical violence
• Racist – racial taunts, gestures, and racial language
• Sexual – unwanted / inappropriate physical contact or sexually abusive comments
• Homophobic – because of, or focussing on, the issue of sexuality including inappropriate use of the term 'gay'
• Verbal – name-calling, sarcasm, spreading rumours, teasing
• Cyber – all areas of internet, such as email, internet chat room and social networking sites misuse, mobile threats by text messaging, BBM or equivalent and telephone calls, misuse of associated technology, i.e. camera and video facilities

Why is it important to respond to bullying?

Bullying hurts. No one deserves to be a victim of bullying. Everybody has the right to be treated with respect. Pupils who are bullying need to learn different ways of behaving. Bullies also need support and it is our duty to determine why the bully is behaving as they are and support them with overcoming and ultimately changing this behaviour.

The Albion Foundation has a responsibility to respond promptly and effectively to issues of bullying.

Objectives of this policy:

• All governors (Trustees), teaching and non-teaching staff, pupils and parents / carers should have an understanding of what bullying is

• All governors (Trustees), and teaching and non-teaching staff 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 / carers should be assured that they will be supported when bullying is reported

• Bullying will not be tolerated.

Signs and Symptoms

A young person may indicate signs or behaviour that she or he is being bullied. Adults should be aware of these possible signs and they should investigate if a young person:

• Is frightened about travelling to and from school
• Changes their usual routine
• Is unwilling to attend school
• Begins to truant
• Becomes withdrawn, anxious or lacking in confidence
• Starts stammering
• Has disturbed sleep patterns
• Achievement levels reduce
• Has possessions that are damaged or 'go missing'
• Has unexplained cuts / bruises
• Becomes aggressive, disruptive or unreasonable
• Starts bullying others themselves
• Stops eating
• Is reluctant to explain what is wrong
• Gives improbably excuses when questioned
• Is nervous or anxious when receiving cyber messages / using the internet

These signs and behaviours could indicate other problems, but bullying should be considered as a possibility and should be investigated.

Procedures

1. Report incidents of bullying to staff
2. In cases of serious bullying the incidents will be recorded by staff
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
6. Attempts must be made to help the bully change their behaviour

Outcomes

1. If appropriate and genuine the bully may be encouraged to apologise and the pupils will be reconciled
2. Other consequences will be considered depending on severity
3. In serious cases fixed term exclusion and even permanent exclusion will be considered
4. After incidents of bullying have been dealt with cases will be reflected upon and discussed by staff with a view to prevent repetition

Prevention Through Education

We will use the following methods to endeavour to prevent bullying at The Albion Foundation School:

• Clearly explain 'preventing bullying' policy at point if induction

• Clearly explain safe use of internet during induction

• Discuss bullying and potential consequences during Team Time

• Ensure PSHE curriculum includes bullying

• Display anti-bullying posters in each classroom

• Integrate stories, poems, articles about bullying into the English curriculum

• Ensure mentors are equipped with information and support (see below) regarding bullying

Help organisations:

Advisory Centre for Education (ACE) 0808 800 5793
Children's Legal Centre 0845 345 4345
KIDSCAPE Parents Helpline 0845 1 205 204
Parentline Plus 0808 800 2222
Youth Access 020 8772 9900
Bullying Online www.bullying.co.uk
Further advice, guidance and support www.kidscape.org.uk

Contact Details:
The Albion Foundation School,
Brasshouse Lane,
Smethwick,
West Midlands
B66 1BA.
Tel: 0871 271 9840

Head of School:
Anna Pincher, Head of Education and Safeguarding
Tel : 0871 271 9840
Email : anna.pincher@albionfoundation.co.uk

Nominated Complaints Co-ordinator:

Marc Brady, Head of Operations
Tel : 0871 271 9840
Email : marc.brady@albionfoundation.co.uk