following Anti-Bullying Policy was drawn up by the staff of St. Patrick’s
Primary School, Tuam, Co. Galway. It was presented to the Parents Council in
draft form in June 2001. Their observations and comments were presented along
with the draft policy to the Board of Management on 28/06/2001. The Policy was
ratified by the Board on that day.
was circulated to all parents in September 2001.
policy was formulated in accordance with the Education Act 1998, Section 15,
(1), (2), Section 21, (1), (3), (4), Section 23 (2), (3) and in accordance with
Circular 20/90 of the Department of Education and Rule 130 of the Rules for
National Schools of the Department of Education.
Anti -Bullying Policy/Polaisí Frith-Bhullaíochta
Definition of Bullying
Bullying is repeated aggression, verbal, psychological or physical conducted by
an individual or group against others. We say a pupil is being bullied or picked
on, when another pupil or group of pupils say nasty or unpleasant things to him
or her. It is also bullying when a pupil is hit, kicked, threatened sent nasty
notes or when no-one talks to him/her.
Aims of the Policy
create school ethos which encourages children to disclose and discuss
incidences of bullying behaviour.
raise awareness of bullying as a form of unacceptable behaviour with school
management teachers, pupils, parents/guardians.
develop procedures for noting and reporting incidents of bullying behaviour.
develop procedures for investigating and dealing with bullying behaviour.
develop a programme of support for those affected by bullying behaviour and
for those involved in bullying behaviour.
Contents of Policy
class will engage in the Stay Safe programme as part of S.P.H.E.
school will have a Bullying Awareness Day annually, for teachers, children and
parents, preferably in the first term which will:
on personal experience of bullying and develop an empathy for bullies and
the procedures for reporting incidents. (As part of this procedure a
questionnaire will be administered to all students to identify patterns of
bullying behaviour in the school.
Teachers will emphasise the importance of reporting repeated incidents to the
Class Teacher as well as the teacher on Yard Supervision.
Rota will be drawn up to ensure that the yard and the corridors are
supervised at break times. (See Yard Supervision Policy).
identification of bullying behaviour will be highlighted at one staff meeting
for Noting and Reporting an Incident of Bullying Behaviour
reports of bullying, no matter how trivial, will be investigated and dealt
with by class teachers. In that way pupils will gain confidence in
“telling”. This confidence factor is of vital importance.
cases of bullying behaviour by pupils will be referred immediately to the
or guardians of victims or bullies will be informed by the Principal earlier rather than later of incidents
so that they are given the opportunity of discussing the matter. They are
then in a position to help and support their children before a crisis
staff such as caretakers, cleaners are encouraged to report any incidents of
bullying behaviour witnessed by them, to the teaching staff.
the case of a complaint regarding a staff member, this should be raised with
cases, relating to either a pupil or a teacher remain unsolved at school
level, the matter should be referred to the School’s Board of Management.
not solved at Board level, refer to local inspectorate.
Procedures for Investigating and Dealing with Bullying
Teachers will take a calm, unemotional problem-solving
approach when dealing with incidents of bullying behaviour reported by either
pupils, staff or parents/guardians. In any incident of bullying, the teacher
will speak separately to the pupils involved, in an attempt to get both sides of
the story. All interviews will be conducted with sensitivity and with due regard
to the rights of all the pupils concerned. Pupils who are not directly involved
can also provide useful information in this way.
analysing incidents of bullying behaviour, the teacher will seek answers to
questions of what, where, when, who and why, in a calm manner, setting an
example in dealing effectively with the conflict in a non-aggressive manner.
a group is involved, each member will be interviewed individually and then
the individuals are met as a group. Each member will be asked for his/her
account of what happened to ensure that everyone is clear about what
everyone else has said. Other pupils may also be interviewed to get a
of once off aggression will be
dealt with according to the schools Code of Discipline. If it is concluded
that a pupil has been engaged in bullying behaviour, it will be made clear
to him/her to see the situation from the victim’s point of view.
‘No Blame’ approach may be used to resolve less serious incidents of
The ‘No Blame’ Approach:
Teachers who are investigating cases of bullying behaviour will
keep a written record of their discussions with those involved. It may also
be appropriate or helpful to ask those involved to write down their account
of the incident.
the child being bullied and the bully.
pupils to identify solutions.
In cases where it has been determined that bullying behaviour has
occurred, meet with the parents or guardians of the two parties involved as
appropriate to (a) explain actions being taken and the reasons for
them, referring them to the school policy, (b) discuss ways in which
they can reinforce or support the actions taken by the school.
Separate follow-up meetings, with the two parties involved will be
arranged, with a view to possibly bringing them together at a later date if
the victim is ready and agreeable. This can have a therapeutic effect.