Bullying Policy

We aim to provide a positive, collaborative and cooperative culture within the school community to cater for the academic and social needs of all learners.

POLICY AIMS

  • To support the victims of bullying, as well as the bully, and help them to avoid and/or deal with the bullying.
  • To help young people understand the difference between assertive and aggressive behaviour.

DEFINITION OF BULLYING

BULLYING IS THE WILFUL DESIRE TO HURT, THREATEN OR EMBARRASS SOMEONE.

ACTS OF BULLYING

  • Verbally - nasty name calling, taunting, teasing, spreading gossip.

  • Threat of physical harm / intimidation.

  • Cyber - using the internet/text messages to make inappropriate comments.

  • Written abuse - writing or sending nasty notes.

  • Sexual or sex based harassment.

  • Physical Harm - by physical contact.

  • Extortion - demand for money or favours.

  • Exclusion - deliberately leaving someone out of an activity.

  • Interference with personal property.

If this is happening to you TELL YOURSELF that it is not your fault, and that it is the bully who needs to change - NOT YOU.

INDICATIONS OF BULLYING

There is no sure way of knowing that a young person is being bullied. However, the student may show the following signs:

  • Be frightened of walking to or from school and around school.

  • Be unwilling to go to school.

  • Want to be driven to school.

  • Change their route to school.

  • Begin to do poorly in their school work.

  • Come home regularly with clothes or books destroyed.

  • Become withdrawn.

  • Change their eating habits.

  • Cry themselves to sleep.

  • Have nightmares.

  • Have unexplained bruises, scratches or cuts.

  • Ask for money or begin stealing (perhaps to pay the bully).

  • Continually lose their money.

  • Refuse to say what is wrong.

  • Be late to class.

  • Refuse to work in a particular group or sit next to a particular student.

  • Sudden outbursts of temper.

  • Mood swings - snappy, withdrawn, tired, hitting out, outbursts of crying.

  • Withdrawn from social activities with peers.

TALKING is the only way to stop bullying. At Maylands Peninsula Primary School, teachers and students must be prepared to talk so that everybody understands how

WHAT A STUDENT CAN DO ABOUT BULLYING AND HARASSMENT.

Students should not retaliate by physical or verbal bullying.

Simply knowing that you can do something about it makes a difference.

WHAT CAN YOU DO?

  • Share your feelings with others. Talk about it with friends, parents/caregivers, a teacher or someone you think can help.

  • Ignore it. Show that it does not upset you. The bully is not encouraged and it may stop.

  • Do not continue to ignore bullying if it does not stop. DO something, SAY something. IT'S O.K. to TELL!

  • Confront the person bullying you. Tell them that their actions are unwanted and are against school policy.

  • Go to a safe place or see a teacher.

Incidents of bullying to be reported to the school's Leadership Team..

WHAT A PARENT CAN DO.

If your child or adolescent is involved in bullying, either as a victim or bully, he or she needs your confidence, understanding and support.

If a young person is being bullied:

  • Encourage talking; it may be difficult but be patient.
  • Try not to over react, listen calmly and try to work out the facts.
  • Be sensitive in areas such as 'names' the young person is called.
  • Give assurances that the situation will be changed.
  • Assure the young person that it happens to most people at some time, we learn to avoid it or cope with it or confront it
  • Reassure the young person that it is not happening because there is something wrong with them.
  • Identify reasons why bullies are hurtful and explain that not responding helps in stopping the unwanted behaviour.
  • Talk with other parents/caregivers, teachers and share ideas and experiences.
  • Formally report to a member of staff, even if unsure of the extent of bullying, they will now be alert to the possibility of a problem.

Always try to work through the School, but always talk with the young person about what you are doing and why.

If your child is bullying others;

  • Make it clear that bullying because of revenge, for annoyance or fun is unacceptable behaviour.

  • Help the young person understand the difference between assertive and aggressive behaviour.

  • Make it clear that hurting or distressing another person unable to defend himself/herself is a form of weakness and proves nothing.

  • Explore the possibility that the young person is seeking attention and love. Are there home or school situations that are contributing to the young person feeling alone/lacking confidence?

  • Sensitive discussion may indicate that the bully is also a 'victim'. This is a delicate situation and requires sensitive and empathetic handling.

  • Explore the need for a development of self-confidence and success in an area to counter poor self-esteem.

  • Talk with other parents/caregivers, friends, teachers and share ideas and experiences.

Listen. Trust. DO NOT KEEP IT A SECRET

WHAT A TEACHER CAN DO.

LISTEN and offer immediate support.

Arrange a meeting with ALL concerned.

1.) Explain the process, the role of the teacher and the need for confidentiality and the rules:

  • We're here to solve a problem;
  • No blaming;
  • No excuses;
  • No interrupting; and,

2.) Everybody listens:

  • Each person in turn tells what has happened to them;
  • Just the facts;
  • Listen to others while they tell their story;
  • Repeat what has been said; and,
  • Now each person tells how they felt.

3.) Resolving the conflict:

  • Each person states what they need if the problem causing the conflict is to be solved;
  • The mediator helps both sides to work out strategies and to reach agreement.

Report the incident to the school's Leadership Team.

About a week later, the teacher discusses with all concerned, how things are going and alter strategies if necessary.

THIS PROCESS OCCURS ON THE FIRST OCCASION, CONTINUED INCIDENTS WILL RESULT IN REFERRAL TO THE PRINCIPAL