This Code of Behaviour Policy was developed by a sub-group consisting of the Principal, teachers and Board of Management representatives following consultation with staff, pupils and parents. The Policy has been approved by the Board of Management. It will be circulated to all parents of existing pupils and all parents of new pupils. All pupils will be made aware of the policy at the start of the school year. Temporary and substitute teachers and other school staff will also be made aware of the policy. The Board of Management, Principal and staff are responsible for implementation of the policy.
All policies need to be reviewed on a regular basis to ensure that they meet the current needs of the school. The Code of Behaviour Policy was reviewed because:
The aims of this policy are:
Woodland National School strives to:
The Code of Behaviour policy requires the co-operation of staff, pupils, parents and Board of Management. It is important that everyone knows what is expected, what procedures are in place to support and promote the policy and to deal with problems that may arise.
In promoting positive behaviour the school has in place policies and procedures which cover all aspects of the school day e.g. arrival, dismissal, in-class management, school yard, wet days, movement through the school, etc. In developing this Code of Behaviour all school policies and practices, curriculum and classroom management practices have been considered with regard to promoting positive behaviour.
In accordance with the Code of Professional Conduct for Teachers (Teaching Council 2012), the staff are expected to treat all children with respect and dignity and to implement the Code of Behaviour in a fair, consistent and reasonable manner.
The school’s Social Personal and Health Education Curriculum is used to support the Code of Behaviour. It aims to help the children develop communication skills, appropriate ways of interacting and behaving and conflict resolution skills. It also aims to foster self-esteem and to help children accommodate differences and develop citizenship – New staff and substitutes are briefed on all policies and practices within the school by the staff mentor.
Staff will regularly make the children aware of the Code of Behaviour and will remind them of the expectations throughout the school year.
The overall responsibility for ensuring that a Code of Behaviour is prepared rests with the Board of Management. The Board of Management appoints a sub-committee to review and draft the Code of Behaviour in consultation with the whole school community. The Board of Management will ratify the Code of Behaviour and will continually monitor its implementation making adjustments as necessary.
The Code of Behaviour is drawn up in consultation with the parents.
When making application for enrolment parents will be given copies of the Code of Behaviour and Anti-Bullying policies. On receiving an offer of a place for their child, parents will be required to confirm in writing that the Code of Behaviour and Anti-Bullying policy and any subsequent changes is acceptable to them and that they will make every effort to ensure compliance by their child.
Parents will support the school in the promotion of positive behaviour by:
In drafting this Code of Behaviour, the senior classes in the school were consulted. All children are involved in the drawing up of classroom rules.
Pupils are regularly made aware of the Code of Behaviour e.g. at the beginning of each school term/prior to school outings etc. and at different times through various subject areas, discussions and assemblies.
Standards of behaviour expected from pupils:
(See Appendix A)
It is recognised that certain factors may influence a child’s behaviour e.g. bereavement, trauma, educational needs, medical condition, etc and will be taken into consideration.
The following strategies are used to promote positive behaviour in the classroom and the school yard and other areas of the school:
Although the overall focus is on reinforcing positive behaviour it is important that sanctions for unacceptable behaviour are also in place
There are degrees of unacceptable behaviour. Examples of minor misdemeanours include:
Examples of more serious unacceptable behaviour include;
The above lists are not exhaustive and are only examples.
Examples of strategies for dealing with unacceptable behaviour are as follows;
More serious unacceptable behaviour:
Some students need more active intervention to help them to manage their behaviour. Without additional help they may be at risk of failing behaviourally, socially and educationally.
In consultation with parents additional inputs or interventions might include:
A small minority of students may have great difficulty in learning new behaviour and may not respond to low-level interventions. These students will need a sustained and systematic response involving school and home.
The Principal and staff have good links with local support services that may be able to assist in responding to the needs of a student with behavioural difficulties. These services include the National Educational Psychology Services (NEPS), HSE Community Psychology Services, the National Council for Special Education and Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS).
Before resorting to suspension the normal channels of communication between school and parents will be utilised. Parents will be involved at an early stage rather than as a last resort. Communication with parents will be verbal or by letter depending on the circumstances. The parents concerned will be invited to the school to discuss their child’s behaviour and they will be given an opportunity to respond before a decision is made and before any sanction is imposed.
Circumstances relating to the allegations will be investigated in a fair and impartial manner. Investigations where possible, will be carried out by a senior member of staff not directly involved and will present their findings to the Principal. The Principal will make a decision in an objective way based on the findings.
For repeated instances of serious misbehaviour suspension will be considered. Aggressive, threatening or violent behaviour towards another person (pupil or staff) will be regarded as serious or gross misbehaviour, depending on circumstances. Where it is necessary to ensure that order and discipline are maintained and to secure the safety of the pupils and staff the Board authorises the Chairperson or Principal to sanction an immediate suspension for a period not exceeding three school days, pending a discussion of the matter with the parents. Any suspension in excess of 3 days requires the approval of the Board of Management.
If a decision is made to suspend a pupil, under natural justice, the parents may appeal the decision to the Board of Management. This appeal must be submitted in writing to the Board of Management stating the reasons for the appeal within 7 days of the date of notification of suspension. Parents will be informed of the decision of the Board of Management within 7 days of the receipt of the written appeal.
Parents will be informed in writing:
When any sanction, including suspension, is completed, a pupil will be given the opportunity and support for a fresh start.
Suspension will be implemented in accordance with the terms of Rule 130 (5) of the Rules for National Schools.
Expulsion is a very serious step and will only be taken by the Board of Management in extreme cases of unacceptable behaviour which may include:
In the event of expulsion being considered by the Board of Management fair procedure and procedures prescribed by the Education Welfare Act 2000 will be followed.
Homework Diary – from 1st to 6th class. Teachers may make notes in Parent/Teacher comments section. Teacher may send note to parents of Junior and Senior Infants in homework folder or lunchbox.
Classroom Incident Book – Kept by each classroom teacher.
Record of Behaviour Book – Kept in Principal’s office.
In accordance with the Educational Welfare Act 2000 the school has a duty to report any child who has missed 20 days or more to the National Educational Welfare Board. Parents/guardians are obliged by law to provide a written explanation on their child’s absence to the school when the child returns (stating the reason for absence).
A number of other school policies are linked to the Code of Behaviour policy. These include:
Practices and procedures listed in this policy being consistently implemented by teachers.
28th August 2014
The Policy will be reviewed during the school year 2016-2017 or earlier if necessary.
Children must have one uniform and one P.E. uniform
Crested school jumpers/cardigans are available only at County Seat uniform shop Lower Main Street. All other uniform items are available there or at local department stores. Please note that County Seat, for reasons of colour and quality is the only approved supplier of the crested jumper/cardigan. No other garment should have a school crest – P.E. sweatshirt, coat/jacket.
P.E. uniform may be worn on P.E. Days only. On all other days school jumper or cardigan, must be worn with pinafore, trousers or skirt.
If children are representing the school at formal functions i.e. Choir, Interschool Quiz, etc. they must wear the school jumper/cardigan not the sweatshirt and in this event advance notice will be given.
Wearing the school uniform is part of the Code of Behaviour and will be monitored on a regular basis.
All clothing must be marked with children’s names. Please Note: Apart from stud earrings no other jewelry is permitted.