Castlebrae Community High School – Equality, Diversity and Anti-Bullying Policy and Procedures – 2017 to 2021
OUR SCHOOL’S VALUES AND BELIEFS
FOCUS – RESPECT – PERSEVERANCE – INTEGRITY
Protecting the Learning
All pupils and staff have the right to feel happy, safe and included.
Our shared values of mutual respect between staff and pupils and high expectations of success within a caring and supportive environment, form the basis of our positive school ethos. Within our wider school community, we promote tolerance and understanding of one another and value diversity.
We are committed to advancing equality of opportunity for all and we work actively towards eliminating all forms of bullying and discrimination.
We recognise the effects that bullying and discrimination can have on pupils’ feelings of worth, on their school work and in the community. We actively foster good relations between diverse groups and individuals.
We recognise that certain individuals and groups in society experience disadvantage, prejudice or discrimination on account of their age, disability, ethnicity, gender, gender change, looked-after status, pregnancy or maternity, religion or belief, sexual orientation and socio-economic status or any combination of these.
Bullying is an abuse of (assumed) power. People who are bullied are very upset by something someone else has done or said to them or about them. They are likely to fear that this will happen again and feel powerless to stop it. Their own dignity or ‘agency’ has been diminished. Bullying is also a breach of children’s rights under several articles of the Convention on the Rights of the Child. Cyber-bullying is bullying behaviour that takes place via mobile phone or social media. (Council Policy)
“Bullying … can make you feel frightened, threatened, left out and hurt. Something only needs to happen once for you to feel worried or scared to go to school or other places you enjoy going to. Just because someone doesn’t realise how hurtful their behaviour is doesn’t mean its not bullying” (Respectme)
We use the legal definition of ‘equalities’ which gives protection to people who have specific characteristics – for example being gay, lesbian or bisexual, disabled or from a minority ethnic group. It also includes anyone undergoing gender change, as well as those of particular faith groups. The Equality Act 2010 defines these as ‘protected groups’. Looked-after children, young carers and children and young people from economically disadvantaged backgrounds can also be included as equalities groups.
The Council uses the same classification as Police Scotland, taken from the MacPherson report on the Stephen Lawrence Inquiry that took place in 1999, i.e.
“A racist incident is any incident which is perceived to be racist by the victim or any other person”
While this is not absolutely definitive, it requires all allegations to be treated seriously from the outset, investigated and if substantiated dealt with and then recorded. This approach is in line with our anti-bullying procedures and all forms of identity-based bullying.
The Head Teacher at Castlebrae is responsible for introducing and implementing this policy. They are also responsible for nominating an Equalities Coordinator who is familiar with Council Equalities Guidance, including the most recent guidance on Supporting Transgender young people. However, all staff, all pupils and their parents have an active part to play in the development and maintenance of the policy, and in its success.
Pupils are expected to
- report all incidents of bullying and suspected incidents that other children may be afraid to report
- Support each other and to seek help to ensure that everyone feels safe, and nobody feels excluded or afraid in school.
Teachers are expected to be proactive, to treat all allegations seriously and keep records.
Parents can help by
- Supporting our anti-bullying policy and procedures.
- Encouraging their children to be positive members of the school community.
- Discussing with their child’s teacher any concerns that their child may be experiencing
- Helping to establish an anti-bullying culture outside of school.
- Speaking to the Head Teacher if their concerns are serious and ongoing.
Leadership Teams are expected to
- Monitor and report annually on the implementation of this policy
- Supervise the review and updating of this policy at least every four years.
Getting in Touch
We recognise that there may be times when parents feel that we have not dealt well with an incident of bullying and we ask that this be brought to the Head Teacher’s notice. If the Head Teacher cannot resolve these concerns informally, parents can raise their concerns more formally through referral to the Advice and Complaints Service at
We are also pleased to receive compliments from parents when things have gone well.
COMMUNICATING THIS POLICY
- We publicise our policy and Protecting the Learning procedures on the school website
- We work with our community to ensure there is a collective understanding of the policy
EVALUATING AND REVIEWING OUR POLICY
We evaluate this policy using the following measures:
Examining staff, parents and pupils’ views from surveys or focus groups
The number of incidents that are reported to staff over a given period.
Rates of attendance, exclusions and attainment and achievement of pupils in protected groups.
From the comments received in our comments box.
Pupils’ perceptions and experiences of bullying in secondary schools through periodic questionnaires.
The number of complaints and compliments that we receive from parents.
The policy and procedures will be reviewed every 4 years.
WHAT WE DO WHEN BULLYING OCCURS
A child may not be engaging consciously in bullying behaviour, but its impact is still felt and this is taken seriously. The level of awareness of a child who is bullying is a significant factor in how it is dealt with.
Pupils who experience bullying or discrimination will be listened to and supported.
Pupils who engage in bullying behaviour or discrimination will be treated fairly and consistently using a range of measures
Our support to pupils who are bullied or discriminated against
They are reassured that they do not deserve this, and it is not their fault.
We assure them that it was right to report the incident.
We encourage them to talk about how they feel and try to ascertain the extent of the problem.
We engage them in making choices about how the matter may be resolved
We discuss strategies for being safe and staying safe
We ask them to report immediately any further incidents to us
We affirm that it can be stopped and that we will persist with intervention until it does
Our work with pupils who bully others
We interview the pupil (or pupils) involved in bullying separately.
We listen to their version of events and talk to anyone who may have witnessed the bullying.
We seek to understand and address the causes of their behaviour
Where there is mutual will, we undertake restorative meetings
We reinforce the message that bullying is not acceptable, and that we expect it to stop.
We seek a commitment to this end.
We affirm that it is right for pupils to let us know if they are being bullied.
We consider sanctions under our school’s Protecting the Learning Policy.
We advise pupils responsible for bullying that we check to ensure that bullying stops.
We ensure that those involved know that we have done so.
When bullying occurs, we contact the parents of the pupils involved at an early stage.
We follow up after incidents to check that the bullying has not started again. We do this within two weeks, and again during the following half term.
We work with pupils who have been involved in bullying others to ascertain the sort of support that they need.
Other strategies include:
Peer mentoring and mediation
Involvement of other agencies and partners in health, police and voluntary sector
Physical separation of person/people bullying, where necessary and possible
Referral to specific support service, such as Educational Psychologist, Education Welfare Service, Social Work service or Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service
In extreme cases, Child Protection procedures will be considered
Involvement of Police as needed
Exclusion from school is not itself a sanction or punishment for bullying behaviour and will only be used as a last resort
Reporting and Recording Incidents
Pupils who have been bullied should report this to a member of staff.
Pupils who see others being bullied should report this to a member of staff.
Members of staff who receive reports that a pupil has been bullied should report this to ASL Team
Reports of bullying are logged by the Depute Head Teacher.
Records are kept on SEEMiS.
All incidents are recorded and acts of bullying or discrimination on ground of race, disability, gender, faith and sexual orientation are of equal concern and are all clearly distinguishable
We send annual summaries of incidents to Council headquarters on request
Cyberbullying and bullying outside the school premises
We know that bullying can occur outside the school gates and via mobile phones and social network internet sites. The bullying may be done by pupils from our own school, by pupils from other schools or by people who are not at school at all. Where a pupil or parent tells us of bullying off the school premises we will:
- Talk to pupils about how to avoid or handle bullying outside of school.
- Talk to the Headteacher of another school whose pupils are allegedly bullying.
- Consider additional support, police involvement and Child Protection procedures
- Talk to the transport company about bullying on buses.
We examine and use all available information to ensure that the promotion of equality and anti-bullying issues are contained within our development plans.
EQUALITY IMPACTS ANALYSIS
When reviewing or creating any new policies or services within our school, we give due regard to all protected groups and consider whether any individual or group might experience a particularly positive or negative impact. We keep a record of this and where necessary we take steps to reduce any negative impact.
We actively encourage all our young people to participate in school and extra-curricular activities and we take positive action to make sure that the diverse school population is represented in all aspects of school community life.
GATHERING AND MONITORING INFORMATION examples
Our school routinely monitors attainment of pupils by ethnicity and gender. We are also committed to developing measures for monitoring the achievements of our looked-after and disabled pupils.
We also monitor attendance and exclusion of pupils by ethnicity, disability and gender.
We examine our annual records of incidents and survey information
We are aware of our local demography, through pupil census data
We use information from surveys of pupils’ views and opinions
We take active steps to ensure that all data held on pupils’ disabilities, ethnicity, caring and looked-after status is accurate and regularly reviewed.