Code of Discipline

Kyle National School

Kyle National School

Code of Behaviour

This Code of Behaviour is being prepared in accordance with the guidelines “Developing a Code of Behaviour: Guidelines for Schools” published by the National Educatonal Welfare Board (NEWB, 2008). The Code of Behaviour also conforms with legislation as required by Section 23 of the Education Welfare Act (2000).  The Code of Behaviour is available from the school office, Golden Rules will be printed front of every child’s homework journal when new journals are being ordered and a copy of the code is given to new parents before the beginning of the school year in September,2013.  When parents enrol their child in Kyle N.S. they are agreeing to support the implementation of the Code of Behaviour and other policies in the school.

Our Vision:  

The vision for relationships and behaviour in Kyle N.S. is that: 

“Each individual through positive learning experiences will be stimulated to reach his/her full potential, face life confidently, find fulfillment and be respectful in an every changing world”.

Aims:  

The code aims at creating a caring, ordered environment based on respect and tolerance where each child can feel secure and confident. The code not only applies everywhere on the school premises but also applies at any school related activity whether on or off the premises such as school tours, swimming, sports activities, religious ceremonies etc.  

Strategies to promote Positive Behaviour:

  • Ensuring that pupils are treated fairly, equally and firmly
  • A quiet word or gesture to show approval
  • Matching work with pupil’s abilities. A prize/reward carefully noted by the teacher to ensure that all children at regular stages during the school year are rewarded for effort/bahaviour/skill etc. Teachers creating moments of success and then acknowledging them.
  • A comment in a pupils exercise book
  • Reward eg. “Free Time”
  • A visit to another member of staff or the Principal for commendation
  • A word of praise in front of a group or class
  • Delegating some responsibility or privilege
  • A mention to a parent-written or verbal
  • Teacher records improvement in the behaviour of a disruptive pupil
  • Implementation of Programmes such as Circle Time to promote positive behaviour

Golden Rules (from Sept.2013):

Children cannot remember long lists of rules. The expectations in this policy provide clear guidelines for members of our school community and pupils as to what type of behaviour is expected of pupils and adults within our school.These rules synopsise for the children what is expected of them, in a language they understand and incorporates the motto ‘Show Respect and Expect Respect’. Children from Junior Infants – 6th classes will be reminded of these rules and will recite them and discuss them regularly. It is expected that the children will know them ‘by rote’.

Be Gentle                        Don’t hurt anyone

Be kind and helpful        Don’t hurt people’s feelings

Be honest                        Don’t cover up the truth

Work hard                       Don’t waste time

Look after                      Look after property       Don’t waste or damage things or take things that don’t belong to you.

Listen to people             Don’t interrupt

Expectations of Staff

School rules are devised with regard to the health, safety and welfare of all members of the school community. It is imperative that adults ‘practise what they preach’ in their interaction with children every day.  

Staff are expected to:

  • support and implement the school’s code of behaviour;
  • be cognisant of their duty of care;
  • to be familiar wtih and follow the school’s policy on “Child Protection”.
  • create a safe, welcoming environment for each pupil;
  • praise desirable behaviour;
  • facilitate pupils to reach their full academic potential;
  • recognise and provide for individual talents and differences among pupils
  • be courteous, consistent and fair;
  • keep opportunities for disruptive behaviour to a minimum;
  • deal appropriately with misbehaviour;
  • keep a record of serious misbehaviour or repeated instances of misbehaviour;
  • listen, at appropriate times, to pupils’ explanations for behaviour;
  • provide support for colleagues;
  • communicate with parents and staff when necessary, always with courtesy and respect;
  • provide reports on matters of concern. 

 

Expectations of Parents

Parents are expected:

  • to nurture in their children a positive attitude towards school and try not to pass on any negative experiences parents may have had themselves while at school.
  • to ensure their child attends school regularly and punctually in full school uniform with appropriate clothing for the weather so that their child will be warm and dry playing outside during breaks;
  • to send a written note to the class teacher explaining their child’s absence from school;
  • to ensure the school has up-to-date phone numbers of family/friends to be contacted in case of an emergency. 
  • to arrange and ensure that a family member/friend is contactable and available to attend the school in the event of an emergency. 
  • to ensure their child attends school clean and with a good level of hygiene; to check their child’s head regularly for head lice and treat as necessary;
  • to ensure their child has a healthy lunch in school every day in line with the school policy on “Health Eating”.
  • to arrange meetings with the class teacher and/or principal when they are concerned about any issue relating to their child;
  • communicate with staff when necessary, always with courtesy and repsect and to model good behaviour in their relationship with teachers;
  • to encourage children to have a sense of respect for themselves, for others, for their own property and that of others;
  • to be interested in, support and encourage their child’s school work;
  • to ensure that their child has the correct books and other materials;
  • to be familiar with the code of behaviour and other school policies and to support the implementation of these policies;
  • to co-operate with teachers in instances where their child’s behaviour is causing difficulties for others;
  • to communicate to the school problems which may affect a child’s behaviour.

Expectations of Pupils

Pupils are expected:

  • to listen to the class teacher, work hard, do their best and make best use of their time in school.
  • to complete their homework to a high standard and hand it up on time.
  • to be punctual
  • to enter and leave the school building at all times in an orderly fashion.
  • When the bell rings after play-time the children stop playing and walk to their class lines. Children do not enter the school building without getting permission from teachers.
  • to walk within the school building and quietness is expected while children are getting ready to enter/exit class i.e. while lining up, while putting on coats , changing footwear etc. ;
  • to treat all staff members, themselves and each other with due respect and courtesy;
  • to stand back for an adult, to welcome visitors and to show respect to their elders;
  • to never bully any person; Any behaviour that intereferes with the rights of others to learn and to be safe is unacceptable. Fighting, rough play or any physical force is never allowed or tolerated.
  • to never use bad language; Inappropriate language if used towards a teacher or anywhere within the school or while on a school activity is considered a breach of the code.
  • to wear their full school uniform;
  • not to bring chewing gum, glass bottles,other solvents, matches, cigarettes, alcohol or drugs to school either on the premises or to a school related activity;
  • jewellery should be kept to a minimum
  • not to wear make-up;
  • not to cycle in school grounds unless taking part in safety training organised by the school;
  • to hand up their mobile phone, switched off, to the class teacher or principal as soon as school starts and to remember to get their mobile phone from the teacher/principal before school finishes. If a child is found with a mobile phone it will be confiscated.
  • to keep their hair neat; For hygiene purposes hair must be tied back.
  • to respect the school building and property; If an deliberate damage is caused, the parent/guardian will be responsible for the cost of repair/replacement. 
  • to value our school environment; The playground is a litter-free zone. All other empty carton drink containers and wrapping papers are considered household waste and are taken home.
  • not to climb on the school railings. 

Before/After School

Parents are reminded that the staff of Kyle do not accept responsibility for pupils before the official opening time of 9.00 a.m. or after the official closing time of 2.00 p.m.(infants) 3.00 p.m. (other classes) except where pupils are engaged in an extra-curricular activity organized by the school and approved by the Board of Management. Pupils involved in such activities are expected to behave in accordance with school behaviour policy during these times.

On wet days children are expected:

  • to do activities in class based on the class teacher’s instructions or supervising teacher’s instructions; One teacher and 2 S.N.A.s (I based in each class room) will be on supervision duty .
  • to stay in their classrooms and not run around the room;
  • to never use sharp implements;
  • to never use a tin-whistle except during music practice/class.

When swimming children are expected:

  • to wear a coat when walking to the swimming pool except on dry, sunny days during May and June;
  • to walk in line behind the teacher to the swimming pool. No running allowed;
  • to never shout or run in the dressing rooms or pool area;
  • to listen and obey the instructor and life guard;
  • to wear a swimming cap. Arm bands are needed for beginners and shower socks may be worn;
  • to never leave the pool from the side – unless under the instructor’s directions;
  • to never push or play roughly in the pool, pool area or dressing rooms;
  • to dress quickly after each session;
  • not to buy drinks/sweets at the pool.

When on school trips/tours, children are expected:

  • to enter/leave the bus in an orderly manner;
  • to arrive 15 minutes before departure time; Parents are expected to contact the school 15 minutes before departure time if a child is sick or unable to attend.
  • to keep the school rules as listed above;
  • not to bring mobile phones or electronic devices on school tours; Teachers will have mobile phones on tour if parents/children need to get in contact with one another.
  • to sit in their seats and avoid loudness that would distract the driver;
  • to take drinks and sweets at the appointed lunch breaks;
  • to stay in their appointed groups at all times;
  • to wear uniform on school tours;
  • to return the parental/guardian permission slips allowing the child to go on tour

Notes

Notes are required in the event of:

  • A child missing a day(s) from school
  • Homework not completed
  • Children who are late or who wish to leave early.

Behaviour in Class and in School Building:

  • Pupils must not behave in such a manner as to disrupt class work or to cause unnecessary disturbance.
  • It is the school policy that every pupil listens to the class teacher, works hard, making best use of their time in school and performing to the best of their ability.

Behaviour in the Playground

  • All pupils have the right to enjoy their time out in the playground in a safe environment at break periods.
  • A Misdemeanour  refers to any action that puts the safety of self or others at risk
  • Fighting, rough play or any physical force is never allowed or tolerated.
  • In the interest of safety, climbing on the banks is strictly forbidden.
  • In the interest of safety when the bell rings during playtime the children stop playing, stand in their places and move to their class lines only when directed. Children do not enter school building without getting permission from teachers.

Sanctions

Sanctions will be applied when misbehaviour occurs. Teachers  will take into consideration the gravity of the misbehaviour, the age of the child and their emotional development before imposing a sanction. We will always strive to be fair and consistent to all children.

The degree of misdemeanours i.e minor, serious or gross will be judged by the teachers of Kyle N.S based on a common sense approach taking into account the gravity and frequency of the misdemeanours.

Sanctions may include

  • A verbal reprimand including, advice on how to improve.
  • Temporary separation from peers within class or temporary removal to another class.
  • Extra work.
  • Noting instance of yard misbehaviour in yard book.
  • Standard note re uniform, homework etc.
  • Write an account of what happened, to be signed by the parent.
  • Loss of privileges/ denial of participation in a class activity.
  • Detention during break at designated place in the playground/hallway.
  • A note in the homework journal to be signed by a parent.
  • Discussion with a parent regarding the misbehaviour.
  • Referral to Principal.
  • Exclusion (Suspension or Expulsion) from school (in accordance with Rule 130 of the Rules for National Schools as amended by circular and Education Welfare Act 2000).

 Examples of Minor Misdemeanours:

Interrupting class work/ running in the school building/ talking during  class/ littering/ not wearing correct uniform/ being discourteous/ unmannerly/ not completing homework without good reason/ minor endangerment of self or others/ using unacceptable language.

Examples of Serious Misdemeanours:

Being constantly disruptive/ bringing weapons to school/ bullying/ stealing/ leaving the school premises without permission/ frequenting the school premises after hours without permission/ damaging school property/ unacceptable language/ serious endangerment of self or others.

Examples of Gross Misdemeanours:

Aggressive, threatening or violent behaviour towards a pupil, staff member or teacher/ unresolved bullying/ deliberately injuring a fellow pupil/ taps turned on in senior classes/ deliberately blocking toilets/ turning on the fire hose/ deliberately activating the fire alarm/ setting fire to the school

Suspension/Expulsion

In cases of a  Gross Misdemeanour or repeated instances of serious misbehaviour suspension may be considered

While the Board of Management has the authority to suspend, the B.O.M. of Kyle N.S. has delegated this authority to the Principal, for periods up to three days. The B.O.M. has also authorized the Principal, with the approval of the Chairperson of the Board, to impose a suspension for up to five days in circumstances where a meeting of the Board cannot be convened in a timely fashion. The B.O.M. has placed a ceiling of ten days on any one period of suspension imposed by it.

Prior to suspension, where possible, the Principal may review the case in consultation with teachers and other members of the school community involved, with due regards to records of previous misbehaviours, their pattern and context, sanctions and other interventions used and their outcomes and any relevant medical information.

Suspension will be in accordance with the Rules for National Schools and the Education Welfare Act 2000

Immediate Suspension

In exceptional circumstances the Principal may consider an immediate suspension to be necessary, where the continued presence of the student in the school at that time would represent a serious threat to the safety of students, or staff of the school.

The following procedure will be followed in Kyle N.S.

  • An investigation of the facts to confirm serious misbehaviour
  • Parents will be informed by phone or in writing about the incident
  • Parents will be given an opportunity to respond

If suspension is still decided upon

  • The Principal will notify the parent(s) in writing of the decision . The letter will outline
  1. The period of suspension
  2. The reasons for the suspension
  3. Arrangements for returning to school, including commitments to be entered into by the parents and/or the student.
  4. The provision for appeal to the B.O.M.
  5. The provision for appeal to the Secretary General of the D.E.S. (Only where the total number of days for which the student has been suspended in the current school year reaches 20 days)
  6. Where the cumulative total of days reached 6, the N.E.W.B. will be notified.

Records and Reports

Formal written records will be kept of:

  • The investigation
  • The decision making process
  • The decision and rationale for same
  • The duration of the suspension

EXPULSION

Procedures in respect of expulsion.

  • A detailed investigation carried out under the direction of the principal.
  • A recommendation to the BOM by the principal
  • Consideration by the BOM of the principal’s recommendations and the holding of a hearing.
  • BOM deliberations and actions following the hearing.
  • If BOM is of the opinion that the student will be expelled, the Board must notify the Educational Welfare Officer (EWO) in writing, of its opinion and the reasons for this opinion. The intention to expel a student does not take effect until 20 school days have elapsed after NEWB have received written notification. The NEWB will be notified using a Notice of Intention to Expel form which is available on www.schoolreturn.ie or from the helpline (1890 36 3666). This form will be completed and sent to School Return Section, National Educational Welfare Board, 16-22 Green St, Dublin 7.
  • Consultations arranged by the EWO.
  • Confirmation of the decision to expel.

Appeals

A parent may appeal a decision to expel to the Secretary General of the Department of Education and Skills ( Education Act 1998 section 29)

Success Criteria: (by which the policy will be judged)

  • Atmosphere of discipline within the school
  • Children are aware of school rules
  • Staff apply school rules
  • Growth in self discipline
  • Co-operation between parents, teachers and pupils in maintaining the code.
  • Comments or compliments on behaviour.
  • Children working to the best of their ability
  • Class working to the best of their ability
  • Improvements in behaviour

Monitoring and Review:

Each staff member is responsible for the implementation of the Code of Behaviour and Anti-Bullying Policy. Within the classroom the teacher monitors his/her class. Teachers consider themselves responsible for the behaviour of children within sight or sound of them and respond to any instance of unacceptable behaviour. The Principal is responsible for monitoring and reviewing policy at staff level on a regular basis and reports any review the staff deem necessary to the Board of Management.

The Board of Management (BOM) has ultimate responsibility for discipline in the school under its management and a duty to ensure that a fair code of discipline applies therein. The BOM will ensure the Code of Behaviour and Anti-Bullying policy is reviewed yearly or more often if the need arises.

In registering children in Kyle N.S. parents are expected to support teachers in following the policies and procedures of the school. Parents are informed at the start of every school year that they may receive a copy of relevant policies and procedures if they so wish.

Implementation

This policy has been in operation since September 2009 . It has been revised and ratified by the B.O.M. in April 2013. It will be reviewed annually or more often if the need arises.

 

Signed: ____________________ (Chairperson of the Board)  Date: ________

 

             _____________________ (Principal)  Date: _____________________