"Any concerns raised are always dealt with. It is nice that the school is prepared to face into issues but is always happy to discuss concerns. " Parent comment on parent survey March 2014
Bullying at Collaton St Mary is unacceptable. The community of staff, parents and children all take bullying very seriously, and whenever an instance of bullying has been reported, the school community makes every effort to ensure that it is eradicated.
Instances of bullying at Collaton St Mary are thankfully rare. At our last OFSTED inspection (July 2011), behaviour and safety were judged as outstanding. During a recent independent external review (November 2013) lead by a local National Leader of Education (NLE) and a director of a local teaching school, behaviour was judged to be ‘exemplary’ and securely ‘outstanding’. Instances of fixed term exclusion are extremely rare.
Our church school mission statement has three overarching aims: To see God in everyone; to experience the Christian way of life together; and to be the best learners we can be. All instances of bullying, and other poor behaviour are dealt with by the school with these aims in mind, and all relationships with children and parents are underpinned by our school’s chosen Christian values of friendship, forgiveness, trust, hope, peace and thankfulness.
During the spring of 2013, following a parent survey, which highlighted some parents' uncertainty about how the school dealt with bullying, we focused extensively on auditing and improving our practice and this work culminated in us writing a new anti-bullying policy, which incorporated the views of children, staff and parents. (see below)
During the spring and summer term of 2013 we:
- Implemented a whole school six week, weekly circle time and class worship linked to anti-bullying
- Introduced a kindness and respect award, presented by the Headteacher each week
- Led regular whole school worships on anti-bullying, kindness and respect
- Introduced a new recording system of incidents
- Held staff meetings about improving our procedures
- Had school-council meetings, including all children about anti-bullying
- Had a ‘Kindness and Respect’ week
- Met with a selection of parents and governors to discuss behaviour and safety
- Invited five governors to come in and interview children about behaviour, including bullying, and fed the outcomes of this into our policy and self-evaluation.
- Rewrote our anti-bullying policy (see below) as a result of all the work above. This was adopted by governors in July 2013.
Since this work, we have regularly built teaching about anti-bullying into PSHCE lessons, RE lessons, School Council and whole school collective worship. In addition to this, since September 2013 we have employed a pastoral support worker to support children who are having difficulties, including difficulties with bullying or difficult relationships with peers.
Whenever bullying behaviours have been reported to the school, we have always followed our policy meticulously, and have provided significant amounts of time and support to all involved. Children who exhibit bullying behaviours are clear that bullying is not tolerated in any form.
"Some recent issues with another family have been dealt with appropriately, confidentially and swiftly. Thank you. " Parent comment from parent survey March 2014
We still have work to do. We are not complacent, although it is heartening to see that parents are much clearer and happier with how bullying is dealt with in the school. In 2013 only 66% of parents agreed or strongly agreed the question, "The school deals effectively with bullying" while by March of 2014 only 3% of parents disagreed with the same question.