Anti Bullying Policy
Version: September 2023 Review Date: September 2024
Approved review date by Governors:
A consultation via email around the contents of this policy has been conducted
with all staff prior to the policy release.
This policy is to be read in conjunction with the Academy Safeguarding and Child Protection Policy and the Academy Behaviour Policy. Co-op Academy Swinton is committed to preventing all forms of peer on peer abuse including bullying.
We will work hard to ensure that bullying plays no part in our school community by proactively dealing with all students, their families and staff to eradicate and promptly address all reported incidents. Bullying is a form of anti-social behaviour that has no place in our school community. Bullying is aggressive or insulting behaviour by an individual or group, often repeated over a period of time, which intentionally hurts or harms. This includes all forms of online and social media bullying. Bullying can produce feelings of powerlessness, isolation from others and undermine self-esteem. It can affect attitudes and performance in school. For some it can lead to serious and prolonged distress and long-term damage to social and emotional development.
Co-op Academy Swinton intends to implement an Anti-bullying Policy that reflects the aims and policies of the DCSF reflected in, ‘Don’t Suffer in Silence’ an Anti-bullying pack for schools (www.governor.co.uk). This complies with the Human Rights Act 1998, Race Relations (Amendment) Act 2000 and ‘Safe to Learn: Embedding Anti-Bullying work in Schools’ (2007). This Anti-bullying Policy also embeds the key concepts of the Anti-Discrimination Law meaning that staff must act to prevent discrimination, harassment and victimisation within a school. This policy should be read in conjunction with the DfE guidance ‘Preventing and tackling Bullying - July 2017 Guidance and 'Keeping Children Safe in Education 2021’. This Academy sees the issue of bullying as a serious matter.
Aims/Statement of Intent:
All our staff, students and parents/carers at Co-op Academy Swinton are working together to create a school community where bullying is not tolerated. This is at the heart of our academy’s ‘Ways of Being’:
Be yourself always
Show you care
Do what matters most
As a school we are committed to not only dealing with bullying but to do all that we can to prevent it happening in the first place.
All students in our academy should feel free from the threat of bullying and have the right to feel safe and secure. The aim of the policy is
- increase awareness and to encourage students to report concerns regarding bullying
- provide protection, support and reassurance for victims
- develop the self-confidence and self-esteem of all students
- develop an effective range of emotional 'self-defence' skills for all students
- promote a culture of self-discipline and excellent behaviour from all of our students
Definition of Bullying:
There are many definitions of bullying.
Bullying may be considered as: ‘deliberately hurtful; repeated over a period of time and difficult for victims to defend themselves against’.
Bullying can appear in many forms including racial, gender, sexual orientation and disability or being a Young carer.
There are two main types of bullying:
Physical harmful behaviour – e.g. Hitting, kicking, theft, hitting and other forms of physically abusive behaviour
Emotionally harmful behaviour – e.g. taunting, name calling, insults, offensive remarks or cyber bullying
These can be further categorised as:
Verbal – e.g. spreading nasty stories (rumours), exclusion from social groups, sending malicious texts, emails or messages on social media by using technologies such as mobile phones
Emotional – Excluding, tormenting, subjecting someone to ridicule or humiliation
Racist – Racial taunts, graffiti or gestures
Sexual – sexual harassment, unwanted physical contact or abusive comments. ‘Sexting’ may form a part of this
Homophobic - Any hostile or offensive action against lesbians, gay, bisexuals, transgender
students or those perceived to be lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender
Cyberbullying - Mobile threats by text messaging and calls; all areas of the internet such as email and chat room misuse; misuse of associated technology e.g. camera and video facilities and use thereof to deliberately upset someone else.
Extortion - Taking money off a student against their wishes
(This is not an exhaustive list)
Such behaviour constitutes bullying if:
- it is repetitive, wilful or persistent
- it is intentionally harmful, carried out by an individual or a group
- there is an imbalance of power leaving the person who is bullied feeling defenceless
Strategies for Prevention/How to combat bullying:
As an academy we are committed to not only dealing with bullying but we will try to do all that we can to prevent it happening in the first place.
Students will be informed about our Anti-Bullying Policy via:
- Protective curriculum – Anti-bullying week and anti-bullying surveys will be conducted twice a year, to raise the profile of this issue and also look at diversity whether this arises from race, culture, gender, sexuality, or disability
- Whole school curriculum and Personal development curriculum – will incorporate aspects that will challenge stereotypical views and promote student’s appreciation for differences in a positive manner
- Assemblies – Senior leadership team, pupil progress coordinators and year managers will inform students of the academy’s zero tolerance policy.
- Newsletters , Anti-Bullying displays, posters, academy website will inform students on various issues regarding e-safety and cyberbullying and other categories of bullying
Co-op Academy Swinton is fully committed to a working partnership with parents and carers and believes that working together, where incidents of bullying may occur, always achieves the best outcomes for the children. Working together also creates an environment of support and openness, with a mutual goal of finding solutions to any issues that may arise. Parents and carers should inform the year team as soon as they believe that bullying is occurring so as an academy we can address all concerns in a timely and effective manner which is focused around the child’s safety.
In addition we will ensure that parents and carers are fully informed our policy and procedures via mediums such as:
- Academy website
- Intake Evenings and Parents’ Evenings
- Anti-Bullying Policy
- Academy social media
- Safeguarding and mental health and well being bulletin
In trying to create an ‘anti-bullying culture’ we take a preventative approach to bullying to safeguard the welfare of our students. We are committed to creating a school in which people treat others with respect. We have many strategies in place to enable us to do this:
- Dedicated website Safeguarding report button - this is sent to a dedicated trained safeguarding staff
- Peer Mentoring – older students support younger students during form time and encourage them to discuss any issues
- Students will be made aware of sanctions if bullying does occur
- Safe areas provided in school (STRIVE Centre)
- Staff supervision at break time, lunchtime and after school
- Anti-Bullying Surveys are conducted twice a year with all year groups which gives students the opportunity to indicate any students that might be a victim or bully
- Students are encouraged to ‘Call out, speak out’ their Form Tutor, Year Manager, Pupil Progress Co-ordinator or any staff member that they can trust. This ‘Call out, speak out’’ message is relayed to all students through form time activities, assemblies and our PSHE curriculum
- Nurture Group enables students to build self confidence and self esteem to form friendship groups
- Variety of activities on offer at lunchtime and after school, all supervised by staff
- Protective curriculum will include a focus week of activities and presentations on anti bullying to provide us with the platform to highlight bullying issues and talk freely during form time and PSHE
- Competitions, such as anti-bullying posters created by students
- We are a ‘listening school’ and there is always a member from our Pastoral Team on pastoral duty to listen if a student is in need
- Promote our academy ethos of ‘Mutual respect’
- Breakfast club is supervised by a member of staff from 7:30am every morning and provides opportunity and support for students before school
- Student council allows student representatives to discuss any issues around anti bullying and to look at the current anti bullying policy
- Year Managers and members of support staff are trained and are available to discuss any concerns with students
We aim to make anti-bullying initiatives an integral part of the curriculum for all years, with dedicated lessons during form time through the protective curriculum and PHSE. Where appropriate, teachers encourage discussion, group work and cooperative learning to demonstrate the importance of bullying issues. We also raise student awareness and tolerance through assemblies, workshops, external programmes with external providers such as the Pride Trust, Stonewall etc. and Anti-Bullying Surveys.
Procedures and sanctions for dealing with reported incidents:
All reported incidents will be dealt with sensitively and effectively by the member of staff to whom the incident was reported. The school will take firm and decisive action to deal with any incident of bullying witnessed by or reported to any member of staff (in line with the Behaviour Policy). Bullying can be reported to any member of staff in the academy either directly or indirectly and each case will be fully investigated and taken seriously. The academy will have a proactive and sympathetic supportive response to victims and will be tailored to each individual case and specific needs.
The response to a reported bullying incident will be specific to the nature of the individual case and needs of the potential victim. We will follow a staged response to any reports of bullying which is proportionate to the incident reported. This may include the following
- Immediate swift action to stop the incident and secure the child’s safety
- working with parents and carers to eliminate further incidents
- Positive reinforcement that reporting the incident was the correct thing to do and the first step to alleviate the problem
- Reassurance that the victim is not responsible for the behaviour of the bully
- Strategies deployed and discussed with the student to prevent further incidents
- Parental/carer contact may be deemed appropriate
- Restorative approaches or restorative justice to be used where deemed appropriate
- Pastoral team monitoring
- Pastoral mediation with victim and perpetrator if deemed appropriate
- Internal exclusion if appropriate/Appropriate sanction
- Referral to SLT and SLT involvement
- Referral to outside agencies
- Parental/carer meeting with pastoral staff
- Internal mentoring for extra support for the victim
- Appropriate timetable amendments
- Referrals to onsite police community officers or Local police
- Safety planning and risk assessment
- Potential safeguarding referrals
Monitoring and evaluating the policy
The academy will review the Anti-Bullying Policy annually by the Designated safeguarding lead and SLT, which will be ratified by the Headteacher and the trust governing body. The views of the students, staff, governors, parents and trust will be taken into consideration to make changes and improvements to the policy on an ongoing basis. All bullying incidents will be recorded on CPOMS.
Annually the policy will be assessed as to its implementation, effectiveness and success throughout the academy and incidents of bullying will be reported to Governors on an annual basis.
At Co-op Academy Swinton we consider bullying to be against our underlying ethos of ‘Mutual respect’. We must all act in a consistent, supportive and sympathetic way when dealing with issues of bullying.
If you need to contact our academy or require further information/help, then please contact us on:
0161 794 6215 or email us at: email@example.com
Useful contacts for parents/carers
Co-op Academy Swinton Year team contacts
Miss G Daley
Mr R Williams
Mrs R Stevens
Miss S Carrington
Miss L Cope
- Kidscape: 08451 205204 or https://www.kidscape.org.uk/
- Parentline Plus: 0808 800 2222
- NSPCC: 0808 800 5000 or https://www.nspcc.org.uk/
- Anti Bullying Alliance: 020 7843 1901 or www.antibullyingalliance.org
- CEOP: https://www.ceop.police.uk/safety-centre/
- Childline: 0800 1111 or https://www.childline.org.uk/
- GOV.UK: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/preventing-and-tackling-bullying
- Stonewall: https://www.stonewall.org.uk/
- Co-op Academy Swinton: https://swinton.coopacademies.co.uk/anti-bullying/
A consultation via email around the contents of this policy has been conducted with all staff prior to the policy release.
Helpful Anti-bullying guidance
What is cyber bullying?
Cyber bullying is bullying through the use of communication technology like mobile phone text messages, emails or websites. This can take many forms for example:
- Sending threatening or abusive text messages or emails, personally or anonymously
- Making insulting comments about someone on a website, social networking site (eg: MySpace, Instagram, snapchat) or online diary (blog)
- Making or sharing derogatory or embarrassing videos of someone via mobile phone or email (such as ‘happy slapping’ videos)
- sharing of consensual and non-consensual photos which are deliberately posted for malicious reasons
It should be noted that the use of ICT to bully could be against the law.
Abusive language or images, used to bully, harass or threaten another, whether spoken or written (through electronic means) may be libellous and may contravene the Harassment Act 1997 or the Telecommunications Act 1984 for example.
Within our Anti-Bullying Policy and Acceptable Use Policy that use of the web, social media, text messages, email, gaming, video or audio to bully another student will not be tolerated.
‘Bullying can be done verbally, in writing or images, including through communication technology (cyber bullying) eg: graffiti, snapchats, social media messaging, gaming messages, text messaging, email or postings on websites. It can be done physically, financially (including damage to property) or through social isolation. Verbal bullying is the most common form.’
At Co-op Academy Swinton we believe that children should be confident in a no-blame culture when it comes to reporting inappropriate incidents involving the internet or mobile technology: they must be able to do this without fear.
If a bullying incident directed at a child occurs using email or mobile phone technology either inside or outside of school time;
- Advise the child not to respond to the message
- Refer to the relevant Year Manager, Pupil Progress Coordinator or Mr Rigby, they will then notify parents/carers
- Secure and preserve any evidence
- Inform the sender’s email service provider
- Consider informing the Police depending on the severity or repetitious nature of offence
If deliberately invented or malicious or threatening comments are posted on an Internet site about a student you should;
- Inform and request the comments be removed if the site is administered externally
- Secure and preserve any evidence
- Send all the evidence to your child’s Pupil Progress Coordinator or Year Manager, parents/carers
- Endeavour to trace the origin and inform Police as appropriate
- The Headteacher or Deputy Headteacher would consider informing LA E-safety Officer, as appropriate (Sarah Callaghan)
What is homophobic/Biophic and transphobic bullying or language?
Homophobic, biophic and transphobic language means terms of abuse that are often used towards lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender people, or those thought to be LGBTQ+. However, homophobic, biophobic and transphobic language is also often used to refer to something or someone as inferior. Phrases such as ‘you’re such a lezzer’ or ‘those trainers are gay’, for example, may be used to insult someone or something, but without referring to actual or perceived sexual orientation. This language is often dismissed as ‘harmless banter’ and not thought to be particularly hurtful, especially where the intent is not to comment on someone’s actual or perceived sexual orientation. However, regardless of the lack of any deliberate intent, these terms liken being gay to something that’s bad, wrong or inferior.
Co-op Academy Swinton endeavours to eliminate this sort of behaviour or use of this language. Our staff and students work together to create a school culture where homophobia, biophobia and transphobia and homophobic, biophibic and transphobic bullying are not tolerated.
Our academy aims to intervene when young people use homophobic language, including the use of the word gay to mean inferior, we will respond in the same way that we challenge racist language.
Co-op Academy Swinton has various ways of addressing the issue homophobic, biophobic and transphobic bullying or language as indicated below:
- Teachers and academy staff will challenge homophobic, biophobic and transphobic behaviour or language every time they see or hear it
- Ensure that our students understand that homophobic, biophobic and transphobic behaviour or language is offensive and this is done via school assemblies, protective curriculum and the whole school curriculum
- Involvement of the Senior Leadership Team if homophobic, biophobic and transphobic behaviour or language persists
- Involvement of parents/carers if homophobic, biophobic and transphobic behaviour or language persists
- The school has addressed homophobia and LGBT equality in lessons
- Use of assemblies to address problems or promote messages about LGBTQ+ people
- Use of protective curriculum to promote awareness and understanding of the LGBTQ+ community
- Use of posters around school to promote awareness
- Asking students their views of homophobic, biophobic and transphobic behaviour or language and how to tackle the problem
Any homophobic, biophobic and transphobic behaviour or language will be dealt with in accordance with the above approaches or where deemed necessary by using the ‘Seven Steps Approach’.
Transphobic bullying stems from a hatred or fear of people who are transgender. ‘Transgender’ is an umbrella term that describes people whose sense of their gender or gender identity is seen as being different to typical gender norms.
Transgender people commonly feel that their biological body is not aligned with their inner sense of gender identity. This leads some people to live in the gender role in which they feel more comfortable and which relates to their own sense of their gender identity rather than to their biological body.
Where children and young people are perceived not to be conforming to the dominant gender roles that may be widely expected of them, the Academy will be alert for signs of bullying.
Transphobic bullying is commonly underpinned by sexist attitudes. Boys and girls may be equally affected. An individual may also experience transphobic bullying as a result of perceptions that a parent, relative or other significant figure displays gender ‘variance’ or is transgender.
The need to address sexist, sexual and transphobic bullying will be viewed in the wider context of the academy’s duty to implement the Gender Equality Duty (2007), to promote student well-being and to promote community cohesion. We understand that sexist, sexual and transphobic bullying is fundamentally an issue of equality. Although girls are most frequently harmed by sexist and sexual bullying, both sexual and transphobic bullying may affect boys and girls.
We will consider all students as potentially at risk of such bullying, particularly where they are perceived by others not to conform to dominant or stereotypical gender roles. The academy is committed to respecting the views of students in accordance with their human rights. The academy will respond to and prevent this type of bullying by following the ‘DFE - Preventing and Tackling Bullying-July 2017’ guidance, ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education 2019’ and ‘DFE - Guidance on Sexual Violence and Sexual Harassment, May 2018’.
Biphobia is the fear or dislike of someone who identifies as bi based on prejudice or negative attitudes, beliefs or views about bi people. This can also include denying somebody’s bi identity or refusing to accept it. Biphobia may be targeted at people who are, or who are perceived to be, bi.
Biphobic bullying is bullying based on prejudice or negative attitudes, beliefs or views about, or behaviours towards, bi people. This can also include denying somebody’s bi identity or refusing to accept it. Biphobic bullying may be targeted at children and young people who are openly bi, those who are questioning their sexual orientation, or who are suspected of being bi. Biphobic bullying is also often targeted at children and young people who have bi family members. Biphobic bullying may target children and young people with negative stereotyping (for example suggesting that they are greedy) or imply that being bi is a phase.
Young Carers Bullying Guidance
At Co-op Academy Swinton we are aware that some students in our academy have caring roles at home.
Definition of a Young Carer;
‘A young carer is a child or young person under the age of 18 who carries out significant caring tasks and assumes a level of responsibility for another person which would normally be taken by an adult.’
We believe that all children and young people should have equal access to education, regardless of their circumstances at home and that whilst some children have to take on inappropriate or excessive levels of caring responsibilities we need to make sure that their educational needs are addressed.
When a young person does look after someone in their family who has a serious illness, disability, mental health issue or suffers a substance misuse problem, they may need a little extra support to help them get the most out of school.
We aim to understand the issues faced by Young Carers and support any student who helps to look after someone at home.
We aim to support Young Carers through a whole-school approach and through working with other agencies and professionals, with the understanding that support for the whole family is in the best interests of the Young Carer.
Salford Young Carers Service works in partnership with our school to offer appropriate support to young carers both within school and the wider community.
Any bullying towards Young Carers will be dealt with in accordance with the above approaches or where deemed necessary by using the ‘Seven Steps Approach’.
Prejudice-based/Discriminatory or Racist bullying Guidance
Prejudice-based bullying is when bullying behaviour is motivated by prejudice based on an individual’s actual or perceived identity; it can be based on characteristics unique to a child or young person’s identity or circumstance.
Prejudice-based bullying includes the protected characteristics, but prejudice can and does extend beyond these and can lead to bullying for many other reasons.
Additional support needs can arise for any reason for any length of time. Additional support may be required to overcome needs arising from the learning environment; health or disability; family circumstances or social and emotional factors. A child or young person may be bullied because they have an additional support need and, crucially, being bullied can also lead to an additional support need.
Asylum Seekers and Refugees: Stigma, caused by a lack of knowledge and understanding of asylum seekers and refugees, can mean children with this status may be at greater risk of being bullied. In addition, reluctance to burden parents or carers with extra worries can allow bullying to go undetected and continue.
Body image and physical appearance can be hugely important to children and young people, with bullying because of body image having the potential to negatively impact upon their wellbeing.
Disablist bullying: People who bully others may see children and young people with disabilities as being less able to defend themselves and/or tell an adult what has happened. The bullying behaviour is likely to be focused upon their specific disability or disabilities.
Racial bullying:Children and young people from minority ethnic groups can experience bullying based on perceived differences in dress, communication, appearance, beliefs and/or culture as well as their skin colour and accent.
Religion and belief: Lack of knowledge and understanding about the traditions, beliefs and etiquette of different faiths can lead to religious intolerance and bullying
At Co-op Academy Swinton we aim to prevent prejudice-based bullying, by using our whole school Anti-bullying approach.
We endeavour to create a culture that celebrates ‘Being yourself always’
- We fulfil and promote our Equity duty as an academy
- We create a culture that reflects safety and inclusivity
- We celebrate difference
- We use the language of diversity
- We include and involve all students
- We empower staff and students
Child on Child Abuse Guidance
We recognise that children and young people are capable of abusing their peers and that peer on peer abuse can manifest in many different ways, including on-line bullying, youth produced imagery (consentual or non consentual), criminal and sexual exploitation, initiation/hazing and inappropriate harmful sexual behaviours. It is very clear that this abuse should always be treated seriously and never just ‘banter’ or a ‘part of growing up’. Any concerns around peer on peer abuse must be reported and recorded in line with the Child Protection and Safeguarding Procedures within the Academy. (Please refer to Child Protection and Safeguarding Policy).
Sexual Violence and Sexual Harassment Guidance
Sexual Violence and Sexual Harassment is unwanted conduct of a sexual nature that may occur on or off line and can occur between two or more children of any age and gender. it can also occur through a group of children sexually assaulting or sexually harassing a single child or group of children. Sexual violence can occur online and offline and in physical, verbal or both.
Sexist Bullying - This is bullying based on sexist attitudes that when expressed demean, intimidate or harm another person because of their sex or gender. These attitudes are commonly based around the assumption that women are subordinate to men, or are inferior. Sexist bullying may sometimes be characterised by inappropriate sexual behaviours.
Sexual Bullying - This is bullying behaviour that has a specific sexual dimension or a sexual dynamic and it may be physical, verbal or non-verbal/psychological. Behaviours may involve suggestive sexual comments, including ‘sexting’ sexual bullying via a mobile device or innuendo including offensive comments about sexual reputation; or using sexual language that is designed to subordinate, humiliate or intimidate. It is also a common method of dealing with bullying of this nature: underpinned by sexist attitudes or gender stereotypes.
Upskirting - This behaviour involves taking a picture under a person’s clothing without them knowing, with the intention of viewing their genitals or buttocks to obtain sexual gratification, or cause the victim humiliation, distress or alarm. This is a criminal offence and any incident of ‘upskirting’ within the academy will be reported to the Police.
The academy will take all forms of Sexual Violence and Sexual Harassment seriously. The Academy is aware that some groups may also potentially be at more risk.
Evidence shows that girls, children with SEND and LGBT+ are more at risk. The academy will ensure that an appropriate ‘Protective’ Curriculum is in place to educate and safeguard young people within the academy about such issues.
We understand that sexist, sexual and transphobic bullying is fundamentally an issue of equality. Although girls are most frequently harmed by sexist and sexual bullying, both sexual and transphobic bullying may affect boys and girls. We will consider all students as potentially at risk of such bullying, particularly where they are perceived by others not to conform to dominant or stereotypical gender roles. The academy will respond to and prevent this type of bullying by following the ‘DFE Preventing and tackling Bullying July 2017’ guidance.
Anti-Bullying Policy - September 2023