Our overall aim in St. Mary’s Senior National School is to create a secure and happy learning environment so that each pupil can reach their full potential. We fully acknowledge and appreciate the important contribution parents/guardians make towards achieving this aim. Our school behaviour policy encourages self-discipline and mutual respect.
DISCIPLINARY PROCEDURES AND SCHOOL RULES
We have evolved a system of discipline in St. Mary’s Senior National School, which is outlined below. In St. Mary’s we are anxious to foster a positive attitude towards the school. We are also most anxious to provide the best opportunity for our pupils to pursue their studies and to try to ensure that each child’s right to learn is a disruption-free environment is jealously guarded.
The school places a great emphasis on the importance of children receiving encouragement to develop good patterns of behaviour.
- To function properly and to create a pleasant learning environment, a school community needs clearly stated rules and regulations wisely and consistently applied.
- The Board of Management, the Principal and Staff may have to apply suitable sanctions to ensure that good order is promoted and maintained.
- The Behaviour Policy encourages co-operation, respect and tolerance through an emphasis on self-discipline.
- We wish at all times to help each child to develop a positive self-image.
- The policy is designed to enable the child to socialise in an acceptable manner within the group, within the class, within the school and ultimately within the community.
- The Policy is designed to ensure the safety of our pupils, our staff, individually and collectively and at all times to encourage consideration towards the physical safety of the individual and of the group.
MEASURES TO PROMOTE CO-OPERATION BETWEEN SCHOOL AND PARENTS/GUARDIANS
- Formal meetings
- Informal meetings
- Regular accurate and meaningful reporting
- Use of Newsletter
- Use of Homework Notebook
- Extra-curricular activities
- Special events
- Supplying parents with copies of policy on discipline
THE ROLE OF THE TEACHER IN REGARD TO DISCIPLINE
“The individual teacher is responsible for the effective implementation of the school’s policy on discipline with his/her own classroom and in communal areas during breaks etc. He/she is entitled to expect the support of the Principal Teacher, and the BOM with regard to the fair implementation of this policy.”
Our School Code of Conduct specifically states:
“Bullying by individuals or by groups will incur the most severe sanctions.”
Countering Bullying Behaviour c.20/93 addressed the issue of Bullying.
THE REWARD SYSTEM
In order to encourage and reinforce good behaviour we use a number of methods:
- The first is acknowledging and praising the pupil. Each pupil, in our care, is special with individual strengths and interests. Individual or collective praise encourages and motivates the child. A written note to a parent or a phone call to highlight the excellent word or behaviour is often the result “Mol an Óige” sums up our philosophy.
- A prize from the Principal or a mention at general assembly in the hall provides another occasion to thank and reinforce the effort.
- Individual privileges, class privileges, treats etc. are often employed to reward consistency and application, suitable for the age and maturity of the pupil/class
- Teacher comments in a Journal, weekly tests scores are other systems of encouragement
- No Uniform Days
- Parent Teacher Association Treats for individual classes
- Night off homework
- Certificates to mark good effort etc.
- Stars for good work and doing ones best.
THE FOLLOWING STRATEGIES MAY BE USED TO SHOW DISAPPROVAL OF UNACCEPTABLE BEHAVIOUR
- Reasoning with a pupil
- Reprimand (advice)
- Temporary separation from peers
- Loss of privileges
- Extra written work
- Extra memory work
- Copying of school rules
- Memorisation of school rules
- Confinement (under supervision) during play periods
- Referral to the Principal Teacher
- Report of incident entered into relevant incident book
- Transfer to a different class
PROCEDURES TO BE FOLLOWED IN THE EVENT OF MAJOR AND LESS SERIOUS MISDEMEANOURS
- Teacher will enter incidents in the class discipline book. Extra exercises (either written or memory work) may also be given.
- If incidents recur the accumulation will be noted in the Official Incident Book in the Principal’s office and the Parents/Guardians will be notified of same.
- Unwarranted repetition of “minor” misdemeanours becomes serious as outlined in accumulations above.
- In the event of a serious misdemeanour the incident will be noted in the Official Incident Book and the Parents/Guardians will be informed.
- Insolence: Insubordination or disrespect for teachers/adults.
- Bullying or retaliation: Interfering with other pupils e.g. horse-play, fighting, tripping etc.
Bullying must be reported. Retaliation is forbidden.
- Damaging property
- Serious disruption of class
- Leaving the school without specific permission
- Deliberate lack of application (schoolwork and homework)
- Bad language, vulgarity of speech
- “Accumulations” – any unacceptable level of repeated “less serious” misdemeanours
- Blatant disobedience
LESS SERIOUS MISDEMEANOURS (SOME EXAMPLES)
- Late coming to school
- Unruly behaviour
- Class disruption
- Being in any part of the school premises without permission
- Misbehaving, talking or running in silent zones (toilets and corridors)
- Failure to line up properly or answer bell promptly (correct lining up procedure)
- Failure to enter or leave school by proper routes
CODE OF DISCIPLINE FOR ST. MARY’S SENIOR NATIONAL SCHOOL
- The school day begins at 8.50am. and pupils should be in their lines at that time.
- The correct full school uniform should always be worn except on PE or swimming days.
- Pupils should have all books, copies, pens etc. from the first school day in September.
- The hallways, corridors etc. are silent zones.
- Always walk inside the building.
- All school books and copies are required to be covered for September.
- Children must not interfere with other children’s property or with school property.
- Children must present a note from parent/guardian following any absence from school.
- Chewing gum, crisps, popcorn, glass bottles and all nut products are forbidden.
- Be conscious of the safety and well being of others.
- Fighting , kicking or bullying are absolutely forbidden.
- “Bad language” is unacceptable.
- Pupils must remain in the yard during break time and in order to re-enter the building they must receive the permission of the teacher on duty.
- When the bell goes for the end of break stand still and listen. When the bell rings again walk quietly to your line.
- Parents will be notified of any accidents or serious misconduct.
- Dangerous or rough games are not allowed.
- Walking about is forbidden.
- Insolence will never be tolerated.
- Each child is expected to keep his/her immediate desk area clean and tidy.
- Never leave the room without permission.
- Pupils may not leave their places if the teacher is absent from the room.
- On “wet days” pupils must remain in their places during break.
PLEASE NOTE: The Board of Management would like to state that should a Parent/Guardian have an issue with any other child/children in the school then in no circumstances should any Parent/Guardian approach any child either in the school yard or anywhere else within the school grounds. Such issues should be addressed either through the Parents/Guardians of the child, the Class Teacher or the School Principal. Any failure to follow this procedure may have to be investigated by the Board.