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Code of Behaviour

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Code of Behaviour, St. Peter’s N.S. ,Snugboro, Castlebar, Co. Mayo

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CODE OF BEHAVIOUR
of St. Peter’s N.S.
Snugboro

Mission Statement
St. Peter’s N.S., Snugboro, a Roman Catholic school (which is established in connection with the Minister of Education & Skills) aims at promoting the full and harmonious development of all aspects of the person of the pupil: intellectual, physical, cultural, moral and spiritual, including a living relationship with God and with other people.

The school models and promotes a philosophy of life inspired by belief in God and in the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The Catholic school provides religious education for the pupils in accordance with the doctrines, practices and traditions of the Roman Catholic Church and promotes the formation of the pupils in the Catholic Faith.
One of the primary aims of St. Peter’s N.S. is that every member of the school community feels valued and respected, and that each person is treated fairly and well. All are expected to work towards creating a caring community based on mutual trust and respect.
The purpose of St. Peter’s N.S. is to help pupils to discover and develop their talents and aptitudes in an environment permeated by Catholic values, so that they will be able to participate actively and responsibly in society now and in the future. All school activities are assessed against this objective and disciplinary decisions are informed by a concern for the individual pupils and the welfare of the whole school community.
The primary aim of the Code of Behaviour is the promotion of good relationships so that all can work together to advance learning in an effective and considerate way. The intention of this approach is to create an environment that assists mutual respect, self-discipline and self-development in pupils.
Our School Motto is -
“Treat others as you would like them to treat you”. Code of Behaviour, St. Peter’s N.S. ,Snugboro, Castlebar, Co. Mayo
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This Code of Behaviour has been drafted Under Section 23 of the Education (Welfare) Act 2000, which states that the Board of Management(B.O.M.) of each school must prepare and make available a Code of Behaviour in respect of its pupils. The Code was extensively re-drafted after consultation with the staff, parents, pupils and Board of Management of St. Peter’s N.S. in May and June 2021. The Act requires that the school Code of Behaviour be prepared in accordance with Guidelines issued by the National Educational Welfare Board / TÚSLA. TÚSLA must also advise schools on matters relating to the conduct of pupils and must "promote and foster, in recognised schools, an environment that encourages children to attend school and participate fully in the life of the school. "Education (Welfare) Act, 2000 Section 10. ( Referenced material includes ‘Developing a Code of Behaviour: Guidelines for Schools’ NEWB 2008; ‘Managing Challenging Behaviour: Guidelines for School’ INTO 2004).
When parents enrol their child(ren) in St Peter’s N.S., they are agreeing to support the implementation of the Code of Behaviour and other policies in the school. We ask parents/legal guardians to sign a form agreeing that they will uphold the Code of Behaviour.
Rights and Responsibilities :
Pupils’ Rights: All pupils have the right to expect to be treated fairly, consistently and with respect. They should be able to learn and to be educated in a relatively disruption-free environment, safe from bullying and abuse. Pupils should have the expectation that their individual differences will be recognised and acknowledged. Pupils have the right to be listened to, and to question, in a respectful way and at appropriate times. As learners, they should be allowed to make mistakes and to learn from them. They should have confidence that their positive behaviour will be affirmed and that misbehaviour will be dealt with appropriately. (‘Towards Positive Behaviour in Primary Schools’ INTO 2004) .All pupils have the responsibility to behave in accordance with our Code of Behaviour.
Staff: Principal’s,Teachers’/SNAs’/Staff’s Rights :The Principal,Teachers and SNAs, Secretary and Caretaker/Cleaner, like all workers, have the right to be treated with respect and dignity. They should be able to work in a safe, well-mannered, physical environment, relatively free from disruption. They have the right to the support and co-operation of teaching colleagues, other school staff, parents and pupils in order to achieve the school’s aims and objectives. (‘Towards Positive Behaviour in Primary Schools’ INTO 2002)
Code of Behaviour, St. Peter’s N.S. ,Snugboro, Castlebar, Co. Mayo
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Principles: The school recognises and celebrates the variety of differences that exist between children and its duty to cater for these differences as facilities and expertise allow.
It is agreed that a high standard of behaviour requires a strong sense of community within the school and a high level of mutual respect and co-operation among staff and between staff, parents and pupils. Parental support is essential for the Code to be implemented successfully.
Every effort will be made to ensure that the Code of Behaviour is implemented in a reasonable, fair and consistent manner.
Our staff will strive to offer a model of respect in action. Parents are expected to model respect in action also. In our Code, the individuality of each child will be taken into consideration while acknowledging the right of every child to education in a disruption-free environment.

Every effort will be made by all members of staff to adopt a positive approach to behaviour in the school and to ensure that the Code of Behaviour is implemented in a reasonable, fair and consistent manner.

Each teacher is responsible for discipline within her/his own classroom while sharing a common responsibility for good order within the school environment.

Discipline is based on respect:

– respect of pupils for themselves and for others ,
- respect of staff for themselves and for others,
-respect of parents for themselves and for others.,.
Code of Behaviour, St. Peter’s N.S. ,Snugboro, Castlebar, Co. Mayo
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In the implementation of sanctions, the emphasis is always on the child’s behaviour and not on the child.
Our Code of Behaviour was developed through consultation with our stakeholders i.e. parents, staff, pupils and the Board of Management of St. Peter’s N.S.
The aims of the Code of Behaviour of our school are :
To provide clarity for pupils, teachers, staff and parents on behavioural expectations.
To provide for the safe and effective operation of the school.
To create an environment where everyone feels happy, safe and secure and where members of the school community treat each other with consideration and respect.
To develop pupils’ self-esteem and resilience and to promote positive behaviour.
To foster the development of a sense of responsibility and self-discipline in pupils based on respect, consideration, tolerance of others and the rights of others.
To foster caring attitudes to the environment.
To facilitate the holistic education and development of every child.
To enable teachers to teach without disruption.

Rules:
Rules are kept to a minimum and are devised with regard for the health, safety and welfare of all members of the school community. If a school is to function efficiently ,it is necessary that school rules and regulations are stated clearly and enforced consistently.
Our school rules emphasise positive behaviour and are applied in a fair and consistent manner, with due regard to the age of the pupils and to individual difference. Good behaviour is expected and encouraged.
Behaviour that interferes with the rights of others to learn and to feel safe is unacceptable. The Code of Behaviour not only applies on the school premises but also at any school related activity whether on or off the school premises such as tours/trips ,competitions, religious ceremonies etc.
Code of Behaviour, St. Peter’s N.S. ,Snugboro, Castlebar, Co. Mayo
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The above list of rules and places is not exhaustive and consists of examples only.
Other Relevant Policies:
The Code of Behaviour has been developed to include and in conjunction with the following policies/procedures : Anti- Bullying policy, Child Safeguarding Statement & Risk assessment, School Attendance Strategy, C.C.T.V. policy, Homework , Uniform, Healthy Eating and Home-School Communication procedures, Parental Complaints procedures (Appendix 1), Acceptable Use Policy, Health and Safety Policy , Admissions Policy, Enrolment procedures & New pupils/Infant Booklet and our Covid 19 Response Plan.
Please visit our website www.stpetersnssnugboro.ie for further information regarding the procedures and policies mentioned here.

Attendance: Attendance at School
Under section 21 of the Education Welfare Act 2000, the Board Of Management of a recognised school is required to prepare a report twice a year on the level of attendances at the school. This report must then be submitted to the Child and Family agency (Túsla). If a pupil has 20 or more absences in the school year, the school is obliged by law to forward his/her name to The Child and Family Agency/Túsla. Pupils are required to be regular in their attendance at school. After a pupil has been absent, an explanation by way of an email/ note from the PARENT(S)/LEGAL GUARDIAN(S) must always be provided to the class teacher upon the pupil’s return or during their absence. When a pupil has to leave school early (i.e. before 1.50p.m./2.50p.m.), a note/email from the PARENT(S)/LEGAL GUARDIAN(S) must be sent to the class teacher. The person collecting the child must sign the child out in the book provided at the front office. (Due to Covid 19 restrictions, the pupil is signed out/in by a member of the school staff.) A pupil must be signed back in if he/she is returning to school before 2.50 p.m.
Healthy Eating: Each pupil has two breaks during the day:-
Junior Classes: Sos: 10.45 a.m. to 10.55 a.m. Lunch :12.15 p.m. to 12.45 p.m.
Senior classes: Sos: 11.00a.m. to 11.10a.m. Lunch: 12.55p.m. to 1.25 p.m.
Code of Behaviour, St. Peter’s N.S. ,Snugboro, Castlebar, Co. Mayo
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Children eat their lunches in the classroom, where they are supervised by a member of staff.
 In order to promote good eating habits in accordance with the Department of Health and Education guidelines, lunches/snacks should consist of sandwiches/wrap/roll/pasta, fruit, yoghurt and a non-fizzy drink.
Crisps, bars, sweets and chewing gum are NOT allowed in the school.
Due to a number of pupils with life-threatening food allergies in the school we request that parents/guardians do not include nuts, nut products, cereal bars which contain nut or nut traces, food containing nuts and food cooked in nut based oil in your child/children’s lunches.
ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES/Expectations
The Board of Management will provide a comfortable, safe environment, support the Principal and staff in implementing the Code and ratify and review the Code as necessary. The school reserves the right to amend this policy from time to time entirely at its discretion.

The Principal will promote a positive climate in the school and provide a safe working environment for all staff and pupils. The principal will ensure that the Code of Behaviour is implemented in a fair and consistent manner and arrange for review of the Code as necessary.

The Staff will implement the Code of Behaviour in a fair and consistent manner. They will be inclusive, courteous, and supportive in their interactions with pupils and parents. They will promote positive behaviour and re-inforce the school rules. They will communicate any concerns with the Principal and parents when necessary and keep records of serious, gross or repeated misbehaviour. Code of Behaviour, St. Peter’s N.S. ,Snugboro, Castlebar, Co. Mayo
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Parents or Legal Guardians are asked :
to nurture a positive attitude in their child(ren) towards school and to support, encourage and be interested in their child’s education.
It is the parents’ responsibility to ensure that children attend regularly and punctually, and the parents’ responsibility to support and encourage their children’s schoolwork.
Parents are asked to ensure that children attend school in good health and with a good level of hygiene. Parents are asked to check their child’s head regularly for head-lice and to treat as necessary. Parents are expected to keep children at home if they are sick and to send a written explanation/email for the child’s absence to the class teacher.
Parents are asked to ensure that children complete homework to the best of their child’s ability.(Homework is given at the discretion of the class teacher and usually is expected to be completed from Monday –Thursday).
Parents are expected to encourage children to have a sense of respect for themselves and for property.
Parents are expected to communicate with staff in a respectful and courteous manner and to model good behaviour in their relationship with staff. Parents are also asked not to approach staff outside of school regarding school issues. Code of Behaviour, St. Peter’s N.S. ,Snugboro, Castlebar, Co. Mayo
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Parents should be familiar with the Code of Behaviour and support its implementation. It is important that parents advise the class teacher/S.E.T. /the Principal of any problems which might affect their child’s behaviour and to co-operate with the teachers in instances where their child’s behaviour is causing difficulties for others.
Parents are expected to co-operate with the school in resolving a problem and on no account to approach or reprimand a pupil or staff member on school grounds/at any school related activity regarding any issue.
Parents must make an appointment initially with the class teacher to resolve an issue.(As per our Covid 19 Response plan, meetings are over the phone.)
(See Appendix 1 for our Complaints procedure).
For insurance purposes the B.O.M. wishes it to be known that the school has no responsibility for children on the school grounds before/after school opening hours.(School opening hours: 9.10 a.m. – 2.50 p.m.)
Creating a happy school/Affirming Positive Behaviour:
Positive reinforcement of good behaviour leads to better self-discipline and we place a greater emphasis on rewards and incentives than on sanctions. Each teacher is responsible for the implementation of the Code of Behaviour in his/her own classroom. Below is a sample (not an exhaustive) list of rewards/incentives/initiatives. Individual teachers use a variety of award systems and incentives in their classrooms to promote positive attitudes and behaviour. Class teachers draft their own classroom rules in conjunction with their pupils.
A quiet word or gesture to show approval.
A comment on a child’s copy.
Stickers and stars.
Happygrams
Class Dojo.
Code of Behaviour, St. Peter’s N.S. ,Snugboro, Castlebar, Co. Mayo
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A visit to another class or Principal for commendation.
Praise in front of class group/school assembly/over the tannoy.
Individual class merit awards, points or stamps.
Delegating some special responsibility or privilege.
Written or verbal communication with parent.
Pupil of the week/month award.
Homework vouchers.
Random Acts of kindness awards/prizes.
Affirmation of exceptional behaviour at assemblies/over the tannoy.
Incredible Years Programme
Catholic Schools’ Week
Friendship/Anti-bullying week

Where to get help in the first instance?
Pupils/parents are asked to contact the class teacher to get help/when problems arise.
Expectations of pupils: THE CODE FOR PUPILS
I will take care on my way to and from my classroom and in and around the school grounds.
I will do my best to be on time for school.
I will remain on the school grounds for the whole day unless my parents have to collect me. (A written email/note/explanation from parents is required).
I will show respect for myself and for all others.
I will do my best in school and I will use my time wisely.
I will have the correct books/copies/materials etc. ready for class.
I will listen well and follow instructions.
Code of Behaviour, St. Peter’s N.S. ,Snugboro, Castlebar, Co. Mayo
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I will have good manners, be truthful and be honest at all times.
I will look after property and I won’t damage things.
I will walk quietly in the school buildings and on the stairs.
I will wear the correct uniform and appropriate clothing to suit the weather. e.g. coats, hats etc.
I will do my homework and get it checked/ signed.
I will follow the Healthy Eating Policy and bring my wrappers home.
I will not bully others and I will report any bullying I experience or witness.
I will leave mobile devices at home e.g. mobile phone ,tablets etc.
I will ask my parent to send an email/written to my teacher if I am absent, leaving early or am late.
THE BREAK TIME CODE FOR PUPILS
I walk to the yard ~ I do not run.
I play well with others – I play by the rules – I don’t spoil other pupil’s games
I am gentle ~ I do not hurt others.
I always show respect. ~ I don’t taunt others, insult them, call them names or use bad words.
I am honest. ~ I don’t cover up the truth.
I am kind to others ~ I ask others to join games.
I always ask permission to leave the yard or to enter the building.
I stop when the bell rings ~ I walk to my line and I stand quietly.
I stay seated and busy during wet breaks.
I will never climb/swing on the boundary walls, trees, hand rails and gates
I will leave the stones/pebbles alone and I will never throw stones
(These lists are not exhaustive).
Code of Behaviour, St. Peter’s N.S. ,Snugboro, Castlebar, Co. Mayo
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Yard behaviour is monitored daily by staff. All serios incidents are reported verbally to class teachers.Class teachers assume responsibility for record keeping.
Aggressive behaviour, fighting, leaving the school grounds and being disrespectful to staff are considered serious misdemeanors /misbehaviours which may warrant immediate removal from the yard and a referral to the Principal or Deputy Principal.
MISBEHAVIOUR
The degree of misdemeanours i.e. minor, serious or gross, and the appropriate sanctions will be determined by the teachers and/or Principal based on a common-sense approach with regard to the gravity/frequency of such misdemeanours.
EXAMPLES OF MINOR MISDEMEANOURS
Interrupting class work
Messing in the class line
Swinging on chairs/school gates
Climbing on the boundary walls/trees/hand rails.
Throwing stones
Leaving seat without permission ( except to go to the toilet)
Placing unfinished food/drink cartons in class bin
Leaving litter around school
Not wearing the correct uniform
Being discourteous/unmannerly
Not completing homework without good reason
Not having homework signed by a parent* suspended due to Covid 19
Not bringing correct books/ materials to/from school

EXAMPLES OF SERIOUS MISDEMEANOURS/SERIOUS MISBEHAVIOURS
 Refusing to carry out an instruction by a member of staff (Insubordination)
 Regularly and/or Constantly disruptive in class
 Telling lies
 Stealing
 Damaging property
 Fighting/aggressive behaviour
Code of Behaviour, St. Peter’s N.S. ,Snugboro, Castlebar, Co. Mayo
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Bullying :first offence (see Anti bullying policy)
 Being disrespectful to a staff member
 Leaving school premises during school day without appropriate permission
 Consistent refusal by pupil to try their best in class
 Using unacceptable language and discussing inappropriate topics in school e.g. profane/offensive
 Endangering self or fellow pupils
 Repeated occurrences of minor misbehaviours

EXAMPLES OF GROSS MISDEMEANOURS/VERY SERIOUS MISBEHAVIOURS:
Repeated occurrences of serious misbehaviours
A serious threat of violence against another pupil or member of staff
Aggressive, or violent behaviour towards a pupil/member of staff
Deliberately hurting a pupil
Bringing dangerous implements/illegal substances/alcohol to school
Constantly and/or Regularly disrupting the order and work of the class and school
Serious theft
Wilfully causing damage to school property or school buildings
Repeated incidents of aggression, name calling or bullying (see Anti Bullying policy)
Transmitting, recording or bringing to school any material (digital or otherwise) that may be offensive or injurious to any member of the school community
Sexual harassment
Sexual assault ( which warrants a Mandated report to Túsla and to the gardai)

(It should be noted that these lists consist of examples only and are not exhaustive .Other actions not listed above may be classed as gross misdemeanors).
Procedures followed when dealing with misbehaviour:
The Class Teacher or the person on supervision deals with the situation and may impose a Sanction / Sanctions. (See list below).

Person on supervision reports the misbehaviour to the Class Teacher verbally and may write up in an incident to be filed in an incident notebook.
If the misbehaviour is of a serious/gross nature, the pupil will be referred to the Deputy principal/Principal.
Sanctions : (This list is not exhaustive). Code of Behaviour, St. Peter’s N.S. ,Snugboro, Castlebar, Co. Mayo
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A single occurrence is dealt with by discussing the misbehaviour with the child.
 Verbal warning
 Write an account of what happened or an explanation of how the code was broken.
 Note in homework journal to be signed by parent
 Name entered in Incident book and class teacher informed by yard supervisor
 Carrying out a useful task in the school
 Loss of privileges
 Cost of repair of property/replace another pupils’ property
 Temporary separation/withdrawl from peers e.g.Sinbin/Time-out/Shadowing
 Sending to another teacher
 Parents/Guardians informed
 Meeting between teacher and parent with or without pupil present
 Referral to Assistant Principal/Deputy Principal/Principal
 Principal/Deputy Principal/Assistant Principal communicates with parents
 Meeting with Deputy Principal or Principal with Teacher and Parents
 Chairperson of Board of Management informed and parents requested to meet with Chairperson and Principal
 Report to the Board of Management
 Suspension *
 Expulsion

*(The B.O.M. has authorised the Principal to initiate a suspension for 3 days and a suspension of up to 5 days in circumstances where a meeting of the B.O.M. cannot be convened in a timely fashion.
In exceptional circumstances, where the principal considers that a period of suspension longer than three days is needed ,in order to achieve a particular objective a longer period of suspension can be imposed.)
(Due to Covid 19 restrictions, unless in exceptional circumstances, meetings will take place over the phone.)
Code of Behaviour, St. Peter’s N.S. ,Snugboro, Castlebar, Co. Mayo
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Dealing with Gross Misdemeanours: Suspension and Expulsion
Preamble:
The Education Welfare Act accepts the right of the Board to take reasonable measures to “ensure the good order and discipline are maintained in the school and that the safety of pupils (and staff) is secured.” The Board of Management’s duty of care extends to all pupils and staff and includes providing a safe environment for all staff and pupils.
In the case of gross misbehaviour, the Board has authorised the Principal or Chairperson to sanction an immediate suspension pending a discussion of the matter with the parent(s) or guardian(s).The sanction of Suspension or Expulsion will be applied in accordance with the Rules for National Schools and the Education Welfare Act 2000.
In accordance with the revised practice of Boards of Management, the Principal will report any and all serious and gross breaches of discipline to the school Board of Management at scheduled Board meetings.
Where a pupil has been suspended and has re-offended, the Board reserves the right to expel the pupil from the school. Expulsion will be considered in an extreme case in accordance with legislation, due process and fairness procedures.
The procedures for imposing Suspension and Expulsion as outlined in full in the publication ‘Developing a Code of Behaviour: Guidelines for School’ NEWB 2008 will be adhered to. What follows serves as a summary.
Fair Procedures
Schools are required by law to follow fair procedures when proposing to suspend or expel a pupil. Fair procedures have two essential parts: The right to be heard, and the right to impartiality.
The Right to be Heard means:
• The right to know that the alleged misbehaviour is being investigated;
Code of Behaviour, St. Peter’s N.S. ,Snugboro, Castlebar, Co. Mayo
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• The right to know the details of the allegations being made and any other information that will be taken into account;
• The right to know how the issue will be decided;
• The right to respond to allegations;
• Where the possible sanction is of a serious nature, the right to be heard by the decision- making body;
• Where the possible sanction is of a serious nature, the right to ask questions of the other party or witnesses where there is a dispute about the facts.
The Right to Impartiality means:
• The right to an absence of bias in the decision- making process;
• The right to impartiality in the investigation and the decision making
Applying Fair Procedures in the School:
In school, fair procedures apply to the investigation of alleged misbehaviour that may lead to suspension or expulsion and the process of decision making as to whether the pupil did engage in the misbehaviour and in what sanction to impose.
The principle of impartiality in decision making means that it is preferable that, where possible, the Principal arranges for another member or members of staff to conduct the investigation and to present a full report on the facts of the case and any other relevant information to the Principal. The Principal is then free to take a view whether the child did engage in the behaviour and about the sanction, based on the report of the investigation. It is incumbent on the Principal to ensure that the investigation has been fully and fairly conducted. In circumstances of particular difficulty, school authorities may need to seek legal advice to support their decision making. (NEWB Guidelines Page 66, 67)
Suspension is defined as requiring the pupil to absent himself/herself from the school for a specified, limited period of school days.
Code of Behaviour, St. Peter’s N.S. ,Snugboro, Castlebar, Co. Mayo
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Exclusion of a pupil for part of the school day, as a sanction, or asking parents to keep a child from school, as a sanction, is a suspension. Any exclusion imposed by the school is a suspension and will follow the NEWB Guidelines relating to suspension listed on page 74.
Suspension as part of a behaviour management plan should
• Enable the school to set behavioural goals with the pupil and their parents;
• Give school staff an opportunity to plan interventions;
• Impress on a pupil and their parents the seriousness of the behaviour.
Where Suspension is imposed, it is to be proportionate to the behaviour that is causing concern. The decision to suspend a pupil requires serious grounds such as that:
• The pupil’s behaviour has had a seriously detrimental effect on the education of other pupils;
• The pupil’s continued presence in the school at this time constitutes a threat to safety;
• The pupil is responsible for serious damage to property.
A single incident of serious misconduct may be grounds for suspension.
Factors to be considered before suspending a pupil:
• The nature and seriousness of the behaviour;
• The context of the behaviour;
• The impact of the behaviour;
• The interventions tried to date;
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• Whether suspension is a proportionate response;
• The possible impact of suspension.
Forms of Suspension:
Immediate Suspension:
In exceptional circumstances, the Principal may consider an immediate suspension to be necessary where the continued presence of the pupil in the school at the time would represent a serious threat to the safety of pupils or staff of the school, or any other person. Fair procedures as outlined above must be applied. (NEWB Guidelines for Schools p 73)
Automatic Suspension:
A Board of Management may decide, as part of the school’s policy on sanctions, and following the consultation process with the Principal, parents, teachers and pupils, that particular behaviours incur suspension as a sanction. (NEWB Guidelines for Schools p 73)
The following breaches of discipline will merit an automatic suspension:
• Bullying, where repeated offending has occurred, and a programme of interventions has failed to arrest the behaviour;
• Leaving the school premises during school day without the permission of the Teacher, Deputy Principal or Principal;
• Endangering self or fellow pupils in the school environs;
• Bringing weapons, drugs or alcohol to school;
• Any action that is physically or verbally injurious to another member of the school community including the dissemination of any explicit or defamatory material that could be grossly offensive to a member of the school community.
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Procedures in Respect of Suspension
• A preliminary investigation should be conducted to establish the case for the imposition of the suspension.
• The formal investigation into the circumstances that led to the suspension, should immediately follow the imposition of the suspension.
• Inform the pupil and parents about the complaint;
• Give the parents and the pupil a chance to respond.
The school may inform the parents by telephone or in writing depending on the circumstances in question and the parents will be given an opportunity to respond before the decision is made and before any sanction is imposed. Fair procedures as listed above will be followed.
Implementing the Suspension:
The Principal will notify the parents in writing of the intention to suspend. The letter should confirm:
1. The duration of the suspension and the dates on which the suspension will begin and end;
2. The reasons for suspension;
3. Any programme of school-work that should be followed;
4. The arrangements for returning to school including any commitments that should be entered into by the pupil and the parents;
5. The provision for an appeal to the Board;
6. The right to appeal the decision to the Secretary General of the DES.
Code of Behaviour, St. Peter’s N.S. ,Snugboro, Castlebar, Co. Mayo
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Procedures In Respect Of Immediate Suspension :
Where the decision has been taken and the sanction of immediate suspension has been imposed for the safety of the pupil or for the well-being of other members of the school community, the parents may respond to the sanction. The imposition of the sanction will remain in place. The duration of the suspension will be decided by the Principal and will be proportionate to the alleged offence committed.
• A preliminary investigation will be conducted to establish the case for the imposition of the suspension.
• The formal investigation into the circumstances that led to the suspension, should immediately follow the imposition of the suspension.
• Parents will be notified, and arrangements will be made for the pupil to be collected as the school must have regard to its duty of care for the pupil. (NEWB Guidelines for Schools p 75)
• Once the imposition of the suspension has taken place, steps 1-6 above will be followed.
The Period of Suspension:
Rule 130- Rules for National Schools (5) Where the Board of Management deems it necessary to make provision in the code of discipline to deal with continuously disruptive pupils, or with a serious breach of discipline, by authorising the chairperson or principal to exclude a pupil from school, the maximum initial period of such exclusion shall be three school days. A special decision of the BoM is necessary to authorise a further period up to 10 school days to allow for consultation with the child’s parent(s) or guardians(s).
If a period of suspension longer than three days is proposed by the Principal, the matter will be referred to the Board for consideration and approval, given the circumstances and the expected outcomes. However, the Board of Management has further authorised the Principal, with the approval of the Chairperson, to impose a suspension of up five days in circumstances where a meeting of the Board cannot be convened in a timely fashion, subject to the guidance concerning such suspensions. (NEWB Guidelines for Schools p 75)
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The Board places a ceiling of ten days on any one period of suspension imposed by it. (Rules for National Schools 130 (5)
The Board will formally review any proposal to suspend a pupil, where the suspension would bring the number of days for which the pupil has been suspended in the current school year to 20 days or more. Any such suspension is subject to appeal under section 29 of the Education Act 1998. (NEWB Guidelines for Schools p 76).
Before serious sanctions such as suspension or expulsion are used, the procedures outlined above will have been followed. The normal channels of communication between school and parents will be utilised. Communication with parents may be verbal or by letter depending on the circumstances.
Repeated Offence:
Where there are repeated instances of serious or gross misbehaviour, the Chairperson of the Board of Management will be informed, and the parents will be requested in writing to attend at the school to meet the Chairperson and the Principal. 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 regard to records of previous misbehaviours, their pattern and context, sanctions and other interventions used and their outcomes and any relevant medical information.
Notification of the Education Welfare Officer :
The Education Welfare Act (2000) obliges the school to notify in writing the Education Welfare Board (Túsla and Education Welfare Officer) of instances where pupils have been suspended for 6 days or more (cumulatively) and proscribes schools from expelling pupils until 20 days have elapsed following the notification to the Education Welfare Board (Túsla) via the EWO. (The EWO may be notified by way of the returns sent to Túsla at the end of each term.)
Appeals:
The Board of Management will offer the opportunity to appeal the decision to suspend a pupil. Where the total number of days for which the pupil is suspended reaches twenty days in the current school year, the parents may
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appeal the suspension under Section 29 of the Education Act 1998 as amended by the Education (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2007. At the time when the parents are being formally notified of such a suspension, they should be told about their right to appeal to the Secretary General of the Department of Education and Science and should be given information about how to appeal. See Circular letter M48/01 Appeal Procedures Under Section 29 of the Education Act, 1998 at the Department of Education and Skills website at www.education.ie for full details.
Removal of Suspension (Reinstatement)
Following or during a period of suspension, the parents/guardians may apply to have the pupil reinstated to the school. They must give a satisfactory undertaking that a suspended pupil will behave in accordance with the school Code of Behaviour and the Principal must be satisfied that the pupil’s reinstatement will not constitute a risk to the pupil’s own safety or that of the other pupils or staff. The Principal will facilitate the preparation of a behaviour plan for the pupil if required and will re-admit the pupil formally to the class. Appendix 2 :Behaviour Management Plan
Expulsion:
Expulsion may be considered in an extreme case, in accordance with the Rules for National Schools and the Education Welfare Act 2000. Before expelling a pupil, the Board shall notify the local Education Welfare Officer in writing in accordance with Section 24 of the Education Welfare Act .
Rule 130 Rules for National Schools.: A pupil is expelled from a school when a Board of Management makes a decision to permanently exclude him or her from the school having complied with the provisions of Section 24 of the Education (Welfare) Act 2000.
In line with the Education (Welfare) Act, the school reserves the right to impose a suspension or expulsion on a pupil from school activities where:
• The pupil’s behaviour is a persistent cause of significant disruption to the learning of others or to the teaching process;
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• The pupil’s continued presence constitutes a real and significant threat to safety;
• The pupil is responsible for serious damage to property
Where expulsion is considered, the school authorities will generally have tried a series of other interventions and believe that they have exhausted all possibilities for changing the pupil’s behaviour. These will include:
• Meeting with parents and the pupil to try to find ways of helping the pupil to change their behaviour;
• Ensuring that the pupil understands the possible consequences of their behaviour should they persist;
• Ensure that other possibilities have been tried;
• Seeking the assistance of support agencies such as NEPS, CAMHS, NCSE and the National Behaviour Support Service.
Expulsion for a First Offence: The Board notes that the NEWB (TUSLA) lists the following for possible inclusion in a list of single breaches of discipline that may lead to expulsion:
• A serious threat of violence against another pupil or member of staff;
• Actual violence or physical assault;
• Supplying illegal drugs to other pupils in the school;
• Sexual assault.
Factors to be Considered Before Proposing to Expel a Pupil (Listed NEWB (TUSLA) Guidelines for Schools p 82 under the following headings)
1. The nature and seriousness of the behaviour
2. The context of the behaviour
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3. The impact of the behaviour
4. The interventions to date
5. Whether expulsion is a proportional response
6. The possible impact of expulsion
Procedures in Respect of Expulsion (as listed by the (NEWB Guidelines for Schools chapter 12 and summarised here.)
Step 1: A detailed investigation is carried out under the direction of the Principal.
The Principal will:
o Inform the parents and the pupil in writing about the details of the alleged misbehaviour, how it will be investigated and that it could result in expulsion.
o Give parents and the pupil every opportunity to respond to the complaint of serious misbehaviour before a decision is made and before a sanction is imposed.
o Where expulsion may result from an investigation, the parents will be afforded the opportunity to respond to the complaint of serious misbehaviour before a decision is made about the veracity of the allegation.
Step 2: A recommendation to the Board is made by the Principal
The Principal will:
o Inform the parents that the Board of Management is being asked to consider expulsion.
o Ensure that the parents have records of the allegations made against the pupil, the investigation itself and written notice of the grounds on which the Board is being asked to consider expulsion.
o Provide the Board with a copy of the same records as are given to the parents
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o Notify the parents of the date of the hearing and invite them to the hearing
o Advise the parents that they can make a written and oral submission to the Board of Management
o Ensure that the parents have enough notice to allow them time to prepare for the hearing.
Step 3: Consideration by the Board of Management of the Principal’s recommendation and the holding of a hearing
o It is the responsibility of the Board to review the initial investigation and satisfy itself that the investigation was properly conducted in line with procedures.
o The Board should undertake its own review of all documentation and the circumstances of the case.
o Where the Board decides to consider expelling a pupil, it must hold a hearing.
o At the hearing, the Principal and the parents put their case to the Board in each other’s presence. Each party should be allowed to question the evidence of the other party directly.
o In the conduct of the hearing, the Board must take care to ensure that they are and are seen to be impartial between the Principal and the pupil. Parents may wish to be accompanied at hearings and the Board should facilitate this in line with good practice and Board procedures.
Step 4: Board deliberations and actions following the meeting
o Having heard from all of the parties, the Board must decide whether or not the allegation is substantiated and, if so, whether or not expulsion is the appropriate sanction.
o Where the opinion of the Board is that the pupil should be expelled, the Board must notify the Education Welfare Officer in writing of its opinion and the reasons for this opinion. (Education (Welfare) Act 2000, s24(1)).
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o The pupil cannot be expelled before the passage of 20 school days from the date on which the EWO receives this written notification. (Education (Welfare) Act 2000, s24(1)).
o The Board should inform the parents in writing about its conclusions and the next steps in the process. Where expulsion is proposed, the parents should be told that the Board will now inform the Education Welfare Officer (EWO).
Step 5:Consultations arranged by the EWO
Within 20 days of receipt of the notification from the Board of Management of its opinion that a pupil should be expelled, the EWO must:
o Make all reasonable efforts to hold individual consultations with the Principal, the parents and the pupil and anyone else who may be of assistance.
o Convene a meeting of those parties who agree to attend. (Education (Welfare) Act 2000, section 24).
o In the interests of the educational welfare of the child, those who come together should with the EWO, plan for the pupil’s future education.
o Pending these consultations, the Board may take steps to ensure that good order is maintained and that the safety of pupils is secured (Education (Welfare) Act 2000, s24(5)).
o The Board may consider it appropriate to suspend a pupil during this time. The suspension should only be considered if the presence of the pupil during this time will seriously disrupt the learning of others or represent a threat to the safety of other pupils or staff.
Confirmation of the Decision to Expel:
o Where the 20-day period following notification to the EWO has elapsed and where the Board of Management remains of the view that the pupil is to be expelled, the Board should formally confirm the decision to expel. This task may be delegated to the Chairperson and/or the Principal.
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o Parents should be notified immediately that the expulsion will now proceed.
o The Parents should be told of the right to appeal and be supplied with the standard form on which to lodge an appeal.
o A formal record should be made in the minutes of the Board of the decision to expel a pupil.
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). An appeal may be brought by the NEWB (TÚSLA) on behalf of a pupil. The process begins with the provision of mediation by a mediator nominated by the Appeals Committee (Department of Education & Skills: D.E.S.)
SUMMARY:
The procedures will include:
1. A detailed investigation will be carried out under the direction of the Principal.
2. A recommendation to the Board of Management to expel the pupil is made by the Principal.
3. Consideration by the Board of the Principal’s recommendation and the holding of a hearing.
4. The deliberations of the Board will be recorded, and the actions proposed following such a hearing.
5. Consultations will be held with the Education Welfare Officer.
6. Confirmation of the decision to expel will be recorded and communicated to the parents and TUSLA in writing.
7. The parents may appeal the decision to the Secretary General of the D.E.S.
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Home/School Communication
Good Home-school communication is essential to maintain a positive approach to our children’s education.
The following procedures are designed to maintain a high level of communication among staff, pupils and parents.
Parents are encouraged to talk to the class teacher(s)/ Special Education teacher(s) about any significant developments in a child’s life, in the past or present, which may affect the child’s behaviour.

The following methods of communication are to be used at all levels within the school:
Parent/Teacher communication: Parents are asked to email/send a note to the class teacher regarding matters of concern. Teachers may phone parents to discuss the matter.

For serious matters a parent or teacher may request a parent-teacher meeting to exchange information or to discuss matters of concern. (Due to Covid 19,Meetings are Phone meetings). A note/email to the class teacher requesting such a meeting is always essential. It is also necessary that the purpose of the meeting is stated so that teachers/parents may prepare for the meeting.
Appointment with Principal: Parents should contact the School Secretary if they wish to meet the Principal. Please note that parents should contact class teachers initially to resolve any difficulty that a pupil may be experiencing.

Formal parent/teacher meetings are generally held in November. (Due to Covid 19 Parent/Teacher meetings were conducted over the phone in the spring Term.)
Other Home-School Communications
Emails/Letters/notes from school to home and from home to school in pupils homework notebook/an envelope.
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Details of school holidays, school closures and staff meetings are
communicated in writing and/or by text message.
In the case of inclement weather, notification re. school closure is

announced on MWR radio station and/or by Text.
If, due to illness or any other cause e.g. medical or dental appointments etc.,a child is absent from school, an email/explanatory note should be forwarded to the class teacher.

Children are not allowed home early at any time without a request (email/phone call) from the parents or guardians.
At all times, permission to leave the premises must be sought and the child should be signed out and signed in if they return to school before 1.50 p.m.(Infants)/2.50 p.m.(1st to 6th class), at the Front Office.(Due to Covid 19,staff are maintaining records regarding partial absences from school).
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.
All staff have a collective responsibility to monitor the behaviour of children within sight or sound of them, to affirm good behaviour and to 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.
It is available at reception and published on the school website. The Code of Behaviour is distributed to all staff.
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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 Behaviour applies therein. The BOM will ensure the Code of Behaviour and Anti-Bullying policy is reviewed yearly or more often if the need arises.
This policy was drawn up and written by the Principal and Deputy Principal, after extensive consultation with all members of the school staff, Board of Management, pupils and parents in May / June 2021.
The policy was ratified by the Board of Management on 17th June 2021.
The policy will be reviewed in May 2022.
Signed:
17/06/2021
APPENDIX 1
PARENTAL COMPLAINTS PROCEDURE
The Irish National Teachers’ Organisation and the Catholic Primary School Managers’ Association reached agreement in 1993 on a procedure for dealing with complaints by parents against teachers. The purpose of the procedure is to facilitate the resolution of difficulties where they may arise in an agreed and fair manner. The agreement lays out in five stages the process to be followed in progressing a complaint and the specific timescale to be followed at each stage.
Introduction
Only those complaints about teachers which are written and signed by parents/guardians of pupils may be investigated formally by the Board of Management, except where those complaints are deemed by the Board to be:
(i) on matters of professional competence and which are to be referred to the Department of Education;
(ii) frivolous or vexations complaints and complaints which do not impinge on the work of a teacher in a school; or
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(iii) complaints in which either party has recourse to law or to another existing procedure.

Unwritten complaints not in the above categories may be processed informally as set out in Stage 1 of this procedure.
Stage 1
1.1 A parent/guardian who wishes to make a complaint should, unless there are local arrangements to the contrary, approach the class teacher with a view to resolving the complaint.
1.2 Where the parent/guardian is unable to resolve the complaint with the class teacher she/he should approach the Principal with a view to resolving it.
1.3 If the complaint is still unresolved the parent/guardian should raise the matter with the Chairperson of the Board of Management with a view to resolving it.
Stage 2
2.1 If the complaint is still unresolved and the parent/guardian wishes to pursue the matter further she/he should lodge the complaint in writing with the Chairperson of the Board of Management.
2.2 The Chairperson should bring the precise nature of the written complaint to the notice of the teacher and seek to resolve the matter between the parties within 5 days of receipt of the written complaint.
Stage 3
3.1 If the complaint is not resolved informally, the Chairperson should, subject to the general authorisation of the Board and except in those cases where the Chairperson deems the particular authorisation of the Board to be required:
(a) supply the teacher with a copy of the written complaint; and
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(b) arrange a meeting with the teacher and, where applicable, the Principal Teacher with a view to resolving the complaint. Such a meeting should take place within 10 days of receipt of the written complaint.

Stage 4
4.1 If the complaint is still not resolved the Chairperson should make a formal report to the Board within 10 days of the meeting referred to in 3.1(b).
4.2 If the Board considers that the complaint is not substantiated the teacher and the complaint should be so informed within three days of the Board meeting.
4.3 If the Board considers that the complaint is substantiated or that it warrants further investigation it proceeds as follows:
(a) the teacher should be informed that the investigation is proceeding to the next stage;
(b) the teacher should be supplied with a copy of any written evidence in support of the complaint;
(c) the teacher should be requested to supply a written statement to the Board in response to the complaint;
(d) the teacher should be afforded an opportunity to make a presentation of case to the Board. The teacher would be entitled to be accompanied and assisted by a friend at any such meeting;
(e) the board may arrange a meeting with the complainant if it considers such to be required. The complainant would be entitled to be accompanied and assisted by a friend at any such meeting; and
(f) the meeting of the Board of Management referred to in (d) and (e) will take place within 10 days of the meeting referred to in 3.1(b).

Stage 5
5.1 When the Board has completed its investigation, the Chairperson should convey the decision of the Board in writing to the teacher and the complainant within five days of the meeting of the Board.
5.2 The decision of the Board shall be final.
5.3 This Complaints Procedure shall be reviewed after three years.
5.4
CPSMA or INTO may withdraw from this agreement having given the other party three months’ notice of intention to do so. (In this agreement ‘days’ means schools days. ) Code of Behaviour, St. Peter’s N.S. ,Snugboro, Castlebar, Co. Mayo
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Appendix 2:Management Plan (page 1 of 1)
(Completed by Teacher and Parents in consultation)
Pupil’s Name: ____________________________________________________
Expectations: _______________________________ is expected to do his/her best
always. S/he is also expected to achieve the following goals:
1. ___________________________________________________________________
2. ___________________________________________________________________
3. ___________________________________________________________________
The pupil and the teacher have agreed to the following positive outcomes if the goals
are met:
1. __________________________________________________________________
2. __________________________________________________________________
3. __________________________________________________________________
The pupil will receive the following incentives:
CONSEQUENCES
There will be consequences for serious unacceptable behaviour such as fighting with
fellow pupils, violent behaviour towards others including staff, showing serious
disrespect as outlined in the school’s Code of Behaviour. Sanctions will also be
applied for failure to meet the expectations outlined above. These will be:
1. ___________________________________________
2. ___________________________________________
3. ___________________________________________
Other interventions applied with this plan will include:
1. _________________________________________
2. _________________________________________
3. _________________________________________
This plan will be monitored by the teacher, pupil, principal and parents. It will be
reviewed in ___ weeks to assess the pupil’s progress towards reaching his/her goals.
We have read and agreed to the plan:
______________________&___________________________________________
Pupil Parent(s)
_______________________ & _______________________
Teacher Principal Date: ___/___/___
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