Positive learning behaviours are central to everything we do; they are the foundation of our school culture. High standards of behaviour will be expected, always modelled and promoted, both during the school day and beyond the school gates. All members of staff will set high standards and learners will be given clear guidance on what is expected of them. Expectations relating to behaviour will be communicated to pupils and followed by all students. Pupils who actively demonstrate outstanding positive learning behaviours will be rewarded in several ways as set out in the Rewards section. We will work in partnership with parents to ensure that the school’s values become central to the lives of students.
The Blue Coat Way
1. All members of the Blue Coat community treat everyone with respect.
2. If students have any concerns about the wellbeing of others they should report it immediately to a member of staff.
3. Students must always follow instructions and reasonable requests from members of staff.
4. Students must move around the school in a sensible, calm and quiet way.
5. Students must travel to and from school in a calm and dignified way, remembering they are wearing the school uniform and are therefore our ambassadors.
6. Students must be proactive in keeping the school environment clean and tidy. They must be respectful of the school site and never drop litter.
7. Students must not leave the school site during the day.
8. Students must be organised in bringing books, necessary stationery and equipment to school each day.
9. Students are responsible for looking after their own property in school. They should avoid bringing in valuable items and they should use their locker for storage.
10. Students must wear their school uniform with pride and in line with the school uniform policy. Coats must not be worn inside the school building. They should be stored in lockers or in a bag.
11. Students must only bring items to school that support their learning.
12. All students should respectfully contribute to worship and reflection.
Recognising and rewarding students’ good behaviour, self-discipline and learning is crucial to establishing and maintaining a culture of high expectations. We don’t believe that students value impersonal acts of rewards or recognition, they want to show the people in their lives that they are doing well. They want to feel pride. They want what everyone wants, the chance to feel important and valued for their efforts. We aim to ensure students feel valued in the following ways:
- Sensitive and genuine verbal praise from teachers
- Written praise and feedback in exercise books
- Departmental Reward letters sent home
- Letters of praise accompanying school reports
- Rewards and special privileges given by Directors of Learning
- Recognition in assemblies, wall displays and newsletters
- The Headteacher’s Award
- Celebration events with Directors of Learning and other members of senior staff
- End of year celebration events including school Speech Night
Departmental letters are sent home each half term to acknowledge a pupil’s progress, achievements and attitudes to learning in a chosen subject. Furthermore, the pupil’s name will be displayed on the subject celebration board and an electronic message will be sent to the parent notifying them of their child’s achievement.
Every half term, each Year Group (7 – 11) will have a Celebration Assembly where their Director of Learning will select pupils for special recognition, based on positive entries from staff members.
Additionally, there will be an Annual Celebration Assembly for each Year Group in recognition of pupils’ achievement and progress across several different categories, including excellent progress and standards and attendance.
Supporting Young People
At The Blue Coat School, we recognise that part of growing up can at times be challenging. However, we are committed to supporting and nurturing our young people to enable them to become good citizens with a strong moral compass. Where pupils make decisions which compromise their safety, their relationships or their progress, staff at Blue Coat will use a range of strategies and interventions to ensure pupils learn from their mistakes and have ‘a way back’. We do this in several ways and some examples are as follows:
- The Form Tutor will monitor and track behaviour, progress and attendance. Where concerns arise, form tutors may conduct one to one coaching sessions and contact home.
- The Director of Learning will work with a range of staff in school to provide bespoke pastoral support from learning mentors, the school nurse, the safeguarding team or members of Senior Leadership.
- Restorative Practice is used across the school to resolve conflict and to enable pupils to reflect on their behaviour and set targets to ‘make things better’.
- External agencies may be called upon for additional support and guidance when appropriate and offsite direction may be used as a temporary approach to improve behaviour.
- Social stories are used with children with additional needs/communication difficulties.
Teachers, teaching assistants and other paid staff with responsibility for pupils have the power to discipline pupils whose behaviour is unacceptable, who break the school rules or who fail to follow a reasonable instruction. Their power to discipline applies to pupils’ behaviour in school and outside school, in certain circumstances. Blue Coat will impose reasonable disciplinary penalties in response to poor behaviour. Our range of reasonable penalties include:
- Short informal detentions at lunchtime or break time.
- Exclusion from social time e.g. loss of break times and lunch times for a period of time.
- After school detentions for up to 1 hour. Legally schools can issue detentions without notice and without the consent of parents however our policy is to, where possible, contact parents by telephone or letter in advance of the detention.
- Confiscation, retention or disposal of a pupil’s property.
- For involvement in a serious incident or persistent failure to meet expectations, students may receive ‘Internal Exclusion.’ Students will be removed from lessons and social time for a period of time, the length of which is dependent on the behaviour. Students will have to complete their work separately, under supervision. Parents will always be informed if this sanction is used.
- Students who persistently fall below our behaviour expectations will have a personalised support plan designed by their Director of Learning.
- Parents may be invited to attend review meetings to discuss pupil conduct and support as appropriate
- In a small number of cases, a student’s bad behaviour or failure to respond to help, support and other sanctions may result in them being excluded from school by the Headteacher in accordance with statutory guidelines.
The school has the power to search and is not required to inform parents/carers before a search takes place or to seek their consent to search their child. “Headteachers and staff authorised by them have a statutory power to search pupils or their possessions, without consent, where they have reasonable grounds for suspecting that the pupil may have a prohibited item.” Please see the DfE guidance on Searching, Screening and Confiscation.
Any article that the member of staff reasonably suspects has been, or is likely to be, used to commit an offence, or to cause personal injury to, or damage to the property of, any person (including the pupil). N.B. This is not an exhaustive list. The school will confiscate any items which are deemed ‘inappropriate’. Depending on the items these may be returned via parents; passed to the Police or disposed of.
Prohibited items are:
- Knives or weapons;
- Illegal drugs;
- Stolen items;
- Tobacco, cigarette papers, e-cigarettes;
- Pornographic images
Electronic Devices: School staff may examine any data or files on an electronic device if they think there is good reason for doing so. As with physical items the device and/or files may be returned via parents; passed to the Police or erased depending on the circumstances. All incidents of poor behaviour are logged on our digital conduct log. Parents can access their child’s record remotely.
Use of Reasonable force
In addition, all members of staff have the power to use reasonable force to prevent pupils from committing an offence, injuring themselves or others or damaging property, and to maintain good order and discipline in the classroom. This can range from guiding a pupil to safety by the arm through to more extreme circumstances such as breaking up a fight or where a student needs to be restrained to prevent violence or injury. The decision on whether or not to physically intervene is down to the professional judgement of the staff member concerned and should always depend on the individual circumstances. The school follows current government guidelines about the use of reasonable force:
HARMFUL SEXUAL BEHAVIOUR
We have a zero-tolerance approach to abuse whether physical, psychological, emotional, sexual or online abuse. It is never passed off as “banter”, “children being children” or “just having a laugh”, which can lead to a culture of unacceptable behaviours and create an unsafe environment for our young people. Through wellbeing and our wider curriculum, children are taught in an age-appropriate way about: how to recognise, understand and build healthy relationships; self-respect and respect for others; tolerance, boundaries and consent as well as how to manage conflict and recognise unhealthy relationships.