Code of Behaviour

CRESCENT COLLEGE COMPREHENSIVE, S.J.

CODE OF BEHAVIOUR

 

Contents

Mission Statement, p 3

Legislative context, p4-5

Part 1: Introduction: Discipline; the care and management of pupils, a foreword outlining School Ethos and Aims of Code, p6-8

Part 2: School Rules and Regulations, p10-14

Part 3: Internal Structures and Procedures, p15-16

Part 4: Sanctions, p17-19

Part 5: Procedure for Review and Appeal, p20

Conclusion, p21

 

 

MISSION STATEMENT

Crescent College Comprehensive incorporates the characteristics of

Jesuit education.  It seeks to develop each student’s religious, moral

social, intellectual, physical and cultural sensibilities.  As an important

means of doing this, the school strives to create a strong sense of

community between parents, students and teachers.

Igantian Context

The college seeks in all it does to foster each pupil’s unique talents and qualities as people of competence, conscience and compassion. The Ignatian value of the ‘Magis’ (‘the more’) animates all the interactions, activities and endeavours in a Jesuit school. By this it is meant that the teachers and students, both personally and communally, strive to attain the highest standards and make better choices in an effort to serve the ‘greater good’.

‘When you work, give your all. When you make plans, plan boldly.

And when you dream, dream big.’

No where should this value be more evident than in the quality of relationships that exist within the school. Good order, respectful behaviour and hard work are the minimum expectations. The Magis calls on all in a Jesuit school to work with a desire to be the best one can be and to interact with others in the spirit of Christian love.

Legislative context

The Education (Welfare) Act 2000 (Section 23) places an obligation on Boards of Management to prepare a Code of Behaviour in respect of students registered in the school.

The Constitution

The policy has been considered against the constitutional background from which it emerges and in particular Article 42 (Education) of Bunreacht na hEireann.

The policy has also been considered against a general legislative background but, in particular, the following pieces of legislation:

Education (Welfare) Act 2000

Section 23

Education Act 1998

Section 28

Section 29

Equal Status Act, 2000

The school aims to promote equality and prohibit types of discrimination, harassment and related behaviour.

There are nine grounds of discrimination contained in section 3(2) of the Act. These are gender, marital status, family status, sexual orientation, religion, age, disability, race, membership of the Travelling community. The Code of Behaviour requires behaviour that respects diversity. It prohibits harassment and sexual harassment.

Non-fatal Offences against the Person Act 1997

The Convention on the Rights of the Child

School discipline is administered in a manner consistent with the human dignity of the child and in conformity with the Convention.

The EPSEN Act 2004

The EPSEN Act provides for the provision of education plans for children with special needs and states that, where possible, children with SEN will be educated “in an inclusive environment with children who do not have SEN”

 

Non-fatal Offences against the Person Act 1997

This policy is applied in the context of all school policies and procedures, including the Child Protection Guidelines as issued by the Department of Education and Science but particularly the following policies and procedures:

Substance Use Policy

Bullying Policy

Health and Safety Policy

Suspensions and Expulsion Policy

Accident and Emergency Procedures

Amendments to this policy may be made by the Board of Management from time to time as the needs of the school dictate.

Dissemination

Initially all parents/ guardians will receive a final copy from their child. They are encouraged to discuss the policy with their son/daughter. In future years the policy will be added to the list of those available for parents to request. Students will be made aware of the policy primarily by their parents and secondly their Form Tutor. Parents of incoming students will be given a copy of the policy on registration.

Staff will be aware of the policy through staff meetings and, thereafter, through a Staff Handbook.

 

 Part one: Introduction

THE CARE AND MANAGEMENT OF PUPILS

An efficient and fair Code of Behaviour is central to the operation of an effective school.  The code will succeed best where pupils, parents and staff subscribe to the code, mutual respect and co-operation are encouraged, and where there is regard for the rights and responsibilities of all.

The task of drafting the code is delegated by the Board to the Principal, in consultation with the staff, pupils and parents.

The school code takes account of the ethos of the school, and encompasses rules, sanctions, rewards, incentives and procedures.

The code of discipline is not intended to be repressive or smothering.  However, for education to occur there must be order.

The Aims of the Code of Behaviour are:

  • To ensure the safety of pupils and staff
  • To create an environment conducive to learning

  •  To encourage pupils to take responsibility for their own behaviour and learning
  • To help young people mature into responsible participating citizens

Standards of Behaviour expected at Crescent College Comprehensive

At Crescent College Comprehensive we have very high expectations with regard to behaviour.

Self respect and respect for others are fundamental, as are the virtues of kindness, courtesy, honesty and forgiveness.

All members of the school community are expected to show a willingness to help others and to use respectful ways of resolving difficulties and conflict.

Students are expected to show a sincere commitment to their own learning and the learning of their peers by  attending school regularly and punctually

  • doing one’s best in class
  • taking responsibility for one’s work
  • keeping the rules
  • helping to create a safe, positive environment
  • respecting staff
  • respecting other students and their learning
  • participating in school activities

 

Students with SEN

Class teachers and specialist personnel should check that standards and rules are communicated in a way that students with special educational needs can understand.

 

Rewards and Incentives

In this school we promote the idea of positive behaviour among pupils.

Research has shown that social rewards such as smiling, praising and complimenting are extremely effective in increasing desirable behaviour.  At Crescent College a culture of pupil social involvement exists, and there is considerable attachment to the school on the part of pupils.

Strategies to affirm and promote good behaviour include:

  • giving students responsibility in the school
  • setting clear, consistent and easily understood standards which are implemented in a fair way
  • parents supporting the school by encouraging good learning behaviour
  • good relationships between teachers, parents and students and a happy school atmosphere
  • having good school and class routines

 School Rules

These have been kept to a minimum.  They emphasise personal responsibility and safety, and respect for persons and property.  Pupils must understand that they are fair, and that they as pupils have responsibilities.  Each rule has real purpose and is reasonable.  If impossible to implement or supervise, its purpose will be lost.

Sanctions

A school administers sanctions for misdemeanours and breaches of school discipline.  The sanction must be reasonable and fair; it should have elements of penalty, and opportunities to reform. As far as possible the sanctions are developmental and constructive. (Minor sanctions, e.g., reprimand, verbal chastisement, are left to the discretion of teachers, but there are clear guidelines regarding detention and suspension).  It should be noted that certain breaches of discipline are punishable by detention, and that this is an approved sanction in the school.

Year Heads and the Deputy Principal regard disciplinary referrals as opportunities to teach pupils appropriate behaviour, to improve their social skills and to teach alternative behaviour.

 

Procedures

The school maintains proper records of misbehaviour and the action taken.

Each Subject Teacher maintains his/her class records of attendance, punctuality, homework etc.  In this manner the teacher builds a data base on each pupil which is consulted at Parent/Teacher Meetings.  A teacher may contact a parent/guardian directly on any matter of concern, or indeed satisfaction.  However, it is best if the Form Tutor is informed of any such communication.

Where a teacher considers it necessary, he/she may fill in a Report Sheet on a pupil and include this in the Class/Year Discipline File.  These files contain details of the more serious incidents of indiscipline (deemed to be so either by their nature or recurrence).

Parents are involved at an early stage in resolving instances of serious misbehaviour.

Serious misconduct endangering safety is rare, and is dealt with immediately.  However, the less dramatic, more common problems negatively affect the learning environment.  Disruptions interrupt lessons for all pupils, and the disruptive pupil loses even more time.

Our school discipline strategies seek to encourage responsible behaviour and to provide all pupils with a satisfying school experience, as well as to discourage misconduct.

Our aim is to balance clearly established rules with a climate of concern for all pupils as individuals.

A code of behaviour is drawn up for the well being of all members of the school community. Human nature dictates that no two situations are precisely the same. Flexibility in the applications of rules must be maintained to ensure that management of the school can exercise its judgement in relation to the particular circumstances of each situation.

Part Two

General Regulations

 Each pupil and member of staff is to be treated with respect at all times.

Good manners are a requirement.

Bullying of any form, whether physical, verbal or by exclusion, is prohibited.  Each pupil is obliged to report to an adult if they suspect another is being bullied.

(Please see Appendix ‘A’ Bullying Policy).

Pupils are expected to observe the dress code by wearing the uniform correctly.

Foul language is offensive and will not be tolerated.

 

Crescent College is a non-smoking environment.  Pupils who are in breach of this rule will be required to perform community work at school to make amends for their anti-social behaviour.

 Movement around the school is clockwise.

Pupils are advised against bringing large sums of money to school, and instead should bring a cheque for any school fee required.

Pupils are not permitted to use electronic equipment in class as it interferes with teaching aids and concentration. Such items will be confiscated by the teacher and returned to a parent/guardian by the Deputy Principal.

Chewing gum and tippex are banned.

 Pupils are requested to observe proper mobile phone etiquette at school, i.e., phones should be switched off during class.

 Pupils are requested not to eat or drink in the classrooms, corridors or the Central Area.  Food and drink should be consumed outdoors or in the Dining Hall.

 The school buildings, grounds and property are to be respected.  Damage caused as a result of carelessness or rough behaviour is the liability of the pupil.

The Retreat Programmes, Social Outreach and Outdoor Pursuit trips are an integral part of the curriculum on offer at Crescent College.  All pupils are expected to participate fully in these programmes.

At all times, including between classes and during breaks, pupils are expected to behave in a manner which neither embarrasses nor endangers themselves or others.

In the Classroom

  • Be prompt

  • Be prepared

  • Be polite

Each pupil is issued with a Timetable at the beginning of the school year.  Pupils are expected to move promptly between classes, and are not permitted to go to their locker, either between classes or during class time.  Instead, pupils are required to organise their books, copies and stationery before Roll Call for their morning classes, and at the end of their lunch-break for the afternoon classes.  Pupils are not normally given permission to go to the toilet during class times.

Roll Call is at 8.55a.m. each morning in the pupil’s Form Room.

Class times are as follows:

Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday 8.55am-3.55pm

Wednesday 8.55am-1.20pm

Any pupil who is late for school must report to the school office, where their arrival is recorded.

Parents are asked to make all elective appointments for after school hours.

Where a student needs to leave school early for some reason, parents are asked to provide their child with an excuse note which will be signed by the form tutor during form time. The parent will be required to collect the student at the appointed time. Please note that this applies to all students, i.e. over 18s, and those students with permission to park at school.

Any interference with teaching and learning is unacceptable, and will be strictly discouraged.  Teachers record any serious or repeated incident, and the action taken in dealing with it, in the Class File for the information of Form Tutors, Year Heads and the Deputy Principal.  Any pupil reported in this manner may be interviewed by the relevant Year Head and/or Deputy Principal.  Appropriate sanctions will be applied with the goal of an immediate change in behaviour.

All pupils are given a School Journal at the beginning of the school year and are required to have their journal with them in all classes. Parents are requested to consult their child’s Journal regularly. Proper use of the journal promotes and encourages better organisational skills and is an effective tool of communication between teachers, pupils and parents.

 

School Uniform

Girls

Light blue shirt (plain)

School tie

Navy v-neck pullover with school crest

Navy skirt mid-calf length (the skirt and pullover to match)

Navy cords (to match the pullover) are permitted for girls.

 Leaving Cert girls only may wear a pin-striped blue shirt

 

Boys

Light blue shirt (plain)

School tie

Navy v-necked pullover with school crest

Medium grey trousers (flannel/wool mixture)

Jeans, denims, canvas, cords or baggy trousers may not be worn

Leaving Cert boys only may wear dark navy trousers (flannel/wool) to match pullover

 

Physical education class

Clean and appropriate leisure wear with appropriate shoes, complete change of under-wear, towel and soap.  (Showers must be taken after each P.E. class or games session).  Pupils must change back into their school uniform before going home.  The appropriate school jersey or top must be worn.  Black shorts and blue socks are required for rugby, soccer, Gaelic football and hurling.  A navy skirt is required for hockey.

 

Scarves, jackets (other than school blazer), caps or hats may not be worn inside school buildings.  Blazers (navy) are optional for pupils, except for Prefects, for whom they are required wear. 1st, 2nd, 3rd and TY students are expected to wear their school jacket to and from school.

All pupils should be particular about cleanliness and tidiness in their dress and general appearance, in accordance with school requirements.  Girls may wear one pair of simple earrings, and boys are permitted to wear one small ear stud. Other piercings are forbidden.  For out-of-school activities the school uniform must be worn, unless specified otherwise by the teacher.

ALL ITEMS OF CLOTHING MUST BE CLEARLY MARKED WITH THE OWNER’S NAME.

TO AND FROM SCHOOL

This policy applies while students are on the school premises, wearing school uniform and/or participating in any school event either inside or outside the school boundaries.

Crescent College pupils are expected to behave with courtesy and consideration to members of the public at all times.

The school rule of No Smoking applies in the vicinity of the school, and while on any recognised school activity.

Only those pupils with lunch passes may leave the school campus at break.  Pupils must bring a letter from their parents, giving them permission to go home at lunch-time, to be issued with this pass.

Only those pupils with a parking permit may park at school.  There is a designated area for pupils’ cars and bikes.  For reasons of safety, pupils are not permitted to drive from the school during the school day.  Any breach of this rule will result in the immediate withdrawal of the pupil’s parking permit.

Parents and pupils are requested to respect the traffic regulations within the school grounds.  These apply to parking and movement of traffic.  There are designated drop and collection points.

The school’s authority should be sufficient to ensure the well-being and safety of all its pupils and to protect the good name of the school. This authority is subject to the jurisdiction of outside authorities in dealing with particular situations e.g. sporting authorities, transport management, hotel staff, Gardai, etc.

SCHOOL TRIPS

 

Normal school rules with regard to behaviour and manners apply while on an outing organised by the school.

Pupils are asked to co-operate fully with the organising adult/s so as to get the most out of the activity.  This begins with paying for the trip on time.

Uniform will be worn on these occasions, unless otherwise stated.

Pupils are reminded to show respect for the venue in which they stay, and the bus in which they travel.

Pupils are representatives of their school on these occasions.  Bad behaviour by an individual reflects badly on the whole school community.

If extra-ordinary rules are to be included with the agreed guidelines for behaviour while on a school tour all pupils and parents/guardians will be made aware of same  for example with regard to the times when students will be unsupervised.

Note: Normal sanctions as outlined in this policy will apply for breaches of discipline while on a school outing.

Part three

Internal Structures and Procedures

Role of Principal

 The Principal shall control the internal organisation, management and discipline of the school.

Role of Deputy Principal

 The Deputy Principal assists the Principal in the internal organisation, management and discipline of the school.  The Deputy Principal works with the Year Heads, Form Tutors, Chaplain, Guidance Counsellors and subject teachers in reviewing and implementing the Code of Behaviour.

 Role of Year Head

 The Year Head has general responsibility for the observance of school regulations by the year group.  The Year Head oversees their attendance and punctuality, co-ordinates the work of the Class Tutors and liaises with the parents of the year group.

 Role of Form Tutor

 The Form Tutor takes a particular interest in the activities and progress of the pupils in their class; helps their pupils to be positive in their behaviour and work.  In addition the Form Tutor serves as a special link between the school administration and their pupils, and co-operates with the Year Head in ensuring that the pupils observe the school rules.  The Form Tutor co-ordinates the school reports and monitors the pupils’ journals.  Although Form Tutors will be aware of the disciplinary issues relating to their charges, it is preferable that their role is viewed as pastoral, though this of course will be determined by the personality of the Form Tutor and the relationship he/she wishes to have with their class.

 Assistant Deputy Heads

 The Assistant Deputy Heads monitor the corridors, remonstrate with a pupil sent out of class to the office, before giving him/her a report form, and sending him/her back to class; dealing with any out-of-class incidents/accidents brought to their attention; taking note of details etc.

Note no pupil is allowed to remain in the Central Area or corridors unless supervised by a teacher.

Class Teacher

 The subject teacher has responsibility for the maintenance of general discipline within his/her classroom, while sharing a common responsibility for good order within the school premises.  It is recommended, out of courtesy, as well as maintaining proper procedures, that the Form Tutor and Year Head be informed of any contact a teacher initiates with a parent of one of their charges.

Pupils

 Pupils are required to observe all school regulations, and to adhere to and carry out any lawful instruction given to them by a member of staff.

The Role of Parents

 Good discipline in schools requires the co-operation and involvement of parents.  For the vast majority of pupils there will be no discipline problems.  Parents and a supportive home environment play a crucial role in shaping attitudes which produce good behaviour in schools and in society generally.  Where parents feel a sense of involvement with the school, they will encourage their children to abide by the school’s code, and should actively support the teaching staff in the application of the code.  Teachers and parents are on the same side with regard to good behaviour, in that the purpose of school discipline is to allow the education of young people to go ahead.

 

Part Four

SANCTIONS

Sanctions are needed to show disapproval of and to discourage unacceptable behaviour.

The following strategies may be used to show disapproval of unacceptable behaviour:

  • Reasoning with the pupil

  • Reprimanding (including advice on how to improve)

  • Temporary separation from peers, friends or others

  • Loss of privileges

  • Detention during break or after school hours

  • Additional home-work

  • Formal note of misdemeanour to be recorded for reference in the event of recurring indiscipline

  • Referral to the ADH

  • Referral to the Year Head

  • Referral to the counselling services in the school

  • Communication with parents/guardians

  • Referral to the Deputy Principal

  • Referral to the Principal

  • Suspension

  • Expulsion

Note: the above list is not intended to be either exclusive or sequential. It should instead serve as a guiding framework

It is important to make a distinction between minor and more serious behaviour.  Instances of minor misbehaviour are dealt with at school level.  Where there is a more serious incident of misbehaviour, parents will be informed and their co-operation in addressing the problem will be requested.  This may involve a meeting with the teacher, Form Tutor, Year Head or Deputy Principal.  At such meetings it should be remembered that everybody is acting in the best interests of the pupil and the school.

Detention

The authority to detain a pupil during school breaks or after school hours derives from the ‘in loco parentis’ nature of the relationship of the pupil with the school authorities.

Parents/guardians should be advised in advance of detention and given details of when the sanction is to be imposed and for what period.

Suspensions and Expulsions

The school will only resort to the sanction of expulsion in the most serious or chronic cases of indiscipline, and usually only after every effort at rehabilitation has failed, and other sanctions have been exhausted.  If a pupil is causing severe disruption, a school may have to exclude such a pupil to allow the education of the other pupils to proceed. The rights of all pupils must be taken into account.

If the behaviour, either by its nature or regularity, is considered serious, a report form should be filled, giving pertinent details.  This can be brought directly to the attention of the Year Head, or simply filed in the Class File in the staff-room.

Note:  It is of course essential that the action taken by the teacher in dealing with the behaviour be noted.  The Year Head will decide if further intervention is required.  Year Heads consult the files on a weekly basis at least; they may decide to discuss the behaviour of a pupil at the weekly meeting with the Principal and Deputy Principal, who may in turn decide on further action.  It is the practice at Crescent College Comprehensive that Year Heads deal with breaches of discipline, or repeated misbehaviour, while briefing the Deputy Principal on a regular basis.  On other occasions (e.g. where bullying is suspected), they may prefer the Deputy Principal to deal with the pupil.  The Principal and/or the Deputy Principal may suspend a pupil but the ultimate sanction of permanently excluding a pupil from the school is a matter for the Board of Management. Suspensions and expulsions may be appealed under Section 29 of the Education Act (1998). See also Appendix 1 Suspension and Expulsion Policy

 

School property

School property is the property of the whole school community and the Board of Management has an obligation to protect that property. The cost of malicious damage to school property will be recouped from parents and/or pupils.

The property of pupils

Pupils are responsible for the protection of their own property.

Pupils should report any interference with their personal property to the school authorities.

There are occasions when legitimately held property of pupils might be confiscated by school authorities in the interest of good management e.g. mobile phones, irrelevant reading material, non-essential electronic equipment etc.

In the interest of the general student body occasions may sometimes arise when it is considered necessary to search a student’s property in the investigation of a particular breach of the Code of Behaviour, e.g. substance use, thievery. This might take the form of

  • Search of pupil’s locker

  • Search of pupil’s bag

  • An instruction to empty the locker or pockets etc

Bullying/harassment

The Board of Management has a duty of care towards its pupils and staff to provide a contented, safe and productive environment for both to work together to achieve the aims and objectives of the school. All forms of bullying and harassment are strictly prohibited by this Code of Behaviour.

Violent behaviour

Physical violence between pupils is prohibited. Instances of violence will be investigated. The temporary suspension of pupils might be necessary to ensure the safety of all during the course of the investigation. A staff member has a duty to intervene, perhaps physically, to ensure the safety of pupils. Sanctions will be imposed to prevent further occurrences of the violence.

Part Five

 Procedure for Review, Monitoring and Evaluation

The Principal, Deputy Principal, staff and parents assume the responsibility for monitoring the effective implementation of this policy.

Appeal Procedure under Section 29 of the Education Act, 1998

Currently, Section 29 of the Education Act provides that the following decisions may be appealed to the Secretary- General of the Department of Education and Science:-

  1. Permanent exclusion from the school

  2. Suspension for a period which would bring the cumulative period of suspension to twenty school days, or longer, in any one school year

  3. Refusal to enrol.

 

Appeals must be made within the legislative time-frame from the date the decision of the school was notified to the parent or student. Accordingly, the Principal will advise parents of this right of appeal, and associated time-frame, when informing them of any of the above categories of decisions.

Conclusion

This policy is not a legal document. In good faith, the Board of Management of Crescent College Comprehensive S.J. is setting out the procedures which apply to suspensions and expulsion.

This policy was approved by the Board of Management of Crescent College Comprehensive S.J.

Richard Leonard

Chairman,

Board of Management,

Crescent College Comprehensive, S.J.

 

 

Nicholas Cuddihy

Secretary, Board of Management

Crescent College Comprehensive, S.J.

 

 

 

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