Code of Excellence
AIMS OF PRIMARY EDUCATION
The aims of primary education may be briefly stated as follows:
- To enable the children of Scoil Mhuire to live full lives as children.
- To equip them to avail themselves of further education so that they may go on to live full and useful lives as adults in society.
The Board of Management, teachers and parents are committed to the realisation of these goals. Our aim is to create a happy, secure environment for our pupils in which there is a sense of good order.
The aims of this Behaviour Policy are:
- To help create a positive learning environment in which every pupil can benefit from school.
- To help pupils to become more self-disciplined and to encourage good standards of behaviour.
- To help organise a large group so that school can operate smoothly for the benefit of all.
- To care in a practical way for pupils, parents, staff, the school and it’s environment.
ROLE OF PUPILS: All pupils are expected to behave in a responsible manner both to themselves and others, showing consideration, courtesy and respect for other pupils, staff and visitors at all times.
ROLE OF TEACHERS: Teachers should have a lively regard for the improvement and general welfare of their pupils, treat them with kindness combined with firmness and should aim at governing them through their affections and reason and not by harshness and severity.
ROLE OF PARENTS: Parents and guardians should familiarise themselves with the school’s policy document in relation to discipline, co-operate and communicate with the school with regard to the implementation of its policy on discipline and communicate regularly with the school about factors likely to affect the behaviour of their children in school.
ROLE OF THE BOARD The Board of Management has ultimate responsibility
OF MANAGEMENT: for discipline in the school under its management and a duty to ensure that a fair code of discipline applies therein. The Board of Management will review this code periodically.
GENERAL GUIDELINES FOR BEHAVIOUR
The Code of Excellence covers the following areas in relation to pupils:
(A) BEHAVIOUR IN CLASS.
(C) SCHOOL ENVIRONMENT.
(D) ATTENDANCE AT SCHOOL.
(F) REPRESENTING THE SCHOOL.
(A) BEHAVIOUR IN CLASS
Pupils must respect the right of other pupils to learn. Any behaviour that interferes with this right e.g. constant disruption of the class or persistent distracting of others is considered unacceptable behaviour. Courtesy and respect are basic to classroom behaviour. Disrespectful behaviour towards other pupils or towards a teacher or staff member e.g. defiance, cheek, insolence, will not be tolerated.
Children should encourage one another and help one another to learn.
In order that pupils benefit from the work in class full co-operation is required from pupils at all times. Pupils must co-operate with any instructions given by the teacher.
(B) BEHAVIOUR IN THE PLAYGROUND
Pupils should treat others as they would like to be treated themselves. Any
behaviour which endangers or offends others is not permitted. Any behaviour
which interferes with others’ play is not permitted. Games or activities
considered to be dangerous shall be prohibited. Rough behaviour e.g. fighting
kicking, spitting, pushing, shoving etc is forbidden. Pupils may not leave their
playground for any reason during breaks without the permission of the
supervising teacher. This includes re-entering the school building.
Running is not permitted in the playground for reasons of safety and to
(C) BEHAVIOUR IN THE SCHOOL ENVIRONMENT
Respect and sensitivity to others are the basic rules. Any kind of verbal or physical abuse is strictly forbidden. Bullying or intimidation will not be tolerated and is always regarded as a serious offence.
Pupils must show respect for school property and the property of others at all times.
For reasons of safety and to minimise accidents, pupils should move about the school in an orderly manner.
Pupils are required to be regular in their attendance at school. After a pupil has
been absent, a note from the parent(s) must always be brought to the class
teacher upon the pupil’s return to school.
When a pupil has to leave school early (i.e. before 2.30pm) a note from the
Parent(s) must be brought to the class teacher.
Pupils must be in time for school each day. School opens to receive pupils at
It is the policy of the school to assign homework on a regular basis. All homework must be done promptly and completely. Parents should sign the Homework Journal/Copy to confirm that ALL homework has been completed. This may include memorization, written assignments or other tasks. Generally, homework is not given at weekends.
If for some reason homework (or part of it) cannot be completed, parents are asked to note this in the Homework Journal/Copy.
Written Homework must be done neatly and carefully. Graffiti on textbooks and copybooks is not allowed.
The procedure outlined here is followed when dealing with persistent minor misbehaviour and serious misbehaviour by pupils. The particular steps invoked will depend on the seriousness of the misbehaviour. If the difficulty has not been resolved the next step comes into play.
- The Teacher requests the pupil to stop. If the misbehaviour continues then …..
- The Teacher discusses the offending behaviour with the pupil. If the misbehaviour continues then ……
- A sanction is imposed by the class Teacher (refer to sanctions below).
- A note is sent to the parents by the Teacher informing them of the child’s misbehaviour. If the misbehaviour continues then …..
- The Class Teacher meets with the parents of the pupil. The Principal will be informed that the Teacher is meeting the parents.
- Referral to the Principal. Conference between the pupil, the Class Teacher and the Principal.
- Principal may impose a sanction for the misbehaviour e.g. Principal may advise detention (Parents will be informed by the Principal).
- Formal letter to the parents from the Principal. Parents will be asked to meet with the Principal and the Class Teacher.
- If there continues to be behavioural problems, after consultation with parents and the teacher, the Principal may seek an assessment of the child, with the approval of the parents, or further help to cope with behavioural problem.
- Suspension which we would hope never to have to invoke. (See sanctions).
Encouraging high standards of behaviour among pupils and creating and maintaining an orderly atmosphere for learning in the school will involve the use of praise and rewards for good behaviour, sound relationships between teachers and pupils and effective teaching and learning. It will also involve in some instances, the application of sanctions to register disapproval of unacceptable behaviour. When sanctions are invoked pupils should understand that what they have done is not acceptable and that it is the misbehaviour that is rejected and not the pupil.
To discourage unacceptable behaviour sanctions will be imposed. The following are examples of sanctions which may be imposed:
- A reprimand by the teacher.
- Extra work or repetition of unsatisfactory work
- A note is sent to parents.
- Having play curtailed.
- Not being allowed to represent school or take part in various school activities e.g. trips etc
- Referral to senior staff (Principal or Deputy -Principal).
- Detention – for serious breaches of discipline and after other sanctions have failed. Prior notice is given to parents.
- Letters to parents.
- Loss of privilege or practical task, which is deemed appropriate may be assigned by the teacher with a view to correcting or redressing an unacceptable deed on the part of the child.
- Temporary separation within the classroom.
- Temporary separation from the classroom.
SUSPENSION (EXCLUSION) OF PUPILS
This will be in accordance with the Rules of Dept. of Education in operation at the time. The current ruling, under the terms of Circular 7/88, is as follows:
“Where the Board of Management deems it necessary to make provision in the code of excellence to deal with continuously disruptive pupils or with a serious breach of discipline, by authorising the Chairperson or Principal to exclude a pupil or pupils from school, the maximum initial period of such exclusion shall be three school days. A special decision of the Board of Management is necessary to authorise a further period of exclusion up to a maximum of 10 school days to allow for consultation with the pupil’s or pupils’ parents or guardians.
In exceptional circumstances, the Board of Management may authorise a further period of exclusion in order to enable the matter to be reviewed.”
To maintain good standards of behaviour the school must rely on the support and co-operation of the parents. The primary responsibility for the behaviour of pupils when they come to school lies with their parents.
We would therefore earnestly ask parents to:
- Familiarise themselves with the school’s policy document in relation to discipline.
- Co-operate with the school with regard to the implementation of its policy on discipline.
- Communicate regularly with the school about factors likely to affect the behaviour of their children in school.
Chairman of the Board of Management
Review Date: before summer 2014