ADDRESSING BULLYING

St Mary’s Limavady is committed to providing a caring, friendly and safe environment for all our students so they can learn in a supportive, friendly and safe environment, free from bullying behaviours of any kind. We all have a responsibility to contribute, in whatever way we can, to the protection and maintenance of such an environment.

Our key message is that:

  • If you feel that your child is unhappy at school for whatever reasons please contact us

  • If you feel that you are being bullied please tell your teacher, form teacher or any adult that you feel comfortable talking too

Bullying is not the occasional, falling out with friends, name calling, arguments or when the occasional trick or joke is played on someone. It is bullying if it is done several times on purpose. Students sometimes fall out or say things because they are upset. When occasional problems of this kind arise it is may not classed as bullying. It is an important part of students’ development to learn how to deal with friendship breakdowns, the occasional name calling or childish prank. We all have to learn how to deal with these situations and develop social skills to repair relationships.

Students are taught through LLW to recognise the difference between teasing and bullying behaviour. They are also taught to understand that what is meant as good natured teasing may not always be received in the same way and that bullying may be unintentional.

It is understood that children can both display bulling behaviour and be the target of bullying behaviour at the same time. Although some children are vulnerable to bullying behaviour because of physical or social characteristics, anyone can be bullied for any reason or difference or for no particular reason. Individuals may resort to bullying for a range of reasons and the school will seek to support those displaying the bullying behaviour as well as the target of bullying behaviour.

Types of Bullying

Emotional

Being unfriendly, excluding, tormenting (e.g. hiding books, threatening gestures, spreading rumours)

 

Physical

Pushing, kicking, hitting, punching, or any use of violence

 

Racist

Racial taunts, graffiti, gestures

 

Sexual

Unwanted physical contact or sexually abusive comments

 

Homophobic

Because of, or focussing on, the issue of sexuality

 

Verbal

Name calling, sarcasm, spreading rumours

 

Cyberbullying

Cyberbullying occurs when the someone uses Information and Communications Technology (ICT), particularly mobile phones and the Internet, deliberately to upset someone else. Included are all areas of internet misuse e.g. e-mail and chat room; threats by text messaging and calls from mobile phones and other devices and misuse of associated technology e.g. camera and video facilities. Cyberbullying can take place at any time and can intrude into spaces that might previously have been regarded as safe or personal.

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