Xavier Catholic College Ballina considers bullying to be an unacceptable form of behaviour which will not be tolerated under any circumstance. Such behaviour has no place in a faith community which exists to proclaim and witness the love of God for each individual and among one another. In our Christian community great value is placed on a sense of family belonging and family care.
Xavier Catholic College has the responsibility to foster an educational environment where there are no any barriers to learning and where all students, staff, parents and visitors feel safe and valued.
What is Bullying?
Bullying is when people intentionally use their power to hurt, scare or put down others. It can be done by an individual or a group. It can be carried out physically, emotionally or verbally. This type of behaviour is UNWANTED, UNWELCOME, UNSOLICITED and is REPETITIVE. As such, it undermines the rights of the individual and erodes morale in our community. Bullying diminishes the very values that this school seeks to promote.
Examples of Bullying:
Physical – fighting, punching, pushing, shoving, gestures, vandalism, stealing or invasion of personal space
Verbal – name calling, pay-out, offensive language, slander, putting people down behind their back, verbal threats or taunts
Visual – offensive notes or materials, graffiti, some gestures and facial expressions
Victimisation – picking on others, stand-over tactics, threats to people, where groups try to dominate others, discriminating against others because of their race, sex or religious creed
Sexual – commenting on the size and shape of another person’s body, calling someone rude names or making comments about their morals, asking unwanted questions about another person’ private life.
Procedure for reporting incidents:
All students are encouraged to report any incidents of bullying to a staff member, even if they are not directly involved. People who witness acts of bullying should support the victim and report the incident.
The incident should be immediately reported to a: Class Teacher; Homeroom Teacher; Year Coordinator; Welfare Coordinator; Assistant Principal.
- Fellow students, senior students and College Leaders may also help a student to approach a staff member.
- It is also important that the rights of the student who has been bullied are respected. The student is encouraged to discuss the incident/behaviour with his parents, who in turn are welcome to contact either the Year Coordinator or the Student Welfare Coordinator who have the responsibility for student welfare. They will treat the matter with great sensitivity and care.
As a general principle, incidents of bullying will initially be dealt with as a pastoral matter. Both bully and victim will be offered confidential help. If it is thought to be of help, the victim and the perpetrator may also be brought together in order to share concerns, to mediate and hopefully to resolve any difficulties to the satisfaction of both parties. This procedure will occur usually before any sanctions are considered.
Victims who are having persistent difficulties with bullying will be referred to the School Counsellor in order to explore options and strategies for dealing with this type of behaviour.
Students who are identified as persistent bullies will also be referred to the School counselor:
- to help examine the responsibilities and consequences associated with their behaviour; and
- to explore options and strategies that could provide better outcomes
Any case of serious bullying will be considered as a discipline matter as well as a pastoral concern. Staff who have special responsibility for student welfare may decide that sanctions and further disciplinary action may be required. These incidents will be referred to the Year Coordinator and/or the Student Welfare Coordinator for appropriate sanctions. The consequences of these incidents may include withdrawal from class, isolation, in school suspension, out of hours detentions and/or if the circumstances warrant, the student may be suspended or removed from the College.
Students who are identified as persistent bullies will have their behaviour monitored closely by College staff. During the school day Class Teachers, Homeroom Teachers, Year Coordinators and playground duty supervisors (recess and lunch) will monitor the student’s behaviour.