What is Bullying?
Bullying is a wilful, conscious desire to hurt, threaten or frighten someone with the intention to harm. This may take the form of verbal or psychological as well as physical abuse, threatening behaviour or extortion (demanding money, possessions etc.). It may occur as an one-off event or over a number of occasions.
Cyber Bullying – contact via text, email, BBM or social networking sites that upsets or embarrasses the victim purposefully.
Physical Bullying – a form of physical contact that makes the students feel uncomfortable, intimidated or harmed.
Racists or Sexual Bullying may be physical, verbal or emotional.
Any student who feels they are a victim of bullying or who witnesses an incident of bullying is encouraged to approach any member of staff for help.
All members of staff (academic, administrative, cleaning and maintenance) and students must be made aware that bullying will not be accepted at Cornerstone College.
Just as all members of staff and students are responsible for the upholding of the Behaviour Policy they will equally be held responsible for the implementation of the anti-bullying policy. All students are to feel safe and free from harassment in the college environment and confident that any incidents reported are dealt with and taken seriously. These expectations hold for behaviours in college, student accommodation and outside of college where the same standards and consequences will occur.
Students will be informed of the policy through the student induction process at the beginning of each academic year and the policy will be printed in the student handbook. Parents will also receive a copy. Aspects will be covered during tutorials and PSHE sessions.
The policy aims to ensure a safe and happy environment for the students of Cornerstone. This will be achieved in part by promoting good relationships between all members of the CCC community.
- Working towards an inclusive environment where students feel safe to talk about issues and how to report them. For students to feel they are valued, will be listened to and taken seriously
- By sharing information and creating a positive and safe environment. For students, staff and parents to be fully aware of ‘what is bullying’ and the impact of bullying, the college’s policies and procedures and the need to report incidents to support a zero tolerance to bullying
- Ensuring that all staff understand their responsibilities and are aware of how to get help and support.
It is important to respond quickly to any bullying to prevent it escalating into a larger issue. Disciplinary action will take place in accordance with our behaviour policy and the seriousness of the incident. Sometimes the person carrying out the bullying does not appreciate the effect of their action on others or even realise they are doing wrong.
What to look out for
A student may come to you but often this is not the case. You should look out for behaviour that is out of character such as being isolated, teased in class, not wanting to attend college or symptoms linked with anxiety, fall in confidence, withdrawal, self-harm. Open a discussion about their school work, friends, what they do in their free time in college and outside of college or any problems they are facing.
Staff who witness bullying must respond immediately and should also:
- Set an example with your own behaviour: of respect, kindness, courtesy and good manners towards all college members.
- Uphold standards of behaviour in a quiet, controlled and caring atmosphere.
- Not ignore unacceptable behaviour.
- Deal promptly and effectively with all aspects of bullying.
- Keep a written record of all incidents of bullying and action taken.
- Inform the student’s Personal Tutor/Director of Studies of the incident and actions taken in dealing with the incident.
- Be aware of times in the day and areas about college where bullying could occur. These then require adequate staffing to hinder the opportunities for bullying to occur.
Students will be made aware of:
- The need to inform any member of staff if they feel that they are being bullied or witness bullying.
- That the matter will be taken seriously and dealt with sensitively.
- This information will be shared with a senior member of staff for example the Director of Welfare
- That they may request a student mentor be the first point of addressing the issue with the student involved if they feel this would create a more successful solution.
- Everyone has a social responsibility within the community to look out for others and to be tolerant of differences.
- This information will be enhanced through tutorial work and PSHE activities where students will look at their own behaviour, morality and choices they make.
- Students should always report incidents of bullying or of observed distress.
- Give specific support for the college policy on bullying.
- Report bullying incidents to the student’s Personal Tutor or the Director of Studies in the first instance.
Further Information on Bullying:
Anti-Bullying Alliance: ABA founded by NSPCC to develop and share good practice across a range of bullying issues.
Family Lives (previously Parentline Plus) 0808 800 2222 – gives support and advice for parents on any aspect of parenting and family life, including bullying.
Advisory Centre for Education (advice for parents and children on all school matters): 0808 800 5793
Beatbullying: a prevention charity working directly with young people.
Childnet International: specialist resource to raise awareness for online safety for children and how to protect themselves.
Children’s Legal Centre (free legal advice on all aspects of the law affecting children and young people): 0845 120 2948
Kidscape helpline for parents: 08451 04 (10.00 am to 4.00 pm)
Parent line Plus helpline:
0808 800 2222 (Monday to Friday 9.00 am to 9.00 pm, Saturday 9.30 am to 5.00 pm, Sunday 10.00 am to 3.00 pm)
Reviewed in September 2023
By Dr. Emmanuel Obikwu.