|Review date: September 2021|
|Date of next Review: September 2022|
|Date agreed by Governors: 16th September 2021|
|Authored by: Anthony N Evans, Lauren Haydon et al|
- Knowing and Understanding our Pupils and their Influences
- We Teach “Learning Behaviours” Alongside Managing Behaviour
- Classroom Management Strategies Support Good Classroom Behaviour
- Use Simple Approaches as Part of Your Regular Routine
- Use Targeted Approaches to Meet the Needs of Individuals
- A Place of Safety
- Class Work
- Language and Voice
- Interactions with Adults
- Interactions with Each Other
- Teacher Modelling, Explanations and Questions
- Classrooms and Resources
- Class and School Worship
This policy has the school vision, values and shared aims at its heart. It is based on current research and evidence and reference is made to key documents, papers and expert views throughout the document. It is also written in conjunction with the following policies:
- Anti-bullying policy
- Exclusion policy
- Special Educational Needs (SEN) policy
- Equal Opportunities policy
- Attendance policy
- Safeguarding policy
- Staff Code of Conduct
Our vision is used across all policies and guides our work. It states:
Like a lighthouse, St Michael’s is a beacon of safety and stability. It takes courage to learn and remember knowledge, develop new skills and allow your own light to shine in the world. We respect our differences and know that working peacefully together allows our lights to shine more brightly.
‘Let your light shine’ Matthew 5:16
Our school values are peace, courage, and respect.
We have simplified our vision and values into our school aims listed below:
For our children to:
Learn and remember the skills and knowledge they need for the next phase of education
Love and enjoy books and reading
For school to be:
A place of safety and stability
A place where we nurture a Christian character
For staff and children to:
Respect differences and live and work peacefully with each other
In addition to these school aims, we want to take an inclusive approach to behaviour and to help all our children to improve and refine their behaviour. This includes making reasonable adjustments for some children so that progress and improvements can be made.
1. Foundations of Policy and Process
Belonging and Safety
A. At St Michaels, we believe our school is place of both safety and of belonging. We aim to help children feel safe, valued and part of both a class and a wider school. We do this by demonstrating, modelling, and teaching respect towards each other regardless of background. We know from evidence such as Robert Coe’s Great Teaching Toolkit that classrooms where children feel safe and respected impacts greatly on pupil wellbeing and academic achievement:
B. Classrooms where students respect and pay attention to each other’s thoughts, and feel safe to express their own thoughts, are more productive for learning. Where students cooperate with each other effectively, they are able to benefit from learning interactions with their peers. By contrast, in classrooms where relationships between students are characterised by aggression, hostility, belittling or disrespect, learning is impeded.1
Great Teaching Toolkit June 2020 Robert Coe et al
C. Alongside classroom routines and proportional teacher responses to behaviour, relationships are central to our school culture and to the way we manage behaviour. Teachers aim to consciously create and maintain relationships of trust, dignity and support between all students and themselves.2 We know that a warm and supportive classroom is one where student outcomes improve and where children feel safe and secure.3 Our relationships and “botherdness”4 principle operates across the school from senior leaders, the pastoral team, with support staff as well as in classrooms.
D. We want to catch children being on task rather than just when they are not, to celebrate their achievements and use these as examples to others. We aim to recognise and celebrate when children make significant progress in their behaviour as well as those times when children are consistently doing the right thing or regularly showing positive learning behaviours.
E. Recognition comes in the form of house points, stickers, chats, appropriate mentions in assemblies, chats with senior leaders as well as a less public events such as quiet words, phone calls home or comments in books. This is because we know that specific praise is powerful, but not all children enjoy such public demonstrations. It is also our aim to foster and develop longer lasting intrinsic motivation rather than a dependence on extrinsic rewards.
F. House points are awarded to children whose behaviour is outstanding; these might be children who demonstrate the core and Christian values as well as positive learning behaviours. When children achieve 25, 50 or 75 house points, they will receive a certificate to highlight this.
G. Within EYFS and Year 1, to support the children in their learning behaviours more immediate rewards will be used when necessary.
H. In each classroom, there is a recognition board to celebrate children’s contribution to the current behaviour focus within their class. This is to promote positive behaviours across the school. When the class achieve their focus, they will move onto the next target. The time taken to achieve these may vary. This is a positive initiative; children’s names will not be removed. Each class teacher will use their professional judgement when and how to share this with each child. The design of these boards will vary according to the needs of the children.
I. Rewards need not be material. In many circumstances, proportionate, sincere recognition of the student’s achievement is the most valuable reward available. Intrinsic rewards for good behaviour (better learning, the value of the subject in itself) should be prioritised in order to avoid ‘reward fatigue’ where students become desensitised to benefits.5
J. Staff will frequently communicate values, routines and expectations to pupils through explanations, posters and through story. When children are subject to behaviour plans, we endeavour to ensure all staff working with a child are part of this planning process and that they are informed if modifications are made.
K. The school online reporting system for behaviour is looked at throughout the day by senior leaders in order to stay abreast of behaviour and safeguarding developments, however this is not the sole means of communicating behaviour issues. Where staff are experiencing difficulty with behaviour this needs to be communicated early with senior leaders, in order to plan for support and implement strategies.
L. We aim to communicate frequently with parents through letters, newsletters, phone calls and face to face chats. We intend to share good news stories, points for celebrations, any work difficulties and on areas where we could work together. Where there are behaviour issues then we will speak about these at an early stage. We know that such issues may be for a number of reasons, and we will attempt to problem solve any issue together with a consistency of approach.
M. Behaviours will not define a child and it is important that everyone avoids labelling and awarding children unfair reputations or labels as their behaviour may only be a feature for a period time. If we need to talk to parents about a child, then we will aim to do this respectfully, away from others and with active listening for both parties.
N. At St Michael’s we believe that face-to–face interaction is far more personal, useful and important than phone calls and emails. Wherever possible we will share any behaviour incidents (as well as positive experiences) with parents in person. This may be a short conversation at the end of the day, or we may arrange a meeting at a more convenient time. Where a meeting is not possible, we will then prioritise a phone call over email to discuss any incidents. For parents with limited English we will try to use their preferred means of communication.
O. Teachers and senior leaders work proactively with parents. We share good news stories, achievements and learning points. They use both formal and informal communication channels to build positive relationships including chats, phone calls, meetings, and electronic tools. We see parents and carers as co educators, and we aim to work together to help children thrive in all areas. We do this through active listening and (where necessary) setting of joint behaviour targets that can be worked on at home and in school.
2. What is Good Behaviour and a Christian Character?
Aims and Values
A. One of our school aims is to develop a Christian or good character. This essentially means that children learn how to show our school values of peace, courage and respect through stories, assemblies and our day-to-day dealings with children and other adults.
B. We go beyond our three values and use examples from the Bible and other stories to highlight to children how they should act and behave to prepare them for the next stage of their school career and beyond. This includes how to treat themselves, how to treat others and how to treat the planet.
Not Simply the Absence of Bad Behaviour
Good behaviour is not simply the absence of ‘bad behaviour’ (swearing, fighting, or retreating from classroom tasks). Good behaviour includes aiming towards students flourishing as scholars and human beings. So, while good behaviour does include the absence of, for example, vandalism, rudeness and indolence (which we can describe as negative good behaviour), it also describes behaviour that is more broadly desirable. This could mean helping students to learn good habits of study, or reasoning, or interacting with adults, coping with adversity, or intellectual challenges (positive good behaviour). This could also describe the learning behaviour we wish to see develop in students such as behaving as a scientist, an artist, a mathematician. School leadership has the responsibility for creating circumstances where both forms of good behaviour are encouraged and supported.
Creating a Culture: How school leaders can optimise behaviour
Tom Bennett DFE 2017
- What we Know About Behaviour Management?
Adapted from Educational Endowment Foundation Report on Behaviour 6
Knowing and Understanding our Pupils and their Influences
Good behaviour management is based on developing positive relationships, knowing our pupils and understanding what influences their behaviour.
There is a strong evidence base that teacher-pupil relationships are key to good pupil behaviour and that these relationships can affect pupil effort and academic attainment.
Understanding what is behind behaviour.
Relationship building is one of the most important things we can do with our pupils and can be enhanced through discussion with parents, pastoral support team and former teachers.
We Teach “Learning Behaviours” Alongside Managing Behaviour
Research has suggested that if children improve their learning behaviours this has a greater impact than simply having their behaviour managed. Learning behaviours are:
Classroom Management Strategies Support Good Classroom Behaviour
Classroom management reduces challenging behaviour, though strategies and techniques can benefit from review, trying new approaches and working out what works with your class.
Use Simple Approaches as Part of Your Regular Routine
Greeting every pupil at the beginning of every day
Taking time to practise lining up and transitioning from one part of the school to another – as a pre-emptive practise and not a punitive measure.
Using a ratio of 5 points of praise to one point of critique to pupils
Children attending breakfast club
Working with parents to set joint behaviour goals
Ensuring that the behaviour policy is both understood and consistently applied
Use Targeted Approaches to Meet the Needs of Individuals
Interventions that have a positive effect on behaviour focus on putting in place reward systems and helping develop learning behaviours.
Two successful interventions mentioned by EEF and used in school are:
Focussed Assessment – teachers and pastoral teamwork in partnership to identify behaviours, triggers and possible solutions.
Report Cards – the class teacher and child identify specific behaviours for correction or positive reinforcement, and these are observed, recorded and rewarded with praise and Senior Leader involvement by means of a report card.
Consistency and coherence in behaviour management policy at a whole-school level are paramount.
Behaviour programmes are more likely to have an impact on attainment outcomes if implemented at a whole-school level
4. Proportionate Sanctions and Clarity
A. We recognise the importance of demonstrating a proportionate, consistent and appropriate response to behaviour incidents. Most misdemeanours that happen day to day will be dealt with in class and will often not require a formal sanction.
B. Sanctions and responses will always work alongside pupil teacher relationships and knowledge of our children will inform how we deal with the individuals involved.
C. We operate a stepped approach with low level disruption dealt with by teachers giving warnings, moving seats, or missing part of a break or lunchtime. This is always done privately, and we always aim to preserve the dignity of the children involved. For significantly serious incidents such as bullying, sexual abuse or homophobic and racial incidents then senior leaders will coordinate and decide on the appropriate sanction and work with staff to speak to parents involved
D. When behaviours persist or the behaviour is significantly challenging then teachers or teaching assistants will proceed to involving middle leaders or senior leaders as detailed below.
E. We do not hold over sanctions to later in the week or display the names of children who have broken rules publicly on boards. We know that children need immediate and relevant responses and that displaying names can help to build negative reputations.7
F. Examples of Minor Incidents include (but are not limited to):
- Calling out in class
- Disrupting the learning of others in the classroom
- Not completing the work set by an adult
- Saying something unkind to another child
- Reacting to a situation instead of seeking support from an adult
- Hurting someone whilst playing
- Lying or refusing to take responsibility for actions when they have been witnessed
- Deliberately throwing small objects to cause disruption
- Late back to class without reasonable explanation
- Being silly in the toilets.
- Refusing to follow adult instructions
G. Frequent and deliberate displays of minor incidents will involve intervention from middle or senior leaders. Examples of these are listed below:
- Behaviour is creating a health and safety risk
- Running out of school and leaving the school grounds.
- Intentional physical harm to other children
- Throwing/kicking large objects at someone or around the room to cause harm or damage.
- Verbal abuse to any staff member
- Serious damage to school property or someone else’s belongings.
- Serious theft, e.g. taking money or a mobile phone from an adult’s bag
- Persistent bullying
- Racial or homophobic unkind words
5. Behaviour Steps Poster
These can be adapted as a visual aide-mémoire for children and staff. They must not include any names of children against any of the steps.
6. Establish, Maintain and Restore
A. At St Michael’s, not only do children follow our three values of Peace, Courage and Respect but so do all the adults. We believe mutual respect from the children to the adults and the adult to the children is paramount for a happy and safe learning environment. At St Michael’s we want our classrooms to be peaceful to ensure the children can make the most of their learning time. Therefore, we have a ‘no shouting belief’ amongst all our staff. To gain the attention of the children we use different techniques such as clapping and singing which the children respond to effectively.
B. If a behaviour incident occurs, we will address that situation and focus on reflection with them to stop the incidents from taking place again. Adults should use the EMR method of establish, maintain and restore relationships with children. Note the EMR approach has been shown to have significant impact on student/teacher relationships and pupil outcomes in 2018 studies.
Intentional practices to cultivate a positive relationship with each student (i.e. build trust, connection and understanding)
Proactive efforts to prevent relationship from diminishing over time, continue with positive interactions.
Intentionally repairing harm to the relationship after a negative interaction. Reconnect, repair and restore.
7. Expectations Day-to-Day
A. The following expectations are how we express our school values and vision. Each of these routines and norms need to be modelled, clearly taught and frequently revisited. This needs to be done within the context and alongside our values, aims and vision, and not as a set of decontextualised rules.
Behaviour cannot be modified in the long term by simply telling students to behave. The behaviour curriculum must be taught, similarly to how we would teach an academic or practical subject.
Tom Bennett Running the Room p51
A Place of Safety
B. Our school is a place of safety, and this includes the space and freedom to get things wrong both academically and in behaviour. We know that children will make mistakes and that they will fail and subsequently learn from their failures. As adults we make mistakes and we share these with children to break down the stigma around them. We then model how to overcome them to provide the children with these strategies to use for themselves. We encourage children to have a growth mindset and to go on trying, even when they do not feel like they can achieve we encourage them to believe that they can. When we notice children overcoming these barriers, it is recognised and, if appropriate, rewarded.
C. Lessons vary from how they are delivered by the teacher to how the teacher assesses the lesson. One lesson may require a group of children to collaborate and produce a PowerPoint on a laptop; another may require partners to explain how they have solved a challenge; or another may require children to work independently to produce a written response. Teachers will make this expectation clear and explain when it is appropriate to talk and collaborate and when it is appropriate to work in silence.
D. During periods of formal work, movement around the classroom should be at a minimum and routines should be in place to ensure children do not need to leave their seats.
E. While there is scope for teachers to use a level of professional judgement around noise levels, we know from research that noisy classrooms are not conducive to good outcomes and they can cause stress and anxiety for children. Our children are entitled to work in calm and quiet classrooms, particularly when writing at length. For more on this, see research such as Dockrell and Shield’s extensive 2003 review on the effects of noise in class. They concluded:
In summary, it appears from this body of work that the general effects of chronic noise exposure on children are deficits in sustained attention and visual attention; poorer auditory discrimination and speech perception; poorer memory for tasks that require high processing demands of semantic material; and poorer reading ability and school performance on national standardised tests
F. Even when the children are working collaboratively with partners or in small groups, it is still expected that the children will be working effectively. This will need to be modelled to children as working with and alongside a peer can be challenging at all stages and phases.
Language and Voice
G. Staff make every effort to use language to aid learning and that addresses behaviour as the issue and not the child. Repeated negative language about a child results in the formation of a negative reputation, stereotyping, bias and resultant low expectation. Therefore, staff speak of the behaviour or the incident being wrong rather than the whole child being bad. In line with this, behaviour is best addressed privately and not as a public show of shame to the class.
H. Children do not have their names displayed on board for breaking behaviour rules and when conversations about behaviour need to take place this happens out of the ear shot of other children and adults.
I. In keeping with the role of the school as a place of safety, staff avoid defaulting to shouting at pupils. This is kept as a last resort or when needed to avoid a hazard.
J. As adults we act as role models with our language and demonstrate to children that we can use words to build each other up and encourage each other. Racist, homophobic, ableist, sexist and any prejudicial language will always be challenged by staff.
Interactions with Adults
K. At our school children greet other adults with an appropriate salutation. Saying “Good morning” and “How are you?” should not be forced or unnatural. We teach children these greetings explicitly and clearly along with saying “please” and “thank you”, holding doors and looking at the speaker.
L. Through modelling and recognising these behaviours in others it encourages children to notice these attributes in others and replicate them. This is both an outworking of our values and also preparation for life outside and beyond school. Adults that visit the school for talks, worship, as cover teachers or to volunteer remark on how attentive polite and respectful our children are.
M. Uniform is a way of signifying belonging and by putting it on children show they are ready to take part in a day of learning at St Michael’s. Children are expected to arrive in school wearing school uniform as outlined on the school website. It also helps to prepare them for life at secondary school and beyond. On the day when children are taking part in PE, then children will wear PE kit including jogging bottoms on colder days.
N. We will give reminders to children not to enhance or customise their uniform with scarves, jewellery, flags or excessive hair adornments. Children are asked not to dye their hair to pink, purple or green unless it is a themed day or theatrical costume.
Interactions with Each Other
O. As with their interactions with adults, we expect children to respect, collaborate, share, play with, listen to and get along with their peers. This is taught explicitly through stories, RHSE and collective worship sessions. It is also addressed through the daily experiences and discussions about events in class from preschool and beyond.
Teacher Modelling, Explanations and Questions
P. Teachers can expect to be able to model, explain and question without interruption. Children can respond via cold calling, whiteboard sharing or other techniques pertinent to the class. Unsolicited calling out or talking over the teacher should not happen.
Q. During inputs, teachers use a range of methods to include their class and check on their understanding such as cold calling, whiteboard sharing and partner talk.
R. Cold calling is a method adopted by teachers for the majority of time which requires children to not put their hand up and allow any child to be chosen to share their response or idea. It is used to engage more children and to ensure no child can sit back and hide behind those that always have their hands up.
S. Each method will have been modelled to the class so they understand how to engage effectively. There are times during inputs that teachers need to model, explain and question without interruption. Unsolicited calling out or talking over the teacher should not happen.
8. Mobiles Phones
A. At St Michael’s we believe that for the children to work in a safe environment they do not need their mobile phones with them. We understand that in some year groups children walk to school by themselves and a phone is useful for their safety therefore a non-smart phone is allowed into school if it is handed directly to the class teacher on entering the classroom.
9. Behaviour Outside of School Premises
A. Whilst this behaviour policy refers mainly to the behaviour of pupils within school premises, the schools reserve the right to discipline beyond the school gate if needed. Teachers have the power to discipline pupils for misbehaving outside of the school premises “to such an extent as is reasonable”
Behaviour and discipline in schools, DfE Jan 2016.
B. Subject to the behaviour policy, teachers may discipline pupils for misbehaviour when the pupil is:
- taking part in any school-organised or school-related activity or
- travelling to or from school - wearing school uniform
- in some other way identifiable as a pupil at the school.
or misbehaviour at any time, whether or not the conditions above apply, that:
- could have repercussions for the orderly running of the school or
- poses a threat to another pupil, member of the public or could adversely affect the reputation of the school.
C. In the incidences above, the headteacher/deputy may notify the police of any actions taken against a pupil. If the behaviour is criminal or causes threat to a member of the public, the police will always be involved.
10. Children with Special Educational Needs
A. For some children their significant cognitive, sensory and/or emotional needs mean that the social and busy environment of school can be a challenging place for them. Staff will continue to hold high expectations for these children both academically and behaviourally. However, adaptions and adjustments made to policy in the form of specific behaviour plans need to be in place for children with such needs to enable them to thrive and succeed. This could include adjusting timetables, having a safe space around the school and intervention in the form of nurture or emotional literacy support.
B. This work will always be coordinated, planned in partnership with the Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCO). Not all children with special educational needs need such adaptions or considerations. It should also be remembered that whatever plans are put in place for a child, they will complement this policy and expectations of behaviour will remain high.
11. Documenting Behaviour
A. Adults record incidents of behaviour using the Child Protection Online Management System (CPOMS). Staff ensure that entries are factual and devoid of judgement or assumption. These entries help when feeding back to parents, other members of staff and (when appropriate) outside agencies. The school SENCO and pastoral team can use these entries to help support teachers and pupils and as a means of identifying behaviour triggers, devising adaptions and planning additional support.
12. Sexism and Sexual Harassment
A. Staff and Governors understand the importance of challenging inappropriate behaviours between peers, making clear that sexual violence and sexual harassment are not acceptable, will never be tolerated or dismissed and are not an inevitable part of growing up. These forms of abuse will never be tolerated (regardless of gender) or passed off as ‘just banter’, ‘just having a laugh’, ‘boys being boys’ or ‘part of growing up’. Challenging behaviours (potentially criminal in nature) such as grabbing bottoms, breasts and genitalia, flicking bras and lifting up skirts will not be dismissed, tolerated or normalised to prevent a culture of unacceptable behaviours, an unsafe environment for children and in worst case scenarios a culture that normalises abuse leading to children accepting it as normal and not coming forward to report it
B. Sexual violence, such as rape, assault by penetration and sexual assault (this may include an online element which facilitates, threatens and/or encourages physical abuse), sexual harassment, such as sexual comments, remarks, jokes and online sexual harassment, which may be stand alone or part of a broader pattern of abuse, causing someone to engage in sexual activity without consent, such as forcing someone to strip, touch themselves sexually, or to engage in sexual activity with a third party, consensual and non-consensual sharing of nudes and semi nudes images and or videos (also known as sexting or youth produced sexual imagery); up skirting , which typically involves taking a picture under a person’s clothing (not necessarily a skirt) without their permission, with the intention of viewing their genitals or buttocks (with or without underwear) to obtain sexual gratification or cause the victim humiliation, distress or alarm (it is a criminal offence and could happen to anyone of any sex); and initiation/hazing type violence and rituals (this could include activities involving harassment, abuse or humiliation used as a way of initiating a person into a group and may also include an online element).
C. We respond immediately to concerns and disclosures of sexual harassment and abuse. See the safeguarding policy for further details and guidance on response, escalation and sanctions
13. Policy Review
A. This policy will be reviewed annually by staff and governors at the beginning of each academic year. Information will be used from the school online reporting system to help inform any changes that are needed. Alongside this, views will be sought from parents, staff and children on the efficacy and impact of current ways of working. Any review will also take account of current research in the areas of behaviour and teaching and learning.
14. References and Further Reading
When the Adults Change Everything Changes Independent Thinking Press Paul Dix 2017
When the Adults Change Everything Changes Independent Thinking Press Paul Dix 2017
Classrooms and Resources
T. Our classrooms are organised to store stationery, books and equipment for 30 pupils, teaching assistants and a teacher. It should be the job of the children to help the adults keep rooms organised, tidy and clean. Children will follow routines set by the teacher to distribute materials and tidy up.
U. This is taught from the earliest stage in reception where children learn songs and rhymes. However, as rooms and layouts change children will learn new routines and organisation as they progress up the school.
V. Children move from their classroom in silent lines to avoid disrupting other classes and to ensure they arrive at their next destination safely. Teachers consider beforehand where children stand in their line to minimise disruption. It is the responsibility of all adults in the school to ensure this takes place and if they see any children not following this rule to stop and remind them.
W. Our school prioritises reading and children are expected to look after their reading book and have it in school for changing. As children progress throughout the school, they will move beyond the reading scheme to become an independent reader where they can choose their own book from the class library. They are responsible for this book and for its care. They need to choose a book carefully and avoid getting something randomly from the class library.
Class and School Worship
X. Worship times need to begin with a clear transition from what has gone before. This could be music, a verbal reminder or lighting of a candle. From this point on the children know that this is a different and special time of the day. It requires them to show reverence, respect, and reflection. It should feel different in classroom or the hall during worship.