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School Policies & Documents

ETHOS Statement


The “ethos” of Ardfert N.S. compasses selective attitudes, beliefs, core values, traditions, aspirations and goals.  These are reflected in the actual practices which are carried out in the school on a daily, weekly and yearly basis.  While it is impossible to outline all aspects of the school “ethos”, the following characteristics are experienced and promoted as essential elements in the establishment of a supportive and positive “ethos”.


  • In Ardfert Central N.S. where the ethos is that of a Catholic school, religious instruction, in accordance with the doctrine and tradition of the Catholic Church is part of the education given to children who belong to that Church.
  • The pupils are prepared for the reception of the sacraments of First Confession, First Holy Communion and Confirmation, in accordance with arrangements in the diocese .
  • Prayer is a feature of the school day.
  • The school aims at promoting the full and harmonious development of all aspects of the pupil, including his relationship with God, with other people and with the environment.
  • The Principal and teaching staff aim at maintaining high professional standards and creating a safe and happy environment.
  • A spirit of mutual respect is promoted within the school community.  Pupils are drawn by example and teaching to appreciate and respect people of different religious affiliations and of different nationalities.
  • Close contact is maintained between school and home.  Parents/Guardians and teachers support one another and collaborate with one another in leading the children to the fullness of their potential at the different stages.
  • It is our wish that all visitors to the school would sense, upon entering the premises, the warmth, friendship and collegiality of the whole school community.

Ancillary staff in the school are highly esteemed and respected.  It is recognised that their work makes a valued contribution to the process of education.

Mission Statement



ArdfertCentral National Schoo  lwhich is comprised of pupils, teachers, management and ancillary staff is committed to the education and development of the young people in its Christian community.


  • Ardfert School staff strives to recognise the dignity and uniqueness of each child.
  • Ardfert School staff actively aspires to   providing the highest quality education in a safe environment.
  • Ardfert School staff values the support and co-operation of parents/guardians in the education of their children.
  • Ardfert School staff seeks to build a  Christian environment in which each individual child is taught and treated with love, respect and understanding.

School Attendance Policy

There is a very strong tradition of good attendance in Ardfert Central National School.  We are anxious that parents be aware of the absolute necessity for regular punctual attendance at school. Quite simply, children cannot learn if they are not in school. The following strategies have been put in place to help foster an appreciation of learning and good attendance;

  • Rewards in accordance with the Code of Behaviour
  • The Principal issues certificates of good attendance at the end of the school year.
  • At September Information meeting for Parents and Guardians of the new Junior Infants, the Principal will emphasize the need for the child’s good attendance at school. A copy of the policy will be handed out on the night.
  • As stated in the Code of Behaviour, parents are expected to write a note/letter notifying the teacher of the reason for a child’s absence within three days of the child’s return
  • The teacher notes the reason for the students absence, especially those that are at risk of developing school attendance problems

Appropriate contact will take place between the school and parents/guardians of these children;

  • Following 10 days absenteeism, the teacher will inform the Principal, who will write to the parents expressing her concerns.
  • Following 15 days absenteeism, the teacher will inform the Principal who will write to the parents inviting them to a meeting to discuss the problem.(Where a child has been genuinely sick and the Principal has been kept informed, this letter will not be sent)
  • For 20 days absenteeism the teacher will inform the Principal, who will inform the N.E.W.B. and notify the parents of this by letter.Parents will be invited in again and a strategy drawn up under the following remit “What supports need to be put in place?”

1.  Attendance, behaviour and academic records of children who transfer to another primary school will be forwarded to the Principal of the school by post as soon as written confirmation of this transfer is received.

2.  Attendance, behaviour and academic records of children who transfer into Ardfert Central National School will be sought directly from the previous school.

3. Attendance, behaviour and Academic records of pupils transferring to secondary school will be sent to the school once enrolment has been confirmed.



Education (Welfare) Act 2000: III;22.1

Education (Welfare) Act 2000: III;21.4

Education (Welfare) Act 2000: III;20.5

Education (Welfare) Act 2000: III;20.5

Education (Welfare) Act 2000: III;20.3

Education (Welfare) Act 2000: III; 22.5

“Empty Desks”, C.D.U. Mary Immaculate College


This Policy was ratified by B.O.M. on _______________


Signed Chairperson of B.O.M. _______________________

Child Safeguarding Statement

Ardfert Central N.S. is a primary school providing primary education to pupils from Junior Infants to Sixth Class.

In accordance with the requirements of the Children First Act 2015, Children First: National Guidance for the Protection and Welfare of Children 2017, the Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post Primary Schools 2017 and Tusla Guidance on the preparation of Child Safeguarding Statements, the Board of Management of Ardfert Central N. S. has agreed the Child Safeguarding Statement set out in this document.

  1. The Board of Management has adopted and will implement fully and without modification the Department’s Child Protection Procedures for primary and post-primary Schools 2017 as part of this overall Child Safeguarding Statement.
  2. The Designated Liaison Person (DLP) is Betty Stack Principal.
  3. The Deputy Designated Liaison Person (Deputy DLP) is Marie O Connell Deputy Principal
  4. The Board of Management recognises that child protection and welfare considerations permeate all aspects of school life and must be reflected in all of the school’s policies, procedures, practices and activities.   The school will adhere to the following principles of best practice in Child protection and welfare.

The school will:

  1. recognise that the protection and welfare of children is of paramount importance, regardless of all other considerations
  2. fully comply with its statutory obligations under the Children First Act 2015 and other relevant legislation relating to the protection and welfare of children
  3. fully co-operate with the relevant statutory authorities in relation to child protection and welfare matters
  4. adopt safe practices to minimise the possibility of harm or accidents happening to children and protect workers from the necessity to take unnecessary risks that may leave themselves open to accusations of abuse or neglect
  5. develop a practice of openness with parents and encourage parental involvement in the education of their children; and
  6. fully respect confidentiality requirement in dealing with child protection matters

The school will also adhere to the above principles in relation to any adult pupil with a special vulnerability

The following procedures/measures are in place:

  1. In relation to any member of staff who is the subject of any investigation (howsoever described) in respect of any act, omission or circumstance in respect of   a child attending the school, the school adheres to the relevant procedures set out in Chapter 7 of the Child protection Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools 2017 and to the relevant agreed disciplinary procedures for school staff which are published on the DES website
  2. In relation to the selection or recruitment of staff and their suitability to work with children, the school adheres to the statutory vetting requirements of the National Vetting Bureau (Children and Vulnerable Persons) Acts 2012 to 2016 and to the wider duty of care guidance set out in relevant Garda vetting and recruitment circulars published by the DES and available on the DES website
  3. In relation to the provision of information and, where necessary instruction and training to staff in respect of the identification of the occurrence of harm (as defined in the 2015 Act) the school:
    1. Has provided each member of staff with a copy of the school’s Child Safeguarding Statement.
    2. Ensures all new staff are provided with a copy of the school’s Child Safeguarding statement
    3. Encourages staff to avail of relevant training
    4. Encourage Board of Management members to avail of relevant training
    5. The Board of Management maintains records of all staff and Board member training.
  4. In relation to reporting of child protection concerns to Tusla, all school personnel are required to adhere to the procedures set out in the Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools 2017, including in the case of registered teachers, those in relation to mandated reporting under the Children First Act 2015
  5. In this school, the Board has appointed the above named DLP as the ‘relevant person’ (as defined in the Children First Act 2015) to be the first point of contact in respect of the school’s child safeguarding statement.
  6. All registered teachers employed by the school are mandated persons under the Children First Act 2015
  7. In accordance with the Children First Act 2015, the Board has carried out an assessment of any potential for harm to a child while attending the school or participating in school activities,   A written assessment setting out the areas of risk identified and the school’s procedures for managing those risks is attached as appendix to these procedures.
  8. The various procedures referred to in this Statement can be accessed via the school’s website, the DES website or will be made available on request by the school.

Note:   The above is not intended as an exhaustive list.   Individual Boards of Management shall also include in this section such other procedures/measures that are of relevance to the school in question.

  1. This statement has been published on the school’s website and has been provided to all members of school personnel, the  Parents; Association (if any) and the patron.   It is readily accessible to parents and guardians on request.   A copy of this Statement will be made available to Tusla and the Department if requested.
  2. This Child Safeguarding Statement will be reviewed annually or as soon as practicable after there has been a material change in any matter to which this statement refers

This Child Safeguarding Statement was adopted by the Board of Management on 11/03/2018



Chairperson of BOM



Principal/Secretary to the BOM


Appendix 1.

The staff and board of management of this school have identified the following as areas of specific concern in relation to child protection.  Following discussion and consultation the staff and board of management have agreed that the following practices be adopted.


The Stay Safe Programme is the primary resource used in this school to provide education for children on abuse prevention.  The programme is taught as part of the school’s S.P.H.E curriculum under the strand unit Safety and Protection (Personal Safety).  On enrolment of their child, parents will be informed that the Stay Safe Programme is in use in the school.  The formal lessons of the programme will be taught in their entirety every second year in accordance with the S.P.H.E two year cycle plan.  Staff will be make every effort to ensure that the messages of the programme are reinforced whenever possible.

School Access

Ardfert School has an Access Control Card System in operation.  It operates on both main doors for security reasons.  No unauthorised personnel are permitted into the building.  Visitors must identify themselves and state the purpose of their visit to the secretary in front of house office before access is considered.

Arrival, Dismissal and Absences during the School Day

There is a policy of collective responsibility for supervision in the school from 9.00 a.m – 2.40 p.m.  Morning supervision in Ardfert will be carried out by Principal and Deputy Principal from 8.30 a.m to 9.00 a.m.  Children attending Ardfert N.S. go to class in single file when the morning bell rings and leave the school building in an orderly fashion when dismissed in the afternoon.  Should children wish to leave the school during the day they must

  • Be signed out in the “early leaving” copy by an authorised adult.
  • Should a child become ill in school during the day the secretary will phone the parent/guardian to take the child home.

If we fail to contact parents the child will stay in school unless seriously ill, in which case the child will be taken straight to hospital (sanction for this is sought at time of enrolment).

If it is considered necessary an ambulance may be called and the child will be accompanied to hospital.

Children may not leave the school unaccompanied under any circumstances during the day.  Parents/Guardians may not make arrangements to meet the child at the gate. They must come into the building and personally “sign out” the child.


  • While every precaution will be taken under our Health and Safety statement to ensure the safety of children, we realise that accidents will happen.  Accidents will be noted in our “Incident Book” and will be filed in Mrs. Stack’s room.  Any injury to a child’s head or private parts will be reported to parents immediately.
  • Sixth Class children will be selected as “yard buddies”.  They will wear fluorescent  “walking jackets” and assist teachers on yard duty.
  • If there is a serious injury the teacher on yard duty will bring the child to the office.  They will inform the teachers in the staff room, one of whom will go out to the yard to cover for the teacher dealing with the injury.
  • When Secretary/Teacher is applying band aids to cuts and grazes she will do so in the presence of an older sibling of the child involved or another adult.


Our school attendance will be monitored as per our Attendance Policy.  With regards to child protection we will pay particular attention to trends in non-attendance.  We will also monitor non-attendance in correlation with signs of neglect/physical/emotional abuse.


Children are encouraged at all times to play co-operatively and inappropriate behaviour will be addressed under our Code of Discipline/Anti Bullying Policy.  If an incident occurs which we consider to be of a sexualised nature we will notify the D.L.P who will record it and respond to it appropriately.


Procedures for reporting and the action to be taken are outlined in Ardfert N.S.

Bullying Policy.

Resources used:  Circle Time                       S.P.H.E.

Walk Tall                         Bí Folláin

Prim-Ed. Publications       Alive-O

Stay Safe

Children travelling in staff cars

Members of the school staff will not carry children alone in their cars at any time.


Every effort will be made to enhance pupil-teacher communication.  If pupils have concerns they will be listened to sympathetically.  The S.P.H.E/Oral Language/R.S.E programmes allow for open pupil-teacher relationship.  If teachers have to communicate with pupils on a one-to-one basis, they are requested to leave the classroom door open.

Induction of Staff

The D.L.P will give a copy of the Child Protection Policy to all new staff.  All new teachers are expected to teach the designated S.P.H.E objectives for their class.

Induction of Pupils

All parents and children will be made aware of attendance rules and their implications as laid down in the Education Welfare Act (2000).  All parents will be informed of the programmes in place in the school that deal with personal development e.g. R.S.E., Walk Tall, Stay Safe and S.P.H.E.  All new parents are given a copy of the school’s enrolment policy, which outlines the procedures parents and children should use when contacting the school if there are absences or concerns of an educational/personal/family matter.  Parents are encouraged to make an appointment with the Class Teacher/Principal if they wish to discuss their child’s progress.  All parents are given a copy of the school’s Code of Behaviour and Anti-Bullying Policies.

Record Keeping

Teachers will keep each child’s file updated with results of assessments carried out, dates and details of meetings with parents and notes from parents.  The records are kept in a secure place.  Roll books will be updated daily.  Sensitive information regarding children will be shared on a need-to-know basis.  All educational files of pupils who no longer attend this school are kept by Learning Support and Resource Teachers.  All psychological reports will be stored in the office.


The school’s Supervision Policy will be followed by all staff to ensure that there is comprehensive supervision of children at all breaks and arrival and dismissal.  Principal/Deputy Principal will be involved before/after school supervision.  A rota will be displayed to cover sos and lunchtime breaks.  School tours and outings will be supervised at a ratio of 10 children to 1 adult.  Parents will be asked to help with supervision on school tours and outings.


Children will be brought by bus to the swimming pool.  Children will line up in an orderly manner for the bus as stated in our dismissal policy in the school’s Health and Safety Statement.  Children from First Class will use ladies changing rooms.  From Second Class upwards girls will use ladies changing rooms and boys will use mens changing rooms.  They will be supervised by two garda vetted adults, either parents or employees of the swimming pool.


Teachers will ensure that children are visible in the school playground.  Children will not be allowed spend time in classrooms, toilets or sheds where they would not be under adult supervision. They will get an opportunity to use toilets before they go out at sos time and lunch time. They are not to leave the school playground or to engage with adults who are outside of the school playground.


Teachers on playground duty will be aware of visitors entering the school playground and will ascertain their intentions.  They will be supervised in the discharge of their business.

Guests Speakers/Visiting Teachers

Teachers will remain with the class at all times when a visiting teacher or guest speaker is engaging with the pupils.

Toileting/Intimate Care/Toileting Accidents

In situations where a pupil has toileting/intimate care needs a meeting will be held with the parent, teacher, SNA and if appropriate, the child, after enrolment to discuss the issue and procedures to be followed.  In the case of a toileting accident older brothers and sisters may help.  Two adults must always be present when caring for a child who has had a toileting accident.

One to One Teaching

Where teachers are teaching children individually they may only do so in classrooms that have a clear glass panel in the door.  A letter of consent for individual tuition must also be signed by parent/guardian.

Talking to Children

Should a teacher wish to speak to a child at a personal level, it is advised that such conversations take place on the corridor.

Recruitment and Selection of Staff

ArdfertN.S.endorses arrangements for the vetting of teaching and non-teaching staff as outlined in Circular 0094/2006 by the D.E.S.


On admission to the school, parents/guardians are requested to sign a permission slip for photographs of their children to be taken.  Photographs by outside agencies (i.e. Press Photographers etc.) are taken under the supervision of a staff member.

Internet Use

Internet use is considered a school resource and a privilege.  Procedures are outlined in our Acceptable Use Policy.

Substance Use

ArdfertN.S.acknowledges that the school has an important role in terms of education, prevention, support and handling substance abuse related incidents.  Our approach is outlined in our Substance Use Policy.

Risk Assessment

School Activities

Risk of Harm

Managing the Risk

Arrival & Dismissal of pupils Bullying of child by child Observation by teachers, orderly dismissal


Breaks Bullying/Physical harm to child Designated play areas for different classes & 7 adults supervising at every break Repaint lines, organised play,

Buddy bench, Rules for running

Classroom Teaching Harm to child/teacher Classroom Rules and those developed by children – Procedure if teacher has to leave the room – Routines
One to One Teaching Physical & emotional harm/inappropriate behaviour by school personnel Window & glass panelling on door,

door left ajar, SEN Policy, Infant Class child when left alone after 2.00 pm will go to another classroom

Outdoor Teaching Activities Multiple//Pupil and Teacher Supervision/per school rules ratio 1:10 Garda vetting (exempting short bus journeys – Driver/Teacher)
Sporting Activities Injury/Abuse Supervision ratio 1:10   Garda vetting

Female teacher present

School Outings Injury/Abuse Supervision ratio 1:10
Care of Pupils with SEN including intimate care Harm to pupils S.E.N Policy & Policy on Intimate Care
Sports Day Injury Supervision, First Aid basic, Non-high risk activities
Challenging behaviour Harm to school personnel & students Adhere to Code of Discipline, School rules, Think Sheets, Assembly (Recap on Rules)
Medicine Accessible to pupils All medicines in office except children high risk on emergency plan


Administration of

First Aid

Treat superficial cuts etc, Record serious incident

Serious injury – Ring ambulance and medical centre, Critical Incident Plan

Plasters and ice packs

Bangs on head – ring home

Curricular Provision in Respect of SPHE/

Stay Safe/R.S.E Third Term

Harm to pupil through lack of knowledge Taught as per curriculum
Prevention & Dealing with

Bullying among pupils

Harm to pupils Anti-Bullying Policy

Yard Supervision

Supervision at dismissal & arrival

Buddy Bench

Assembly SPHE RSE Stay Safe

Zippy’s Friends, Friends for Life

Training of school personnel in child protection matters Harm to pupils/

School personnel


Training for all staff



Use of external personnel to supplement curriculum Harm to pupils Garda vetting

Teacher present

Care of pupils with specific vulnerabilities such as pupils from ethnic minorities/Migrants/

Traveller Community/

LGBT Children/

Minority Religious Faith/

In Care/On CPNS

Harm to pupils





Zippy’s Friends

Friends for Life

Friendship Week



Inclusive Ethos of School

Recruitment of

School Personnel

Harm to pupils Garda Vetting
Use of Information &

Communication Technology by pupils in the school

Harm to pupils Supervision

Safety Net

Acceptance Usage Policy

Application of sanctions under the school’s Code of Behaviour/Confiscation of mobile phones Harm to school personnel Phone put into sealed envelope

Assembly – Recap of School Rules

Students participating in work experience in the school Harm to pupils Garda Vetted by their colleges

Teachers present

Student teachers in the school Harm to pupils Garda vetted by their colleges

Teacher present in the room


Other media

Harm to pupils Permission for same granted/not granted on Enrolment form
Joe Burkett/Dance/Drama

After School hours

Harm to pupils 3 Adults Garda Vetted

All children in hall together

Healthy Eating Policy/Nutrition Policy

  1. All food and drink consumed in the school will follow the guidelines recommended in the “Food Pyramid”.


  1. Food from the bottom shelf of the “Food Pyramid” –

the carbohydrate shelf, should be eaten at lunch break.

Eg. Sandwiches, bread rolls, crackers, pitta bread, scones, tortilla wraps, pasta salad, rice salad, potato salad and popcorn.


3. We encourage healthy lunches, which are prepared at home.


  1. At least one piece of fresh fruit/vegetable each day is encouraged as part of the food eaten at school.


  1. (a) We actively encourage water and milk as drinks at school.

(b) Yops, frubes, actimel, petit filous and any other type of yoghurt               are not allowed.

(c) Fizzy drinks are not permitted.

(d) We would recommend 100% pure unsweetened fruit juice or

diluted juices.

(e) Juice drinks with a high sugar content are actively discouraged.

Eg. Sunny delight and Capri sun.


  1. (a) Plain biscuits are permitted every day.

(b) One food from the top shelf of the “Food Pyramid” will be

permitted on Fridays as a treat.  Eg. Penguin bars, chocolate

biscuits, treat size bars, buns etc…

(c) Crisps and sweets are not permitted.


  1. Any uneaten food and wrappers must be taken home to be disposed of in compliance with An Coiste Glas.


8. As a health promoting school, we would remind parents of the

importance of a nutritious breakfast.  Eg. Porridge and low sugar

content cereals like weetabix, cornflakes, ready brek etc…


Date of next review:_______________________


Our Healthy Eating Policy


An Coiste Glas

Any uneaten food and wrappers must be taken home to be disposed of in compliance with An Coiste Glas.


A Good Start

As a health promoting school we would remind parents of the importance of a nutritious breakfast.

Eg. Porridge and low sugar content cereals like weetabix, cornflakes, ready brek etc…



We encourage healthy lunches, which are prepared at home.



At least one piece of fresh fruit/vegetable is encouraged each day as part of the food eaten at school.



We encourage:                        We do not allow:

Water                                                Fizzy drinks

Milk                                         Juice drinks with a

100% pure unsweetened                   high sugar content

fruit juice                                 eg. Sunny Delight,

Diluted juices                           capri sun


Food Pyramid

All food and drink consumed in the school will follow the guidelines recommended in the “Food Pyramid”.


Top Shelf Foods

Plain biscuits are permitted.



Food from the bottom shelf of the Food Pyramid  – the carbohydrate shelf should be eaten at each lunch break.  Eg. Sandwiches, bread rolls, crackers, pitta bread, scones, tortilla wraps, pasta, salad, rice salad, potato salad and popcorn.


Relationships and Sexuality Education Policy of Ardfert National School

Introductory Statement:

The school has a responsibility to put in place an RSE policy as part of the wider social, personal and health education strand of the curriculum.  The process was initiated in [14/6/2010] when the policy committee made up of Parents, Teachers and RSE facilitator Jane Lewis was charged with setting parameters for the organisationand management of RSE in the school.



The need for this policy arises from our schools obligation to provide for all the needs of the student body and respond appropriately to sensitive and emotive issues relating to emerging sexuality.


  • To enhance the personal development, well being and self-esteem of each child
  • To enable each child to gain an understanding of and respect for human love, reproduction and sexual activity in a sensitive and measured way
  • To enable the child develop healthy friendships and relationships

Relationships to School Ethos:

The school ethos affirms and supports close links between school and home.  To this end parents were encouraged to play a meaningful role in the RSE policy formation, through a series of meetings, full representation on the steering committee and the ratification of the finished product.  Parents also have the right to withhold their children from participating in RSE classes.

School Provision

Strand Units:

Myself – Self identity, taking care of my body, growing and changing, safety and protection

Myself and Others- Myself and family, friends and relating to other people

Taking Care of My Body–   Naming parts of the male and female body using appropriate terminology.This will be introduced in 4th Class following consultation with all parents.(A vote was held in May 2011)

Identifying physical changes, understanding puberty and the reproductive system (Senior Classes)

Growing and Changing–    The stages of development of a baby from conception to birth (Middle Classes). Understanding sexual relations within the context of a committed loving relationship (Senior Classes).


Teachers do not cover topics such as contraception and same sex friendships.  Children who ask questions in class on content outside the curriculum are talked to individually and discreetly.  Parents are usually informed and asked to talk to their child.


  • It was decided by the RSE committee that:
  •  Fourth Class girls would be introduced to the Busy Bodies section on menstruation by the RSE facilitator in May/June.
  • Fifth Class boys would be shown the Busy Bodies DVD relating to boys and the girls would be shown the section concerning girls by RSE facilitator in May/June.
  • Sixth Class boys and girls would watch all of the Busy Bodies DVD and that the RSE facilitator would answer any questions arising. Parents would get the booklet or DVD if they wished to discuss content with children at home.
  •  Senior pupils are treated in a mature way and are encouraged to discuss issues that arise with their parents.
  • The Alive O 8 resource materials are used extensively in senior classes.

The Stay Safe and Walk Tall programmes:

The Stay Safe programmeis taught in all classes as mentioned in Child Protection Policy by the whole school at the same time usually after Easter. Worksheets will be taken home by children and discussed with parents.


Topics covered up to 2nd class include;

  • Keeping safe
  • Bodily changes during growth and development
  • Making and keeping friends
  • Making age appropriate choices
  • Appreciating family life
  • Recognizing and expressing feelings
  • Self care, hygiene, diet, exercise and sleep (link with P.E. Healthy Eating Policy and S.P.H.E.)
  • Expressing opinions and listening to others


Topics covered from 3rd to 6th Classes include;


  • Bodily changes
  • Healthy eating, personal hygiene, exercise
  • Keeping safe
  • Expressing feelings
  • Family relationships
  • Making healthy and responsible decisions
  • Forming friendships
  • Reproduction, conception (5th and 6th Classes)


Guidelines for Management:

Parents have the primary responsibility for educating their children in sexual matters.  The school R.S.E. programme acts as a support only to parents, and parents retain the right to withdraw their children from classes.  The programme is taught within the ethos of the school and contemporary issues/topics are dealt with by the teacher at a level appropriate to the age and stage of development of pupils within a moral and spiritual framework.  Teachers are present at all times when guest speakers are visiting a class.


Child Protection:

The school follows the DES child protection guidelines and has a Child Protection Policy with the Deputy Principal as Designated Liaison Person. In cases of disclosure; the DLP will follow the procedures as set out in Child Protection Policy.



Teacher Choice/Staff Development:

The teacher’s right to choose is enshrined in the policy and if teachers do not wish to teach specific aspects of the programmeor require additional resources, a suitable speaker will be employed by the BoM.  The teacher may need to plan the specific material to be covered and should be present during the talk.


The staff have availed of training in;


  • The Child House Prevention Programme(Stay Safe)
  • Relationships and Sexuality Programme(RSE)


The PCSP whole school plan is available on a shared resource file in both the Secretaries Office and the Principals Office.  Each teacher is responsible for his/her long term and short term planning, comprising of a yearly and fortnightly scheme of work.  A Cuntas Miosuil is retained in the Principals Office.


School/Community Links:

The school is involved in;


  • Athletics and Basketball inter – school competitions
  • Cumann na mBunscoil – football, hurling and camogie
  • Choir for First Communion and choir for Confirmation every year
  • Graduation ceremony.
  • School Concerts
  • Credit Union Quiz
  • G.A.A. Foolball and Hurling
  • Scòr na bPaistì




  • Teacher observation
  • Inventory of what needs to be changed
  • Ensuring all strands are covered
  • Teacher designed tasks and tests and self-evaluation
  • Community feedback


Roles and Responsibilities:

The school community of BoM, staff, pupils and parents play a key role in the formulation and implementation of the plan.



This policy was ratified by the BoM in [June 2011].



Implementation is on a phased basis from Sept 2011.


This policy will be reviewed in June 2013.

Safety outside the school


As you will have noticed we are trying out a new system of parking and bus pick-up outside the school.

  • All staff cars will park on the village end of school gate thus vacating the parking area at “Casement’s View” side of school which will allow buses to park there.  It is hoped that this will facilitate the safer use of the buses by the children.
  • When you are dropping your children by car in the morning, please drop them at the opposite side of the school so they can, with the help of the traffic warden, access the school safely.
  • When collecting the children in the evening please allow them to avail of the services of the traffic warden and wait for them at the opposite side of the school.
  • When dropping off in the morning or collecting in the evening please do not double park behind staff cars. 
  • Parents must also use the traffic warden to cross the road safely with the children.
  • Please do not use the parking area for staff (village side of school gate) as a place for turning your car.  This area will be strictly for staff parking only.  Unfortunately, this area has become a “free for all” area, with cars pulling in from all sides while other cars are reversing out etc…etc… It is miraculous that there has not been an accident.
  • Last year, when we encouraged children to walk to school, parents parked safely, a little distance from the school and either walked with their children to the traffic warden on the side opposite the school gate or allowed the older children to walk safely by themselves to her.  This was a good safe procedure and we now ask you to return to practising same again.
  • Our new system of parking is to ensure the safety of all.

Please co-operate with us.



Betty Stack


Ardfert Central N. S. Special Needs Assistant Policy

This policy was devised following a consultative process with all interested parties, and is guided by the relevant legislation such as The Education Welfare Act 2000 and the EPSEN Act 2004 and D.E.S. Circulars 07/02, 08/03, 24/03, 13/04, 02/05, 0034/10.


The policy was formulated to enable:

  • all staff, including the SNA’s have clear guidelines on procedures within the school
  • each SNA see themselves as contributing positively to the learning experiences of the children and the overall efficiency of the school.
  • a culture of fairness, inclusion and equality is seen to be in operation throughout the school.
  • to address issues such as seniority and suppression of posts.


  • to facilitate the inclusion of SNAs as valuable members of staff in a whole school context
  • to ensure the effective deployment of SNAs in enhancing the social skills and self esteem of the Special Needs Child.
  • to enable the SNA to be an effective support to the class teacher.
  • to provide optimum learning experiences for all children through judicial use of the skills and talents of the SNA.

Staff Roles

Principal and SEN Co-Ordinator

Principal and SEN Co-Ordinator have:

  • responsibility for assigning role specific and child specific tasks to the SNA in association with the class teacher.
  • direct responsibility for co-ordinating the integration and devising the role profile of the SNA.
  • monitoring the effectiveness of the SNAs contribution to the needs of designated children.
  • responsibility for managing areas of conflict which may arise.

Special Education Teachers

The S.E.T.:

  • identify the appropriate tasks to be completed by the SNAs in conjunction with the class teachers.
  • assume responsibility for I.E.Ps in consultataion with all relevant bodies.
  • identify aspects of Life skills Programme which SNA’s can work on i.e. toileting and safety issues.

Class Teachers

The Mainstream Teachers will have an input through;

  • providing a suitable seating arrangement for SNA/Special Needs child in the mainstream setting.
  • collaboration with the SNA.
  • devising a list of classroom tasks to be undertaken by the SNA on in-service days.

The Role of the SNA – Implementation Procedure

There is one SNA presently employed in Ardfert Central N. S.   She is considered an important part of the school team and carries out duties of a non teaching nature.

The SNA always works under the direction of the Class Teacher or S.E.T.

The teacher plans lessons and directs learning.   The SNA provides support to the teacher and through this to the pupils and to the teaching of the curriculum.

The Role and Responsibilities of the SNA in Ardfert N.S. are as follows:

  • To foster the participation of assigned pupils in the social and academic processes of the school.   This is done through supervising and assisting small groups of pupils in activities set by the teacher and promoting the inclusion of these children in mainstream work and keeping them on task.   The SNA will supervise her assigned child during break times.   She must be aware at all times of the position of her assigned child in the yard.   She is expected to bring any early signs of bullying to the attention of either the class teacher or the Principal.  The SNA will also assist in the inclusion of her assigned child through supervision of organized games.
  • To enable assigned pupils to become more independent learners.   The SNA is encouraged to develop independence in her assigned pupils both in the classroom setting and at play.   The SNA can also play an important part by supporting the work of outside agencies such as Speech Therapists and Occupational Therapists under the guidance of the class teacher.   The SNA will also be required to assist teachers in the supervision of pupils with special needs during assembly, recreational and dispersal periods, school visits, walks and similar activities.   This applies to assistance with clothing, feeding, toileting and general hygiene.
  • To help raise standards of achievement of all pupils.   This form of support for pupils is achieved through being involved at whole class level in activities that can support the teacher e.g. assisting with art, games and P. E. and preparing classroom materials.

Classroom Procedure

  • The pupils may address the SNA in a formal manner only.   Children are permitted to address the SNA by her first name.
  • The SNA will have a work station adjacent to the child in her care.
  • The SNA must refer all matters on curriculum, classroom management, discipline etc. to the classroom teacher.
  • Contact is made to home through the homework journal.

Information received on children, and observations made in classrooms, need to be handled sensitively and carefully.

Parents with questions or issues about school policy or practice should be referred directly to the class teacher or the SEN co-ordinator or the Principal.   This applies to direct face – to – face communication or indirect telephone communication.

Staff Meetings

The SNA may be required to attend Staff Meetings when issues of relevance to their own particular work is up for discussion.   On days of In-Service the SNA will be required to attend school to complete tasks laid out by teachers/Principal.

Hours of Work

The full time SNA is expected to work 32 hours per week and the Infant SNA is expected to work 20 hours per week.   Part –time SNAs work hours in accordance with SENO allocation.   In addition 12 additional days per year outside of the normal school year may be worked.   These days are at the discretion of the Board of Management/Principal in consultation with the individual SNAs.


Regular training is provided for SNAs when appropriate.   This may coincide with in-service days for mainstream staff or is availed of when appropriate courses become available through the local Education Centre.   Whenever needs of Special Needs Children change it will be necessary to under go such training or where an SNA has identified a hazard in employment, training will be provided where necessary e.g. Administration of Medicines, Lifting etc.  Training will be provided by relevant agencies HSE. Enable Ireland etc.

Success Criteria

This Policy is geared to making a difference to the teaching and learning of Special Needs Children in our school and also the Health & Safety of all concerned.   We will know that the Policy is achieving its aims when:

  • children with Special Needs are included in whole school activities without disruption to mainstream class procedures.
  • children are experiencing a safe and stimulating environment.
  • the Special Needs children are becoming independent learners and acquiring life skills.
  • the Special Needs child is reaching the targets set out in Individual Education Plans.

Review / Ratification

This policy was reviewed and ratified by the Board of Management on ________________


Signed __________________________________

Chairperson of Board of Management

Ardfert Central N. S. Supervision Policy


Our aim is to provide a safe place for all the children in our care to learn and play. As teachers we accept the duty of care which devolves to us. In Ardfert N.S we make every effort to ensure that the children given into our care are adequately supervised.

Roles and Responsibilities

The School Principal is responsible for drawing up and updating the Supervision Rota, which is made known to each person on the rota.  In the event of a planned absence the person arranges for a yard buddy to swap supervision duties.   In the event of an unplanned absence the Principal arranges for the next person on the rota to supervise.

Policy Statement

During break times (10.40 – 10.50 and 12.30 – 1.00) two teachers and four SNAs supervise the yard.  On wet days the supervisors patrol the classrooms. The Rules for the yard are revised and reviewed regularly and are well known and repeated often to the children. All classes have copies of the relevant rules. The person on yard duty remains on duty supervising the classes until their own teacher returns to the class.

The school will open to receive pupils at 8.30 a.m. No responsibility is accepted for pupils arriving before that time.   The bell rings at 9.00 a.m. Classes will end each day at 1.40pm (infants) and 2.40 p.m. (all other classes). Teachers ensure an orderly dismissal. Bus children vacate the school first. A second bell rings to dismiss all other children when buses have left. Parents who wish to have their children escorted home should make their own arrangements to have them met at the school gate and the person to escort them should be at the school gate not later than 1.40pm (infants) and 2.40 p.m. (all other classes), as the school cannot accept responsibility for the supervision of children after that time.


Ratified by Board of Management on _________________________

Date _____________________

Signed __________________________________

Chairperson of Board of Management

Teachers’ Course Days Policy

The need for Ardfert Central N. S. to devise a policy on course days is primarily to assist in the smooth operation of the school, to minimize disruption to classes and to provide encouragement to teachers to undertake professional development courses which enhance their teaching and promotes a standard of excellence throughout the school.


  • Requests for EVP days are made in the first instance to the Principal and noted on the school calendar which will be displayed in the principal’s office.
  • Except in exceptional circumstances, prior notice at least a week in advance should be given.
  • In the event of two or more applications for the same day the Principal shall consult with each teacher as soon as is feasible and a decision is made based in the first instance on date of request by the teachers.
  • Teachers will endeavour to avoid, as far as possible, taking their EVP days during the week leading up to Christmas, Easter and Summer holidays or on days when other classes are on school tours, or attending events.
  • If an exceptional situation arises where two class teachers need to absent themselves on the same days for their EVP days it shall be the responsibility of the Principal to arrange for the effective supervision of the pupils.
  • Teachers will have work prepared/photocopied and this should be readily available to the Principal.

Ratified by the Board of Management on__________________

Date:      ______________________________

Signed:  ______________________________

Chairperson, Board of Management


There are two teachers on the yard and plus S.N.As.

  • A bell rings at 10.40 a.m and 12.30 p.m  to signal the start of the breaks.Teachers on yard duty must go out on duty immediately.
  • A bell rings at 10.50 a.m and 1.00 p.m  to signal the end of the breaks.Teachers on duty will ensure that all the children will line up quietly and will not talk once in line. No bouncing of the ball is allowed.
  • Teachers on yard duty will then signal to the first line to go into their classes.
  • When teachers in the staffroom hear the bell signalling the end of the breaks, they will leave the staffroom and prepare to receive their classes.

Course Days

If a teacher knows he/she will be absent (for whatever reason) he/she must swap the day’s yard duty with another teacher.

Sick Days

Each teacher should ensure that they have a “Yard Buddy” for the year.  The yard buddy will do the supervision in the event of an unexpected absence through sickness etc…

Wet Days

One teacher will supervise each corridor. On wet mornings, the Principal or Deputy Principal will assign 5th/6th Class children to the Junior Rooms of the school.  Principal and Deputy Principal will supervise the separate corridors going in and out of the classrooms.

Deputy Principal

The school officially opens at 8.30 a.m.  One of the duties of the Deputy Principal is to supervise the yard in the mornings, in conjunction with the Principal.


This policy outlines current practice in relation to meetings.   It aims to ensure that meetings are effective and use time well, that procedures are widely known and that meetings ultimately improve teaching and learning.


  • Staff Meetings

Preparing Agendas


The Principal is responsible for organising and convening staff meetings. A draft agenda circulated by the Principal, submissions invited and final         agenda circulated. Attendance at meetings is recorded. Outside speakers may be invited to address meeting.


Who Attends Meetings?

Permanent teachers, temporary teachers and long-term substitute teachers are entitled to attend. In shared situations, when meetings clash,    teacher(s) involved generally attend meetings with base school. All Special Needs Assistants attend for relevant issues.


Conducting Meetings

All meetings are minuted.Meetings should start and finish on time. Mobile phones should be switched off.


Frequency of Meetings

Staff meetings are held at least once a term or as deemed necessary.


School Development Planning Meetings

Attended by all teaching staff, permanent, temporary and long term substitutes. S. N.A attends where relevant topics are to be discussed.

Frequency – monthly.


Meetings of Ancillary staff

Co-ordinated on group / individual basis by Principal / Deputy Principal.

Meetings occur at least once per term or as deemed necessary.


Meetings of SEN Teams

Co-coordinated by Principal.

Frequency at least once per term at a time agreed by all.

Agenda – based on feedback from mainstream teachers, and support teachers, ancillary staff and parents.


Parent / Teacher Meetings

In line with terms of circular 14/04 – formal once a year.

  • Parents given opportunity “in writing” to select preferred times.
  • Co-ordination of times where there are siblings attending school/team teaching.
  • Meetings take place in classroom/support room.
  • Guidelines re: meetings known by all teaching staff.
  • All pupils receive an end of school year written report.

Informal Parent/Teacher Meetings

To avoid disruption to teaching and learning, meetings should be by appointment.  Parents can make appointment through the office.             Meetings can be one-on-one or team based.

Meetings of Middle – Management

Co-ordinated by the Principal.

All post holders attend.

Meetings are held at least once a term usually prior to a staff meeting.

Meetings of Principal / Parents Association

  • Principal meets with Chairperson and Secretary of Parents  Association at least once a term.
  • Meetings are minuted.
  • Meetings occur at least once a term or as deemed necessary.

Annual General Meeting of Parents’ Association is attended by the Principal who addresses the parent body and answers any questions that arise from the floor.

Meeting of Principal /Secretary

Principal meets with the Secretary every Monday morning at 10 a.m. to discuss the week’s activities / appointments / visitors / events / necessary correspondence / forthcoming meetings / notices etc.

Board of Management Meetings

  •    Notification is sent to all Board of Management members seven days prior to meeting.
  •    Items for agenda are invited.
  •    A minimum of 5 meetings are held yearly.
  •     An annual report is published on the school’s website at the end  of the year.

Home / School Links

  • Information evening for all parents in September.
  • Information evening specifically for New Junior Infants in September.
  • Information  / notices are communicated through letters / notes home.
  • Information is communicated through text message to parents.
  • Homework Journals.
  • Parents’ Association.
  • Meetings through extra curriculum activities.

Anti Bullying Policy

This anti- bullying policy operates in conjunction with the Code of Behaviour, which is used to address isolated instances of anti-social behaviour.

The school has a central role in the children’s social and moral development just as it does in their academic development. In school, we work towards standards of behaviour based on the basic principles of honesty, respect, consideration and responsibility. The individuality of each child needs to be accommodated while at the same time acknowledging the right of every child to education in an environment free from disruption.

 Aims of the Anti Bullying Policy

·         To foster a school ethos of mutual and self respect

·         To raise awareness of bullying as a form of unacceptable behaviour

·         To outline, promote and raise awareness of preventative approaches that can be used in response to reported incidences of bullying

·         To develop a programme of support for those affected by bullying and for those involved in bullying behaviour

·         To outline procedures for recording and reporting instances of bullying behaviour

·         To outline procedures for investigating and dealing with incidents of bullying behaviour.



What is bullying?

Bullying is defined as repeated aggression, whether verbal, psychological or physical, conducted by an individual or a group against others. Examples of bullying include: physical aggression, damage to property, intimidation, isolation, name calling, taunting or ‘slagging’. These examples of bullying can happen in the following areas:

·         Child to child bullying

·         Teacher to child bullying

·         Intra staff bullying

·         Parent to staff bullying

·         Parent to child bullying


Isolated instances of aggressive behaviour, which would be dealt with under the Code of Behaviour, would not be described as bullying. However when the behaviour is systematic and ongoing, it is bullying.

Types of Bullying


Pupil Behaviour


Physical Aggression:

This behaviour is more common among boys than girls. It includes pushing, shoving punching, kicking, poking and tripping people up. It may also take the form of severe physical assault. While boys commonly engage in ‘mess fights’, they can often be used as a disguise for physical harassment or inflicting pain.


Damage to Property:

Personal property can be the focus of attention for the bully; this may result in damage to clothing, school books and other learning material or interference with a pupil’s locker or bicycle. The contents of school bags and pencil cases may be scattered on the floor. Items of personal property may be defaced, broken, stolen or hidden.



Demands for money may be made, often accompanied by threats (sometimes carried out) in the event of the victim not promptly “paying up”. Victims’ lunches, lunch vouchers or lunch money may be taken. Victims may also be forced into theft of property for delivery to the bully. Sometimes, this tactic is used with the sole purpose of incriminating the victim.



Some bullying behaviour takes the from of intimidation: it is based on the use of very aggressive body language with the voice being used as a weapon. Particularly upsetting to victims can be the so-called ‘look’ – a facial expression which conveys aggression and/or dislike.



Abusive Telephone Calls:

The abusive anonymous telephone call is a form of verbal intimidation or bullying. The anonymous phone call is very prevalent where teachers are the victims of bullying.




This form of bullying behaviour seems to be more prevalent among girls. A certain person is deliberately isolated, excluded or ignored by some or all of the class group. This practice is usually initiated by the person engaged in bullying behaviour. It may be accompanied by writing insulting remarks about the victim on blackboards or in public places, by passing around notes about or drawings of the victim or by whispering insults about them loud enough to be heard.


Name Calling:

Persistent name-calling directed at the same individual(s), which hurts, insults or humiliates should be regarded as a form of bullying behaviour; most name-calling of this type refers to physical appearance, e.g. ‘big ears’, size or clothes worn.


Accent or distinctive voice characteristics may attract negative attention. Academic ability can also provoke name calling. This tends to operate at two extremes; first, there are those who are singled out for attention because they are perceived to be slow, or weak, academically. These pupils are often referred to as ‘dummies’, ‘dopes’ or donkeys’. At the other extreme are those who, because they are perceived as high achievers, are labelled ‘swots’, ‘brain-boxes’, licks’, ‘teachers’ pets’, etc.



This behaviour usually refers to the good-natured banter which goes on as part of the normal social interchange between people. However, when this slagging extends to very personal remarks aimed again and again at the one individual about appearance, clothing, personal hygiene or involves references of an uncomplimentary nature to members of one’s family, particularly if couched in sexual innuendo, then it assumes the form of bullying. It may take the form of suggestive remarks about a pupil’s sexual orientation.


Bullying of School Personnel

Bullying of school personnel by means of physical assault, damage to property, verbal abuse, threats to people’s families’ etc.


Effects of Bullying

Pupils who are being bullied may develop feelings of insecurity and extreme anxiety and thus may become more vulnerable. Self-confidence may be damaged with a consequent lowering of their self-esteem. While they may not talk about what is happening to them, their suffering is indicated through changes in mood and behaviour. Bullying may occasionally result in suicide. It is, therefore, important to be alert to changes in behaviour as early intervention is desirable.


Indications of Bullying/Behaviour – Signs and Symptoms


The following signs/symptoms may suggest that a pupil is being bullied:-

·         anxiety about travelling to and from school – requesting parents to drive or collect them, changing route of travel, avoiding regular times            for travelling to and from school;

·         unwillingness to go to school, refusal to attend, mitching;

·         deterioration in educational performance, loss of concentration and loss of enthusiasm and interest in school;

·         pattern of physical illnesses (e.g. headaches, stomach aches);

·         unexplained changes either in mood or behaviour; it may be particularly noticeable before returning to school after weekends or more                especially after longer school holidays;

·         visible signs of anxiety or distress – stammering, withdrawing, nightmares, difficulty in sleeping, crying, not eating, vomiting, bedwetting;

·         spontaneous out-of-character comments about either pupils or teachers;

·         possessions missing or damaged;

·         increased requests for money or stealing money;

·         unexplained bruising or cuts or damaged clothing;

·         reluctance and/or refusal to say what is troubling him/her.


Those signs do not necessarily mean that a pupil is being bullied. If repeated or occurring in combination those signs do warrant investigation in order to establish what is affecting the pupil.


The school acknowledges that there are three parties involved in bullying:

·         The Bully

·         The Victim of the bullying

·         Witnesses to the bullying

Teachers bear this in mind when dealing with bullying and offer support and work with all three parties involved.


Types of bullying and the procedures in place when dealing with them:

Child to child bullying

Stage one

Unless the incident is of a very serious nature, it will be dealt with by the classroom teacher who will talk to the children involved. Teachers respect the need to support the esteem of each party involved in an incident. When a teacher becomes aware that a child is regularly or involved in one isolated incident of significant gravity he/she will start a record of such incidents. Prior to a record of incidences being kept, parent(s) will be informed.

The purpose of this record is:

·         To aid memory by recording details of the incident

·         For clarity in assessment of the situation

·         For planning and intervention


If the issue is not resolved at this stage then the staff will proceed to stage two.

Stage two

The Principal will arrange to meet with the parents of the child who is seen to be bullying and separately with the parents of the child who is the victim of the bullying. The children themselves may be required to attend part or all of these meetings. The child who is bullying will be placed on report. This means that the child’s behaviour in all areas is monitored during the day. The child has three meetings with his/her teacher and together they decide on what is to be written for that part of the day. All positive behaviour, progress etc will be noted. At the end of the school day, the teacher writes his/her own comment. The purpose of this report is to focus as much as possible on the positive qualities and efforts of the child, and to motivate the child to move away from negative behaviour. The child should be able to see that parents and school are working together in his/her interest, so the co-operation of the parents is essential.

Initially a review of the reports will be carried out on a weekly basis, in a meeting with the Principal, teacher, parents and child. If progress is being made, longer intervals between meetings may be decided upon. The child who is the victim of bullying will also meet the Principal and his/her parents. The aim of such meeting(s) will be to address emotional needs and devise strategies for the child to deal with the bullying. This may involve reinforcing the programme being covered in class (SPHE), or other strategies.

Stage three

It is the duty of the school to provide a safe environment for all the children. Should the above interventions fail and the bullying continue, a programme of appropriate sanctions may be implemented by the Principal in consultation with the parents and Board of Management. Sanctions  implemented aim to encourage positive behaviour and support the esteem of the child. These sanctions may include a period of suspension during which there will be ongoing consultation with the parents to decide on appropriate action(s) to be taken in the best interests of the child. Suspension for any period of time will be reported in writing by; the Principal to the Chair of the Board of Management.

Bullying by Adults

In the case of intra-staff bullying, Ardfert Central National School will adopt the procedures outlined in Section C (c2) of the INTO booklet, ‘working Together: Procedures and Policies for Positive Staff Relations’. A copy of this document is available for free download on the INTO website.

Teacher- Child Bullying

In the case of Teacher- Child bullying, a complaint should in first instance be raised with the teacher in question by the parent/guardian of the child if possible and then if necessary; referred to the Principal. Where it has not been possible to agree a framework for the resolution, the matter should be referred in writing by both parties to the Board of Management of the school for investigation.

Parent- teacher bullying

In the case of parent- teacher bullying, the Principal should be informed in the first instance, and if deemed necessary; the Board of Management should subsequently be informed in writing.


Parent/ Visitor to the School- Child Bullying

In this case the complaint should be referred in the first instance to the child’s class teacher and subsequently to the Principal if unresolved.

Principal – Parent /Child bullying

In the case of Principal –Parent/Child bullying, the matter should be raised with the Principal if possible or referred to the Chairperson of the Board of Management.

Anti-Cyber-Bullying Policy of Ardfert National School

Ardfert Central National School aims to ensure that children are safe and feel safe frombullying, harassment and discrimination. This school is committed to teaching children the knowledge and skills to be able to use ICT effectively, safely and responsibly.


·         Cyber bullying is the use of ICT (usually a mobile phone and or the internet) to abuse another person

·         It can take place anywhere and involve many people

·         Anybody can be targeted including pupils and school staff

·         It can include threats, intimidation, harassment, cyber-stalking, vilification, defamation, exclusion, peer rejection, impersonation, unauthorized                  publication of private information or images etc.

·         While bullying involves a repetition of unwelcome behaviour the Anti-Bullying Procedures for Primary and Post Primary Schools,                September   2013, states:

2.1.3.  In addition, in the context of these procedures placing a once-off offensive or hurtful public message, image or statement on a social network site or other public forum where that message, image or statement can be viewed and/or repeated by other people will be regarded as bullying behaviour.


There are many types of cyber-bullying. The more common types are:

Text messages– can be threatening or cause discomfort.  Also included here is

‘Bluejacking’ (the sending of anonymous text messages over short distances using bluetooth wireless technology)

  1. Picture/video-clips via mobile phone cameras– images sent to others to make the victim feel threatened or embarrassed
  2. Mobile phone calls– silent calls, abusive messages or stealing the victim‛s phone and using it to harass others, to make them believe the victim is responsible
  3. Emails– threatening or bullying emails, often sent using a pseudonym or somebody else‛s name
  4. Chat room bullying– menacing or upsetting responses to children or young people when they are in a web-based chat room
  5. Instant messaging (IM)– unpleasant messages sent while children conduct real-time conversations online using MSM (Microsoft Messenger), Yahoo Chat or similar tools
  6. Bullying via websites– use of defamatory blogs (web logs), personal websites and online personal ‘own web space’ sites such as You Tube, Facebook,, Bebo (which works by signing on in one‛s school, therefore making it easy to find a victim) and Myspace – although there are others.

Explanation of slang terms used when referring to cyber-bullying activity:

1.    ‘Flaming’:Online fights using electronic messages with angry and vulgar language

2.    ‘Harassment’:Repeatedly sending offensive, rude, and insulting messages

3.    ‘Cyber Stalking’:Repeatedly sending messages that include threats of harm or are highly intimidating or engaging in other on-line activities that make a person afraid for his or her own safety

4.    ‘Denigration’: ‘Dissing’ someone online. Sending or posting cruel gossip or rumors about a person to damage his or her reputation or friendships

5.    ‘Impersonation’:Pretending to be someone else  and sending or posting material online that makes someone look bad, gets her/him in trouble or danger, or damages her/his reputation or friendships

6.    ‘Outing and Trickery’: Tricking someone into revealing secret or embarrassing information which is then shared online

7.    ‘Exclusion’: Intentionally excluding someone from an on-line group, like a ‘buddy list’

This list is not exhaustive and the terms used continue to change.


·         To ensure that pupils, staff and parents understand what cyber bullying is and how it can be combated

·         To ensure that practices and procedures are agreed to prevent incidents of cyber-bullying

·         To ensure that reported incidents of cyber bullying are dealt with effectively and quickly.


·         Staff, pupils, parents and Board of Management (BoM) will be made aware of issues surrounding cyber bullying through the use of appropriate                awareness-raising exercises

·         Pupils will learn about cyber bullying through Social, Personal and Health Education (SPHE), assemblies, friendship week activities and other                  curriculum projects

·         The school will engage a speaker to facilitate a workshop on cyber bullying for 5th and 6th classes annually. Classes 1st to 6th will participate in              the ‘Bullying in a Cyber World’ programme.

·         Staff CPD (Continuous Professional Development) will assist in learning about current technologies

·         Parents will be provided with information and advice on how to combat cyber bullying

·         Pupils will sign an Acceptable Use of ICT (Information and Communication Technology) contract

·         Parents will be expected to sign an Acceptable Use of ICT contract prior to enrolment and to discuss its meaning with their children

·         Pupils and parents will be urged to report all incidents of cyber bullying to the school

·         All reports of cyber bullying will be investigated, recorded, stored in the Principal’s

office and monitored regularly

·         Procedures in our school Anti-bullying Policy shall apply

·         The police will be contacted in cases of actual or suspected illegal content

·         This policy will be reviewed annually. Pupils, parents and staff will be involved in reviewing and revising this policy and any related school                        procedures


If you are being bullied by phone or on the Internet:

Remember, bullying is never your fault. It can be stopped and it can usually be traced.

  • Don’t ignore the bullying. Tell someone you trust, such as a teacher or parent or call an advice line.
  • Try to keep calm. If you are frightened, try to show it as little as possible. Don’t get angry, it will only make the person bullying you more likely to continue.
  • Don’t give out your personal details online – if you are in a chat room, do not say where you live, the school you go to, your email address etc. All these things can help someone who wants to harm you to build up a picture about you.
  • Keep and save any bullying emails, text messages or images. Then you can show them to a parent or teacher as evidence.
  • If you can, make a note of the time and date bullying messages or images were sent, andnote any details about the sender.
  • There is plenty of online advice on how to react to cyber bullying. For example, and have some useful tips.

Text/video messaging

·           You can easily stop receiving text messages for a while by turning-off incoming messagesfor a couple of days. This might stop the person texting you by making them believe youv’ve changed your phone number.

  • If the bullying persists, you can change your phone number. Ask your mobile service provider about this.
  • Don’t reply to abusive or worrying text or video messages.
  • Your mobile service provider will have a number for you to ring or text to report phone bullying. Visit their website for details.
  • Don’t delete messages from cyber bullies. You don’t have to read them, but you should keep them as evidence.

Useful Websites

Compiled in consultation with teachers, SNAs, parents/guardians and B.O.M on 8th May 2014

As per Department guidelines this policy will be reviewed annually.

A report will be given to BOM regarding bullying behaviour each term.

The Parents’ Association will be informed that the annual review has taken place.

Attached is a copy of the form which will be used to record any bullying behaviour.

Appendix 3 Template for recording bullying behaviour

1. Name of pupil being bullied and class group
Name _____________________________
Class  _____________________________
2. Name(s) and class(es) of pupil(s) engaged in bullying behaviour
3. Source of bullying concern/report
(tick relevant box(es))*
  • Pupil concerned
  • Other pupil
  • Parent
  • Teacher
  • Other
4. Location of incidents (tick
relevant box(es))*
  • Playground
  • Classroom
  • Corridor
  • Toilets
  • School Bus
  • Other
5. Name of person(s) who reported the bullying concern
6. Type of Bullying Behaviour (tick relevant box(es)) *
  • Physical Aggression
  • Damage to Property
  • Isolation/Exclusion
  • Name Calling
  • Cyber-bullying
  • Intimidation
  • Malicious Gossip
  • Other (specify)
7. Where behaviour is regarded as identity-based bullying, indicate the relevant category:
  • Homophobic
  • Disability/SEN related
  • Racist
  • Membership of Traveller community
  • Other (specify)
8. Brief Description of bullying behaviour and its impact
9. Details of actions taken
Signed ______________________________ (Relevant Teacher)
Date _________________________
Appendix 3 Template for recording bullying behaviour