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Behaviour, Bullying and Attendance, Absence and Exclusion

Behaviour

Most pupils are well-behaved in school and it is important to create a positive whole school ethos helping to ensure our children and young people can be included, engaged and involved throughout their school careers.

Education Scotland’s Rights Support and Wellbeing Team support local authorities and schools to introduce and embed approaches to positive behaviour based on improved relationships, staged interventions, engagement and motivation, and emotional wellbeing.

Behaviour in Scottish Schools Research provides a robust, independent picture of pupil behaviour in schools, including positive and negative behaviours and measures used by schools and school staff to promote positive behaviour. It is based on a large scale, 3-yearly survey of local authority staff, headteachers, teachers and support staff, and was developed in collaboration with teaching unions and education leaders. The latest survey was published in 2012.

In 2013 the Scottish Government and Scottish Advisory Group on Behaviour in Schools (SAGBIS) issued a response to this report better learning, better behaviour, better learning.  The response identified the next steps and priority actions to support local authorities, establishments, practitioners and partners to further improve relationships and behaviour within their learning community.

One of the priority actions for the Scottish Government and SAGBIS was to ‘Develop and publish guidance on the safe and responsible use of personal mobile technology in schools, which will recognise the role that social networking plays in people’s lives, and take into account wider issues of internet safety and the 2013 ICT Excellence Group report’. This guidance was launched at the recent respectme conference

In addition, at the respectme conference the Government launched the 360 Degree Safe e-safety self-review tool which is an online, interactive resource which helps schools to review their e-safety policy and practice. It is available, free of charge, to all schools.

A full list of legislation relevant to all aspects of online safety, including the safe and responsible use of mobile technology

Bullying

Bullying in schools is completely unacceptable, regardless of its motivation. The Government is committed to supporting all those who work with children and young people and to this end have established the 'respect me' anti-bullying service to provide advice, information and training on both preventing and tackling bullying effectively.

Developed with the Scottish Anti-Bullying Steering Group, the Scottish Government published ‘A National Approach to Anti-Bullying for Scotland’s Children and Young people’ in December 2010.  The approach sets out a common vision and aims for anti-bullying work across Scotland.

Attendance, Absence and Exclusion

In 2007, the Government published national guidance, Included, Engaged and Involved: Part 1 – attendance in Scottish Schools which focuses on promoting attendance and managing absenteeism. Since 2007/08 pupils rate of attendance has increased from 93.2 to 93.6 per cent in 2012/3.

Guidance on exclusions - Included, Engaged and Involved Part 2: a positive approach to managing school exclusions – was published in March 2011. This aim is to support local authorities, schools and other learning establishments and their partners to keep all children and young people fully included, engaged and involved in their education wherever this takes place; and to improve outcomes for those most at risk of exclusion.

The guidance for schools and local authorities stresses that exclusion is an extremely serious option of last resort, to be used within an ethos of prevention, early intervention and support for learners. Exclusion rates have dropped steadily in recent years, resulting in a 50% reduction from a peak in 2006/07.

In March 2013, the Scottish Advisory Group on Behaviour in Schools published better relationships, better learning, better behaviour, which sets out national and local government priority actions to support local authorities and schools to further improve relationships and behaviour in their learning communities. This is central to delivery of Curriculum for Excellence and the implementation of GIRFEC.

 

 

 

Useful publications

Included, Engaged and Involved Part 1: attendance in Scottish schools – provides advice for schools and local authorities about encouraging good attendance as well as information on how attendance and absence should be recorded

Included, Engaged and Involved Part 2: a positive approach to managing school exclusions – provides advice for schools and local authorities on the use of exclusion

A Guide for Parents on Attendance – explains parental responsibilities around school attendance and provides information on where to get support when attendance becomes an issue

Statistics on Attendance, absence and exclusion – the Scottish Government school statistics page includes links to various sets of statistics including attendance, absence and exclusion.

Pupil Inclusion Network Scotland – network which brings together voluntary sector organisations with a commitment to improving educational outcomes for all children.  PINS provides an extensive online resource and puts on a series of seminars and workshops each year.

Respectme Scotland’s national Anti-Bullying Service.  Includes information and advice on all forms of bullying for parents, carers and anyone involved in the lives of children and young people.

A National Approach to Anti-Bullying for Scotland’s Children and Young People – sets out common aims and vision to ensure that anti-bullying work across Scotland is coherent and consisten

Bullying - A guide for parents and carers - This publication looks at bullying behaviour, both face to face and online

Behaviour in Scottish Schools Research 2006, 2009, 2012 – 3 yearly government commissioned research project surveying school staff perceptions of behaviour.

Scottish Government and Scottish Advisory Group Behaviour In Schools (SAGBIS) response to Behaviour in Scottish Schools Research 2006, 2010 2013

Building Curriculum for Excellence Through Positive Behaviour and Relationships – leaflet providing more information on approaches to positive behaviour and outlining actions arising from the 2009 sweep of Behaviour in Scottish Schools