- 15 May 2018
Short Life Working Group on Recording and Monitoring Incidents of Bullying in Schools
Draft Terms of Reference
On 15 November 2017 'Respect for All: The National Approach to Anti-bullying for Scotland's Children and Young People' was published – setting out a commitment to develop a consistent approach for schools and local authorities to adopt for recording and monitoring incidents of bullying. 'Respect for All' recognised that in order to identify trends or themes where improvements could be made at the school / local level that a streamlined and uniformed system was required. The approach should minimise the amount of additional workload for local authority and school staff.
The Deputy First Minister subsequently confirmed his intention to convene a working group to deliver the new approach in his statement to Parliament on Wednesday 15 November.
The group will:
- develop a consistent and uniform approach to recording and monitoring that schools and local authorities can adopt in time for the school year 2018/19;
- develop supporting guidance for local authorities and schools in time for the school year 2018/19;
- consider SEEMiS' anti-bullying and equalities module and develop recommendations for the SEEMiS Governance Group to improve the current module and align with the approach for recording
- develop quality indicators to measure the effectiveness of the approach and agree time of the review. The review will assess whether the approach has been consistently applied and is meeting the needs of staff, children, young people, parents and carers
- develop a pupil reference group and teacher reference group to assist with the review
- conduct a consultation with children, young people, parents and carers to ensure these views are incorporated into the guidance
- provide a final report with recommendations to Scottish Ministers by spring 2018
The Short Life Working Group on Recording and Monitoring Incidents of Bullying will bring together expertise from across the education sector at the national, local and operational levels as well as expertise from a number of key stakeholder organisations.
SEEMiS is local authority owned and is in use in all schools in Scotland. However, the way that schools use SEEMiS varies significantly across the country. The Group will consider the existing SEEMiS system, including:
- a review of the protected characteristics listed in the Bullying and Equalities module
- a review of naming terminology/language in the Bullying and Equalities module
- a review of the process to follow in the Bullying and Equalities module
- a review on ease of use in the Bullying and Equalities module
- a review of the Pastoral Note process and information captured
- a review on who can currently access pupil data
- a review on usage of SEEMiS currently in local authorities and school
- consider the findings from LA piloting of the module
Based on the outcome of this review the Group will provide recommendations to update and improve the Bullying and Equalities module for the SEEMiS Governance Group to consider.
As well as recommendations to improve the use of SEEMIS', the Group will produce a supporting guidance document for use by schools and local authorities / Regional Improvement Collaboratives.
A clear and consistent recording and monitoring process which will be set out in guidance to complement 'Respect for All' and will include:
- what children, young people, parents and carers can expect from others when responding to bullying incidents
- what/when/who should be recorded and why
- instructions to follow when using SEEMiS
- guidance in responding to FOI requests
- how often bullying incidents should be monitored by local authorities/Regional Improvement Collaboratives
- issues/sensitivities around information sharing
- signposting to National Improvement Hub and respectme's website for good practice example/s of recording to be included
- make the links with How Good Is Our School quality indicators where appropriate
The guidance will be written for local authority adoption in all 32 Local Authorities in time for 2018/19 academic year.
We expect that all Independent schools have an anti-bullying policy in line with 'Respect for All: The National Approach to Anti-Bullying for Scotland's Children and Young People'.
The group will also consider any improvements to be made to the existing recording systems in Independent Schools.
Chair and Membership
The Group will be chaired by Ian Rivers, Professor and Head of the School of Education, University of Strathclyde.
Membership of the group will be made up of representatives from the National Approach Working Group, Scottish Advisory Group on Relationships and Behaviour in Schools (SAGRABIS), LGBT Inclusive Education Working Group, Education Scotland Local Authority Link Officers and Parent Groups and will comprise:
- School Leaders Scotland (SLS)
- Educational Institute of Scotland (EIS)
- Association of Directors of Education in Scotland (ADES)
- Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (COSLA)
- Scottish Council of the Deans of Education
- Time for Inclusive Education (TIE)
- Stonewall Scotland
- LGBT Youth Scotland
- Police Scotland
- National Parent Forum of Scotland (NPFS)
- Scottish Parent Teacher Council (SPTC)
- Scottish Council of Independent Schools (SCIS)
- Coalition for Racial Equality and Rights (CRER)
- Equalities and Human Rights Commission (EHRC)
- Children and Young People's Commissioner Scotland
- SG Equalities Unit (TBC)
- SG Health and Wellbeing Team
- Education Scotland
- Education Scotland Link Officers Network
- Youthlink Scotland (correspondence only)
The group will meet every 4-6 weeks. The first meeting will take place on 18 December 2017 in Victoria Quay, Edinburgh.
A Correspondence Group is also available for members who are unable to attend in person. The correspondence group will be sent all papers for the meeting and will have an opportunity to feed in views. The views will be communicated by the Group's secretariat to all members in advance of meetings.