TEACHTAIREACHT ÓN PHRÍOMHOIDE

TEACHTAIREACHT ÓN PHRÍOMHOIDE

Tá fáilte romhat isteach chuig Coláiste Oiriall. Glac tamall anois chun aithne a chur orainn agus chun eolas a chur ar ár scoil. Coláiste Oiriall is a progressive and vibrant school working to the highest standards in teaching and learning. We boast a broad curriculum with a superb range of on-site facilities offering pupils an opportunity to excel. We have a very strong pastoral ethos and generous staff commitment to sporting and cultural activities. We have a very high success rate in securing places in universities and our examination results are consistently considerably higher than the national averages.

Cartlann

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  • 2016 (70)
  • 2015 (85)
  • 2014 (70)
  • 2013 (45)
  • 2012 (43)
  • 2011 (55)
  • 2010 (10)

Code of Behaviour and Suspension and Expulsion Policy and Procedures

Contents

  1. Scope, Relationship to school’s mission, vision, aims., Rationale, Goals / Objectives
  2. Roles and Responsibilities, Parents/Guardians, Teachers, Other Staff, Board of Management
  3. SCHOOL RULES, We expect, SCHOOL RULES EXPLAINED, that you come to school every day and arrive on time
  4. That you come to school in full uniform, clean and tidy, that you have respect for people and for property.
  5. That you do your best in class and at your homework
  6. That you come in properly prepared for your subjects, that you act in an appropriate manner around the school
  7. Preventative Measures
  8. Students with Special Educational Needs, Rewards, Rewards for Students with Special Educational Needs, Strategies and Sanctions
  9. Referrals
  10. Procedures in the event of consistent breaches of the Code of Behaviour
  11. Graded System for minor incidents
  12. Implementation
  13. Suspension and Expulsion

Scope

This code applies to students of Coláiste Oiriall and relates to all school activities both during and outside of normal school hours. This policy was drawn up in consultation with all the school partners, including Board of Management, Staff, Parents and Students. This policy is in line with National Educational Welfare Board guidelines.

Relationship to school’s mission, vision, aims.

This policy has been developed in line with the mission of our School which has at its core, the care of the student. The school strives to provide a safe secure learning environment for the development of our students. Our school Code of Behaviour is based on respect for oneself, for others and for our environment, so that a positive and cooperative school atmosphere prevails.

Rationale

Many people work together in our school each day and therefore a high level of courtesy and consideration for others is necessary. Behaviour which is ill mannered, annoying, dangerous or disruptive cannot be allowed. Our code is one that is based on the recognition of the student as an individual and yet creates an environment in which the welfare of all is protected.

Goals / Objectives

The aims of our Code of Behaviour are:

  • To create a climate that encourages and reinforces good behaviour
  • To create a positive and safe environment for teaching and learning
  • To build positive relationships of mutual respect and mutual support among students, staff and parents
  • To encourage students to take personal responsibility for their learning and their behaviour
  • To promote wellbeing to ensure our students are confident, happy, healthy and connected and to enhance the physical, mental, emotional and social wellbeing and resilience of our students.
  • To have effective procedures in place which will allow for the day to day running of the school and which meet the demands of current legislation
  • To help students mature into responsible and participating citizens
  • To allow for the appropriate involvement of all school personnel
  • To ensure understanding by the parents, students, staff and management of the Code of Behaviour and the reasons for it
  • To outline the strategies to be used to prevent poor behaviour and the ways in which positive behaviour is acknowledged
  • To outline the structure of fair, consistent and agreed sanctions that will be used in response to negative behaviour
  • To outline the interventions to be used when a student repeatedly misbehaves

Roles and Responsibilities

The school climate and atmosphere are created by the actions and the behaviour of everyone in the school. Our school acknowledges the contribution of all members of the school community. Each member has responsibility for the promotion of good behaviour and a role in strengthening positive relationships of respect and trust. The school expects that students will at all times do their best to uphold the code of behaviour of our school.

Parents/Guardians

The school acknowledges the role of parents/guardians in the development and operation of the Code of Behaviour and expects them to support the code and encourage their sons/daughters to uphold it.

Teachers

The quality of relationships between teachers and students is a powerful influence on behaviour in the school. The code fosters relationships of trust between students and teachers. The school acknowledges the role of teachers in the development and operation of the Code of Behaviour. The school recognises that a teacher’s main focus is in the area of teaching and learning, but that they also have a pivotal role to play in behaviour management. That pivotal role forms a core element of this code. We have teachers assigned to each class and year group with special responsibilities for operating the code.

Subject Teachers, Tutors, Year Heads, Guidance Counsellor, Learning Support Teachers, Psychological Services, Chaplain, Other Agencies, Pastoral Care team, Deputy Principal and Principal all have specific roles to play in upholding the code.

Other Staff

The school acknowledges the contribution of ancillary staff in the day to day running of the school. They too have a part to play in the successful operation of our Code of Behaviour. In particular they have a responsibility to report incidents of misbehaviour and examples of positive behaviour they witness.

Board of Management

All policies are developed with the authority of the Board of Management and must be approved by its members before becoming official school policy. While members of the Board of Management are not involved in the day to day procedures, they are the body to whom parents and students over 18 may appeal in cases of suspension or expulsion.

The adults in the school have a responsibility to model the school’s standards of behaviour, in their dealings both with students and with each other, since their example is a powerful source of learning for students.

Parents/Guardians are expected to model the standards that the students are asked to respect. The ways in which parents and teachers interact provides students with a model of good working relationships.

SCHOOL RULES.

School Rules apply whenever you are wearing the school uniform, when representing the school or when engaged in any school activity. School rules describe in simple terms how to behave in order to learn well and to develop into mature and responsible adults They are there to safeguard students’ right to learn and teachers’ right to teach in a caring, safe and respectful environment. Therefore …

We expect

  1. That you come to school every day and arrive on time
  2. That you come to school in full uniform, clean and tidy
  3. That you have respect for people and property
  4. That you do your best in class and at your homework
  5. That you come in properly prepared for your subjects
  6. That you act in an appropriate manner around the school

SCHOOL RULES EXPLAINED.

1    That you come to school every day and arrive on time. This means:

  • That you are in the school at 8.55 daily
  • That you attend school every day unless it is absolutely unavoidable.
  • Mitching is regarded as being a particularly serious transgression of the rules
  • That if you miss school you bring a note in your School Diary from your parent/guardian on your return to school and present to your Class Tutor.
  • That if you are unavoidably late, you bring a note from your parent/guardian and get your School Diary stamped in the office
  • That if you are sick during the school day and need to leave the school, a parent (or authorized adult) must collect you
  • That if you must leave school during the day you must get the parental note stamped by the Secretary or teacher prior to signing out at the office
  • That you proceed to all classes without delay and arrive on time
  • That you do not go to the toilets/lockers between or during classes without your teachers’ permission
  • That you behave yourself on your way to and from school
  • Enter the school through the designated door
  • That you behave on the school buses

Because

  • Time missed is hard to make up
  • The school is entitled to an explanation for your absences.
  • It is expected that a late arrival to school be explained out of courtesy.
  • Arriving late for class wastes your time, the teacher’s time and class time
  • Going to the toilets/lockers during or between classes disrupts class
  • The school rules apply on your way to and from school and during lunch break

 

  • That you come to school in full uniform, clean and tidy. This means:
  • You wear the full school uniform in school at all times except, when otherwise directed by the school
  • That you button your shirt/blouse to the neck and that you fasten your tie neatly
  • You are required to bring and to wear the specified sports gear for participation in timetabled P.E. classes, sports training and sports competitions.
  • You should have a neat, tidy and natural looking hairstyle. Hair stencils are not permitted. We expect you to come to school with your natural hair colour.
  • Hats and scarves are to remain in your school bag for the duration of the school day. Coats, jackets and sweatshirts are not permitted in class and should be left in the locker.
  • Smoking is forbidden anytime you are wearing the school uniform, when representing the school or when engaged in any school activity
  • No facial piercing allowed.
  • Jewellery is limited to two finger rings, one discrete studded earring in the lower globe of each ear and a wristwatch.
  • Make-up is not allowed

Because

  • You should wear your uniform with pride, be dressed suitably for school activities and be good ambassador when representing the school
  • Hair style/colour should be in keeping with a dress code suitable for school
  • Hats and scarves can be a distraction in class
  • Smoking is unhealthy. Students should always be good ambassadors of their school
  • Facial piercings can be dangerous
  • Wearing jewellery or wearing excessive jewellery can be dangerous in the context of health and safety.

 

  • That you have respect for people and for property. This means
  • Being helpful and treating other students, all staff and visitors to the school with good manners and respect
  • Respecting the instructions of your teachers and staff
  • Any form of bullying is unacceptable
  • That you should proceed in an orderly fashion around the corridors.
  • That you don’t use offensive or abusive language
  • That you use the litter bins in classrooms, in social areas and in the school grounds
  • That you respect the school property and the property of other people
  • Reporting any accidental damage you may have caused or seen to the main office

Because

  • Like you, other students are entitled to good manners and respect.
  • Teachers are entitled to your respect and co-operation
  • Bullying causes fear, hurt and misery
  • Rough behaviour can lead to accident or injury.
  • Offensive or abusive language shows disrespect and can cause hurt
  • Keeping the school environment pleasant and litter free is everyone’s responsibility
  • You would expect the same respect for your property
  • The school authorities might have no other way of knowing if damage is caused to property or equipment

 

4    That you do your best in class and at your homework. This means

  • That you listen in class to your teachers
  • That you contribute to class and participate in class to the best of your ability
  • That you do not interfere with teaching and learning
  • That you don’t disturb the class
  • That you sit in an orderly manner at all times
  • That you do your homework each night, written and oral and to an acceptable standard
  • That you always have your School Diary with you and take down your homework in it
  • That you get it signed by your parent/guardian each week
  • That if you need to leave your classroom, you must get permission from your teacher with a note of explanation in your School Diary.
  • If you are required by another teacher, that teacher must note this in your School Diary and you must present this note to your timetabled teacher at the start of the class
  • That you help keep your classrooms tidy

Because

  • The teacher is trying to help you
  • Disturbing the class is unfair to others who wish to learn
  • Homework is a back-up to the work done in class
  • Your School Diary helps you remember what you have to do
  • Getting your School Diary signed lets your parents see how you are getting on
  • Getting your School Diary signed to leave the classroom helps keep a record of your time missed and lets other teachers know that you have permission to be out of class
  • It is important to take responsibility for tidying up after ourselves.

5    That you come in properly prepared for your subjects. This means

  • That you have the proper pens, books and copies required for each class
  • That you bring in any special materials and equipment needed for class
  • All bags, books and Student Diary be kept in good condition and free of graffiti.
  • That you are responsible for your own property

Because

  • It only wastes time if you haven’t got your pens, books etc.
  • It is impossible to do the subject without the materials/equipment needed
  • Graffiti can offend.
  • Neatness helps students stay organised. You are old enough now to look after your own property. Label clearly each item of personal property.

 

  • That you act in an appropriate manner around the school. This means
  • You speak Irish only at school, in the school yard, on tour or at any other activities associated with the school. No other language may be spoken with the exception of during other language classes.
  • You proceed quickly and quietly to each class, keeping to the right
  • You wait quietly for your teacher while lining up outside the classroom
  • You should walk on corridors and you should avoid pushing or jostling other students and you should avoid loud and unruly behaviour both inside and outside classrooms.
  • You go to your locker only before class begins in the morning, at small break time, at lunchtime and at the end of the school day
  • You should avoid loitering in the toilets during break times or at any other times
  • That eating and drinking is allowed only in the General Purpose Area and canteen area and only at specified times.
  • Taking your break in the manner and area specified and obeying the instructions of the teacher on duty
  • That you don’t break, damage or deface school property
  • That you must report to a teacher should you notice graffiti or damage to school property and especially if you notice graffiti on your own desk or chair
  • That chewing gum is totally forbidden in the school building and grounds
  • That you do not bring cigarettes, e-cigarettes, lighters or matches to school
  • That there is an absolute ban on knives, lasers and any type of offensive weapons
  • That you leave your mobile phone in your locker, powered off, during the school day as the use of mobile phones is not permitted at any time.
  • That you leave all electronic devices at home.
  • That the production, display or circulation e.g. via facebook and internet, of written words, pictures or other materials which may intimidate, embarrass or erode the reputation of another person is totally unacceptable.
  • Alcohol and illegal substances are totally forbidden
  • You may not photograph or record in school without your teacher’s permission

Because

  • Irish is the language of communication and the teaching medium in the school and we are an Irish medium school
  • Orderly behaviour helps to run the school smoothly
  • Going to the locker during or between classes detracts from learning and disrupts others.
  • Loitering in toilets leads to congestion
  • Specified times and places for eating/drinking helps to keep the school clean and pleasant
  • Obeying break time rules and teachers’ instructions is safer and helps with supervision
  • Others have to use the school property and repairs and replacements are expensive
  • Everyone is responsible for helping to keep the school environment pleasant
  • Chewing gum destroys flooring, school furniture, tarmac etc. It is a possible health hazard
  • Smoking on the school premises is prohibited by law, and besides, it is unhealthy and dangerous
  • The use of mobile phones and other electronic devices is disruptive during school time
  • Matches and lighters are dangerous. Also, this makes it easier not to be tempted to smoke
  • Knives, lasers etc are banned for very obvious reasons
  • Substance abuse is dangerous, unhealthy, addictive and illegal. It can cause misery and in the longer term may even destroy a young person’s life

Preventative Measures

In Coláiste Oiriall students will be encouraged in their efforts to uphold the Code of Behaviour by use of the following measures:

(a) The Code of Behaviour is published on the school website and a summarised version is published in the Student Journal. Students and their parents are asked to read it and to sign their agreement with the content when registering. By doing so they acknowledge their support and co-operation with it. This is to ensure that parents and students understand what our rules are, why they must be adhered to and what procedures will be followed if the rules are not upheld.

Aspects of the code are explained at the information meeting held each year for parents of incoming First Years. Parents are encouraged to contact their son/daughter’s Tutor or Year Head if they wish to raise a concern about a behavioural matter. Parents are invited to get involved in the Parents’ Association or to avail themselves of the meetings organised by the association.

(b) At the start of each school year, the Code of Behaviour is explained to all students. This is done so as to give students the opportunity to think and talk about behaviour, learning and rules so that they can understand what the Code of Behaviour means for them.

(c) The Code of Behaviour is published in the Teachers’ Handbook. At the beginning of the school year teachers are brought through the main aspects of the implementation of the code. This is done to promote consistency of practice.

 (d) We recognise in Coláiste Oiriall that effective teaching and learning are closely linked to good behaviour. When students are engaged and motivated to learn, it is more likely that their behaviour will be positive. Teachers are encouraged to participate in continuous professional development. Within school, staff development includes exploring different teaching methods such as Assessment for Learning and differentiation. Regular Subject Department meetings address curriculum needs and promote collegiality among staff.

(e) If a student is in breach of a rule, he/she may be asked to explain (orally or in writing) the rule he/she has breached, to describe what effect this breach has had on members of the school community, and how he/she could act differently in the future to avoid being in breach of the rule. This is done to develop the student’s sensitivity and consideration for others and to assist them in upholding school rules in future. The principles of Restorative Justice are also applied where possible. Students are encouraged to speak to their Tutor or Year Head if they wish to raise a concern about a behavioural matter.

(f) School rules and the reason for them are discussed as part of the schools pastoral care programme or as part of SPHE. The notion of tolerance for others, self – control, a sense of fairness and the principles of natural justice are also discussed as part of the Religious Education programme in the school

 (g) Issues such as Bullying, Racism, Sexism, Harassment, Violence, Substance Misuse are discussed with the students during their time in our school, using current legislation, current affairs and outside speakers. This is to help the students better understand these issues so that they can base their thinking, understanding and action on factual information and in the line with the values espoused in our school.

(h) The school’s Anti-Bullying policy, which is published on the school website and of which a summarised version is published in the Student Journal, sets out the actions taken in relation to alleged breaches of the policy. Each year in the school we have a Friendship Awareness Week, which focuses the school community on promoting positive behaviour.

Students with Special Educational Needs:

Subject teachers, resource teachers and special needs assistants should check that standards and rules are communicated in a way that students with special educational needs can understand. This understanding needs to be checked from time to time especially where a student with special needs is acting in a way that would usually be seen as being in breach of the rules. Teachers may need support in understanding how best to help a student with special educational needs to conform to the behavioural standards and expectations of the school.

Rewards

In our school teachers use the following methods to reward students for upholding the code of conduct:

  • Verbal praise of student by teacher privately
  • Positive comment regarding the student to tutor or Year head
  • Verbal praise of student at assembly or on intercom
  • Leadership role given to students as prefects and as Student Council members.
  • Class outing related to the curriculum
  • Brief, positive note or phone call to parents
  • Highlight curricular/extra-curricular achievements on notice boards in classrooms and corridors
  • Display of student’s work around the school
  • Highlight curricular/extra-curricular achievements in school newsletter or on digital signage
  • Highlight curricular/extra-curricular achievements on school website or in local newspaper

Students with Special Educational Needs:

Rewards for students with special educational needs should take account of their particular learning styles. For all students and especially those with learning difficulties, a reward will have an impact when it is closely linked in time to the behaviour that is being rewarded.

Strategies and Sanctions

The purpose of these strategies and sanctions is to bring about a change in behaviour. They help students to learn that their behaviour is unacceptable and to learn to take responsibility for their behaviour.

The following strategies and sanctions are used so that our students understand that they have choices about their own behaviour and that all choices have consequences.

They are scaled so as to take account of the nature of the incident, the situation leading up to the incident and are implemented by the staff of the school in accordance with our system of referral.

  • A reminder or caution to the student
  • Interview or talk with the student outlining the expected behaviour
  • Alter the seating arrangement or move the student seat
  • Carrying out a useful task in school
  • Extra appropriate work assignment
  • Student to present to the teacher before school or at break with the work complete and/or an apology
  • Note in Student Journal
  • A fine to cover the cost of repair or replacement
  • Removal of privilege
  • Consultation with Class Tutor
  • Telephone call to parents
  • Removal of student from scene of incident while still under supervision

Strategies and sanctions for more serious incidents or for consistent breaches of our code of conduct include the following. These may be applied but not necessarily in the order listed

  • Giving the student a piece of written work to do in which they have to outline in writing the rule/rules they breached, the effects this breach had on themselves and on other members of the school community and how they can avoid a repeat of this behaviour.
  • Withdrawal from class
  • Literacy Sheet particularly for junior students
  • Lunchtime detention
  • Evening detention
  • Weekly report
  • Contract between school, student and parent
  • Refer student to Tutor/Year Head/Deputy Principal/Principal
  • Telephone call to parents
  • Formal letter home
  • Meeting with parents
  • Suspension from School (see Suspension and Expulsion policy)

Lunchtime detention or short detention is defined as a period of detention of one hour’s duration during the extended lunchtime. Evening detention or long detention is defined as a period of detention of 2 ½ hours duration after school on Fridays.

Referrals

The basic principle of referral system is that the higher up the ladder an incident is dealt with, the more serious it is viewed. The ladder of referral involves all staff in the implementation of the Code of Behaviour in a day-to-day and practical way. It gives an ownership of the policy to all staff and it is appropriate that they be involved as they operate it on an on-going basis.

If a student has a problem which is contributing to their inability to uphold the Code of Behaviour then the following referrals may be made:

  • Referral to Year Head
  • Referral to Deputy Principal
  • Referral to Principal
  • Referral to Guidance Counsellor
  • Referral to psychologist for testing and/or help in behaviour modification.

Step 1: The Subject Teacher

The subject teacher is the frontline source of help for students. As a leader of learning and someone with an established relationship of trust, the subject teacher will have a strong influence with students. Each teacher has the responsibility for managing behaviour in his/her own classroom and will deal with routine incidents of misbehaviour through classroom management strategies. The Class Tutor will also advise and guide the student to reflect on deviant behaviour with a view to changing to more positive behaviours. More serious offences should be dealt with under Step 2 of our referral system.

Step 2: The Year Head

Each Year Group is assigned a teacher with special responsibility for them. He/she has a pastoral and disciplinary role to play with the class groups that make up this year group.

Step 3: The Deputy Principal or Principal

Students whose behaviour has not been modified despite the school’s best efforts will be referred by the Year Head to the Deputy Principal / Principal. If the Deputy Principal or Principal decide that a suspension is warranted the procedures in our policy on suspension and expulsion will be followed.

Student files are kept in the main office. Contracts and weekly reports are filed, as are copies of letters sent home and contents of telephone conversations and meetings with parents relating to sanctions and interventions.

Procedures in the event of consistent breaches of the Code of Behaviour

  1. A student may be sent to the Welfare and Behaviour Committee on the advice of the Year Head for advice and guidance.
  2. Detention, withdrawal of privileges from a student or withdrawal from class or Weekly Report or Contract may be used for specific transgressions e.g. poor punctuality, homework not done, unsatisfactory behaviour on the playing field etc.
  3. If a student isn’t wearing the correct uniform he/she should have a note of explanation, signed by a parent/guardian, in his/her school diary. If the correct uniform is not worn on three occasions the student will receive an appropriate sanction and the parents will be informed. Jackets, coats and jumpers not conforming to the school uniform will be temporarily confiscated.
  4. If a student breaches the Irish speaking rule he/she will receive lunchtime detention. In the event of a pupil repeatedly breaching this rule, the student will receive evening detention and may ultimately be suspended.
  5. Students who are found using or in possession of a mobile phone on the school premises or its surrounds during the school day will be asked to surrender it for a period of one week. Repeated offences will incur a penalty of surrender for a period of two weeks.
  6. There will be cases of indiscipline that will require the Principal to act independently of the above procedures in order to maintain the safety of a student or staff.
  7. The Conduct and Welfare Committee will make the final decision if the school is confident enough about the standard of behaviour of a student to take him on a school tour, especially an overnight tour.
  8. The Principal has the authority to suspend a student if this is deemed necessary.
  9. In the case of a student who continues to misbehave, the student’s case may be brought before the Board of Management or indeed before Cavan and Monaghan Education and Training Board
  10. The Board of Management may advise the permanent exclusion of a student to the Cavan and Monaghan Education and Training Board if the behaviour of the student is preventing teaching and learning taking place on an ongoing basis or if it is a serious once-off offence.
  11. All incidents of indiscipline are recorded electronically in the School’s Discipline System.
  12. The school reserves the right to withdraw a student from an extra-curricular activity or from any other privilege of the school’s choice if the said student is in breach of school rules or regulations. A partial refund of fees may occasionally apply.

Graded System for minor incidents

More than 3 minor incidents, 3 reports or 3 Literacy Sheets

Lunchtime Detention

More than 3 Lunchtime Detentions

Evening Detention

More than 3 Evening Detentions

Suspension

Implementation

All registered students of the school have a summarised version of the Code of Behaviour in their School Diary. The Code is published in its entirety on the school website and is also available from the school upon request. All staff have a copy of the code in their Teachers’ Handbook.

At the beginning of each year each class is brought through the Code of Behaviour. This is done so as to give students the opportunity to think and talk about behaviour, learning and rules so that they can understand what the Code of Behaviour means for them. At the beginning of the school year teachers are also brought through the main aspects of the implementation of the code. This is done to promote consistency of practice.

This Code of Behaviour was drawn up in consultation with the parents, students, staff and management of Coláiste Oiriall.  The code is monitored on a regular basis. Aspects of the code are discussed formally at Year Head, Staff, Department and Committee meetings. Teachers are encouraged to communicate concerns and suggestions to the pastoral team.

SUSPENSION AND EXPULSION POLICY AND PROCEDURES

  1. Policy Statement
    • The suspensions and expulsions policy applies to all schools established and maintained by Cavan and Monaghan Education and Training Board.
  2. Legal framework
    1. Cavan and Monaghan ETB acknowledges the duty of schools under its control to publish their policy concerning admission and participation in the school, including the policy of the school relating to the expulsion and suspension of students pursuant to Section 15 (d) of the Education Act 1998 and Section 23 of the Education Welfare Act 2000. The Code of Behaviour in Coláiste Oiriall specifies:
      • The standards of behaviour that shall be observed by each student attending the school
      • The measures that may be taken when a student fails or refuses to observe those standards
      • The procedures to be followed before a student may be suspended or expelled from a school
      • The grounds for removing a suspension imposed in relation to a student
      • The procedures to be followed relating to notification of a child’s absence from school.
    2. Coláiste Oiriall affirms that its Code of Behaviour is prepared in accordance with the Guidelines issued by the Education Welfare Board 2008. The Code of Behaviour addresses:
      • The standards of behaviour expected in the school
      • The plan for promoting good behaviour
      • The ways in which a school responds to unacceptable behaviour
      • The plan for implementing the code of behaviour
      • School procedures for the use of suspension and expulsion
    3. Coláiste Oiriall recognises the Right to Appeal pursuant to Section 29 of the Education Act.
    4. In regard to informing the Education Welfare Board, Coláiste Oiriall affirms its statutory obligation pursuant to section 21 (4)(a) of the Education Welfare Act.
    5. Coláiste Oiriall affirms that data collected in relation to students and parents is in compliance with the Data Protection Acts 1988 and 2003.
  3. Suspensions
    1. Bord Bainistíochta Choláiste Oiriall holds the authority to suspend a student. This authority is devolved under Section 44 (11(a)) of the Education and Training Boards Act 2013 by Cavan and Monaghan ETB to the Boards of Management of each of the schools under its control.
    2. Cavan and Monaghan ETB recognises that Bord Bainistíochta Choláiste Oiriall may delegate this authority to the Príomhoide of Coláiste Oiriall. The Board of Management should make a formal delegation arrangement taking due account of the provisions of the Education and Training Boards Act 2013.
    3. Coláiste Oiriall recognises that suspension is only one strategy within the Coláiste Oiriall Code of Behaviour in response to inappropriate behaviour.
    4. Coláiste Oiriall recognises that when all other strategies have been exhausted, suspension affords a student time to reflect on their behaviour, to acknowledge and accept responsibility for their behaviour and to accept the need for the behaviour to change. Coláiste Oiriall works closely with parents to assist a suspended student to re-join the school community successfully.
    5. Coláiste Oiriall acknowledges that suspension should be a proportionate response to the behaviour that is causing concern. The decision to suspend a student requires serious grounds such as that:
      • The student’s behaviour has had a seriously detrimental effect on the education of other students.
      • The students continued presence in the school at this time constitutes a threat to safety.
      • The student is responsible for serious damage to property.
      • The student breaches the Code of Behaviour. (At the discretion of the Principal.)
    6. Coláiste Oiriall affirms that all suspensions must be notified to Bord Bainistíochta Choláiste Oiriall.
    7. Coláiste Oiriall affirms that the Education Welfare Services of the Child and Family Agency (Tusla) should be Informed of suspensions in the following circumstances:
      • Where the period of suspension is for 6 or more consecutive school days.
      • Where the aggregate number of days on which a student has been suspended /absent in any school year is 20 or more days.
    8. Coláiste Oiriall affirms that suspension may occur after the following factors have been considered:
      • The nature and seriousness of the behaviour
      • The impact and context of the behaviour
      • The interventions tried to date
      • That all discipline options under the Coláiste Oiriall Code of Behaviour have been applied and documented
      • That all actions /decisions taken are recorded and all correspondence copied.
      • Discussion has occurred with the student and parent(s) regarding the specific behaviour which the school considers unacceptable, and which may lead to suspension.
    9. Bord Bainistíochta Choláiste Oiriall affirms that students attending Coláiste Oiriall may be suspended as follows pending investigation and /or discussion with parents. The following list is not exhaustive:
      • For serious misbehaviour
      • For an unacceptable level of repeated misbehaviour
      • For bullying, insulting, aggressive or violent behaviour towards others whether in person, by mobile phone or via social media or other electronic means; in the school, or when identifiable with the school
      • For the supply/possession /use of alcohol and /or illegal drugs
      • For the supply /possession /use of weapons/ hazardous materials
      • For behaviour that may be a danger to self or others
      • For racist behaviour /supply of racist behaviour/use of racist material
      • For behaviour that is contrary to the terms of the Equal Status Act 2000
      • For sexual harassment and/or the possession/supply /use of pornographic material.
    10. Coláiste Oiriall acknowledges that a single incident of serious misconduct may be grounds for suspension. Such grounds may include where the continued presence of the student in the school at the time would represent a serious threat to the safety or welfare of students, staff of the school or any other person.
    11. A student may be suspended during a state examination and such suspension should normally be approved by Bord Bainistíochta Choláiste Oiriall. This type of suspension should only be used where there is:
      • A threat to good order in the conduct of the examination
      • A threat to the safety or welfare of other students and personnel
      • A threat to the right of the other students to do their exam in a calm atmosphere.
    12. Cavan and Monaghan ETB recognises that Bord Bainistíochta Choláiste Oiriall may decide as part of the school’s policy on sanctions and following consultation process with the Principal, parents, teachers and students, that particular named behaviour incur suspension as a sanction. This does not remove the duty to follow due process and fair procedures in each case.
  4. Inappropriate use of Suspension
    • Rolling suspension.  A student should not be suspended again shortly after they return to Coláiste Oiriall unless they engage in serious misbehaviour that warrants suspension, that fair procedures are observed in full and the standard applied to judging the behaviour is the same as that standard applied to the behaviour of any other student.
    • Informal / unacknowledged suspension.  Exclusion of a student for part of the school day as a sanction is a suspension.
    • Open-ended suspension.  Students should not be suspended for an indefinite periods.  Any such suspension would be regarded as a de-facto expulsion.
  5. Procedures in respect of Suspension.
    1. Cavan and Monaghan ETB affirms that Coláiste Oiriall is required to follow fair procedures when proposing to suspend a student. The school should observe the following procedures
      • The student and parent(s) should be informed about the complaint
      • The student and parent(s) should be given the opportunity to respond
      • In the case of ‘immediate’ suspension, a preliminary investigation should be conducted to establish the case for the imposition of the suspension.  Parents must be notified and arrangement made for the student to be collected from the school.  The school must have due regard for its duty of care for the student.
    2. A student should not be suspended for more than 3 days except in exceptional circumstances. Cavan and Monaghan ETB recognises that Bord Bainistíochta Choláiste Oiriall should provide guidance to the Príomhoide concerning the kinds of circumstances under which suspensions of longer that 3 days might be approved. If a suspension of longer than 3 days is being proposed the matter should be referred to the Board of Management for consideration and approval.  However Cavan and Monaghan ETB recognises that Bord Bainistíochta Choláiste Oiriall may wish to authorise the Príomhoide, with the approval of the Cathaoirleach of the Board of Management, to impose a suspension of up to 5 days in circumstances where a meeting of the Board cannot be convened in a timely fashion.
    3. Cavan and Monaghan ETB affirms Bord Bainistíochta Choláiste Oiriall should formally review any proposal to suspend a student where the suspension would bring the number of days for which the student has been suspended in the current school year to 20 days for more. Any such suspension is subject to appeal under section 29 of the Education Act 1998.
  6. Implementing the suspension
    1. The Príomhoide of Coláiste Oiriall should notify the Parent(s) and the student in writing of the decision to suspend. The letter will confirm:
      • The period of the suspension and the dates on which the suspension will begin and end.
      • The reasons for the suspension.
      • Any study programme to be followed.
      • The arrangements for returning to school, including any commitments to be entered into by the student and the parents.
      • The provision for an appeal to Bord Bainistíochta Choláiste Oiriall
      • The provision to appeal to Cavan and Monaghan ETB.
    2. In the case where Parents do not agree to meet with the Príomhoide, Cavan and Monaghan ETB confirms that written notice will serve as notice to impose a suspension.
    3. A suspension may be removed if Bord Bainistíochta Choláiste Oiriall decides to remove the suspension for any reason.
  7. Appealing the suspension to the Board of Management
    1. A parent/guardian has 7-10 days in which to lodge an appeal from the date of receipt of letter informing him/her of the suspension. 
    2. If the student appealing suspension is 18 years or older, he or she may appeal in their own right.
    3. The grounds for the appeal must be made in writing to the Secretary of the Bord Bainistíochta.
  8. Procedures in respect of Suspension Appeal
    1. Upon receipt of written correspondence concerning the suspension appeal, the Principal should:
      • Inform the student and parents/guardians in writing that the Board of Management meeting is arranged to consider the suspension appeal
      • Ensure that parents/guardians, or a student aged 18 or over have written records of (a) the allegation, (b) the investigation, (c) written notice of the grounds on which the Bord Bainistíochta is being asked to consider the imposed suspension.
      • Provide the Board with the same comprehensive records as are given to the parents/guardians, or a student aged 18 or over.
      • Notify the parents/guardians/student over 18 in good time of the date of the hearing with Bord Bainistíochta and invite them to that hearing.
      • Advise the parents/guardians/student over 18 that they can make a written and oral submission to the Board of Management.
    2. It is the responsibility of the Bord Bainistíochta Choláiste Oiriall to review the initial investigation and satisfy itself that the investigation was properly conducted in line with fair procedures.
    3. The Bord Bainistíochta should undertake its own review of documentation and all circumstances of the case
    4. The Bord Bainistíochta should ensure that no party who has had any involvement with the circumstances of the suspension is part of the Board’s deliberations.
    5. Where the Bord Bainistíochta of Coláiste Oiriall decides to consider a suspension appeal for a student, it must hold a hearing and this meeting should be properly conducted in accordance with Board procedures.
    6. Parents/Guardians may be accompanied at the Board hearing. The nature of appeal hearings is such that legal representation is not required.  The Board Secretary should be informed in writing who shall be attending this meeting at least two days prior to the meeting taking place.
    7. At the start of the meeting the Cathaoirleach shall enquire whether any member has a conflict of interest in respect of the matter being considered by the Board. Where the Board is satisfied that a conflict of interest exists, the member(s) involved shall withdraw from the meeting.
    8. At the hearing both the Príomhoide and the parents/guardians, or a student aged 18 or over, will put their case to the Board in each other’s presence and will be available to answer questions from Board Members. Each party should be allowed question the evidence of the other party.  Questions should be directed through the Chairperson at the end of each presentation.
    9. Once the Príomhoide and the parents/guardians, or a student aged 18 or over, have made their cases, they will withdraw from the meeting.
    10. When both sides have been heard the Board should ensure that the Principal and Parents are not present for the Board’s deliberations.
    11. Should the Board require the professional advice of the Príomhoide, the Príomhoide may be invited to return to the meeting briefly for that purpose only. While the Príomhoide is present, there will be no discussion on the merits of the particular case being considered.
    12. In the conduct of the hearing the Board must take care to ensure at all times that they maintain their impartiality between the Príomhoide and the parents/guardians, or a student aged 18 or over.
    13. In hearing and determining an appeal the Board shall have regard to:
      • the nature, scale and persistence of any behaviour alleged to have given rise to, or contributed to, the decision made by or on behalf of the Board,
      • the reasonableness of any efforts made by the school to enable the student to whom the appeal relates (the ‘student concerned’) to participate in and benefit from education,
      • the educational interests of the student concerned and the desirability of enabling the student as far as practicable to participate in and benefit from education with his or her peers,
      • the educational interests of, and the effective provision of education for, other students of the school and the maintenance of a classroom and school environment which is supportive of learning among the students of the school and ensures continuity of instruction provided to students in any classroom concerned and the school,
      • the safety, health and welfare of teachers, students and staff of the school,
      • the code of behaviour under section 23 of the Education (Welfare) Act of 2000 and other relevant policies of the school and
        • (i) in the case of that code of behaviour, the extent to which it is in compliance with that section 23 and any guidelines issued under subsection (3) of that section, and
        • (ii) in the case of those other policies, the extent to which each of them is implemented, promotes equality of access to and participation in education and is in compliance with:
          • (I) any enactment that imposes duties on schools or their boards,
          • (II) any relevant guidelines or policies of the Minister,
      • the duties on schools or their boards imposed by or under any enactment,
      • guidelines issued pursuant to section 22(7) of the Act of 2000, and
      • such other matters as the Board considers relevant.
  9. Bord Bainistíochta deliberations and actions following the hearing
    • Having heard from all the parties involved it is the responsibility of the Board to decide whether or not the allegation is substantiated and if the imposed suspension is a proportionate sanction.
    • When the Bord Bainistíochta having considered all the facts of the case, is of the opinion that the student should be suspended, the Board will instruct the school principal to communicate the decision of the Bord Bainistíochta to the parents/guardians, or student aged 18 or over and to uphold the decision to impose a school suspension
  10. Section 29 Appeal against Suspension
    • Where the total number of days for which the student has been suspended in the current school year reaches 20 days, the parent(s) or a student aged over 18 years, may appeal the suspension under Section 29 of the Education Act 1998.
    • Parents and the student should be informed about their right to appeal to Cavan and Monaghan ETB
    • Where an appeal to Cavan and Monaghan ETB is concluded, Parents and the student may appeal to the Secretary General of the Department of Education and Skills.
  11. Expulsion
    1. Cavan and Monaghan ETB has the authority to expel a student. This authority may be delegated under Section 44 (11(a)) of the Education and Training Boards Act 2013 by Cavan and Monaghan ETB to Bord Bainistíochta Choláiste Oiriall
    2. Expulsion should be a proportionate response to the student’s behaviour. Coláiste Oiriall acknowledges that expulsion of a student is a very serious step and one that should only be taken by the Board of Management of Coláiste Oiriall in extreme cases of unacceptable behaviour.
    3. Bord Bainistíochta Choláiste Oiriall affirms that Coláiste Oiriall needs to have taken significant steps to address the misbehaviour and to avoid expulsion. Such measures may include:
      • Meeting with parents and students to try and find ways of helping the student to change their behaviour.
      • Making sure that the student understands the possible consequences of their behaviour should it persist
      • Ensuring that all possible options have been tried.
      • Seeking the assistance of relevant support agencies, e.g. Child and Family Agency Education Welfare Services, HSE Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services. National Behavioural Support Service JLO, NEPS, NCSE.
    4. A proposal to expel a student requires serious grounds such as that:
      • The student’s behaviour is a persistent cause of significant disruption to the learning of others or to the teaching process
      • The student’s continued presence in the school constitutes a real and significant threat to the safety and welfare of others.
      • The student is responsible for serious damage to property.
    5. Before expulsion is considered schools authorities must satisfy themselves that all possibilities have been exhausted for changing the student’s behaviour.
    6. ‘Automatic Expulsion’ – Bord Bainistíochta Choláiste Oiriall may decide in consultation with the Principal, parents, teachers and students that particular named behaviours would result in ‘Automatic’ expulsion.  This does not remove the duty to follow due process and fair procedure.
    7. Expulsion for first or once-off offence.  There may be exceptional circumstances where the Bord Bainistíochta Choláiste Oiriall decides that a student should be expelled for a first offence.  The kinds of behaviour that might result in a proposal to expel on the basis of a single breach of the Code of Behaviour could include:
      • A serious threat of violence against another student or member of staff
      • Actual violence or physical assault
      • Supplying illegal drugs to students in the school
      • Sexual assault
  12. Factors to Consider before proposing to expel a student
    1. Bord Bainistíochta Choláiste Oiriall should take the following factors into consideration before considering expelling a student:
      • The nature and seriousness of the behaviour
      • The context of the behaviour
      • The impact of the behaviour
      • The interventions already tried to change the student’s behaviour
      • Whether expulsion is a proportionate response
      • The possible impact of expulsion
    2. Expulsion would not be appropriate for the following:
      • Poor academic performance
      • Poor attendance or lateness
      • Minor breaches of the Code of Behaviour
      • However, any behaviour that is persistently disruptive to learning or dangerous can be a serious matter.  Behaviour must be examined in context to understand both the behaviour itself and the response or sanction that is most appropriate.
  13. Procedures in respect of expulsion
  • A detailed investigation will be carried out under the direction of the Principal. The Principal should ensure that no party who has had any involvement with the circumstances of the case is part of the investigation.
  • The Principal should inform the student and his/her parents about the specific details of the alleged breach of behaviour, how it will be investigated and that it could result in expulsion. The Principal must ensure that the student and parents are given every opportunity to respond to the complaint of serious misbehaviour.  The Principal should communicate this in writing to ensure that parents have a permanent record of having been informed.
  • A meeting should be arranged between the student and their parents and the Príomhoide of Coláiste Oiriall before a sanction is imposed.
  • Should a student and their parent(s) fail to attend a meeting the Priíomhoide should write advising:
  • the seriousness of the matter
  • the importance of attending a re-scheduled meeting
  • Failing that, the duty of the school authorities to make a decision to respond to the inappropriate behaviour
  • Record all correspondence
  • Where the Priíomhoide of Coláiste Oiriall forms a view, based on the investigation of the alleged misbehaviour, that expulsion may be warranted, the Principal shall make a recommendation to the Board to consider expulsion.
  • The Príomhoide should:
  • Inform the student and parents in writing that the Board of Management is being asked to consider expulsion.
  • Ensure that parents have written records of (a) the allegation, (b) the investigation, (c) written notice of the grounds on which the Bord Bainistíochta is being asked to consider expulsion.
  • Provide the Board with the same comprehensive records as are given to the student and the parents.
  • Notify the parents in good time of the date of the hearing with the Bord Bainistíochta and invite them to that hearing.
  • Advise the parents that they can make a written and oral submission to the Bord Bainistíochta
  • Ensure parents are given enough notice to allow them to prepare for the meeting.
  • It is the responsibility of Bord Bainistíochta Choláiste Oiriall to review the initial investigation and satisfy itself that the investigation was properly conducted in line with fair procedures.
  • The Bord Bainistíochta should undertake its own review of documentation and all circumstances of the case.
  • The Bord Bainistíochta should ensure that no party who has had any involvement with the circumstances of the case is part of the Board’s deliberations.
  • Where Bord Bainistíochta Choláiste Oiriall decides to expel a student it must hold a hearing and this meeting should be properly conducted in accordance with Board procedures.
  • Parents may be accompanied at the Board hearing but, as this is a lay forum; legal representation is not the normal practice, however it may be allowed due to the potentially serious consequences for the student. The Board Secretary should be informed in writing who shall be attending this meeting at least two days prior to the meeting taking place.
  • At the start of the meeting the Cathaoirleach shall enquire whether any member has an objective bias in respect of the matter being considered by the Board. Where the Board is satisfied that an objective bias exists, the member(s) involved shall withdraw from the meeting.
  • At the hearing the Príomhoide and the parents, or a student aged 18 or over, put their case to the Board in each other’s presence and will be available to answer questions from Board Members. Each party should be allowed question the evidence of the other party.  Questions should be directed through the Cathaoirleach at the end of each presentation.
  • Once the Príomhoide and the Parents have made their cases, they will withdraw from the meeting.
  • Should the Board require the professional advice of the Príomhoide, the Príomhoide may be invited to return to the meeting briefly for that purpose. While the Principal is present, there will be no discussion on the merits of the particular case being considered.
  • In the conduct of the hearing the Board must take care to ensure they are and are seen to be impartial as between the Príomhoide and the student. Parents may wish to be accompanied at hearings and the Board should facilitate this in line with good practice and Board procedures.
  • When both sides have been heard the Board should ensure that the Príomhoide and Parents are not present for the Board’s deliberations.
  • In hearing and considering a proposed expulsion the Board shall have regard to:
  • the nature, scale and persistence of any behaviour alleged to have given rise to, or contributed to, the decision made by or on behalf of the Board,
  • the reasonableness of any efforts made by the school to enable the student to whom the appeal relates (the ‘student concerned’) to participate in and benefit from education,
  • the educational interests of the student concerned and the desirability of enabling the student as far as practicable to participate in and benefit from education with his or her peers,
  • the educational interests of, and the effective provision of education for, other students of the school and the maintenance of a classroom and school environment which is supportive of learning among the students of the school and ensures continuity of instruction provided to students in any classroom concerned and the school,
  • the safety, health and welfare of teachers, students and staff of the school,
  • the code of behaviour under section 23 of the Education (Welfare) Act of 2000 and other relevant policies of the school and —

(i) in the case of that code of behaviour, the extent to which it is in compliance with that section 23 and any guidelines issued under subsection (3) of that section, and

(ii) in the case of those other policies, the extent to which each of them is implemented, promotes equality of access to and participation in education and is in compliance with

(I) any enactment that imposes duties on schools or their boards,

(II) any relevant guidelines or policies of the Minister,

  • the duties on schools or their boards imposed by or under any enactment,
  • guidelines issued pursuant to section 22(7) of the Act of 2000, and
  • such other matters as the Board considers relevant.

 Bord Bainistíochta deliberations and actions following the hearing

    • Having heard from all the parties involved it is the responsibility of the Board to decide whether or not the allegation is substantiated and if expulsion is the appropriate sanction.
    • When Bord Bainistíochta Choláiste Oiriall having considered all the facts of the case, is of the opinion that the student should be expelled, the Board must notify the Education Welfare Officer in writing of its opinion and the reasons for this opinion pursuant to section 24 91) of the Education Welfare Act 2000. The Board should refer to the Child and Family Agency Education Welfare Services reporting procedures for proposed expulsions. 
    • The student cannot be expelled before the passage of 20 school days from the date on which the EWO receives this written notification.
    • The Board of Management should inform the parents in writing about its conclusions and where expulsion is proposed the parents should be informed that the Board of Management will inform the Education Welfare Officer.
  • Consultations arranged by the Educational Welfare Officer
    • Within 20 days of receipt of a notification from a Bord Bainistíochta the EWO will make all reasonable attempts to hold individual consultations with the Principal, the parent and the student. The EWO will convene a meeting of those parties.  These consultations will focus on alternative educational arrangements for the student.
    • Pending the consultations in 12.1 the Bord Bainistíochta may consider it appropriate to suspend a student during this time. This should only be considered where the continued presence of the student during this time would seriously disrupt the learning of others or represent a risk to the safety and health of students or staff.
  • Confirmation of the decision to expel
    • When the 20 day period following notice to the EWO has elapsed and the Board of Management remains of the view that the student should be expelled, the Board of Management should formally confirm the decision to expel. Bord Bainistíochta may delegate authority to the Chairperson and Secretary to review this decision of expulsion after the twenty days has expired.
    • Parents should be notified immediately that the expulsion will now proceed. Parents and the student must be informed of their right to appeal to Cavan and Monaghan ETB.
  • Section 29 Appeal against Expulsion
    • The parent(s) or a student aged over 18 years, may appeal the expulsion under Section 29 of the Education Act 1998.
      • Parents and the student should be informed about their right to appeal to Cavan and Monaghan ETB and they should be supplied with the standard form on which to lodge an appeal.
    • Where an appeal to Cavan and Monaghan ETB is concluded, Parents and the student may appeal the decision to the Secretary General of the Department of Education and Skills.
  • Review of use of Expulsion
    • Bord Bainistíochta Choláiste Oiriall should review the use of expulsion in the school at regular intervals.
  • Implementation and Review of Policy
    • The Príomhoide and Bord Bainistíochta Choláiste Oiriall will responsible for the implementation of this policy.
    • This policy shall be reviewed periodically, in light of emerging legislation and circulated Guidelines from the Department of Education and Skills from its official adoption by the Cavan and Monaghan Education and Training Board and Bord Bainistíochta Choláiste Oiriall.