Oasis Academy Putney (OAP) is committed to valuing diversity and to equality of opportunity. We aim to create and promote an environment in which pupils, parents and staff are treated fairly and with respect, and feel able to contribute to the best of their abilities.
Partnership with Parents
Parents working in partnership with the school to consistently reinforce the school’s expectations is an important factor in every child’s success. At OAP, we will work in partnership with parents to ensure that expectations are clear and parents can reinforce them with their children. This includes ensuring that parents are kept informed about decisions made in response to a child’s misbehaviour so that we can work together in the best interests of pupils to ensure expectations for behaviour are made clear.
The school is responsible for communicating to pupils, parents and staff its expectations of standards of conduct. A range of policies and procedures are in place to promote good behaviour and appropriate conduct. These are:
Supporting Pupils to Succeed
We aim to include, not exclude, and we approach all challenging behaviour in a supportive and positive way. We recognise that such behaviour can sometimes be symptomatic of a real, deeper need for our support and understanding. All children can go through times of inappropriate behaviour, and we strive to never “give up” easily on a child as we recognise that each person has a unique contribution to make to school life and we want to support them to achieve this.
We will use behaviour data to assess patterns of challenging behaviour in pupils. Where patterns emerge we will systematically intervene, drawing up an action plan with the child, parent and teacher. The Deputy Principal has overall responsibility for sharing data with class teachers and analysing the data. It is class teacher’s parent’s and the child’s responsibility to ensure the action plan is followed.
No exclusion will be initiated without first attempting other strategies or, in the case of a serious single incident, a proper investigation.
Reasons for exclusion:
- Serious breach of the school’s rules or policies;
- Serious risk of harm to the education or welfare of the pupil or others in the school.
This can either be a very serious incident or the repetition of serious incidents.
Any exclusion will be at the decision of the Principal, usually in consultation with other members of the senior leadership team (particularly if they were involved in investigating the incident).
Types of Exclusion
Internal Suspension is when a pupil is excluded from the rest of the school and must work away from their class for a fixed amount of time. This will be in a different classroom.
An internal suspension is a discretionary measure, where a pupil’s behaviour is escalating and more serious measures need to be taken but there are not yet grounds for an external / fixed-term suspension. Typically, a child receiving a consequence of this level should be receiving additional support for their behaviour, intended to help them to avoid their behaviour escalating to a point where a fixed term exclusion is necessary (examples: behaviour chart to address specific behaviours causing a problem; support from the learning mentor etc.)
Temporary / Fixed-Term Suspension
A temporary / fixed term suspension is when a child is excluded from school and must remain home for a fixed amount of time. This should be for the shortest time necessary to ensure minimal disruption to the child’s education, whilst mindful of the seriousness of the breach of policy.
A permanent exclusion is when a child is permanently excluded from school and not allowed to return. This is a very serious decision and the Headteacher will consult with senior leaders and Chair of the Governing Body as soon as possible in such a case.
Reasons for Suspension
A decision to suspend/exclude a pupil, either internally, for a suspension or permanently is seen as a last resort by the school. The physical and emotional health of our children and staff is our primary concern, and we therefore accept, that in some serious situations, suspension/exclusion may be necessary, if all other strategies have been exhausted.
The decision to exclude will usually follow a range of strategies and be seen as a last resort, or it will be in response to a very serious breach of school rules and policies or a disciplinary offence such as:
- Serious actual or threatened violence against another pupil or a member of staff;
- Possession or use of an illegal drug on school premises;
- Persistent bullying;
- Persistent prejudice based harassment or hatred based acts
Suspension/exclusion may be the result of persistently poor behaviour or a serious single incident.
Persistent or cumulative problems internal and temporary suspension may be used in response to a persistent poor behaviour which breaches school rules and policies. In the most serious cases where the problem persists and there is no improvement a permanent exclusion may be necessary.
These would be imposed only when the school had already offered and implemented a range of support and management strategies. These could be joint action plans with parents, child and school, behaviour intervention with the Behaviour Lead, target setting, home/school communication book etc.
The length of a suspension will depend upon a number of factors, such as the severity of the incident, and the likely impact on the child’s learning and ability to succeed on returning to school. Such decisions will be made in the best interests of the child, whilst also mindful of the need to maintain order and reinforce the rules and expectations of the school in a clear and consistent way.
Single incident Internal and suspension may be used in response to a very serious breach of school rules and policies or a disciplinary offence. In the most serious cases where the problem persists and there is no improvement a permanent exclusion may be necessary.
In such cases the Principal or a designated senior leader will investigate the incident and consider all evidence to support the allegation, taking account of the school’s policies. The pupil will be encouraged to give his/her version of events and the Principal will check whether the incident may have been provoked, for example by bullying or racial harassment.
Our Regional Director, Adam Browne, will be informed of all exclusions.
The decision to suspend
If the Principal decides to suspend/exclude a pupil, they will:
- ensure that there is sufficient recorded evidence to support the decision;
- explain the decision to the pupil if the pupil is in the state of mind to listen to the decision
- contact the parents, explain the decision and ask that the child be collected;
- send a letter to the parents confirming the reasons for the exclusion, whether it is a permanent or temporary exclusion;
- the length of the exclusion and any terms or conditions agreed for the pupil’s return;
- in cases of more than a day’s exclusion, ensure that appropriate work is set and that arrangements are in place for it to be marked;
- plan how to address the pupil’s needs and integration back into their class on his/her return;
- plan a meeting with parents and pupil on his/her return to be conducted by a suitable senior member of staff.
A suspension or exclusion will not be enforced if doing so may put the safety of the pupil at risk. In cases where parents will not comply by, for example, refusing to collect the child, the child’s welfare is the priority. In this situation, depending on the reason for suspension/exclusion, the school may consider an internal exclusion until the end of the day, implementing the original exclusion decision from the time the child is collected from school, or, in more severe circumstances the school may contact Social Services and/or the Police to safely take the pupil off site.
After a suspension the pupil and parent will be requested to attend a reintegration meeting with a senior member of staff. At this meeting the behaviour leading to exclusion will be discussed and targets will be set for improvement. Support around behaviour will be also be discussed. The meeting will be recorded on the school re-integration form and a copy retained by the parent, child and school.
When a pupil is suspended for more than one day, work should be set by the school within a reasonable time-scale and this should be returned to the school when the suspension is over. If a child is suspended at the end of a school day, then it may not be possible to arrange for work to be set until the following morning. A pupil can be suspended for up to 10 continuous days on a fixed term basis. On the 6 continuous day, the school is responsible for providing education for the pupil, which could be at another local school, the pupil referral unit or by providing home education.