17 March 2022

Anti-bullying policy endorsed by committee

Members of the Education and Children’s Services Committee approved the latest version of an anti-bullying policy which will apply to all Aberdeenshire schools.

The Anti-Bullying Policy and Guidance: Bullying Prevention and Management for Educational Establishments 2022 sets out the procedure schools and educational establishments that are run by Aberdeenshire Council should follow to prevent bullying and manage any instances that arise.

The policy and guidance have been updated and amended in line with national guidelines and reference is now made to Transgender related bullying in accordance with National Guidance on Supporting Transgender Young People in Scottish schools 2021. It also takes into account children and young people’s rights as set out in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Pupils, staff and parents and carers were all consulted on the policy and guidance. This feedback was shared with the senior leadership team within Education and Children’s Services.

All schools must establish and publish an anti-bullying policy which reflects six key areas in providing a robust and appropriate response to the prevention and management of bullying. The six steps include a scope of the policy, a definition of what constitutes bullying, prevention, the communication regarding prevention and responding to incidents, responding to incidents, and how instances should be monitored and reported.

Aberdeenshire Council’s Director of Education and Children’s Services Laurence Findlay said: “Parents and carers should be reassured we will do everything we can to root out bullying in Aberdeenshire’s schools. This policy and guidance will help make clear unacceptable behaviour so that a consistent approach can be taken across all schools. If any parents and carers are aware of bullying taking place in our schools, then they should raise it with a teacher immediately so it can be dealt with.”

Vincent Docherty, Aberdeenshire Council’s Head of Education, added: “One of our key aims is to help empower children and young people. They need a safe, nurturing, and friendly environment free from bullying in order to feel empowered. The policy and guidance will further embed the ethos of children and young people having rights and responsibilities.”

To read the report in full please visit https://committees.aberdeenshire.gov.uk/committees.aspx?commid=494&meetid=19871

You can also watch a webcast of the Education and Children’s Services Committee by visiting https://aberdeenshire.public-i.tv/core/portal/webcasts