Update: School Bullying – Education 8th October, 2014

8th October 2014 - Bernard Durkan TD

Uimhir:35

Ceist Pharlaiminte

Chun an Aire Oideachais agus Eolaíoctha
To the Minister for Education and Science

To ask the Minister for Education and Skills the extent to which school
bullying remains an issue throughout the country; the extent to which her
Department continues to receive up to date reports of any such incidents on a
regular basis; if any particular schools appear to feature in any such reports
on a more regular basis than the national average; if any particular action
will be taken or is pending in respect of such locations; the measures put in
place to facilitate early detection and follow up on foot of reports; and if
she will make a statement on the matter.
– Bernard J. Durkan.

For ORAL answer on Wednesday, 8th October, 2014.
Reference Number: 37917/14

Freagra

Minister Jan O’Sullivan

There is no requirement on schools to report bullying incidents to my
Department.

The School Principal under the anti-bullying procedures for all schools is
required to report regularly to the Board of Management on the overall number
of bullying cases and provide confirmation that these are being dealt with in
accordance with the procedures.

The Board is required to undertake an annual review and publish the schools
anti-bullying policy on their website.

My Department’s Inspectorate is placing a stronger focus on the actions schools
take to create a positive school culture and to prevent and tackle bullying.
For example, parent and student questionnaires issued as part of whole school
evaluations,  include, since January 2014, additional questions to get a
clearer picture of how the school deals with bullying.  Furthermore, the
Inspectorate’s plan for the current school year provides for a focussed
evaluation to be conducted in a sample of schools to examine the school’s work
to create and sustain safe and healthy environments.

This work will give a better overview on how well the procedures are being
implemented at school level.

This is also an issue that will need to be considered in the context of
developing a Parent and Students Charter that each will be obliged to have. An
important aspect of the Charter will be how parents receive information and
feedback on the operation of school policies and how parents concerns are
addressed.

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