Sacred Heart Catholic School
Code of Conduct (March 2017)
1.0 OUR VISION
In partnership with home and parish, Sacred Heart Catholic School is committed to celebrating each student's unique potential, fostering individual growth and creating authentic relationships which support spiritual, academic, emotional, physical and social development.
Sacred Heart Catholic School is committed to ensuring a caring and safe community and acknowledges the importance of promoting and supporting appropriate and positive student behaviours which reflect Catholic Virtues. As followers of Jesus Christ, all students, staff members, parents/guardians and community members have a shared responsibility to create communities of belonging that are safe, sustainable, inclusive, respectful and healthy.
3.0 PROMOTING POSITIVE BEHAVIOUR
Students share with teachers, parents, and parish the responsibility of maintaining the special spirit and character of the Catholic school within our community. This environment depends upon the cooperation and commitment of all involved.
As a community we treat others with dignity, respect, equity, forgiveness and compassion through various actions both directly and indirectly:
- helping another student in need
- including others who are left out
- challenging "by-stander" behaviours
- expressing concern and care when someone isn't feeling top-notch
- Be aware of feelings and perspective of others.
3.1 STUDENTS HAVE THE RESPONSIBILITY to fulfill the Ontario Catholic Graduate Expectations:
- A discerning believer formed in the Catholic Faith community who celebrates the signs and sacred mystery of God's presence through word, sacrament, prayer, forgiveness, reflection and moral living.
- An effective communicator who speaks, writes and listens honestly and sensitively, responding critically in light of gospel values.
- A reflective, creative and holistic thinker who solves problems and makes responsible decisions with an informed moral conscience for the common good.
- A self-directed, responsible, lifelong learner who develops and demonstrates their God-given potential.
- A collaborative contributor who finds meaning, dignity and vocation in work which respects the rights of all and contributes to the common good.
- A caring family member who attends to family, school, parish, and the wider community. A responsible citizen who gives witness to Catholic social teaching by promoting peace, justice and the sacredness of human life.
3.2 STUDENTS HAVE THE RIGHT:
-to be treated with respect and dignity. In return, they must demonstrate respect for themselves, for others and for the responsibilities of citizenship through acceptable behaviour. Respect and responsibility are demonstrated when a student:
-comes to school prepared, on time and ready to learn;
-shows respect for themselves, for others and for those in authority;
-refrains from bringing anything to school that may compromise the safety of others;
-follows the established rules, policies and local codes of conduct and takes responsibility for his or her own action
4.0 SAFETY AND PROMOTING POSITIVE, INCLUSIVE, FAITH FILLED CULTURE OF BELONGING
4.1 CARING AND SAFE SCHOOLS
Sacred Heart Catholic School community is dedicated to working with home, school and parish to meet the needs of all students. We provide each student with the opportunity to develop to his/her full potential within the Catholic community. Children have unique strengths and needs. Our goal is to celebrate the strengths of the students and to nurture their needs in an empowering Catholic environment.
4.2 PROGRESSIVE DISCIPLINE
Progressive Discipline is a step-by-step process of supporting positive behaviours and responding to and resolving a wide range of infractions and conflicts with appropriate interventions and consequences. It is a whole school approach that helps to facilitate the renewal of relationships and to ensure new beginnings for students within a nurturing environment. It considers the developmental needs of all students and provides opportunities for students to learn and grow. Progressive discipline exists at all times for all students and includes classroom management strategies and school wide programs that teach and reinforce positive social skills, provide support for students, promotes virtue formation and fosters Catholic values.
4.3 ANTI-BULLYING INITIATIVE
The Ministry of Education defines bullying as: "a form of repeated, persistent and aggressive behaviour that is directed at an individual or individuals that is intended to cause (or should be known to cause) fear and distress and/or harm to another person's body, feelings, self-esteem, or reputation. Bullying occurs in a context where there is a real or perceived power imbalance." Students may attain or maintain power over others in the school through real or perceived differences.
Some areas of difference may be size, strength, age, intelligence, economic status, social status, solidarity of peer group, religion, ethnicity, disability, need for special education, sexual orientation, family circumstances, gender, and race.
Bullying is a dynamic of unhealthy interaction that can take many forms. It can be physical (e.g. hitting, pushing, tripping), verbal (e.g. name calling, mocking, or making sexist, racist, or homophobic comments), or social (e.g. excluding others from a group, spreading gossip, or rumours). It may also occur through the use of technology (e.g. spreading rumours, images, or hurtful comments through the use of e-mail, cellphones, text messaging, Internet websites, social networking forums or other technology).
4.4 IS IT BULLYING OR IS IT CONFLICT?
Bullying - is a persistent pattern of unwelcome or aggressive behaviour that often involves an imbalance of power, and/or the intention to harm or humiliate someone.
Conflict - on the other hand is generally a disagreement or difference in opinion between peers who typically have equal power in their relationships. It's usually an inevitable part of a group dynamic.
4.5 DEVELOPING RESILIENCY
Resilience (from the Latin resilire: "to bounce back") refers to the capacity to return to good mental health after challenging and difficult situations. Some researchers define it as the return to normal (or better than normal) functioning after exposure to a high-risk experience (such as abuse, trauma or the death of a parent) or environment (such as poverty, systemic discrimination or a "bad neighbourhood"). Resilience allows individuals to manage difficult episodes or chronic challenges in their lives.
Sacred Heart, works in collaboration with our parent partners and with community agencies to provide all of our students with the compassion and self-confidence to prevent occurrences of bullying/conflict and to equip students with the skills and knowledge to react when they or their friends are confronted by difficult situations. An exciting initiative includes training students to lead conflict resolution initiatives themselves. Research shows that more than one-half of the time, bullying stops within 10 seconds of a bystander stepping in to help.
4.6 RESTORATIVE JUSTICE
In some cases where interpersonal conflict is involved or perhaps there has been material damage, the school (and all parties involved) may agree with a Restorative Justice approach. Restorative Justice is a philosophy that supports the idea that when a wrong is committed in a community, the incident needs to be dealt with by those directly affected. This is so harm is acknowledged and all people involved can begin working toward rebuilding relationship and community integrity.
Restorative Justice would be at the discretion of the school's administration team. All parties must agree to the process in order for it to proceed.
4.7 SAFE SCHOOLS TEAM
Every school in Ontario is mandated to have a Safe Schools Team, comprised of staff members and students. The mandate of the team is to help in educating students about all forms of bullying and promoting healthy social interactions.
Research shows that students must be involved in the discussion surrounding bullying and that the best means of promoting positive interactions comes from peer to peer influence.
- DAILY SCHOOL PROCEDURES
5.1 ATTENDANCE / SAFE ARRIVAL
We believe Every School Day Counts! School attendance is the responsibility of school, parents and students. Students are more likely to succeed in school when they attend consistently. Successful schools work to engage students to ensure they attend every day.
If students need support with daily attendance at school, we want to work together with parents and students to support a plan for success.
5.2 SAFE WELCOME
Our School is equipped with a Safe Welcome System. School Doors and Gates will be locked at 9:15 am. Guests to the School will have to be buzzed in by a staff member to gain entry. This system will provide increased safety in our schools by ensuring all visitors use the same entry doors and sign in.
Periodically throughout the day staff may be attending to other duties and may not be readily available to answer the buzzer, please be patient as you wait until someone returns to the main office.
If you are picking up your child prior to the end of the day (Prior to 3:35) you will need to sign them out at the office, once you arrive we will call the classroom and have the student meet you in the main office.
If you are picking your child up at the end of the day (After 3:35) we respectfully ask you to wait outside the school gate until the end of the day bell rings. Students who are walkers and picked up by parents will exit through the parking lot gate.
5.3 ABSENCE FROM SCHOOL:
If your child is going to be late or absent, parents are requested to notify the school. We are concerned when a child is not present. If we have not heard from you, we will phone your home or place of business to clarify your child's absence. When reporting prolonged absences (3 days or more), parents are required to provide a note explaining the absence and give an anticipated date of return.
Once students arrive at school, they are expected to remain on school property. Students who walk to school may walk home for lunch, provided they have parental permission. This arrangement should be communicated to the classroom teacher at the beginning of the year. Any change to routines should be accompanied by a note.
It is the school's expectation that all students, other than walkers, shall remain at school for lunch unless they are being picked up by a parent.
Students require a note from the parents and/or a medical certificate in order to be excused from any classes (i.e., Physical Education).
When a child is ill the best place for him/her is usually at home. Parents should refrain from asking that students be allowed to remain inside at recess or the noon hour. In addition, most students who are well enough to be at school are well enough to benefit from fresh air and the exercise of outdoor activities.
There are cases when a child appears well before leaving for school, but becomes ill during the day. When this happens, we will contact you. In the case of certain contagious diseases, the Health Unit may be notified also.
In cases of injury at school, appropriate first-aid will be administered. If the injury appears more serious we will notify you or your emergency contact in order that your child may receive the necessary medical attention. In the event an injury is not discovered until the evening, please inform the school the next day.
5.5 STORAGE AND DISPENSING OF MEDICATION
School personnel are not authorized to dispense non-prescription medication, however, any student bringing medication to school must report it to the office and it must be stored to ensure safety.
On occasion we have been asked by a parent to ensure their child received a prescribed medication. Please be aware that in order to do so, we require the completion of a Medical Information and Consent Form signed by the parent and the physician prescribing the medication. All such medication should be clearly labeled, dated, and stored in the office.
5.6 ELECTRONIC COMMUNICATION AND MEDIA DEVICES
All electronic devices brought to school for emergency purposes when travelling to and from school must be powered off and put away in back packs. At the teachers' discretion, electronic devices may be used, under direct supervision, for purposeful academic tasks. Electronic devices are not allowed during unstructured times (recesses, hallways, bathrooms).
5.7 STUDENT DRESS CODE
In keeping with our responsibilities to maintain a positive self-image, including respect for modest, safe apparel, students are to ensure that clothing cover the shoulders (no tank/tube tops or string straps) and the midriff. Shorts and skirts should be a modest length (a hand-with above the knee) and clothing should not display inappropriate language or symbols. Flip-flops and shoes with wheels are not recommended due to their lack of stability and traction.
6.0 APPLICATION OF STANDARDS OF BEHAVIOUR
The school standards of behaviour apply to all members of the school community, including students, parents or guardians, volunteers, teachers, other staff members, superintendents, senior board staff, board personnel, trustees and others who may be present in schools or at school related events under the jurisdiction of the ALCDSB.
The standards of behaviour apply:
- On school property;
- While travelling on a school bus that is under contract to the School/Board;
- In-school sports activities;
- In off-site school-sponsored activities; or
- In circumstances where engaging in an activity could have a negative impact on the school climate.