Behavior policy

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This page contains material copyrighted by YK Pao School. This page shall not be considered to be in the public domain. The includer believes that inclusion of such material is necessary or otherwise helpful. This document describes an official document of the school. Adaptations may have been made to maintain consistency with the style of this wiki. The content shall be made to describe that of the official document (and thus should probably be at least semi-protected), but as usual, no guarantee of validity is made.

Purpose statement

YK Pao High School seeks to encourage and uphold the highest standards of behaviour from all our students. However, we also recognise that an important part of adolescence is making mistakes and learning from them. So, we want our school to be a compassionate community of learners where both staff and students act with integrity and take responsibility for our actions. We firmly believe that the best way to encourage high standards of behaviour is for there to be a positive culture of mutual respect between teachers and students; a culture which recognises, affirms and encourages good and responsible behaviour, a culture where rewards, praise and affirmation greatly outnumber sanctions and a culture of consistency and clarity where students understand the consequences of their actions.

Aims

This policy aims to:

  • Provide a consistent approach to behaviour management
  • Outline how pupils are expected to behave
  • Define what we consider to be unacceptable behaviour
  • Summarise the roles and responsibilities of different people in the school community with regards to behaviour management
  • Outline our system of rewards and sanctions

Approach

YK Pao High School is a place of learning, and we see this in the broadest sense. Of course, students have the opportunity to learn in the classroom, but alongside that, they also have the chance to learn about themselves and others in every aspect of their experience at school. As such, we perceive the mistakes or poor decisions that students make as opportunities to learn about themselves in order to improve, grow and, ultimately, thrive. So, mistakes and poor decisions are viewed not solely as poor behaviour that needs to be sanctioned but also as "teachable moments" which students can learn from.

Dealing with instances of indiscipline

It is most important that all staff support one another by the consistency of their approach to disciplinary issues. A successful and experienced teacher will have few disciplinary issues: her/his standards and expectations will be known and pupils will respond. Pupils will accept the fairness of punishment from such teachers. Our aim should always be that a positive, civilised atmosphere prevails in which all members of the school community—staff and students—treat each other with courtesy and mutual respect.

Nevertheless, all teachers, however experienced, will from time to time encounter disciplinary problems with individuals or groups of pupils. On such occasions, the teacher concerned should not hesitate to seek advice and support. The relevant House Tutor, House Master, or Head of Department are obvious first points of reference, but other colleagues dealing with the same pupil or group will probably also be able to offer helpful pointers. In addition, all senior staff are always willing to offer help and advice on an informal basis.

Discipline should always have a positive outcome. It should never take the form of humiliation. Demeaning punishments, or public criticisms of pupils, are never acceptable. Collective punishment of an entire group for what is the result of behaviour by only a few members of that group is never acceptable, so class detentions should not be conducted.

Staff are expected to take a leading and consistent role in ensuring a high standard of appearance among the pupils. Pupils should not enter or leave your lesson improperly dressed.

Sometimes teachers can be anxious that they may be viewed as lacking ability if they bring a disciplinary problem to the attention of other, more senior colleagues. This is absolutely not the case. Raising such issues with other colleagues in order to seek advice and assistance is only ever viewed as a sign of strong, considered, professional conduct. Conversely, to conceal a problem one may be experiencing with a particular pupil or group of pupils can contribute to the growth of wider behavioural issues and will result in some damage to the educational experience of pupils; it is therefore lacking in professionalism to conceal such issues. YKPS operates a "no blame" culture for staff in which we are all expected to be honest and upfront when experiencing difficulties or making mistakes. In return, when this happens we should receive support, practical advice and the opportunity to reflect, in a non-confrontational way, on how to learn from the situation.

Misbehaviour

Misbehaviour is broken down into four categories: a) minor infractions; b) academic indiscipline; c) major infractions and d) severe infractions. There are defined in the following terms:

Minor infractions

In the case of poor student decisions that affect the student only and create limited long term damage to their standing or education and are not repetitive, such as:

  • Isolated tardiness
  • Isolated missed work
  • Room violation (e.g. failing room inspection, moving furniture without asking, not respecting lights out)
  • Uniform violation
  • Inappropriate public display of affection (PDA) (e.g. sitting in another student's lap)
  • General misconduct (e.g. shouting, roughhousing)
  • Having unauthorised packages sent to school including food and drinks
  • Other conduct falling generally within the description above

These incidents will be most likely be dealt with directly by the teacher present by simply requesting compliance rather than a specific sanction and will not require a referral to the HM or SLO.

Academic indiscipline

In the case of poor student decisions relating to their actions in their work (excluding poor classroom behaviour which interrupts the learning of others, which is dealt with under major infractions), such as:

  • Producing work on more than one occasion which is late or clearly inadequate given that pupil's abilities and the standards required
  • Failing to complete required work after a prior warning
  • Failing to respond to requests to contact a teacher via email
  • Level 1 Academic Malpractice

These incidents are primarily the responsibility of the class teacher and they should follow the "Incomplete Homework Policy" issued by the Academic Affairs Office. If a class teacher is unable to resolve the situation themselves, they should seek the support of their Head of Department.

Major infractions

In the case of poor student decisions that affect other students and their ability to experience success at school and/or have longer term impact on a student's education or standing, which may or may not be repetitive, such as:

  • Repeated (three or more) minor infractions
  • Failure to follow direct instructions
  • Intentional rudeness to staff
  • Inappropriate/undirected use of technology in class, as defined by the teacher
  • Disruption of classes that impact the learning of other students
  • Any form of bullying (see further definitions below)
  • Out of bounds both on campus and off campus
  • Intentionally skipping class
  • Possession of hazardous equipment in the dorms particularly any equipment which poses a fire risk
  • Level 2 & 3 Academic Malpractice

Any occurrence of these incidents will all be recorded on the student's in-school behaviour record and will require immediate referral to the Housemaster/Mistress, who will also notify the Student Life Office or the Academic Affairs Office in the case of academic dishonesty/malpractice. All such incidents will be investigated and students will complete a behaviour reflection sheet which will also be kept on file. Any such incident is likely to be disclosed in an external school or university application.

Severe infractions

In the case of the following student decisions that affect other students and their ability to experience success at school and/or have longer term impact on a student's education or standing, which may or may not be repetitive and are in some cases illegal, such as:

  • Level 4 Academic Malpractice
  • Sexual relations on campus or during a school organised event including trips
  • Sexual assault, which is any non-consensual sexual behaviour
  • Using technology illegally
  • Vandalism
  • Theft
  • Fighting
  • Racist, sexist, homophobic, transphobic or discriminatory behaviour

Possession of and/or use of any prohibited items. These are:

  • Knives or weapons
  • Alcohol
  • Illegal drugs
  • Stolen items
  • Tobacco products including vaping equipment
  • Fireworks
  • Pornographic images
  • Any article a staff member reasonably suspects has been, or is likely to be, used to commit an offence, or to cause personal injury to, or damage to the property of, any person (including the pupil)

Any occurrence of these incidents will be recorded on the student's in-school behaviour record and will require immediate referral to the Student Life Office, who will notify the Principal's Office, as well as possible involvement of the local police department. All such incidents will be investigated and students will complete a behaviour reflection sheet which will also be kept on file. Any such incident is likely to be disclosed in an external school or university application.

Bullying

Bullying is defined as the repetitive, intentional harming of one person or group by another person or group, particularly where the relationship involves an imbalance of power.

Bullying is, therefore:

  • Deliberately hurtful
  • Repeated, often over a period of time
  • Difficult to defend against

Bullying can include:

  • Emotional: Being unfriendly, excluding, tormenting
  • Physical: Hitting, kicking, pushing, taking another's belongings, any use of violence
  • Racial: Racial taunts, graffiti, gestures
  • Sexual: Explicit sexual remarks, display of sexual material, sexual gestures, unwanted physical attention, comments about sexual reputation or performance, or inappropriate touching
  • Direct or indirect verbal: Name-calling, sarcasm, spreading rumours, teasing
  • Cyber-bullying: Bullying that takes place online, such as through social networking sites, messaging apps or gaming sites

Incidents of suspected bullying must be reported to Housemaster/mistress and to the Student Life Office. As part of this process there may be consequences for the students involved which would fall in line with our sanction procedures outlined below. For all students involved in bullying, both perpetrators and victims, we offer counselling support thought the Student Life Office as well as reflective support from the relevant housemaster/mistress and house tutor. The prevention of bullying at school is addressed in part through our Character Education Program. Training on how to prevent bullying and how bullying can be reported and resolved is conducted in whole staff faculty meetings.

Roles and responsibilities

The Senior Management Committee (SMC)

The SMC is responsible for reviewing and approving the school's guiding statements. The SMC will also review this behaviour policy in conjunction with the Principal and monitor the policy's effectiveness, holding the Principal to account for its implementation.

The Principal

The Principal will ensure that the school environment encourages positive behaviour and that staff deal effectively with poor behaviour, and will monitor how staff implement this policy to ensure rewards and sanctions are applied consistently.

Staff

Teaching and support staff are responsible for setting the tone and context for positive behaviour within the school.

In the classroom, they will:

  • Create and maintain a stimulating environment that encourages pupils to be engaged
  • Display the pupil code of conduct or their own classroom rules
  • Develop a positive relationship with pupils, which may include:
  • Greeting pupils in the morning/at the start of lessons
  • Establishing clear routines
  • Communicating expectations of behaviour in ways other than verbally
  • Highlighting and promoting good behaviour
  • Concluding the day positively and starting the next day afresh
  • Having a plan for dealing with low-level disruption
  • Using positive reinforcement

Staff are responsible for:

  • Implementing the behaviour policy consistently
  • Modelling positive behaviour
  • Providing a personalised approach to the specific behavioural needs of particular pupils
  • Recording behaviour incidents

The senior leadership team will support staff in responding to behaviour incidents.

Parents

Parents are expected to:

  • Support their child in adhering to the behaviour policy
  • Inform the school of any changes in circumstances that may affect their child's behaviour
  • Discuss any behavioural concerns with the class teacher promptly
  • Model behaviour which is in line with the YKPS guiding statements and standards outlined in this document

Students

Students are expected to:

  • Approach school with a positive attitude
  • Show kindness and respect to all members of the community
  • In class, make it possible for all pupils to learn
  • Treat the school buildings and school property with respect
  • Wear the correct uniform at all times
  • Accept sanctions when given
  • Refrain from behaving in a way that brings the school into disrepute, including when outside school

Off-campus and online behavior

All sections of this policy continue to apply when a student is on a school organised off-campus trip or is still in school uniform. They also apply for a student's online actions especially those on public forums such as WeChat, QQ, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat etc. The school does not take any responsibility for the actions of a student when not under the direct supervision of the school, however, the school reserves the right to implement sanctions as outlined in this document if an incident does come to light.

Rewards and sanctions

Rewards

Positive behaviour will be rewarded with:

  • Praise
  • Letters or phone calls home to parents
  • Positive references and recommendation letters
  • Student leadership responsibilities
  • Credits towards the YK Pao Challenge
  • Academic recognition through the Founders' and Principal's Awards

Sanctions

All sanctions must be logged in PowerSchool to keep clear record of student misbehaviour. Sanctions for behaviours listed above in order of severity:

  • In-House Detention: Student is required to be in a designated location in the boarding house from 9 pm until 10 pm. This would be issued for incidents of persistent minor infractions reported to the HM. Accumulation of three of these detentions within a semester results in a Principal's Detention.
  • Lunch Time Detention (new for August 2019): Student is required to be in a designated location in the academic building for the lunch period and fl extime. This consequence, which should be given by the class teacher or Head of Department, is primarily issued for incidents of academic indiscipline. Accumulation of three of these detentions within a semester results in a Principal's Detention.
  • Principal's Detention: issued for incidents of technology misuse in class, disruption of classes and other major infractions. Accumulation of three of these detentions within the academic year results in an in-school suspension.
  • In-school Suspension: issued for major infractions and those that go above those listed for a Principal's Detention. Accumulation of three of these detentions within the academic year results in an external suspension and the issuance of a behaviour contract.
  • External Suspension: issued for severe infractions or for students who continually show they are unable to follow rules and directions stated above.
  • Behaviour Contract: Issued for severe infractions or for students who continually show they are unable to follow rules and directions stated above. This will be an understanding between the student, the parents, and the school that if the student cannot follow rules after the contract is agreed upon more serious sanctions will follow (e.g. having boarding status revoked, losing afternoon activity participation privileges, expulsion).
  • Exclusion from the Residential Program and/or the CCA Program: Issued for students who repeatedly fail to adhere to the terms of a behaviour contract, and can be for a period set by the Student Life and Principal's Office.
  • Expulsion: Issued for students who have shown they are not in a position to abide by the school's behavioural or academic expectations.

Reporting Disciplinary Action to Universities

It is in a student's and YK Pao School's best interest to approach the university application process in an honest and ethical manner. Establishing and maintaining YK Pao School's reputation for excellence and integrity among universities is of critical importance. Therefore, YK Pao School reserves the right to notify other schools, colleges and universities (to which a student is applying, has been admitted or is matriculating) of a student's suspension or other serious discipline issue(s) stemming from academic or behavioural misconduct, past or present. As a member of the National Association for College Admission Counselling (NACAC), YK Pao School abides by NACAC's Statement of Principles of Good Practice in providing to universities information about our Secondary School students that is relevant to the admissions process. The Principal will make any decision as to whether a university is informed of disciplinary incidents.


All potential consequences of infractions are at the final discretion of the school's Executive Head.