STUDENT WELLBEING AND ENGAGEMENT POLICY

Purpose

The purpose of this policy is to ensure that all students and members of our school community understand:

(a)    our commitment to providing a safe and supportive learning environment for students

(b)    expectations for positive student behaviour

(c)     support available to students and families

(d)    our school’s policies and procedures for responding to inappropriate student behaviour.

Chum Creek Primary School is committed to providing a safe, secure and stimulating learning environment for all students.  We understand that students reach their full potential only when they are happy, healthy and safe, and that a positive school culture helps to engage students and support them in their learning.  Our school acknowledges that student wellbeing and student learning outcomes are closely linked.

The objective of this policy is to support our school to create and maintain a safe, supportive and inclusive school environment consistent with our school’s values.

Scope

This policy applies to all school activities, including camps and excursions.

Contents

1.       School profile

2.       School values, philosophy and vision

3.       Engagement strategies

4.       Identifying students in need of support

5.       Student rights and responsibilities

6.       Student behavioural expectations

7.       Engaging with families

8.       Evaluation

Policy

1.      School profile

Established in 1896, Chum Creek Primary School is a small rural school located in the Upper Yarra Valley. It is central to the Chum Creek community and currently caters for 63 students from Chum Creek, Healesville and surrounding areas. It has an excellent reputation for pastoral care, providing support for students and their families. The staff are committed to the welfare and development of students and foster a caring environment. Each student works and plays in a child-centred, developmentally appropriate learning environment that recognises, fosters and promotes the intellectual, social, emotional and physical development of each child.

Chum Creek Primary School provides an enriching, supportive and motivating learning environment for all students. It has a long tradition of inclusive education embracing diversity within our community. Students are immersed in a broad and differentiated curriculum. We offer a broad range of wellbeing programs to promote student engagement in learning, student empowerment and a sense of connectedness and purpose. We seek to help build self-confidence, self-esteem and resilience in order for our students to approach future life experiences, opportunities and challenges with self-assurance and energy.

In small schools it is important that the children be given opportunities to mix with other small schools so that a wider peer group can be developed.  The Wollombi Cluster actively encourages small schools to participate in combined camps, incursions, graduation ceremonies, sporting events and productions.  We encourage self-discipline and foster an understanding of each child, their unique family circumstances and interests. We encourage student participation in the school and the community, provide authentic student leadership opportunities, and promote student voice through school wide decision making.

 

2.      School values, philosophy and vision

Chum Creek practices the 3 R’s: Respect, Resilience and Ready To Learn.

Chum Creek’s vision is to provide high quality education and to empower prepare our students to become active, engaged, confident and responsible citizens of the local and global community.  The school aims to prepare students for a rapidly changing world in which creativity, collaboration, resourcefulness, connectedness to the world and adaptability are key features. 

The important values of integrity, respect, caring and responsibility (for self and others) are central to our school. With these core values we seek to create a sustainable school climate where excellence is promoted, enjoyment of school life is highly valued and there is a deep sense of community and of belonging. The school also values excellence, creativity, innovation and inclusiveness.

 

3.      Engagement strategies

Chum Creek Primary School will implement a whole-school behaviour management approach that is based on strong school values and Restorative practices. The key focus will be on prevention and early intervention strategies to promote engagement, positive behaviour and respectful relationships for all students in the school. We work collaboratively with students and parents/ carers to establish fair and respectful behaviour policies and practices, based on the school’s values, expected social competencies and positive peer relationships.

Student engagement, regular attendance and positive behaviours will be supported through the following relationship based whole-school and classroom practices:

·         defining and teaching school-wide and classroom expectations based on the school values of Care, Support, Respect, Integrity, and Responsibility.

·         establishing consistent, school-wide and classroom consequences for behaviour management based on restorative practices

·         establishing school-wide and classroom processes for early identification of students experiencing academic and/ or behaviour difficulty and non-attendance.

·         empowering students by creating multiple opportunities for them to take responsibility and be involved in decision-making

·         providing a physical environment conducive to positive behaviours and effective engagement in learning

·         maintaining high levels of student attendance and participation through articulating high expectations to all members of the community and adopting a consistent, rigorous approach to the monitoring and recording of student absences.

·        creating safe, supportive learning environments where all students experience success through active participation and engagement in purposeful learning

·        providing early identification of, and supportive intervention for, students at risk of non-attendance

·         high and consistent expectations of all staff, students and parents and carers

·         prioritise positive relationships between staff and students, recognising the fundamental role this plays in building and sustaining student wellbeing

·         creating a culture that is inclusive, engaging and supportive

·         welcoming all parents/carers and being responsive to them as partners in learning

·         analysing and being responsive to a range of school data such as attendance, Attitudes to School Survey, parent survey data, student management data and school level assessment data

·         deliver a broad curriculum including VET programs, VCE and VCAL to ensure that students are able to choose subjects and programs that are tailored to their interests, strengths and aspirations

·         teachers at Chum Creek Primary School use an [NAME] instructional framework to ensure an explicit, common and shared model of instruction to ensure that evidenced-based, high yield teaching practices are incorporated into all lessons

·         teachers at Chum Creek Primary School adopt a broad range of teaching and assessment approaches to effectively respond to the diverse learning styles, strengths and needs of our students and follow the standards set by the Victorian Institute of Teaching

·         our school’s Statement of Values are incorporated into our curriculum and promoted to students, staff and parents so that they are shared and celebrated as the foundation of our school community

·         carefully planned transition programs to support students moving into different stages of their schooling

·         positive behaviour and student achievement is acknowledged in the classroom, and formally in school assemblies and communication to parents

·         monitor student attendance and implement attendance improvement strategies at a whole-school, cohort and individual level

·         students have the opportunity to contribute to and provide feedback on decisions about school operations through the Student Representative Council and other forums including year group meetings and Peer Support Groups. Students are also encouraged to speak with their teachers, Year Level Coordinator, Assistant Principal and Principal whenever they have any questions or concerns.

·         create opportunities for cross—age connections amongst students through school plays, athletics, music programs and peer support programs

·         All students are welcome to self-refer to the Student Wellbeing Coordinator, School Nurse, School Chaplain, Year Group Leaders, Assistant Principal and Principal if they would like to discuss a particular issue or feel as though they may need support of any kind. We are proud to have an ‘open door’ policy where students and staff are partners in learning

·         we engage in school wide positive behaviour support with our staff and students, which includes programs such as:

o   Respectful Relationships

o   Safe Schools

·         programs, incursions and excursions developed to address issue specific behaviour (i.e. anger management programs)

·         opportunities for student inclusion (i.e. sports teams, clubs, recess and lunchtime activities)

·         buddy programs, peers support programs

Targeted

[This section should include more specific strategies, designed to address particular concerns in certain age groups or friendship circles.

The text below is included as a sample only:]

·         each class teacher is responsible for their class, monitoring the health and wellbeing of students in their class and acting as a point of contact for students who may need additional support

·         connect all Koorie students with a Koorie Engagement Support Officer

·         all students in Out of Home Care will have an Individual Learning Plan and a Student Support Group (SSG) and will be referred to Student Support Services for an Educational Needs Assessment

·         staff will apply a trauma-informed approach to working with students who have experienced trauma

Individual

Chum Creek Primary School implements a range of strategies that support and promote individual engagement. These can include:

·         building constructive relationships with students at risk or students who are vulnerable due to complex individual circumstances

·         meeting with student and their parent/carer to talk about how best to help the student engage with school

·         developing an Individual Learning Plan and/or a Behaviour Support Plan

·         considering if any environmental changes need to be made, for example changing the classroom set up

·         referring the student to:

o   school-based wellbeing supports

o   Student Support Services

o   Appropriate external supports such as council based youth and family services, other allied health professionals, headspace, child and adolescent mental health services or ChildFirst

o    Re-engagement programs such as Navigator

Where necessary the school will support the student’s family to engage by:

·         being responsive and sensitive  to changes in the student’s circumstances and health and wellbeing

·         collaborating, where appropriate and with the support of the student and their family, with any external allied health professionals, services or agencies that are supporting the student

·         monitoring individual student attendance and developing an Attendance Improvement Plans in collaboration with the student and their family

·         running regular Student Support Group meetings for all students:

o    with a disability

o   in Out of Home Care

o   and with other complex needs that require ongoing support and monitoring.

 

4.      Identifying students in need of support

Chum Creek Primary School is committed to providing the necessary support to ensure our students are supported intellectually, emotionally and socially. The Student Wellbeing team plays a significant role in developing and implementing strategies help identify students in need of support and enhance student wellbeing. Chum Creek Primary School will utilise the following information and tools to identify students in need of extra emotional, social or educational support:

·         personal, health and learning information gathered upon enrolment and while the student is enrolled

·         attendance records

·         academic performance

·         observations by school staff such as changes in engagement, behaviour,  self-care, social connectedness and motivation

·         attendance data

·         engagement with families

 

5.      Student rights and responsibilities

All members of our school community have a right to experience a safe and supportive school environment. We expect that all students, staff, parents and carers treat each other with respect and dignity. Our school’s Statement of Values highlights the rights and responsibilities of members of our community.

Students have the right to:

·         participate fully in their education

·         feel safe, secure and happy at school

·         learn in an environment free from bullying, harassment, violence, discrimination or intimidation

·         express their ideas, feelings and concerns.

Students have the responsibility to:

·         participate fully in their educational program

·         display positive behaviours that demonstrate respect for themselves, their peers, their teachers and members of the school community

·         respect the right of others to learn.

Students who may have a complaint or concern about something that has happened at school are encouraged to speak to their parents or carers and approach a trusted teacher or a member of the school leadership team.

 

6.      Student behavioural expectations and management

Behavioural expectations of students, staff and families are grounded in our school’s Statement of Values. Student bullying behaviour will be responded to consistently with Chum Creek Primary School’s Bullying policy.

When a student acts in breach of the behaviour standards of our school community, Chum Creek Primary School will institute a staged response, consistent with the Department’s Student Engagement and Inclusion Guidelines. and Behaviour policy. Where appropriate, parents will be informed about the inappropriate behaviour and the disciplinary action taken by teachers and other school staff.

Our school considers, explores and implement positive and non-punitive interventions to support student behaviour before considering disciplinary measures such as detention, withdrawal of privileges or withdrawal from class.

Disciplinary measures may be used as part of a staged response to inappropriate behaviour in combination with other engagement and support strategies to ensure that factors that may have contributed to the student’s behaviour are identified and addressed. Disciplinary measures at our school will be applied fairly and consistently. Students will always be provided with an opportunity to be heard.

Disciplinary measures that may be applied include:

·          warning  a student that their behaviour is inappropriate

·         teacher controlled consequences such as moving a student in a classroom or other reasonable and proportionate responses to misbehaviour

·         withdrawal of privileges

·         referral to the Year Level Coordinator

·         restorative practices

·         restitution

·         behaviour reviewssupport and intervention meetings

Suspension and, expulsion and restrictive interventions are measures of last resort and may only be used in particular situations consistent with Department policy, available at: http://www.education.vic.gov.au/

·         https://www2.education.vic.gov.au/pal/suspensions/policy

·         https://www2.education.vic.gov.au/pal/expulsions/policy

·         https://www2.education.vic.gov.au/pal/restraint-seclusion/policy

In line with Ministerial Order 1125, no student aged 8 or younger will be expelled without the approval of the Secretary of the Department of Education and Training.

The Principal of Chum Creek Primary School/principals/spag/participation/pages/engagement.aspx is responsible for ensuring all suspensions and expulsions are recorded on CASES21.

Corporal punishment is prohibited in our school and will not be used in any circumstance.

7.      Engaging with families

Chum Creek Primary School values the input of parents and carers, and we will strive to support families to engage in their child’s learning and build their capacity as active learners. We aim to be partners in learning with parents and carers in our school community.

We work hard to create successful partnerships with parents and carers by:

·         ensuring that all parents have access to our school policies and procedures, available on our school website

·         maintaining an open, respectful line of communication between parents and staff, supported by our Communicating with School Staff policy.

·         providing parent volunteer opportunities so that families can contribute to school activities

·         involving families with homework and other curriculum-related activities

·         involving families in school decision making

·         coordinating resources and services from the community for families

·         including families in Student Support Groups, and developing individual plans for students.

 

8.      Evaluation

Chum Creek Primary School will collect data each year to understand the frequency and types of wellbeing issues that are experienced by our students so that we can measure the success or otherwise of our school based strategies and identify emerging trends or needs.

Sources of data that will be assessed on an annual basis include:

·         student survey data

·         incidents data

·         school reports

·         parent survey

·         case management

·         CASES21, including attendance and absence data

·         SOCS

Chum Creek Primary School will also regularly monitor available data dashboards to ensure any wellbeing or engagement issues are acted upon in a timely manner and any intervention occurs as soon as possible. v

COMMUNICATION

This policy will be communicated to our school community in the following ways:

·         Available publicly on our school’s website

·         Included in staff induction processes

·         Included as annual reference in school newsletter

·         Made available in hard copy from school administration upon request

Further information and resources

[Include links where possible to your related policies including Statement of Values and School Philosophy, Bullying Prevention, Child Safe Standards, etc].

Review cycle

This policy was last updated on [insert date] and is scheduled for review in [month/year].POLICY REVIEW AND APPROVAL

Policy last reviewed in June 2021. Approved by

Principal

Next scheduled review date

June 2025