As in all Together Trust services, Ashcroft believes that it is more important to create an atmosphere in which positive behaviour is encouraged through positive reinforcement, than to rely on the use of sanctions to try to modify unacceptable behaviour.
Behaviour management at Ashcroft is highly individualised, and is built around the principles of clear expectations and a consistent response.
Each student has a personalised behaviour management plan which aims to set appropriate limits, create a safe learning environment, support change and maintain placement stability by providing alternatives to previous strategies. For example, a reward scheme and a range of sanctions are in place and PROACT SCIPr-UK® is used to reduce physical interventions.
The School’s admissions process determines what strategies are agreed for managing behaviours. When preventative approaches are exhausted or ineffective, there is a planned response and alternative school resources are sought which may involve a change of room, group or staffing.
Anti-bullying and cyber safety
Bullying in any form is unacceptable. Learning the effects and consequences that bullying has on the lives of others are included in the curriculum, and the school participates in all government initiatives such as the anti-bullying week.
Students are monitored closely when using the internet and topics on anti bullying and anti cyber bullying are included in ICT and PSHE lessons. Staff are trained in areas such as CEOP (Child Exploitation and Online Protection) ambassador training, enabling effective monitoring and management of all aspects of cyber bullying.
Cyber bullying is a very real and serious issue, and should it arise it will be dealt with following our incident management procedures. We ask parents and carers to assist the school in reducing occurrences of cyber bullying by regularly checking social networking sites which are not accessible in school. We do not allow mobile phones in school as social networking sites are also available via mobile networks, and we will work with parents to inform our young people of the dangers and effects of cyber bullying and to discourage its practice.
Our policy on bullying and cyber bullying is available from the school office on request.
Incident management and physical intervention
All staff undergo PROACT SCIPr-UK® training which focuses upon de-escalation techniques. It does incorporate some physical intervention which can be used, however this is employed on rare occasions and only in exceptional circumstances.
Management of students at risk of exclusion
Fixed term exclusions are only used as part of a planned intervention for the shortest time necessary. It is part of Ashcroft School’s behaviour management plan to maintain discipline, good conduct and an orderly and safe learning environment.
The purpose of exclusion is to help provide boundaries and consequences to ensure the safety of those who use the school and to safeguard the education and welfare of all. We follow relevant guidance from the DfE (Department for Education) and other agencies.
Permanent exclusions are avoided if at all possible – if a placement is at risk then a review is held to try and retain and re-engage the young person. The local authority and parents/carers are informed at an early stage and are involved in the development of a re-engagement strategy or, as a last resort, a planned move. If permanent exclusion is inevitable then the review team will develop a transition plan to ensure the transfer is carefully managed. There is an appeal process to ensure needs and entitlements are considered.
All staff employed at Ashcroft School are required to complete a DBS Disclosure and are appointed through safe recruitment procedures. All staff receive training in child protection. This training is refreshed and updated at regular intervals.
Parents and carers should be aware that if staff suspect that a young person is at risk of harm, they have a duty to inform the relevant authority.
Health and safety
Staff receive training on key issues such as First Aid, Asthma Awareness, Epilepsy Awareness and the administration of medication. The school follows the Together Trust’s comprehensive Health and Safety policies and are guided by the Together Trust’ Health and Safety Officer. MIDAS training is provided for minibus drivers. Ashcroft School has its own fire management plan and fire drills take place once a term. Staff receive training on areas such as first aid, asthma awareness, epilepsy awareness and general safety such as fire regulations.
Equality and diversity
It is the policy of Ashcroft School that all students have full access to a broad and balanced curriculum, regardless of gender, class, ethnic origin, culture, first language, and nature or degree of disability. Activities are planned to maximise opportunities for each student, taking into account their individual background, interests and experiences. The school also operates an equal opportunities approach to the appointment of staff in keeping with Together Trust policies and procedures.
All schools collect, manage and update personal data about their students and we are a Data Controller for the purposes of the Data Protection Act 1998. We hold this personal data and use it to:
- Support teaching and learning
- Monitor and report on progress
- Provide appropriate pastoral care
- Assess how well the school is doing.
This information includes contact details, national curriculum assessment results, attendance information, characteristics such as ethnic group, special educational needs and any relevant medical information. We will not give information about our students to anyone outside the school without parental consent unless the law and our rules permit it. Please see the Together Trust Website’s ‘School Privacy Notice’ for more information on this. We are required by law to pass some of your information to the local authority (LA), and the Department for Education (DFE).
We will not give information about our students to anyone outside the school without parental consent unless the law and our rules permit it. Please visit our website for further details. We are required by law to pass some of your information to the local authority (LA), and the Department for Education (DFE).
Photography and media permissions
The school is careful how photographs and films of students are stored and used. Photographs are only used with the permission of parents and carers or where appropriate, social workers. Photographs or films that are used in publicity about the school or Together Trust are kept for new use for a maximum of three years.