The School Code
These rules have been drawn up and agreed by the Governors, staff and School Council of La Retraite School. They should be read in conjunction with the Six Golden Rules. They cover the main areas of:
- Ensuring a good climate for learning at the school;
- Keeping students safe;
- Ensuring the smooth running of the school.
Behaviour for Learning
- The most beneficial and pleasant learning environment is one where there is mutual respect. This is achieved through good manners and courtesy.
- Students will follow a member of staff’s instructions immediately and at all times. Students should not interrupt and should address members of staff by their names. Rudeness or aggressive behaviour towards staff is not accepted.
- Students must co-operate through lessons in order to benefit fully from the teaching on offer and to ensure a high level of success in their work. Students must bring the necessary books and equipment to lessons, using lockers only at the following times: before morning registration, at break time and for the first and last five minutes of lunch.
- Students must be on time for all lessons and for the school day. If they miss any part of their learning time, they are putting at risk the learning of themselves and of others.
- In the classroom and around the school, a member of staff’s word is final. If there is a problem which needs to be sorted out, the matter may be mentioned politely to the member of staff after the lesson is over, or away from a public situation. Or else, the matter may be mentioned later to the Year Learning Co-ordinator or Deputy Head in charge of Key Stage. In this way, confrontation will be avoided and student and member of staff will find it possible to listen to one another.
Keeping Students Safe
- The possession of an offensive weapon, fighting or attending an affray are all expressly forbidden. These actions will incur severe penalties. The possession of an offensive weapon, or what the head teacher considers to be an offensive weapon, will usually incur permanent exclusion. The claim that the weapon is for defensive purposes is not acceptable.
- Having matches, lighters or fireworks in school is forbidden, as are items of electrical equipment. Being with another student who is known to have these items is also considered very serious. Every member of the school community is responsible for avoiding the risk of fire in the school. Tampering with fire safety equipment including falsely setting off the alarm is expressly forbidden.
- The possession of cigarettes, alcohol and drugs of any sort is expressly forbidden. Students who bring any of these substances into school or who are with girls who have any of these substances will be jeopardising their place at La Retraite. The supply or use of illegal drugs will result in permanent exclusion. Being with another student who has these substances and not reporting this to a teacher is treated very seriously indeed.
- Students must never miss a lesson or any part of a lesson without written permission from a teacher. This is to safeguard students as much as to ensure that they do not miss work. Teachers are responsible for the health and safety of children in their care during any given lesson.
- During break and lunch times, no-one will leave the school grounds without written permission for any reason whatsoever, however briefly.
- Any student arriving late for school or leaving early for an authorised appointment must sign in/out at Reception.
- Telling lies or seeking to deceive staff is regarded very seriously as it can impede an investigation where students’ health and safety are at risk.
- Mobile phones, personal stereos or radios, MP3 players or digital cameras of any sort can present personal safety hazards of various kinds and are strictly not allowed in school. Any such article must be handed in at Reception on arrival at school. If possession of any of these items is discovered, whether by spot-checks or in any other way, the item will be confiscated and not returned until the end of the full term, unless a parent/carer makes an express appointment to recover the article. This will be the case, whoever the article belongs to. Any refusal to hand over such an item will be regarded as refusal of the authority of the school. A letter will not suffice to recover the object. The school takes no responsibility for the safe keeping of confiscated items.
- ICT and other technologies present increasing hazards in the 21st century. Under no circumstances may a student use a chatroom or any other unsuitable web-site. Any use of technology to cause another person hurt or distress, or to bring the school into disrepute, is treated very seriously indeed.
La Retraite has an excellent reputation. It is important that every member of the school community endeavours to maintain that high standard. For this reason, uniform is to be worn to a high standard outside the school as well as inside it.
More seriously, bad or unlawful behaviour outside the school is regarded in the same way as bad or unlawful behaviour inside the school. Students should not do anything which brings the school into disrepute. Deliberately using force against another and the possession or use of what the Headteacher would consider to be an offensive weapon can incur the most severe penalties.
Bullying of any sort is regarded with the utmost seriousness. Bullying can consist of various activities designed to hurt or to render uncomfortable another:
- Physical action against another student;
- Unkind words, rumour-mongering or gossiping behind her back;
- Cyber-bullying, using the internet, texting or some other form of hurtful material;
- Laughing at another, or making fun or her;
- Even, being present while such actions are happening and doing nothing to report such difficulty.
It is of the first importance that if any student either suffers bullying herself or sees it happening to someone else, that this is reported to a teacher or to another adult in the school.
Students should behave with kindness and consideration at all times – within the school, as well astravelling to and from the school. In this way, a pleasant atmosphere will be fostered, which makes La Retraite a happy place to be.
No student should ever ‘take the law into her own hands’. Adults in the school community are responsible for the good order of the school and any infringement of this should be reported to a teacher, the Year Learning Co-ordinator, the deputy head or any responsible adult. Under no circumstances may a student correct or discipline another student herself, even in the apparent interests of justice. Neither may she deliver messages for others, pass on threats or otherwise involve herself in a dispute.
Students are expected to come to school prepared for work. This means being properly equipped for work and being correctly dressed for school. Summer uniform may be worn during the summer term and during the first half of the autumn term only. It is compulsory for Years 7 and 8.
Students are expected to observe the rule that no jewellery is allowed except a wrist watch. If this rule is infringed, the jewellery may be confiscated until the end of the full term.
Students may not wear make-up, nail varnish, or false nails. Cosmetic and hair preparation products are not allowed in school.
Any stealing is forbidden and is treated very seriously.
The buying and selling of goods (unless authorised by the Headteacher for strictly bonafide charity events) is strictly forbidden.
Members of the school community respect the property of the school and that of others. Consequently, theft is taken very seriously. Students should take care of their own property which should be marked with their name. Governors and staff are not responsible for loss of property. Students should neither borrow nor lend items, clothes, money or lunch tokens from others.
Members of the school community will care for the environment by putting litter in a bin and taking care of the furnishings and fittings and especially of all ICT equipment. As a Christian community, we are considerate of all who work and study here. We want to make La Retraite a school where all of the premises staff, including the cleaners and grounds' staff, are respected and where we do not make unnecessary work for them.
These may be any of the following, at the discretion of the Headteacher and senior staff:
- Detention after school or at lunchtime. (It is likely that the sanction for any lesson missed will be equal time in detention).
- Confiscation of items which are not permitted.
- Loss of lunchtimes as free time over a longer period.
- Saturday or holiday time detention.
- Calling in parents for an interview.
- Internal exclusion from lessons and normal social life within school.
- A short external exclusion.
- A longer external exclusion.
- Permanent exclusion.
If a student contravenes the code in any way, she will accept her punishment with dignity and not challenge the authority of the school. Parents are asked to support the school in this.