Addressing Bullying in Schools Act (Northern Ireland) 2016

Publication Date:January 01, 2016


Addressing Bullying in Schools Act (Northern Ireland) 2016

2016 CHAPTER 25

An Act to address bullying in grant-aided schools.

[12th May 2016]

BE IT ENACTED by being passed by the Northern Ireland Assembly and assented to by Her Majesty as follows:

S-1 Definition of “bullying”

1 Definition of “bullying”

(1) In this Act “bullying” includes (but is not limited to) the repeated use of—

(a) any verbal, written or electronic communication

(b) any other act, or

(c) any combination of those

by a pupil or a group of pupils against another pupil or group of pupils, with the intention of causing physical or emotional harm to that pupil or group of pupils.

(2) For the purposes of subsection (1), “act” includes omission.

S-2 Duty of Board of Governors to secure measures to prevent bullying

2 Duty of Board of Governors to secure measures to prevent bullying

(1) The Board of Governors of a grant-aided school must—

(a) ensure that policies designed to prevent bullying involving a registered pupil at the school are pu rsued at the school;

(b) determine the measures to be taken at the school (whether by the Board of Governors, the staff of the school or other persons) with a view to preventing bullying involving a registered pupil at the school—

(i) on the premises of the school during the school day;

(ii) while travelling to or from the school during the school term;

(iii) while the pupil is in the lawful control or charge of a member of the staff of the school; or

(iv) while the pupil is receiving educational provision arranged on behalf of the school and provided elsewhere than on the premises of the school;

(c) review those measures—

(i) at intervals of no more than 4 years; and

(ii) (without prejudice to sub-paragraph (i)) at such times as the Department may direct;

(d) before determining or revising those measures, consult (in such manner as appears to it to be appropriate) the principal and the registered pupils at the school and the parents of those pupils;

(e) in determining or reviewing those measures, have due regard to any guidance given by the Department;

(f) prepare a written statement of such measures and secure that—

(i) a copy of that statement is given or otherwise made available, free of charge and in such form as the Board of Governors considers appropriate, to the parents of all registered pupils at the school and to the staff of the school; and

(ii) copies of the statement are available for inspection at the school at all reasonable times, free of charge and in such form as the Board of Governors considers appropriate; and

(g) secure that such measures are taken.

(2) The Board of Governors of a grant-aided school may, to such extent as it thinks reasonable, consider measures to be taken at the school (whether by the Board of Governors, the staff of the school or other persons) with a view to preventing bullying involving a registered pupil at the school which—

(a) involves the use of electronic communication;

(b) takes place in circumstances other than those listed in subsection (1)(b); and

(c) is likely to have a detrimental effect on that pupil’s education at the school.

(3) Directions under subsection (1)(c)(ii) may be given—

(a) in relation to grant-aided schools generally;

(b) in relation to a class or description of grant-aided school; or

(c) in relation to any particular grant-aided school or schools.

(4) In Article 3(3)(a)(ii) of the Education (Northern Ireland) Order 1998 (duty of the principal to determine measures) omit the words “and, in particular, preventing all forms of bullying among pupils”.

S-3 Duty to keep a record of incidents of bullying

3 Duty to keep a record of incidents of bullying

(1) The Board of Governors of a grant-aided school must ensure that a record is kept of all incidents of bullying or alleged...

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