Home / Policies / St Finbarr’s Policies / Growing as Friends Policy and Framework

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At St Finbarr’s we celebrate God’s presence in all we do.

We are a vital arm of the Holy Spirit parish and we empower our students to always give their best and to transform their world by loving like Jesus.

Growing together, by modeling and teaching about respectful relationships, we strive to nurture and care for our community and for our land every day.

We focus on the needs of each child and aim to engage our students actively and cooperatively in the process of learning for life.

Loving, Growing, Learning for Life Growing as Friends

As St Finbarr’s community members we share beliefs and values and grow together through shared experiences. This policy outlines how the values espoused in our Mission guide us in our teaching and management of behaviour and relationships to truly make St Finbarr’s a place of belonging and nurturing that will enable everyone to feel safe and to learn.

Our policy framework is that of a pyramid. Our strength and ability to support each other in learning and growing comes from our solid foundation of positive relationships and the creation of a community in which we can all belong. Our expectations regarding rights and responsibilities are clearly stated and lived each day through our school code and class and playground rules so that St Finbarr’s is a safe, nurturing environment for all.

Our students are taught the skills they need to develop and maintain friendships and respectful working relationships and we recognise and celebrate their achievements in these areas. When necessary we provide more intensive support interventions so that everyone can experience feeling safe, being valued and achieving as a learner at St Finbarr’s.

Our management of student behaviour is based on the Decision Making Model of Christine Richmond. Our school expressly prohibits the use of corporal punishment and prohibits the administering of punishment of any nature by non-school persons.

At St Finbarr’s we are aiming to create a happy and secure school community which embraces our shared cultures and promotes a strong commitment to social justice.
We strive to include and involve all members of our community in a range of ways.


Welcome BBQ, Fri afternoon cuppa
Christmas Fair
Combined activities with local schools and community organisations


Newsletter, Assemblies etc
Communicating behaviour policy to parents
Drawing from talents/knowledge of wider community (e.g. school clubs, special visitors, parish)

Support Structures:

Student Focus groups
Parent helpers – classroom
IEP Conferences


School community involvement in Sunday Liturgies
Fr Anthony visiting classes
Parish newsletter sent home

We believe that our expectations need to be clearly communicated and that at a school-wide level it is important to acknowledge efforts to help others belong and feel safe.

Policy statements and expectations

Growing as Friends Policy

Statement of Rights and Responsibilities

School Code

School Values (The Eight that Makes Finnie’s Great)

Playground Expectations (Finnie’s Five)


We acknowledge that each member, students, teachers, parents and other members of the school community has individual rights but there are corresponding responsibilities, which must be recognised and practised.

To learn and teach in a positive, supportive and caring environment. Further the learning by:
• Being prepared for the school day
• Being attentive
• Being co-operative
• Valuing the rights of others to learn
• Looking after own belongings
• Attending school every day
• Being on time
To be treated with respect and treat others with respect by:
• Showing courtesy and consideration
• Obeying instructions
• Accepting differences in others
• Listening to and being tolerant of others’ points of view
To feel safe and secure at school.  Be safety conscious by:
• Playing safely
• Ensure the safety of others
• Obeying safety instructions.
• Evaluate and respond to unsafe situations
To have personal property respected • Caring for own equipment
• Sharing school resources
• Using all equipment correctly and being mindful of safety requirements
• Respect others property
To have our environment respected and cared for

• Placing all litter in bins
• Recycling
• Using correct pathways
• Looking after toilet facilities
• Caring for and establishing gardens
To learn about and make informed decisions based on sound judgement • Accepting the consequences of personal decisions and actions

School-wide Acknowledgement and Support Activities

School assembly and newsletter recognition
Weekly Class and Principal’s award
Daily reinforcement for positive playground behaviour
Year 6 leadership program
Student Representative Council
Kindy & Year 6 buddy system
Staff model respectful behaviour

Students are involved in determining expectations for ‘belonging’ behaviour in their classroom. Rules are negotiated and displayed and routines are taught and practised. Positive choices are acknowledged and reinforced.

Classroom Rules and Management

• Early in the school year class rules based on the school code are negotiated and displayed on the wall.
• Rules should be limited to 3 rules per line of code. The less, the better.
• Keep in mind the 5 keys to successful behaviour management
1. Convey expectations clearly.
2. Always follow through.
3. Show concern for the student.
4. Understand the forces that drive the student’s behaviour.
5. Evaluate the strategies you use
• Use Christine Richmond’s Decision-Making Model
• Acknowledgement Correction Crisis Management

Teaching and Modelling Positive Behaviour

• Display and demonstrate expected classroom behaviours
• Develop social competencies within your classroom program
• Teach routines for transitions, tasks etc.
• Model respectful behaviour


• Regularly reinforce and teach about class rules, school code and routines
• Belonging to a class group where learning is fun and success is experienced and where a student feels safe and respected is the strongest reinforcer for positive behaviour
• Use regular tangible reinforcers such as stickers, school/class awards and rewards as well as gestures and verbal reinforcement
• Our aim is to develop intrinsic rewards

We support students in making and maintaining friendships and working with others by explicitly teaching skills for managing behaviour and emotions and solving conflicts in a respectful manner.

Personal development and Social Skills Programs – School-wide
Social, emotional competencies include skills in five key areas that focus on learning how to manage feelings, manage friendships and solve problems. These include:
• Self Awareness
• Self-management
• Social awareness
• Relationship skills
• Responsible decision-making
Teachers currently link these competencies to our School Values and the curriculum outcomes for each stage in RE and PDHPE. A range of programs and teaching resources is used in the process.
The school is currently reviewing and updating units of work that develop the competencies and include appropriate resources.
• Value of the Week will be advertised on a school sign, listed in the school calendar (term planner) and advertised in the school newsletter.
Classroom and/or small group programs
• Operated by a Counsellor or teacher according to need (e.g. anger management, dealing with anxiety)

Students with identified behaviour needs or those that repeatedly reach the final step of the classroom management and correction plan will be referred to the Student Support Team.

This will require a team, including the parents, class teacher, Psychologist or Counsellor, Additional Needs Teacher and Principal to meet and plan an Individualised Program to target the problem behaviours. At this meeting the team will nominate a date to meet again and review the Individualised Program.

Where parents would like to access counselling services to support their child, appropriate contacts will be provided by the Additional Needs Teacher in consultation with the Principal.

Policy implemented 17 June 2008.
Reviewed: 1 June 2011
Next Review date: 1 June 2013
Appendix 1

A Decision-Making Model to Underpin Student Management
by Christine Richmond

This model describes a set of plans for managing student behaviour which move from least intrusive to most intrusive. The Acknowledgement Plan builds on the Promoting Positive Behaviour strategies above, while the Correction and Crisis Plans involve teacher interventions.

The flowchart is saved separately.
Appendix 2

Interventions in Response to Inappropriate Behaviour

The Correction Plan Process
When students choose inappropriate behaviour and fail to respond to prompts and redirections further intervention is required. With regard to these interventions the following should be noted:

Try to remain emotionally unengaged
Clearly explain to the class the specific 6 step Correction Plan from A Decision Making Model
Outline to the students the choice they will be given at steps 2 and 3.
Be clear about the space used for time out at steps 2 and 3. Movement to this space should in no way humiliate or draw undue attention to the student. The time out should only last for 5 to 10 minutes (age appropriate).
At Step 4 use your teaching partner’s classroom for withdrawal. Child completes Behaviour Plan Sheet which must be provided to principal at the end of the day.
The next step is a formal interview with the principal. Parents are contacted and a behaviour plan is developed with their involvement.
A formal re-entry process is to be undertaken.
Use the 5 keys to successful Behaviour Management
1. Convey expectations clearly.
2. Always follow through.
3. Show concern for the student.
4. Understand the forces that drive the student’s behaviour.
5. Evaluate the strategies you use

The Correction Plan Steps

1. Redirection – Reminder Class Rules
2. Choice #1 – Move From Group – (Your choice)
3. Choice #2 – Time Out in Class – complete My Reflection Form – (Your choice)
a) Keep sheet on class file
4. Buddy Class and Admin Involvement-Move from Class and complete Behaviour Plan Sheet–
a) provide completed plan to principal by end of day

5. Principal Interview – Parents Contacted – Any appropriate further consequences or restitution agreed upon – Behaviour Plan written
6. Class Re-entry Process involves meeting between student and teacher including a written Behaviour Plan

A. Playground Process

1. Children without hats will be sent by the teacher on Eating Area duty, when dismissed, to sit in the designated area during play time.

2. The teachers on playground duty should use their discretion when dealing with issues of poor behaviour, following a similar process of graduated time out as that used in the classroom. See Peter Miles Don’t Just Stand There Yell Something chapter 22 for examples of managing minor playground infringements.

3. In any case where a child is upset or injured, all students involved are to complete a Student Incident Report. These are kept in the student desk outside Yr 5/6 C. The students are to sit in the eating area under the supervision of the teacher in that section. When completed the students return the forms to the original teacher who will then to take the time to check the full story. If an incident requires further investigation please contact the principal. All forms are to be provided to the principal.

4. Where a child is physically aggressive or presents a danger to self or others, the child is to be removed immediately from the playground. A member of the Leadership Team should be called if assistance is required. An Incident Report must be completed by the teacher.

5. Please check with the child’s class teacher if he or she would like to be informed of poor playground behaviour.

6. Where an individual behaviour program requires monitoring on the playground, all teachers will have been informed.

B. Crisis Plan

In the event of a dangerous or violent situation arising while directly responsible for a group of students, the teacher is to take the following steps:

1. Remain calm, stay with the student group and endeavour to ensure their safety

2. Call the office via phone to raise the alarm or send a runner – the runner is to go directly to the office and say “ there’s an emergency in ….(the covered area/ 5/6F etc.)”

3. A member of the Executive or another teacher will arrive to assist with the individual causing the concern. The teacher who raised the alarm should then remove the group of students from the scene if this was not already required as part of step 1.

4. Physical restraint should always be used as a last resort and only used where it is required to ensure the protection of a child.

5. An incident Report is to be completed and provided to Principal by end of day.

Note: A dangerous or violent situation is one that you believe to be so at the time.