St Tiernan’s College Code of Behaviour

Introduction and Rationale.

This policy document has been prepared in consultation with the staff, students, parents and the Board of Management of St.Tiernan’s College and in line with best practice as laid out in the document, Developing a Code of Behaviour: Guidelines for Schools (NEWB 2008).

This document will be reviewed annually in consultation with all relevant partners.

These Guidelines have their basis in law – The Education Welfare Act 2000. This act specifies that the Code should specify:

1. The standards of behaviour that shall be observed by each student attending the school.

2. The measures that shall be taken when a student fails or refuses to observe these standards

3. The procedures to be followed before a student is suspended or expelled from the school in accordance with Section 29 of The Education Welfare Act 2000.

4. The grounds for removing a suspension imposed in relation to a student.

5. The procedure to be followed in relation to a student’s absence from school.


It is the aim of St. Tiernan’s College that all students and staff have a right to work and learn in a happy and safe environment. We as a staff endeavour to model positive behaviour and act in a professional manner at all times.

We have always strived to create an open and friendly atmosphere in our school and feel that our Code of Behaviour will ensure that this continues.

We, the relevant partners, believe to do so there must be a suitable Code of Behaviour in place that promotes positive behaviour but also sanctions those who do not adhere to it.

We also believe in rewarding positive adherence to the behavioural code and have included examples of these in our policy.

In the event of a student misbehaving in class it is the responsibility of the class teacher to attempt to deal with that behaviour. This can be done in a variety of ways and is left to the teacher’s own understanding of the situation at the time.

If this behaviour does not improve the teacher should then seek to use the school’s code of behaviour as outlined below.

As we understand misbehaviour can take many forms and may have varying degrees of seriousness, in the interest of fairness certain misbehaviours will now be deemed misdemeanours and will be recorded in the student’s file on the VS Ware system. Three of these misdemeanours will result in a referral.

The following will be deemed to be a misdemeanour:

* Lack of preparedness for class i.e. no equipment, books including not having their diary.

* Littering anywhere on school grounds.

* Failure to get notes in diaries signed by a parent/guardian without a valid reason.

* Chewing gum

* Going to lockers outside of allocated times without diaries signed.

* Damage to school property including desks, chairs, books, school diary.

* Late arrival to class without an adequate explanation.

* Mildly disruptive behavior which is deemed to inhibit the progress of the class (e.g. persistent talking, diverting attention etc.)

Note: Any defacing of or damage to the school diary is seen as a breach of the Code of Behaviour, students must pay €10 to have their diary replaced. Only official school diaries are permitted as school diaries.

Note: Hairstyles, piercings and or excessive make-up deemed inappropriate by school management may be subject to disciplinary action.

Disciplinary Procedure:

1. When a student receives a referral this is given to their Tutor .The Tutor will meet with the student to discuss behaviour and give advice in a pastoral role. The student is then placed on Point 1 by the class Tutor. This should be recorded in the relevant class book in the staffroom, as should all of the following steps by the people responsible for those roles.

2. On receiving a second referral the Tutor meets student again and gives a final warning about behaviour. Student is placed on Point 2

3. Continued bad behaviour sees the Tutor refer the situation to the Year Head and contacts the parents/guardians to inform them of the breach of the Code of Behaviour. Student must complete one lunchtime detention. Student will be placed on Point 3.

4. If breaches continue parents /guardians will again be informed by Year Head and student must complete three lunchtime detentions. Student will be placed on Point 4.

5. Principal and Deputy Principal are informed and Parents will be requested to attend a meeting regarding the behaviour. Students will be placed on a daily report sheet, which will be reviewed at the end of the week, during a meeting between Year Head and student. This may be continued for a further week if the Year Head feels that there hasn’t been enough improvement in the student’s behaviour. There will be a withdrawal of privileges for a period of time e.g. trips away, sporting activities etc. These will be dealt with on a case- by-case basis. Student will be placed on Point 5.

6. If misbehaviour continues, student will be required to complete an after- school detention. Parents/guardians will be given due notice of said detention. If student refuses to complete the after-school detention they then will be suspended for one day. Student will be placed on Point 6.

7. If misbehaviour persists student will be placed on in-house suspension. Parents/guardians will be informed. The student will not attend their regular classes, breaks or lunchtime. They will be fully supervised throughout the day and relevant class work and homework will be given. Student will be placed on Point 7.

8. Student will be suspended following a meeting with parents/guardians.

(Point 8)

9. A second suspension will be given following a meeting with parents/guardians. (Point 9)

10. Referral of previous incidents to the Board of Management with the possibility of expulsion.

11. Student will be referred to Board of Management.

(Point 10)

* Contact with parents/guardians re possible suspension

When parents/ guardians are contacted re suspension and they do not answer the call or refuse to meet etc. their son/daughter will not be permitted to attend classes until they present themselves for this meeting.

* Procedure following return from suspension

Student will be required to attend a meeting with their Year Head and members of the Discipline Committee (possibly a parent/ guardian), to be held in the office before they return to classes.

At this meeting there will be a review of the incidents which led to their suspension. They must write an account of these and give assurance that there will be no repeat of such incidents.

They will also sign a contract of good behavior, please see attached. Refusal to adhere to any of these conditions will lead to the student not being allowed back to classes until a further meeting is held with their parents /guardian.

Serious Breaches of the Code of Behaviour

* School management reserves the right to suspend a student with immediate effect when serious breaches of discipline occur.

* Appropriate sanctions including withdrawal from school tours, outings etc., will be applied where appropriate for safety reasons, as deemed necessary by the teacher in charge in consultation with school management.

Good Behaviour Rewarded

St Tiernan’s College expects positive behaviour from all students. It also wishes to recognise the many students who consistently display such behaviour. During the course of the school year students will be rewarded on this basis. Examples of this behaviour include:

* Working to the best of their ability

* Participation when the opportunity arises and be co-operative.

* Have a positive and helpful attitude towards others.

* Being attentive and respectful towards fellow students and school staff.

* Being punctual and prepared for class, training activities etc.

Examples of rewards include:

* Trips away

* Film afternoon

* Special activity

* Raffle, for those with no referrals, carried out during each term.

* Other rewards deemed appropriate by the school

* If a student’s behaviour is good for a period of 20 consecutive days his/her point level may be reduced, after meeting with the disciplinary committee.

* At the beginning of the new school year a student’s disciplinary record will go back to zero as an incentive to improve on previous poor behaviour.


* When a student is placed on a point it is the responsibility of the teacher involved i.e. Tutor, Year Head or Management to record this in the relevant class record book which will be placed in the staffroom by the appointed Year Head.

This should be done by writing the student name, what point they are on plus the date on the disciplinary sheet.

* Year Heads will record any phone calls to Parents/Guardians in the Phone record book.

Addendum to our Code of Behaviour Policy:   SECTION 4- REMOTE LEARNING 

Whilst the school will implement the above measures to ensure the safety of students on site, it is important to recognise that there is a possibility that some of the learning over the remainder of the year may need to be completed online.

As such we have outlined our expectations as the following.  All students working remotely will:

· Engage with the resources prepared for them by their teachers. This will involve the same level of effort as is expected of them in school.

· Ask questions of their teachers via email or teams when in need of extra assistance.

· Be considerate of family members who are working from home, and talk to their teachers or Mr O’Reilly and Ms O’Malley about any challenges in accessing technology.

· Carry out tasks, work and assessments assigned by their teachers in the time scale provided.

· Should a return to remote learning or blended learning occur, it will be necessary for parents/guardians to monitor correspondence sent from school regarding work and homework to ensure it is being completed. In the absence of the teacher being physically present to motivate the student, parents/guardians need to assume this role. This would be a supervisory rather than a teaching role.

List of related policies

  • Admissions Policy
  • Attendance Policy
  • Homework Policy
  • Safe use of Technology Policy
  • Health and Safety Policy
  • Uniform Policy
  • Prefect Policy
  • Anti-bullying policy
  • Substance Abuse Policy
  • * SPHE Policy
  • * Guidance Policy
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