Our annual focus on National Anti-Bullying Week was celebrated at school with assemblies, tutor times, displays, quizzes and awareness events designed to promote the all-important anti-bullying message.

This event is central to our Focus Weeks programme and integrates well with our Safer Internet Day, Sangha (Friendship) Day, and Mental Health Awareness Week.

This week included students and staff getting involved in ‘Odd Socks Day’ to push the message that being different and standing out is absolutely fine and there should be no pressure to conform or be the same as everyone else.

There were also ‘Change Starts with…’ postcards where students recorded what they would do to support their peers and to eliminate bullying and by the end of the week there were well over 200 examples.

These events were supported by our programmes involving our House Anti-Bullying Reps, our House and Student Councils, and our peer support schemes which make up our daily and weekly support packages.

Luke Baker, Assistant Headteacher, said: “We work to push a sense of responsibility amongst our peers and ensure they recognise the signs and behaviours of bullying and check themselves as much as one another. School, family and working life are all based on good relationships and each of us have a duty to be self-aware and aware of others.”

Matt Allman, Headteacher added: “Today’s teenagers get a bad press, what with ‘snowflakes’ and the like, but it is certain that the pressures they face are very different to their parents: not least the 24/7 pressures of social media. This requires them to build up a resilience and self-confidence, as well as to instil in themselves the discipline to take care in their communication and interaction with others. We work to develop these traits, and to provide the support structures, but we well appreciate that the role of parents in this is critical too.”