Code of Behaviour
 Scoil Chaitríona Naíonáin

The Staff, Parents and Board of Management of Scoil Chaitríona Naíonáin were involved in formulating this policy review in May 2020

Scoil Chaitríóna Naíonáin is a Catholic co-educational school.  Our school aims to provide a safe and happy learning environment in which pupils are encouraged to show respect for themselves, others and for school property. We seek to promote the attitudes and values necessary for individual children to contribute positively to their own personal development and to that of the school.  These attitudes and values are further encouraged through a system of rewards and sanctions.

In Scoil Chaitríóna Naíonáin we believe in a child-centred and holistic approach to the education of our children.

  • We cherish our children
  • We choose Christian culture
  • We prepare children to become responsible members of the community.


This Code of Behaviour is formulated in accordance with the NEWB Guidelines for Schools (2008) as required under Section 23 of the Education Welfare Act 2000.  The Discipline for Learning (DFL) behaviour programme forms the bedrock of this policy and the aim is to provide the optimum environment for quality teaching and learning to take place.

Affirming Positive Behaviour- Discipline for Learning 

The system we use to manage pupils’ behaviour is known as Discipline for Learning. (D.F.L.). The programme aims to create a positive learning atmosphere in the classroom by minimising disruption, this puts the focus on praising children instead of criticizing them

It is a whole-school approach in which pupils are treated in a consistent manner by all teachers and ancillary staff. It aims to create a positive learning environment wherein pupils are motivated to make responsible choices regarding their behaviour, thus minimising disruption and the loss of teaching/ learning time.

Pupils learn that good behaviour brings desirable consequences and unwise choices bring behaviour checks/sanctions. Teachers are encouraged to monitor and analyse classroom interactions so as to improve their classroom management skills and encourage positive behaviour.

D.F.L. is structured around a charter. The charter has three parts:

  1. Rules
  2. Rewards
  3. Sanctions

There are 6 classroom rules. They are clearly displayed in each classroom and are also printed in the D.F.L. booklet which each child receives at the start of the school year. Rules are also verbally reinforced by teachers/ staff members throughout the day.

The rules are the same for all children from Junior Infants to First Class and outline our behaviour expectations. The rules are taught to all pupils. Teachers ensure that the children understand what is expected of them by modelling behaviour/ drawing attention to children who are displaying the desired behaviour.

The consequences for the behaviour pupils choose are also taught. Pupils who choose to follow the rules will be rewarded. Those who choose ‘unwise’ behaviour will be checked.

Scoil Chaitríona Infants Golden Rules

  1. We use kind words, kind hands and kind feet.
  2. We listen, we don’t interrupt.
  3. We raise our hand to speak.
  4. We try our best in school and with our homework.
  5. We are helpful, friendly and honest.
  6. We look after property.

Scoil Chaitríona Infants Yard Rules

  1. Always use Kind words, kind hands, kind feet.
  2. Follow the instructions of teachers and all staff.
  3. Play gently and include others in your games.
  4. Ask an adult if you want to use the toilet.
  5. Listen for the bell, freeze and then walk to the line.
  6. Stay in your seat at lunch time.

Covid-19 Coronavirus To ensure the health and safety of all children and staff during the pandemic the children will be taught to follow the HSE Guidelines.

  1. Wash your hands often.
  2. Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or sleeve when coughing and sneezing.
  3. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with your hands.
  4. Stay at least 2 metres away from other people.


Pupils are rewarded through a structured system based on a stamp book. When pupils choose to follow the rules, they earn a stamp. They can earn up to six stamps per day. Children can also collect bonus stamps. The criteria for earning bonus stamps will change from week to week. At the end of the week stamps earned are counted and the children can collect various rewards.

Pupils will receive rewards on reaching agreed targets. These will include:

Scoil Chaitríona Infants Rewards

  1. Child’s photograph on the Superstars Noticeboard.
  2. Certificate of Achievement
  3. Lucky Dip from Treasure Chest
  4. Name in the Golden Book.
  5. D.F.L. Party.
  6. D.F.L. End of Year Trip.

Parents may also choose to reward their children if they are trying hard and behaving well in school.


Assembly is a forum for recognising good behaviour and good work ethic among pupils. It allows children the opportunity to experience school life as an essential part of a larger group and instils a sense of belonging. At our school assemblies, positive behaviour and improvements in behaviour will be recognised and rewarded. Certificates, trophies, prizes, positivity and praise are an integral part of our assemblies.


Sanctions or behaviour checks are a step by step procedure for dealing with pupils who do not follow the rules. Along with the Rules and Rewards, sanctions are clearly displayed in each room and are taught and regularly discussed to ensure that children understand the consequences of undesirable behaviour.

In Scoil Chaitríona every day is a fresh start and a fresh opportunity to behave. Pupils are taught that when they come to school, it is they who choose how their day will go and if their behaviour will lead to sanctions or rewards. If unwise behaviour leads to behaviour sanctions it is important that pupils know that, at each stage they reach, they have a choice to make. Pupils are encouraged to stop, think and choose between continuing with poor behaviour which will incur more sanctions or follow the rules and earn rewards.

Scoil Chaitríona Infants Sanctions:

  1. Verbal warning.
  2. Time out in class.
  3. Teacher records behaviour in teacher’s book.
  4. Time out in another class.
  5. Note to parents/guardians
  6. Visit to office – name in D.F.L. Book.

Sanctions for Yard Time

The school yard is always supervised during break and yard time and the teachers in charge deal with problems that arise using Restorative Practice and the DFL Programme. For minor incidents in the yard the following graded sanctions will apply:

Scoil Chaitríona Naíonáin Sanctions for Yard Time

  1. Reminder of yard rule “In our school we….
  2. Walk with a staff member for up to 2 minutes.
  3. Stand in a yellow box for up to 5 minutes.
  4. Line up and eat lunch with another class.
  5. Name recorded in Yard Book.
  6. If necessary spoken to by A.P II/ Deputy/Principal.

Whilst DFL underpins the Scoil Chaitríona Naíonáin Code of Behaviour, we incorporate elements of a number of different programmes the staff have been trained in, namely Incredible Years, The Braincalm Programme and Fun Friends as well as using resources from the SESS Behaviour Resource Bank, and the NEPS Continuum of Support.

Examples of Minor Incidents:

  • Refusing to complete work
  • Disruptive in class
  • Inattentiveness
  • Ignoring instructions

Examples of Serious Incidents:

  • Hurting other children or adults
  • Damaging property
  • Using bad language
  • Defiance
  • Endangering the safety of others
  • Non-compliance of HSE hygiene rules during the Covid 19 Pandemic


In implementing this Code of Behaviour, the school hopes to achieve the following aims:

  • To allow the school to function in an orderly and harmonious way.
  • To enhance the learning environment and allow pupils to make progress in all aspects of their development.
  • To create an atmosphere of respect, tolerance and consideration for others, where positive behaviour and self-discipline is promoted.
  • To empower the children to recognise and value differences between themselves and others and to understand the need to accommodate these differences.
  • To respect the right of all pupils to be educated in a disruption-free environment.
  • To ensure the safety and well-being of all members of the school community.
  • To assist staff, parents and pupils in understanding the systems`, and procedures that underpin the Code of Behaviour and to seek their cooperation in the application of these procedures.
  • To ensure that rules, rewards and sanctions, are implemented in a fair and consistent manner throughout the school.

School Policies

This code of behaviour should be read in conjunction with the following policies:

  • Admission Policy.
  • Anti-Bullying Policy.
  • Child Protection Policy.
  • Acceptable Usage Policy.

Expectations about how staff, pupils and parents treat each other:

Parents and teachers are partners in their child’s education. In Scoil Chaitriona Naíonáin we recognise the value of working together to ensure our children get the most out of their time in our school.

We seek to foster positive relationships with parents/guardians by encouraging them to join our Parents’ Association and through the various activities organised by our Home School Community Liaison Coordinators become involved in the school life of their child.

We have annual parent teacher meetings and teachers are available to meet parents before or after school, by appointment only. Parent Teacher consultations should not take place within the hearing of pupils or other parents. In the normal course of events (where lengthy discussions or sensitive issues are not involved) parents are welcome to speak briefly to teachers as the need arises, when collecting children from school at 1.30 p.m.

The school Code of Behaviour endeavours to ensure that all children and staff of Scoil Chaitríona Naíonáin are safe whilst under our care. It is strongly linked to the school’s Anti-Bullying and Child Protection policies. The Code applies to all children, parents/guardians of children and all staff working in Scoil Chaitríona Naíonáin.

When enrolling your child in our school, you must agree, in writing, that your child will abide by the school’s Code of Behaviour.

Scoil Chaitríona Naíonáin believes that all of our children and staff deserve respect. Staff are respectful to parents and parents are asked to be respectful to staff at all times. We listen calmly to each other’s points of view, give everyone the right to reply and work together to resolve issues.
The Board of Management has ultimate responsibility for behaviour in the school.  In the day-to-day running of the school, the overall responsibility for behaviour rests with the principal.  Each class teacher has responsibility for discipline and good order within his/ her own classroom, while sharing a common responsibility with the entire staff, for good order within the school premises.

Parents/Guardians are reminded that the Board of Management and Staff of Scoil Chaitríona Naíonáin does not accept responsibility for pupils before 8.50 a.m. or after the official closing time of 1.30 p.m., except where pupils are engaged in an extracurricular activity organised by the school and approved by the Board of Management. Pupils involved in such activities are expected to behave in accordance with the school behaviour policy rules during these times.

Contact between parents and staff:

  • Parents are asked to ensure that contact numbers, addresses and e-mail addresses are kept up to date.
  • Teachers will remain in regular contact with parents throughout the school year, both informally and formally. In First Class, the childrens’ homework journal can be used to write a note home commenting on both positive and negative behaviour. This can be followed up with a meeting to resolve a problem if necessary.
  • There is an annual Parent – Teacher meeting usually held in February, which is a formal meeting for parents to discuss issues with class teachers and members of the special educational needs team if applicable.
  • A written report is sent home at the end of each year.
  • Home visitation and drop ins are a central component of the Home School Community Liaison Scheme, especially for the parents of Junior Infant children.
  • Parents are asked to meet teachers either before or after school to minimize disruption to class time. Appointments must be pre-arranged.
  • Appointments can be made with the Class/ Special Educational Needs Teacher, Home School Community Liaison Team, Deputy Principal or Principal.

How pupils, teachers and parents can help promote a happy school:

  • There are good relationships between teachers, parents and pupils and a happy school atmosphere. Adults model the behaviour that is expected from pupils.
  • There is consistency across the team as how best to promote good behaviour – standards are clear, consistent & widely understood.
  • There are high expectations for student behaviour.
  • Everyday interactions between teachers & pupils are positive.
  • There are clear boundaries and rules for pupils. There are good school and class routines.
  • Teachers & staff have a range of strategies for promoting good behaviour at class and school level.
  • Good behaviour is recognized and positive feedback is given.
  • Reward systems are used to promote good behaviour and encourage pupils to manage their own behaviour.
  • Pupils are given responsibility in the school.
  • Pupils are made aware of and understand why the code is important and play their part in making it work.

How pupils, staff and parents can help each other meet the standards of behaviour expected in the school:

The most important way in which pupils, staff and parents can help each other meet the standards expected by the school is through good communication. Having a positive attitude, being polite to each other and acknowledging the contribution that each person has to make to the education of the students is also of vital importance.

Responsibilities of Board of Management:

  • To provide a comfortable, safe environment.
  • To ratify the Code of Behaviour
  • To support the Principal and Staff in implementing the Code of Behaviour

Responsibility of Principal:

  • To promote a positive climate in the school.
  • To ensure that the code of behaviour is implemented in a fair and consistent manner and arrange for a review of the Code, as required.

Responsibilities of Staff Members in relation to behaviour:

  • To model good behaviour.
  • To support and implement the school’s code of behaviour in a fair and consistent manner
  • To promote positive behaviour through classroom management strategies
  • To teach children the rules of the classroom, outside the classroom and the yard
  • To discuss expectations, rules, rewards and sanctions.
  • To keep a record of serious behaviour or repeated instances of misbehaviour
  • To communicate with parents/guardians and provide reports on matters of mutual concern when necessary
  • To support colleagues.

Responsibilities of Parents/Guardians:

As parents, you can support us as we encourage positive behaviour by:

  • Providing children with positive models of behaviour
  • Talking to your child about the school rules
  • Ensuring your child attends school regularly and on time.
  • Checking your child has all they need for class i.e. books, copies, etc.
  • Being interested in, supporting and encouraging your child’s school-work.
  • Cooperating with teachers if your child’s behaviour is causing difficulties for others.
  • Sharing information with the school in relation to any problems which may affect your child’s progress/behaviour.

When and where pupil behaviour will be subject to the Code of Behaviour:

The standards and rules contained in the Code of Behaviour apply in the school and in any situation where the pupil although outside the school is still the responsibility of the school,e.g. school tours,games/extra- curricularactivities and attendance at events organised by the school

Absences / Communication:

The Education (Welfare) Act, 2000, Section 18, requires parents/guardians to notify the Principal of a school of the reasons for a child’s absence. In compliance with these sections, the following procedures apply. For absences of pupils from school parents will enter the reason for their child’s absence on the Aladdin App./ send a note (in school journal) upon the return of the child to school outlining the reason(s) for absence or contact the school in person or by phone.

The Education (Welfare) Act 2000, Section 21(4) requires a School Principal to inform an Educational Welfare Officer in writing if the aggregate number of school days on which a student is absent from school during a school year is 20 days or more. Additionally, Section 21(4) authorises the School Principal to notify an Educational Welfare Officer if, in the opinion of the Principal, a child “is not attending school regularly”.

Pupils with Special Educational Needs:

At the start of the school year, a Student Support Plan will be drawn up for each child with special educational needs and those with behavioural needs. This plan will be drawn up by the class teacher, resource teacher, parents and where relevant the child’s SNA.

Recommendations from Psychological reports (where available to the school) will form an integral part of this plan. This plan will be reviewed regularly by the class teacher, resource teacher, parents and where relevant by the child’s SNA.

Every effort will be made to have a child with special social, emotional and/or behavioural needs referred for psychological assessment without delay. Help will be sought, also, from support services within the wider community.

Teachers will take particular care that they help the students with special needs to understand clearly any sanction being imposed and the reason why their behaviour is unacceptable.  For some students, visual prompts or pictures may be needed. Some students may need opportunities to practise observing the rules, with feedback on their progress. Teachers should keep children with special needs in mind when doing circle time, drama, SPHE and other topics dealing with a behavioural theme.

The school and classroom practices that support good learning behaviour are valid for all students, including those with identified special educational needs.

Additional Supports:

  • A small minority of students may show particularly challenging behaviour. They may have great difficulty in learning new behaviour and may not respond to low-level interventions
  • These students will need a sustained and systematic response involving the important adults in their lives, in school and at home. The Principal and staff will build links with local support services that may be able to assist in responding to the needs of a student with behavioural difficulties.
  • Individual Behaviour Support Plans may be devised in consultation with parents, classteacher, SEN teachers,HSCL Coordinators and SNA’s
  • Sources of support may include the National Educational Psychological Service, S.E.S.S. Special Education Support Service, Turas, HSE Community Psychology Services, the National Behavioural Support Service, the National Council for Special Education, Child Guidance Services or Child & Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS).

Prevention Strategies:

  • Circle Time
  • Helping in the School Garden and School Yard
  • Time in the Sensory Room
  • Braincalm Program
  • Play Therapy
  • Funfriends
  • Incredible Years Programme
  • Participation in Roots of Empathy

The School strives to solve issues at the lowest level possible. Teachers encourage, support and show pupils how they may be able to resolve issues themselves. Most issues will be resolved at this point Where sanctions are imposed they will be graded and reflect the seriousness of the behaviour


Only in the most exceptional circumstances will suspension be considered. Having regard to the values of this school, attempts will always be made to bring out the best in pupils and to discriminate between disapproval of wrongful actions and the value of each individual in the school community. This authority is delegated to the Principal at the beginning of each year.


The Board of Management has the authority to expel a pupil. This authority is a reserved function of the Board of Management and is not delegated to the Principal. Before expelling a pupil, the school will have taken significant steps to address the misbehaviour and to avoid expulsion of a pupil.


Where any parent has a concern about any aspect of behaviour the school should be contacted either by phone, in person or in writing and the matter brought to the attention of the child’s teacher or the principal/deputy principal as appropriate.


This Code of Behaviour was reviewed and revised by the Board of Management of Scoil Chaitríona Infants onMay 26th 2020

The Code of Behaviour will be next reviewed in June 2022.


Chairperson of BOM