SCOTTISH Borders Council's updated Respectful Relationships and Anti-bullying Schools policy is to be implemented across all schools in the Scottish Borders.

Over the last six months the policy has been updated and revised with a focus on positive attitude; an aim to reduce the number of incidents of bullying behaviour; to implement a clear and consistent process of dealing with any incidents, and that all schools work to the same guidelines.

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All SBC schools and education establishments will complete the Respectful Relationships and Anti-Bullying Establishment Statement to show they agree and endorse the Policy; thereafter they will create their own statement in partnership with children, young people, parents and carers ensuring they are involved in the discussions.

The Respectful Relationship and Anti-Bullying Policy will provide a consistency of approach across all learning settings, ensuring respectful relationships are embraced at all times and bullying is addressed quickly and effectively if it occurs.

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Councillor Leagh Douglas, Executive Member for Education and Lifelong Learning, said: "This policy follows a number of overarching principles including United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC), Curriculum for Excellence, Getting it Right for Every Child (GIRFEC) and importantly Participation and Involvement of learners and parents.

“Our vision is that all learning establishments are safe, respectful and nurturing environments, seeking to recognise the full potential of all young people and bring out the best in them, especially in challenging situations such as those created by bullying. It is critical, therefore, that those who play a role in the lives of children and young people in the Scottish Borders are equipped to prevent and respond effectively to any incidents of bullying and or disrespectful behaviour.

Good relations come from respect, when we respect each other we're more likely to work and support each other, whether that's at home, the workplace or in our schools. I very much welcome this policy and look forward to it being implemented and embedded in our schools across the Scottish Borders.”