Our Policies

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ETHOS

ETHOS Policy

Declaration of Intent:

As an expression of the mission of the Church and the body of Christ in the real world, the ethos of CBC St. John’s Parklands is governed by the Gospels, the   Sacraments of the Church, the spiritual and educational legacy of Blessed Edmund Rice, the consecrated reason of all within its community and the constitution of a democratic South Africa.  Therefore the school should always allow its policies, priorities and purpose to be illuminated, inspired, guided and challenged by the teaching of the Gospel  (Sullivan, 2000), and by striving to emulate the key characteristics of our founder Blessed Edmund Ignatius Rice , thereby becoming stewards of his spiritual legacy.

The ETHOS of CBC St John’s Parklands:

 

Criteria of this ETHOS Policy:
As an independent Catholic school, this Ethos Policy will impact on the entire school community.

The scope will reach:

  • Board of Governors:  To approve the policy and ensure its implementation.
  • Head of College : To support the procedures of the policy and to be the primary custodian in ensuring its implementation.
  • School Staff: As staff of CBC St John’s Parklands, the requirement is that the whole staff embraces and upholds the ethos of the school and supports the cross-curricular nature of the Ethos Policy;

Their responsibility will be:

  • To implement and review the policy;
  • To ensure a high standard and effective delivery of Ethos Policy.

The Ethos Policy will be implemented and preserved by:

  • The Chaplain, in assisting in the faith and development of students.
  • Pastoral Care Personnel, Religious Educators and Guidance Counsellors: By collaborating with the core committee members of the Ethos body to provide support and give guidance to the students and staff.
  • Head of Ethos, by monitoring the efficacy of the Ethos Policy.
  • Parents / Guardians, by supporting the Ethos Policy requirements in the school and the faith formation of their children.
  • Students, by fully adhering to, participating in and embracing the Ethos Policy.

Mission Statement:

As an independent Catholic school, our aim is to provide an enriched, holistic education based on Gospel values, where the spirituality of each person is nurtured in an environment where life, faith, family, excellence and diversity are celebrated. By recognising each child’s potential, we aspire to produce students who are meaningful contributors to a world requiring social advocacy, compassion, tolerance and innovative thinking.

The archdiocese requires Catholic schools to co-operate in every possible way when adhering to holistic education and spreading Gospel values (Archdiocesan Catholic Policy, since 2009).

Inspired by the vision of Blessed Edmund Rice, founder of CBC, our College, St John’s, hereby adheres to the following 10 pillars of our Ethos:

  • Docemus (We teach) – Devote enough priority time and resources to well-organised formal religious education programmes;
  • Veritas (Truth) – All its educational endeavours are aligned to the contemporary challenges of the Gospel, in particular, countering the false culture of domination in all its forms, including sexism, racism, exploitation and greed;
  • Celebramus (We celebrate) – Expresses its faith through prayer and symbolism, as a whole school or in its various groupings, particularly in the celebration of special occasions and events;
  • Incarnatus (Incarnation) – Providing an holistic, integrated, relevant education where the divine presence is honoured in the human experience and so the Christian spirituality of each person is purposefully cultivated;
  • Curamus (We care) – Nurturing a family-like compassionate community;
  • Laboramus (We work) – Aspiring for excellence in education;
  • Servamus (We serve) – Cultivating a culture of service with a priority given to the poor and marginalised;
  • Dignitas (Dignity) – The dignity of each individual emulates Gospel values;
  • Respectus (We respect) – Manifest self-respect, respect for the environment and to all others.
  • Virtus (Morality) – Uphold a moral compass when mentioning the College via all forms of social media, including Facebook, Twitter, texting, email and Skype.

Conclusion

At CBC St John’s we commit to the importance of formal religious and moral education. This policy allows us the opportunity to reflect on, explore and articulate what it means to be at our College. It is our privilege and purpose to harness the religious development of our students and to provide opportunities for them to know God.  We strive to be faithful to the intentions of our founder and recognise the implications of what it means to be at a Catholic school within the contemporary context of a democratic South Africa.

NB: All who choose to work within the walls of CBC St John’s will be asked to uphold, embrace and sign this policy by signing the Declaration of Agreement as part of your Employment Contract.

RELIGIOUS EDUCATION

Religious Education Policy

The aim of religious education in the Catholic school is to prepare all students to nourish the gospel in their lives, in ways that nurture their individual gift of faith.

We, the staff, students and parents of CBC, St John’s Parklands acknowledge our responsibility to provide an environment where the key fundamentals of Catholic education are lived out, namely:

  • Gospel values and evangelization
  • Spirituality
  • Respect for the individual
  • Love of truth and the environment
  • Academic excellence
  • Nurturing the Christian faith within the community
  • Community service to the less fortunate

To this end, CBC St John’s Parklands, offers a comprehensive RE programme, under the leadership of an RE Co-ordinator that includes:

  • A daily morning assembly programme for staff and students
  • Celebrating liturgical feasts and other significant days through  liturgy, masses, and Para liturgies.
  • Student and staff refection days and retreats
  • A RE curriculum
  • A pastoral care programme
  • An outreach programme (Edmund Rice Society)
  • Sacramental preparation for the Catholic students

“Live Jesus in our hearts, forever” – Blessed Edmund Rice

HEALTH & SAFTEY

Health & Safety Policy

This policy aims to ensure a safe and secure environment for learners, educators and all visitors to the College. It also aims to identify possible hazards at the College and to minimise the risks they pose. The policy will only be effective if frequently communicated and if all members of the school community co-operate in its full   implementation.

Emergency Numbers

Emergency numbers will be readily available and displayed in the reception areas of the Administration block, Pre-school, Junior and Senior School.

Safety on College Premises

The following hazards are identified on the school premises (e.g. staircases, Natural and Life Sciences Labs, workshop areas, kitchens etc)

Controlling Risks in Curriculum Areas:

  • It is the responsibility of the teacher to ensure that learners are aware of any potential hazards and to check that all reasonable precautions are taken.
  • Scissors, knives, and tools should be stored safely and learners should be instructed in the correct usage of these.  Learners using craft knives, etc should never be left unsupervised.
  • No unauthorised persons will be allowed in the laboratories and will be locked when not in use.
  • All chemicals will be stored in the correct manner and will be subject to inspection.
  • Computer equipment must not be allowed to overheat the area of the room in which it is contained.
  • All physical education equipment must be regularly checked for defects.
  • Learners are to wear the PE uniform for PE lessons.

The following guidelines must be communicated to learners and parents:

  • Don’t climb up the front of slides
  • Don’t play in front of or behind the swings
  • Don’t play with sticks or sharp objects
  • Don’t throw sand or stones
  • Don’t run in the corridors (bathroom floors must be kept dry – cleaning staff will close the doors while floors are drying)

Safety Encountered when Travelling to and from College

Parents who drop off children at school must:

  • Drive with extreme caution and be aware of children
  • Drive slowly
  • Keep the Zebra crossings clear

Travelling in vehicles:

  • All drivers must sign to state that they have a current valid driving licence (PDP for the school buses) and will abide by the guidance for drivers
  • A clearly defined code of safety practice for the journey, including in particular rules of conduct and behaviour standards required and routine and emergency safety procedures, should be laid down in advance and made known to all participants and parents
  • All current legal and safety requirements must of be observed, for example wear seat belts, front and back
  • Speed limits must be observed and dipped headlights used in poor visibility
  • Tyre pressures must be adjusted when carrying heavy loads, and re-adjust after unloading
  • All new vehicle users must have a familiarisation drive before first using the vehicle
  • Long journeys are not to be undertaken without suitable breaks, which may mean overnight breaks.

First Aid

Each section of the College will have a trained First Aider

Fully equipped first aid boxes will be available at the College for outings, field trips and sports events, Aftercare Centre and one in each of the Office (Reception) areas where office staff attend to injured or sick children

All classrooms will have an emergency box on the wall containing a mouthpiece and gloves

First aid boxes will be checked and maintained on a monthly basis

CPR procedures will be displayed on the toilet room walls and in Aftercare areas

The Head of College or Head of Schools is responsible for contacting the emergency services if required

Parents will be notified immediately of any serious accident involving their child.

It is the duty of the parent to ensure the school has the correct telephone numbers.

Administering medicines:

  • No teacher or member of staff will be responsible for administering medicines without the consent of parents
  • Should any child require medication during the school day it is the responsibility of the parent to arrange this. The parent is to hand the medication in at the Reception of each school and sign a medicine register. The required dosage, storage instructions and contact details must be filled in on the register
  • All staff will be made aware of any child who has asthma, diabetes or could suffer from anaphylactic shock and the appropriate emergency procedures to be taken

Fire Procedure

  1. Termly fire evacuation drills will be carried out and also recorded in the fire log book. Fire fighting equipment will be inspected annually and checks recorded on the equipment.
  2. Fire exit signs and emergency procedure notices must be displayed in all areas and regular fire drills undertaken during which all staff and students must adhere to evacuation procedures.
  3. Fire risk assessment will be carried out biannually.
  4. In the event of a fire the assembly point is the College playground.
  5. Teachers must bring their daily register to the assembly point to ensure that all learners are accounted for.
  6. The siren is sounded outside.  The principal or head of department will contact the Emergency Services. The security guard is notified to open the gate.
  7. Evacuation routes are to be clearly displayed in all classrooms and reception areas.

Security Arrangements

  1. Security is an ever-present risk in South Africa and the College will take appropriate steps to secure the school environment.
  2. All visitors to the school must sign the visitor’s book on arrival and departure. The visitor’s book is located in the front office.
  3. In order to prevent unauthorised access to the premises, the outside gates must be kept locked when not in use.
  4. All outside gates will be unlocked Monday to Friday at 07:00.  (Side access gates will be locked at 08:15.) Premises to be locked at 18:00
  5. Alarms and intercom to be checked once a month by a secretary.
  6. Duplicate keys will be clearly marked and kept by each school.
  7. Children going home due to ill health, appointments etc. need to be signed out by parents.  Pre-school and Junior School report to their reception areas.  Senior School learners to be signed out at the main reception area.
  8. Aftercare have their names ticked off by Aftercare staff. Parents are to sign their children out of Aftercare.

Contractors and Workers on Site

The presence of workers other than those employed in school may create potentially hazardous situations.

Contractors should discuss with the school the potential hazards that might be caused by the work, for example materials, machinery noise, dust and traffic.

It is the responsibility of the school to check the safety record of the contractor and to monitor safety during the contract duration.

The school safety officer should carry out a full inspection at the end of the contract period.

Recording of Incidents

Any incident or accident or crime will be recorded using the Incident/Injury Report Form. This will enable the frequency and pattern of incidents to be monitored.

EXCURSIONS

Excursion Policy

Parental consent forms should be obtained in advance for each child participating in the journey. These should cover such matters as emergency medical treatment, medical conditions, GP’s address, dietary requirements, home telephone number and address etc.

Parents should be given full written details regarding the organisation of the visit, even those involving only short trips during the day, including the purpose; destination and location of the visit; the programme; the dates and times of the visit; travel and accommodation details; standards of behaviour expected of children; staffing details; details of special clothing required; insurance details; telephone numbers; and emergency procedures for contacting parents.

Teachers must carry out pre-visit risk assessment visits whenever possible.

Recommended bus companies must always be used and staff must ensure all passengers wear seatbelts during journeys.

The principal or another appropriate contact point within the school should be provided with the programme for the trip, contact telephone numbers while on the journey, the planned emergency safety procedures and a full list of all participants and their home addresses and telephone numbers. A chain of contact should be arranged in advance from that person for swift communication in case of  emergency.

The teachers are to:

  • ensure supervision of the learners throughout the journey or visit according to professional standards and common sense
  • take reasonable steps to avoid exposing learners to dangers that are foreseeable and beyond those with which the particular learners can reasonably be expected to cope.

SMOKING

Smoking Policy

In order to promote the health and safety of both learners and staff, the school will endeavour to ensure that its premises are free from tobacco smoke. The smoking of  tobacco will not be permitted on school premises or in school vehicles.

Learners and staff are expected to take personal responsibility for observing this policy and should feel able to draw this policy to the attention of colleagues, most particularly visitors to the school. This should include the display of no smoking notices and the inclusion of appropriate statements in publicity material, particulars of  appointments, invitations to events, external contractors and the like.

Staff should be alert to the need to remind anyone found smoking on school premises of the policy. Individuals who wish to smoke should be asked to do so outside school buildings.

DRUG TESTING

Random Drug Testing Policy

The CBC St John’s Code of Conduct makes it clear that the use of unauthorized narcotic drugs, and potentially habit forming substances is prohibited both on campus and in any context that could identify the student with the CBC St John’s community.

CBC St John’s Parklands is a Catholic, Christian school.  Our policies reflect our fundamental ethos and are always motivated by:

  • Care and concern for the physical, emotional and spiritual well-being of any student
  • Our mission to inform and educate our students and parent community
  • Our desire to operate in a spirit of Christian transparency; emphasising the pursuit of truth and doing so in a manner that is fundamentally just and fair.

Given that the use of unauthorized narcotics and/or habit forming substances is a documented social evil, and that school students are not immune to exposure to narcotics, we believe the school has a solemn duty towards our students and their parents. It is our belief that random drug testing, conducted without prior warning and as often as we deem fit, offers students and their parents a measure of protection as it discourages casual drug use and helps students to resist peer pressure to become involved with narcotics. Random drug testing is not designed to malign or cast suspicion on any student.

CBC St John’s Parklands thus reserves the right (reflected in WCED Circular 0024/2011) to administer random drug testing.

The procedures for random drug testing will be as follows:

  • One student in each grade (male or female) will be selected at random from the student list. The selection will be done in such a way as to not draw attention to the student amongst his peers.
  • A prefect (male or female) will also be selected at random on the occasion of each drug testing session. The selection will be done in such a way as to not draw attention to the student amongst his peers.
  • The selected students will be treated with respect and the test will be conducted in private, with a MMT / senior member of staff (of the same sex) present at all times.
  • The test used will be the 5 drug Multi Test (urine test).
  • The fact and the result of the test will be communicated in writing to the student’s parents and / or guardians only.  No test result will be communicated to any other students or other parents
  • We understand that this procedure can be traumatic, so a trained member of the school counselling team will be immediately available to assist any student who experiences difficulty at the time of the testing procedure.
  • In the event of a student returning a positive test, this test result will be communicated immediately to the student’s parents and / or guardians.

It is expected that:

  • The College will respect the anonymity of the student provided the student (in consultation with his / her parents and / or guardians) submits to recognised counselling / and or rehabilitation with feedback to the appointed member of the respective school counselling team.
  • Any student who returns a positive test result, must supply a certificate from a recognised professional therapist to certify that a counselling / rehabilitation process has been successfully completed.
  • Any student and his or her parents and / or guardians must maintain confidentially regarding the processes and outcomes of the random drug test.
  • A student who returns a positive test and who returns to the College after providing evidence of successful therapy or rehabilitation must expect follow up screening at any time.
  • In the event that a student refuses to cooperate with any or all of these directives, the College reserves the right to refer the student to the Board of Governors for appropriate disciplinary action.
  • In the event that the student is found to be in  possession of any unauthorized narcotic drug or habit forming substance then the college reserves the right to refer the student to the Board of Governors for the appropriate disciplinary action.