Child Protection Policy
St Georges CE Primary School Child Protection & Safeguarding in Schools Policy
St Georges CE Primary School
CHILD PROTECTION & SAFEGUARDING IN SCHOOLS POLICIES
“Section 11 of the Children Act 2004 places duties on a range of organisations and individuals to ensure their functions, and any services that they contract out to others, are discharged having regard to the need to safeguard and promote the welfare of children
Various other statutory duties apply to other specific organisations working with children and families and are set out in this chapter”
Taken from HM Government “Working together to safeguard children” 2015 Chapter 2 Paragraph 4 (pages 52, 53 & 54)
“Individual organisational responsibilities” Chapter 2 Paragraph 9 (page 55)
Furthermore page 55 relates to “Individual organisational responsibilities” and duties of “Schools and colleges” within the Section of 175 and 157 of the Education Act 2002 and “Keeping Children Safe in Education” July 2015.
**Footnote: reference to “School” = All Educational Settings throughout this document
- The aim of the school policy is to make all within the school feel safe and have clear roles and responsibilities in place for that to happen. This policy replaces the previous policy of October 1st 2015
- The school’s duty of care will be in line with Government Legislation and Local Telford & Wrekin Safeguarding Children Board (TWSCB) Procedures
- The protection of children is the responsibility of everyone. Primary responsibility for the care and protection of children rests with parents, but a range of services is available to help them in this task. Many referrals to agencies are made by parents seeking help for themselves. Relatives, friends and neighbours may also directly, or encourage families to, seek help or alert statutory authorities to children about whom they are concerned. All agencies with staff that are in direct contact with children and families must be involved.
- The safety and protection of all children is of paramount importance to all those involved in Education. For avoidance of doubt the role of governing bodies of maintained schools and non maintained special schools is set out in “Keeping Children Safe in Education” July 2015 (KCSIE), effective from July 2015. This guidance coupled with “Working Together to Safeguard Children” March 2015 Chapter 2 and the areas identified above within the context,is the blueprint for all inter agency working and should be available and accessible to all those responsible for children’s welfare. This school policy reflects the “Keeping Children Safe in Education” guidance making it clear to Governing Bodies that staff in all schools and colleges should ensure that all staff read at least part one of KCSIE, although best practice would be for all staff to be acquainted with all sections of KCSIE this can be viewed at;
- Children can develop a special and close relationship with the school/college community and view them as significant and trustworthy adults. For the purpose of these policies and for avoidance of doubt, the school community shall include all those that work at the setting. Those being teachers, whole school staff, governors, children, parents that play an active role regularly at the setting and volunteers.
- All of the school community believe that our school/college should provide a caring, positive, safe and stimulating environment which promotes the social, physical and moral development of the individual child
- Parents/Carers need to be in no doubt that this policy is our commitment towards the statement above and we expect that they embrace everything that is documented in our policy. In principle parents sign up to our school ethos, the law and the legislation that sits behind it.
- It is not surprising therefore that a child, if they have been abused, may confide or disclose to a teacher or another member of staff. For staff to interpret any concerns this school will assess each incident as it appears. In respect of assessing any bruising to a child this school will refer to the “Bruising of Children” guidance produced by the TWSCB to assist their decision making (attached). It is important to note that the four defined categories of abuse being:
But not forgetting bullying which can transgress across all four definitions.
The 4 categories can be viewed in KCSIE 2015 page 11 or within a stand alone
“Information for all school and college staff” July 2015 page 8 which précis Section 1 of KCSIE
As a school we also recognise that extremist views in children can be a sign of potential abuse and will dealt with in the same way as other concerns. The same principle applies to Domestic Violence, Female Genital Mutilation, Forced Marriage, Drug and Substance Misuse, Gang Activity, Fabricated and Induced Illness (see Section 7 Child Welfare)
- Because of the day to day interaction with children, school staff are also in a unique position to notice any change in demeanour such as being quieter than usual, clingy towards staff, changes in appearance, being withdrawn or not wishing to go home at the end of the school day. Or circumstances where staff may notice injuries, marks or bruises when for instance children are doing PE, games or swimming which might indicate a child has been abused.
(In line with Telford & Wrekin Safeguarding Children Board (TWSCB)-Child Protection Procedures, 2010 which are reviewed and updated on an ongoing basis)
STATEMENT ON CHILD PROTECTION
At St Georges Primary School we agree that the safety, welfare and protection of all children is paramount and any delay in reporting concerns unacceptable. All staff will adhere to this principle and the child protection procedures established by the Telford & Wrekin Safeguarding Children Board (TWSCB) and the underlying principles that lie within it. Our policy will be published on our School website for all to view and reviewed annually. However, if need be, it may be reviewed and refined before this yearly commitment so that it is flexible to change and current with new legislation.
- We will work appropriately with each child, their family and other agencies to protect in all cases the welfare of the child Furthermore, will work in partnership and fulfil the ethos and abide by the principles of the thresholds guidance produced by Telford &Wrekin Council within the Family Connect Model“The Child’s Journey in Telford &Wrekin”(attached).
- On occasions the school, where necessary, may be asked to participate in multi agency meetings and in cases of sexually harmful behaviour, be asked to undertake a risk and vulnerability management plan. This school will use the TWSCB Risk & Vulnerability Management Plan-Sexually Harmful Behaviour (attached) to assist them if this is deemed necessary and appropriate
- The school/colleges role is to refer with the information received and under no circumstances become the investigator.
- The school also works to the TWSCB procedures for all staff who work with children, where allegations may be made by a child/adult of abuse in any form. All staff will adhere to the procedures drawn up by the Board in line with national guidelines and supported by the TWSCB managing allegations against those working with children (Section 4.1), where this is managed by the TWSCB through the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO). The process for managing allegations can be viewed at www.telfordsafeguardingboard.org.uk and Section 4 of KCSIE.
- This school believes that those who work within the school community are in positions of trust and as such codes of conduct are based on the underlying principle that the highest standards are expected from all. In line with KCSIE a separate code of conduct policy will be adapted by this setting, this is attached for reference.
- The document “Guidance for safer working practice for those working with children and young people in educational settings” produced by the Safer Recruitment Consortium October 2015, provides guidance on the expected standards of all those that work with children. This is attached for reference and all those in the school community will be made aware of its existence and this will work alongside the separate code of conduct mentioned above and any established Human Resources processes currently in place.
- For avoidance of doubt, for those that provide Early Years provision within our school premises will adhere and ensure that they follow the “Statutory Framework for theEarly Years Foundation Stage” 2014.This is fundamental in setting the standards for learning, development and care for children from birth to five.
- Furthermore within the Early Years Setting at our school and to ensure the safety and welfare of our children in our care, personal mobile phones are not permitted within this setting, when in the presence of children. This being a statutory requirement of the Early Years Foundation Stage Framework.
- Therefore we will ensure that the setting takes measures including;
- All mobile phones must be kept in a secure place and should not be accessed throughout contact time with the children
- Photographs or images of any children within our care may only be taken following parental consent and only using the school camera and those images should remain within the setting
- When on outings, mobile phones may only be used to make or receive phone calls relating directly to ensuring the safety and wellbeing of the children
- Headteacher and Governors
The Headteacher and Governors are committed to working together to create and maintain a safe learning environment for the children and young people attending the school.
The Headteacher and Governors will follow the specific guidance as set out inparagraphs Chapter 2 of “Working Together to Safeguard Children” 2015 and “Keeping Children Safe in Education” July 2015 and will ensure that:
- clear arrangements are in place to encourage, facilitate and support the reporting of child welfare concerns, including instances where pupils are missing from school
- that a Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) is available at all times whilst students are under direct supervision of school staff
- provision is made for appropriate training, induction, support and supervision for DSL’s and other members of the school’s community and workforce
- the school works with the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) and appropriate partner agencies proactively to safeguard pupils
- records relating to safeguarding are kept safely and shared appropriately
- appropriate safeguarding policies are adopted, monitored and evaluated which will include areas such as:
- child protection
- bullying, harassment and discrimination
- use of force and restraint and behaviour management
- health and safety including use of equipment and provision of first aid
- use of the internet, mobile phones and social networking sites
- school trips, placements, outdoor activities
- drugs and substance misuse
- codes of conduct
- meeting the needs of pupils with special medical conditions
- extended services provision-(the extended services team provide separate guidance and support for schools)
- Intimate care
- school security
- issues which may be specific to our local area or population, for example gang activity or knife crime
- “Speak Up” Policy
- the school premises are safe and that the school grounds are not open to unwanted intruders but if public rights of way exist on school grounds then appropriate risk assessments are undertaken
- appointments to staff positions and other roles within the school community are made following the safer recruitment guidance within KCSIE July 2015 and all appropriate vetting checks have been completed (see safer recruitment section)
- approved safer recruitment training, as designated by the Lucy Faithfull Foundation Consortium, has been completed by appropriate members of selection panels (see safer recruitment section)
- the school’s single central record of recruitment and vetting checks covering all staff and others identified by the school as having regular contact with children is kept up-to-date in line with Ofsted requirements.
- the identity of visitors to the school is checked, a record made in the visitors book, suitably identified/badged and that visitors are not left unsupervised within the school.
- The Designated Safeguarding Lead’s (DSL’s)
The Designated Safeguarding Lead’s for child protection are:
- Mr Shaun Tyas – Headteacher
- Mrs Zena Johnson-Taylor – Children and Family Support Manager
- Mrs Ceri Hurst – SENCO
- Mrs Jo Croft – Foundation Stage Leader
- Miss Abbigail Jones – Admin Assistant
- Link Governor is PC Vicki Ridgewell
Guidance already referred to suggests this should be the Headteacher or another senior member of staff and best practice would be to have at least 2 nominated DSL’s for Child Protection and at least 1 Governor. DSL’s form part of a Borough wide network of school DSL’s, where information is shared, in a 2 way process, with the Telford & Wrekin Council Safeguarding Children in Education Officer.
- They have received DSL child protection training and will liaise in accordance with the TWSCB procedures and Telford & Wrekin People Services Team procedures (or other Human Resources procedures in the case of opt out). It is the professional responsibility of the DSL’s to update their own training gaps/needs with Level 2 updates which are held throughout the year and regularly offered by the TWSCB, conferences/workshops offered by private providers and other mainstream providers. If in doubt, “Keeping Children Safe in Education” July 2015 should be referred to for clarification about the role of DSL’s.
- The DSL will ensure that all staff has received appropriate child protection training within the advised timescales. These staff will include full time, temporary and volunteer staff. It is advised that the content reflects the requirements identified by the TWSCB.
- The DSL will make known to the whole school community the location of the TWSCB website address www.telfordsafeguardingboard.org.uk where the policies & procedures are on view; these are regularly reviewed and updated by the TWSCB.
- The DSL will ensure that all members of staff will have completed an induction to child protection and safeguarding systems within the school and satisfy themselves that that member of staff understands their responsibility for sharing a concern and with whom.
- The DSL has direct referral links with the Social Care Safeguarding Advisors & Safeguarding Team via the Family Connect Team 01952 385385. For avoidance of doubt the DSL should be the point of contact with regard to referring a child if there are concerns about possible abuse. A formal written request for service should not delay a verbal discussion so that immediate action can be taken if necessary. However, any referral should be confirmed in writing within 48 hours.
- The DSL must make it clear to all staff that if the DSL or someone from the Senior Management Team is not available, then this should not delay in sharing any concerns about a child to the Safeguarding Advisors Team via The Family Connect Team on 01952 385385.
- The DSL keeps all written records of concerns about a child even if there is no need to make an immediate referral for action; this will include any e technology use issues that may cause indirect abuse to a child. E safety will be treated as any other form of abuse and recognition that bullying can transgress across all four defined categories of abuse including bullying and harassment.
- Ensuring that all such records are kept confidentially and securely and are separate from pupil records, ensuring that an indication of further record keeping in terms of child protection is marked on the pupils records.
- Ensuring that they or a senior colleague are available to attend any Strategy / Resolution / Conference / Professionals / CAF / TAC / MAPPA/Core Group or Planning Meetings as deemed necessary in the remit of child protection. Also that attendance by any school staff includes key information to be tabled at the meeting, especially attendance figures which are considered a key element of all conference reports.
- Ensuring information regarding any pupil currently subject to a Child Protection Plan and deemed “at risk”, who is absent without explanation for two days, is shared with Children’s Services Family Connect Safeguarding Team.
- The Designated Safeguarding Lead will ensure the completion, on a yearly basis, of the TWSCB s11 Safeguarding Self Assessment Toolkit Audit. These will be supplied by the Telford & Wrekin Council Safeguarding Children in Education Officer.
- The Staff
- All those in the school community, including supply teachers, visiting professionals working with students in the school (e.g. counsellors), those who support sex education (e.g. school nurse), external providers of school activities and those supporting school visits, are informed of the name of the DSL’s and the school procedures for protecting children, for example, how to report their concerns, suspicions and how to receive, record and report disclosures:
- during their first induction to the school
- through a copy of this policy
- through the staff handbook
- through induction/supply teachers’ booklet
- All staff are required to be alert to signs of abuse. They should report any concerns or suspicions if not immediately, as soon as possible, that day to the DSL. If in doubt they should talk with the DSL(s), delay is unacceptable.
- We recognise that children cannot be expected to raise concerns in an environment where colleagues fail to do so. All of the school community should be aware of their duty to raise concerns, where they exist, about the attitude or actions of colleagues. Unacceptable standards, conduct or behaviour should be challenged appropriately at the outset, and will not be tolerated. A separate code of conduct policy has been adopted by this school.
- We will adopt the “Speak Up” Telford & Wrekin Policy (attached) on raising concerns.
- Provision to view the TWSCB website should be made accessible to all staff. In the first instance if computer access is needed this should be requested through :
- Mr Shaun Tyas – Headteacher
- Mrs Zena Johnson-Taylor – Children and Family Support Manager
- Mrs Ceri Hurst – SENCO
- Mrs Jo Croft – Foundation Stage Leader
- Miss Abbigail Jones – Admin Assistant
- Response in School
Reporting to the DSL
- Any concern must be discussed with Mr Shaun Tyas, Mrs Zena Johnson-Taylor, Mrs Ceri Hurst, Mrs Jo Croft, Miss Abbigail Jones or another member of the Senior Management Team, as soon as is possible, no later than the end of the morning or afternoon session of that day. In Primary settings this must be the Headteacher or the Deputy.
Immediate Response to the Child
- It is vital that our actions do not abuse the child further or prejudice an investigation, for example:
- listen to the child, if you are shocked by what is being said, try not to show it.
- it is OK to observe bruises but not to ask a child to remove their clothing to observe them.
- if a disclosure is made, the pace should be dictated by the child, without the child being pressed for detail or by asking leading questions such as “what did he/she do next?” or “where did he/she touch you?” It is our role to listen not to investigate. Use open questions such as “is there anything else you want to tell me?” or “yes?” or “and?”.
- accept what the child says. Be careful not to burden them with guilt by asking “why didn’t you tell me before?” or “why did you let it happen”.
- do acknowledge how hard it was for them to tell you this and reassure them that they have done absolutely the right thing by telling you.
- don’t criticise the alleged perpetrator, the child may have warm feelings for them, but merely wish any abuse to stop.
- don’t promise confidentiality, reassure the child that they have done the right thing, explain whom you will have to tell (the DSL) and why; and, depending on their age, what the next stage will be. It is important that you don’t make promises that you cannot keep such as “I’ll stay with you all the time” or “It will be all right now”.
- Make some brief handwritten notes at the time or immediately afterwards; record the date, time, place and context of disclosure or concern, recording facts, who you shared them with and not assumption, supposition and interpretation.
- Also record where you spoke with them and personal safety details such as “I discussed the incident with the child in the Head’s office with the door open” or justify if it were closed, but naming those who you told this to be the case. If alone, reason that rationale stating “the child stated they would only confide in me if I was alone”.
- If it is observation of bruising or an injury try to record detail, e.g. “right arm above elbow”, “bruise noticed on fleshy part leg”.
- Note the non-verbal behaviour and the key words in the language used by the child (try not to translate into ‘proper terms’ ensuring that you use the child’s own words). Body language should be noted and support any disclosure.
- It is important to retain on file signed original handwritten notes and pass them on to the DSL’s who may ask you to complete a Family Connect Safeguarding Team referral request for service form.
Support for Children & Staff
- The child would be made aware of the school Pastoral/Counsellor’s work and offered access to that or any other appropriate service if needed.
- Recognition that a child who is abused or witnesses violence may find it difficult to develop and maintain a sense of self worth. We recognise that a child may feel self blame and we will ensure that all children know there is an adult in the school whom they can approach if they are worried or in difficulty.
- Recognition that the school may provide the only stability in the lives of children who have or who are at risk from harm. The school community will therefore establish an ethos where children feel secure and are encouraged to talk and are always listened to.
- Acceptance that research shows that the behaviour of a child in these circumstances may range from that which is perceived to be normal to aggressive or withdrawn. We will ensure PSHE curriculum opportunities which equip children with the skills they need to stay safe from harm.
- Our policy on bullying and racist incidents is set out in separate documents and acknowledges that to allow or condone bullying or racism may lead to consideration under child protection procedures. These will be documented like all other incidents. Any bullying whether racist, emotional, physical, sexist, homophobic, extremist, cyber or in any other forms will not be tolerated under any circumstances.
- Children in Care (CIC) have access to a DSL in our school/college, where they can seek support, where in certain circumstances the needs are specific or different. This may be the same DSL for all school/college child protection issues but in some cases it is not. Our school/college recognises the Children in Care Policy and which we will adhere to.
Staff-Disclosures and Allegations
- Staff (to whom a disclosure was made, who will be supporting the child and who might be attending, strategy and case conferences) would be able to liaise with the DSL, with the minimum number of people involved who have “a need to know basis” of detail.
- Of the staff not directly involved they will be informed on a “need to know basis”.
- Staff may also need support either as a person who has received a disclosure or if an allegation has been made against them and subsequently needs investigation to conclusion. In both cases support should be offered and Human Resources Business Partner for your school consulted appropriately.
- Staff should not accept personal invitation visits to the homes of children unless permission or instruction has been sought from the Head teacher and it is viewed as a professional appointment, for example supporting Education Welfare issues etc. This should be viewed on a case by case basis. To support this, guidance from the Department of Education (September 2010) states “Meetings with pupils away from the school premises should only be arranged with the specified approval of the Headteacher and the prior permission of the pupil in question”.
- We accept this guidance from the Department of Education (September 2010) stating that in the case of private meetings; “Staff and volunteers should be aware that private meetings with individual pupils could give cause for concern. There will be occasions when a confidential interview or a one-to-one meeting is necessary. Such interviews should be conducted in a room with visual access or an area which is likely to be frequented by other people. Another pupil or adult should be present or nearby. Where conditions cannot apply, staff should ensure that another adult knows that the interview is taking place”.
- Staff should be advised to seek support from their Professional Association or Trade Union if it is needed.
- All staff/governor meetings will have Child Protection and Safeguarding as a standing agenda item on all meetings; this is testament to our school/college making these priority areas and at the forefront of our minds.
- The process of managing allegations against those who work with children can be viewed on the TWSCB website www.telfordsafeguardingboard.org.uk Section 4.1 “Managing Allegations Against Adults who work with Children and Young People”.
- The school has internal procedures and processes in place for dealing with allegations and will follow TWSCB Policies & Procedures and involve the DSL in school. The procedures make it clear that all allegations are to be reported straight away, normally to the Head teacher or Principal for referral if necessary. The procedures also allow for the Chair of Governors to be informed. If the Head teacher or Principal themselves are the subject of the allegation, the Deputy Head and DSL (if not the Head) will liaise with the Chair of Governors and follow the appropriate process. The TWSCB procedures allow for the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) to be party and responsible for monitoring cases to conclusion.
- To avoid potential allegations and for the safety and welfare of pupils and the protection of staff, we will make classrooms highly visible places whereby easy viewing is possible, this is in light of national Serious Case Review recommendations and lessons learnt from them. Therefore, the masking of windows will be forbidden and as such treated as a health & safety issue for the protection of all. There may be exceptional circumstances where masking of classrooms is needed and justified, for example for the teaching of drama, in these cases the Head will make a judgement on a case by case basis being appropriate, balanced and proportionate.
- If abuse is suspected, information should be given directly to the DSL for child protection or, in their absence, to another member of the DSL of the Senior Management Team.
- The personal information about all families is regarded by those who work in this school as confidential. All staff need to be aware of the confidential nature of personal information and will aim to maintain this confidentiality in all areas of the school.
- Staff should understand they need know only enough to prepare them to act with sensitivity to a child and to refer concerns appropriately. It is inappropriate to provide all staff with detailed information about the child, the incident, the family and the consequent actions.
- Staff have a professional responsibility to share relevant information about the protection of children with other professionals, particularly investigating agencies.
- If a child confides in a member of staff and requests that the information is kept secret, it is important that the member of staff tells the child sensitively that he/she has a responsibility to refer cases of alleged abuse to the appropriate agencies for the welfare of that child.
- Within that context, the child should however be reassured that this will be shared on a “need to know” basis. If conversations need to take place and confidentiality is paramount to welfare, then these conversations will be held in appropriate settings and away from any general areas, where that confidentiality may be compromised. Further details on information sharing can be viewed at the Department of Education website.
Parents & Carers
- Parents and Carers play an important role in protecting their children from abuse. The school is required to consider the safety of the child and should a concern arise, professional advice will be sought prior to contacting parents/carers. If deemed appropriate parents/carers will be contacted, and the school will continue to work with the parents/carers to support the needs of their child. Gaining consent from the parents/carers will be sought, although in exceptional circumstances and with the best interests of the child being considered, this may be overridden.
- The school aims to help parents/carers understand that the school, like all others, has a responsibility for the welfare of all children and has a duty to refer cases to FamilyConnect in the interests of the child. The Governors will include a child protection statement in the school e prospectus and all parents/carers can view a copy of this policy. The policy will be made available electronically via the schools portal website.
- Parents/Carers that may have concerns regarding a whole school staff member can in the first instance raise those with the Headteacher, DSL or Governing Body of the school for further exploration. This may involve sharing those concerns with the relevant agencies. Where the parent/carers may have concerns regarding the Headteacher, the Governor for Child Protection or Deputy Head should be consulted in the first instance.
- Parents/Carers can liaise with Ofsted on such conduct issues or regulatory concerns, advicecan be found on its website www.ofsted.gov.uk or contact can be made direct to Ofsted on; Helpline (08456 40445) or a Whistle-blowing line (08456 404046). Parents/Carers can also access “Parent View” which is an online survey questionnaire where parents/carers can give their views on 12 statements from strongly agree to strongly disagree. The statements relating to safeguarding are:
- my child is happy at this school
- my child feels safe at this school
- my child is well looked after at this school
- this school deals effectively with bullying
- this school responds well to any concerns I raise
- We will keep parents/carers informed in all areas of safeguarding and child protection through the regular methods of interaction such as parent’s/carers evenings, newsletters and through the school/college learning platform portal. We will also monitor “Parent View” at regular intervals and seek to quickly address any concerns with parents/carers that may be expressed on this site. At the start of any inspection process we will make available a list of no named referrals that have been made to the DSL, those subsequently referred to the local authority and brief details of resolutions, with the aim being a transparency of operation.
- The present policy for record keeping is to chronologically record concerns in a confidential file, including details of dates, times, staff involved and action taken. These should be handwritten but can be typed up to sit alongside handwritten notes. Never discard handwritten notes.
- Copies of e mail streams are also useful additions which can clearly document sequential action. Again, these should be used alongside handwritten notes and by no means be regarded as a substitute action. It is preferable not to name children in an e mail, but if they are then this should be password protected.
- In the absence of a national standards framework across the country for record keeping we haveadopted guidance from Telford & Wrekin Safeguarding Board “Workbook Guidelines for Child Protection Records, Transfer, Retention & Archiving” (April 1st 2015) to keep our systems robust with the latest current advice.
- If as a school we prefer to note down these concerns in a specific file/book, we will ensure that it is not loose-leaf or ring binder style. Any books used shall be bound and in line with the guidance above or a suitable system will be employed which ensures security and the style of our school management of records, if books are not used. By using a specific school process, the concerns can then be noted sequentially to match the child’s journey with us, with each entry noted for that child alone. It is our intention to tell a child’s story during the time of their education with us.
- The records are reviewed annually in the Summer Term by the DSL’s and checked to be chronological, tidy, legible and factual in content. This should be undertaken each year, as records may sometimes be immediately required by Professionals. Where reports are needed for Child Protection Conferences these should include attendance figures where the child is of compulsory school age.
- Where children are transferring to other schools within and outside of the district we will follow the transfer guidance within the Workbook Guidelines. This includes any transfer to Further Education Colleges
- Access to these records should be clearly stated as to whom–i.e. DSL’s, Headteacher, Head of Year, Senior Management Team or as the school feels appropriate.
- All child protection records are clearly marked as such and are kept securely locked on the premises. Withdrawal from the school by staff will be noted and signed for, as will files released to Professionals, such as the Group Solicitor, Safeguarding/Child Protection Officers, LADO, NSPCC or Police Teams. We will follow the Workbook Guidelines guidance on release and return.
- Upon releasing records the school will request ID Badges for release.
- No named statistics in relation to Child Protection are an important part of performance information. Since 1 October 2011 each DSL has access to a DSL Workbook. This information will be collated in the Workbook and will inform the Head and the Governing Body of how our school is coping with child protection issues. These will be entered and updated on a regular basis. The Workbook for DSL’s and Governors can be downloaded electronically on the Safeguarding Children Board website
- When a Child Transfers To Another School
- If a child is subject to a Child Protection Plan deemed at risk, the child’s key worker within Social Care will be contacted by the DSL.
- When a child changes school within or outside the authority, all child protection records will be passed on to the DSL of the next educational setting by the current DSL Person or Headteacher, or to Social Care within the authority if the child is transferring to another authority. If the child is transferring/leaving to another school within term time, best practice would be for a signed record/or hard copy acknowledgement that the transfer of files has taken place. The current host school in this process should not photocopy and retain child protection records as this is deemed from the Information Commissioners Office that this would contravene the Data Protection Act, but rather produce a chronology to pass on and retain a copy of this chronology for themselves for audit purposes, this would be deemed as best practice. We will follow the Workbook Guidance in all circumstances.
- Retention of Children’s Files
All schools must keep educational records on their children. These should include:
- copies of the reports which have been sent to parents/carers on the child’s achievements, as well as other records about those achievements
- exchanges of correspondence between parents/carers and the school
- any information the school has on the child's education from the local authority
- any statement of special educational needs
- any personal educational plan
There may be other records kept like details of attendance, exclusions, behaviour and family background. This is not compulsory but would be viewed as “best practice”. The educational record does not include the notes that a teacher makes for his or her own use only.
The Child Protection file is a separate file to the educational records. It must be noted that if files are asked to be secured, both files are key elements in any processes for which they are needed. It is important that on releasing files they are signed for on release and on return.
Pupil record files must be kept until the individual reaches the age of 25 years. At this point the file should be shredded. Also a useful document to be familiar with is the “Records Management Toolkit for Schools” Version 4 May 2012 guidance from the Information and Records Management Society (attached) and “Workbook Guidelines for Child Protection Records, Transfer, Retention & Archiving” TWSCB April 1st 2015
Further information is available via: www.education.gov.uk and www.direct.gov.uk
- Children’s Welfare
- Poor or Irregular Attendance-“School staff need to be particularly sensitive to signs which may indicate possible safeguarding concerns. This could include for example, poor or irregular attendance or children missing from education”(Ofsted September 2009).The recognised figure for persistence absence being less than 90%, although concerns may still be raised if above this.
- In respect of this, the school will require behaviour and attendance leads to refer to and use the established protocol document of notification to the Local Authority, filling out the appropriate paperwork, “Policy and Procedures for Identifying Children Not Receiving Education (CNRE) and Children Missing Education (CME)” Telford & Wrekin Council (July 2014 attached)
- Forced Marriage & FGM-Where issues may be raised of Forced Marriage or Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) whether by people within school community, the wider community, older or younger children in all school settings, we will follow Government guidance;“Handling cases of Forced Marriage” (multi agency practice guidelines) June 2009 (attached) **“Female Genital Mutilation” (multi agency practice guidelines) HM Government 2014 pages 42-44 and Home Office “Mandatory reporting of female genital mutilation: procedural information”October 2015.We will consult appropriately and sensitively, in a two way process, in line with that national guidance current, future and local procedure. This school recognises that FGM is against the law and can happen across all ranges of educational settings and we will alert staff to free on line training at www.fgmelearning.co.uk
- Child Sexual Exploitation-Where we as a school may feel that children may be being abused through exploitation (CATE), we will consult in the normal way with the Safeguarding Team Helpdesk via The Family Connect Team on 01952 385385 and seek advice as to whether the incident follows a CATE referral pathway (attached). The concerns will be followed through sensitively and appropriately with fellow professionals.
- Children Leaving School without Permission-Where children leave the classroom or leave school grounds without permission, this is covered within our behaviour management policy and is also set against thebackdrop of the legal framework of the Children Act 1989 s3 (5);“Anyone who has care of a child without parental responsibility may do what is “reasonable” in all the circumstances to safeguard and promote the child’s welfare. It is likely to be “reasonable” to inform the police, or children’s services departments, and, if appropriate, their parents, of the child/young person’s safety and whereabouts.”
- However in principle, if a pupil runs out of class we will establish where he or she has gone. For avoidance of doubt and for all within and outside of the school, teachers will not run after them but will send a message to the office for adult support. It is advisable to keep a watchful eye on any child who has taken themselvesout of the school building and possibly out of the school grounds, unless this watchful eye provokes the child to run further. It is and will be a judgement call for staff to take what they feel is “reasonable” action in line with the advice above. If a child is no longer on school premises, parents/carers will be contacted in the first instance. If they are not at home or contactable the police will be informed that a pupil has left school and is at risk.
- Children That Have Gone Missing-Where children have gone missing and not in manner of the above we will follow the “ Local Missing Children Process” January 2016 (attached)
- Drug and Substance misuse-Where issues come to attention of the school in relation to drugs and substance misuse we will follow the non statutory advice contained within “DfE and ACPO drug advice for schools” September 2012 (attached). This document clearly sets out issues around broader behaviour and pastoral support, as well as managing drugs and drug related incidents within our school. The document produced by the Department of Education and the Association of Chief Police Officers clearly sets out the role of schools, their powers and what schools can do. Coupled with this preventative and supportive approach this will sit hand in hand with our statutory functions of child protection and the alerting to established referral procedures and the law of the land. Our dugs policy is a stand alone policy but for avoidance of doubt our stance and our approach is stated here.
- Domestic Violence and Serious Harm-Research increasingly indicates that Domestic Violence/Serious Harm in any form can and does have an impact on children and young people of all ages and backgrounds. For the avoidance of doubt, and in the spirit of children’s welfare, this school will liaise with agencies in a two way process where Domestic Violence/Serious Harm is a factor in the household. Children within our care will be supported where needed and school available for them. To this end, we will be part of any agency referral, in a two way process, such as the Domestic Violence MARAC (Multi Agency Risk Assessment Conferences), MAPPA (Multi Agency Public Protection Arrangements) or any other named agencies where these specific issues are a factor that may impair and impact on a child’s development.
- Fabricated and Induced Illness
“The fabrication or induction of illness in children is a relatively rare form of child abuse. Where concerns exist about fabricated or induced illness, it requires professionals to work together, evaluating all the available evidence, in order to reach an understanding of the reasons for the child’s signs and symptoms of illness. At all times professionals need to keep an open mind to ensure that they have not missed a vital piece of information”. Taken from”Safeguarding Children in whom illness is fabricated or induced” HM Government. This supplementary guidance to “Working Together to Safeguard Children” will be adopted by this establishment and we will adhere to our duties to refer as set out on pages 31 & 32 paragraphs 3.84-3.89
- Youth Violence and Gang Activity
“The vast majority of young people and educational establishments will not be affected by serious violence or gangs. However, where these problems do occur there will almost certainly be a significant impact.” Taken from the Home Office “Preventing youth violence and gang involvement Practical advice for schools and colleges” In light of this we will embrace the Home Office document and follow this guidance which clearly sets out understanding the issue, seeking support, working with local partners, early intervention and legal powers for staff. Our educational establishment has a duty and a responsibility to protect our students and staff and we recognise dealing with violence also helps attainment. To this end we will ensure students must:
- feel safe at our setting all the time
- understand very clearly what safe situations are; and
- be highly aware of how to keep themselves and others safe
- Extremism, Radicalisation & the PREVENT Agenda
- Extremist views by anyone in school will not be tolerated. Therefore, we will take and expect quick and decisive action where issues of this nature are brought to our attention. Namely, that we expect staff to encourage pupils to respect the fundamental British Values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect, and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs. Staff should ensure that partisan political views are not promoted in the teaching of any subject in the school and where political issues are brought to the attention of pupils; reasonably practicable steps have been taken to offer a balanced presentation of opposing views. We will treat extremism and radicalisation like any other child protection referral.
- As a school we have procedures in place to monitor IT usage and have a duty to seek advice and explore by filtering suspicious content being viewed. Those within and outside the school community should be left in no doubt our duty to cooperate under the law. Further details are included in Section 10 of this policy.
- We will ensure that every frontline member of staff in school has received a Workshop to Raise Awareness of Prevent (WRAP 3 Training) as indentified in the PREVENT Duty Guidance 2015 and delivered by an approved WRAP 3 trainer.
- As a school if we feel children are being abused through extremism or being radicalised, we will consult directly with the police PREVENT Team and seek advice. This is done with a PREVENT referral form (please see the flowchart and referral form attached). As with all referrals this referral will be dealt with appropriately with professionals. If it is deemed from the PREVENT Team that the intervention is not criminal and does not warrant a Channel Panel, but needs local support, we will work with those professional leads for Telford & Wrekin Council. Presently those being Paul Fenn and Jas Bedesha. Our policy also recognises that the local police can be contacted in imminent circumstances on 01386 591835/591825 or 591816 and at firstname.lastname@example.org
- Health & Safety and Physical Intervention
- Policies on Health & Safety and Physical Intervention are set out in separate documentation. It reflects the consideration we give to the protection of our children both within the school environment and when away from the school when undertaking school trips and visits. There is separate documentation “Regulations and Guidelines for Educational Visits and Journeys” September 2015 produced by Shropshire Council.
- The school will set aside a sum of money per annum to be agreed within its budget as contingency for training, updates and for attendance at inter-agency meetings for
- Mr Shaun Tyas
- Mrs Zena Johnson-Taylor
- Mrs Ceri Hurst
- Mrs Jo Croft
- Miss Abbigail Jones
- All new staff receives knowledge of how to access the TWSCB policies & procedures on induction and access whole school training when held.
10. Safer Recruitment and Online Safety
- It was announced that Safer Recruitment Training is a requirement from 1 January 2010. The proposal is that from this date, at least 1 person involved in interviewing an applicant for a post of Headteacher, Deputy Headteacher, Teacher or member of the whole school support staff must have completed the safer recruitment training. This training can be received from any provider but must be accredited by The Lucy Faithfull Consortium; this is acknowledged as the required provider’s qualification. This will continue to be part of our policy on child protection. This requirement states that schools should access “suitable” training. The school maintain the right to seek this training from reputable accredited providers that they choose.
- All staff working in the school/college community will be subject to enhanced Disclosure Barring Service (DBS) checks.
- All within the school community must adhere to “The Corporate Information Security Policy (CISP) including “Acceptable Use of Equipment” and the “Social Media Policy-Acceptable Use for Employees”; the school will make all aware of its existence and importance. Where appropriate, intervention will take place when anyone uses e-technology in an unacceptable fashion.
- Authority wide monitoring software is used within all schools and will be reviewed, updated and checked regularly. This addresses and includes all on line risk of harm, including risks posed by the online activity of extremist and terrorist groups. On occasions unacceptable websitesmight be accessed inadvertently; if this occurs then this should be closed down immediately and logged and reported to Senior Management and to the ICT Team.
- It is recognised at this school that all Information Technology, whether personal or work based, is a whole school issue and all staff has a duty to be vigilant. The policies already mentioned cover the extent of this activity and its suitability, staff and pupils are to be left in no doubt that contravention of them will be forwarded to the appropriate agencies to be dealt with.
- Some useful guidance around Facebook and associated social networking “Facebook Checklist” produced by the UK Safer Internet Centre (attached) will form part of staff awareness training.
- E safety is a major concern for all professionals. For information and support in this area the following websites below are available for all staff to view. The sites are for all age groups, parents and carers. which will form the basis and assist with e safetyeducation and policy in our school;www.swgfl.org.uk www.thinkuknow.co.uk & www.virtualglobaltaskforce.com
10. Taking Photographs in Schools
- Good practice guidance from the Information Commissioners Office, on taking photographs in educational institutions will be followed. This is attached for information. In the interests of safeguarding a common sense approach on a case by case basis will be taken in this area. A full copy of the guidance can be viewed at www.ico.gov.uk
11. Curriculum and Wider Activity in Keeping Children Safe including Section 11
St Georges C E Primary School is committed to providing a wide range of extra-curricular activities to appeal to all children. The clubs offered take place either at lunchtime or after school and include:
- Games Club
- Crochet Club
- Construction Club
- Art Club
- Captain’s Table
Year 6 children are encouraged to become trained Peer Mentors and help to keep younger children safe and happy on the playground.
The playground has a quiet area for children who want time out during breaks.
At lunchtime children have the opportunity to attend Green Lunch Club; these sessions provide a quiet, nurturing experience.
Against Bullying days (Friendship Friday) are held each half-term helping to remind children that the St Georges community will not tolerate bullying.
Year 6 children have the opportunity to take part in Cycling Proficiency each year.
St Georges CE Primary School has a Children and Family Support Team dedicated to providing early intervention and support for more vulnerable children. There is a focus on improving emotional health and well-being and helping children develop their confidence, self-esteem and self-belief.
PSHE lessons have strong links to keeping children safe; this theme is also firmly embedded in literacy lessons.
**All staff and the wider school community have accessa copy of these policies
COMMITMENT TO REVIEW
These Policies will be flexible to change and will be reviewed on an ongoing basis to reflect where there are any changes in Government Legislation or any changes in the duty of statutory agencies in Child Protection and the wider Safeguarding agenda. If it is not appropriate to refine the policy during the year, then this will be done as a matter of course on yearly basis by a named person responsible below, who shall be accountable for that action.
Child Protection Policy and Safeguarding in School Policies- Document Status
Date of Policy Creation
Mrs Zena Johnson-Taylor
Date of review completion
Mrs Zena Johnson-Taylor
Inception of new Policy
Mr Shaun Tyas
Date of Policy Adoption by Governing Body
22nd March 2017