Safeguarding Policy

Safeguarding Students Policy

(including

Child Protection)

  

Accepted 14th July 2017

Next Review date July 2018

 

Safeguarding Director: Edward Morris

Designated Safeguarding Lead: Rod Goold

Deputy Safeguarding Lead/s: Rebecca Kenny

Safeguarding Team: Ian Hardicker, ian McCrudden, Helen Ferguson& Robyn Corfield

Ratified by Directors on: 14th July 2017

Next review date: July 2018

 

 1. Introduction

1.1. This policy has been developed in accordance with the principles established by the Students Acts 1989 and 2004; the Education Act 2002; and in line with government publications the Teachers' Standards 2012, 'Working Together to Safeguard Students' 2015 and 'Keeping Students Safe in Education' September 2016.

1.2. Norton College fully recognises its moral and statutory responsibilities for safeguarding and promoting the welfare of students.

1.3. Our policy applies to all staff, directors and volunteers working in the college.

1.4. There are five main elements to our policy:

· Ensuring we practice safer recruitment in checking the suitability of staff and volunteers to work with students;

· Raising awareness of child protection issues and equipping students with the skills needed to keep them safe;

· Developing and then implementing procedures for identifying and reporting cases, or suspected cases, of abuse;

· Supporting pupils who have been identified as in need of early help or at risk of harm in accordance with his/her agreed Child Protection, Child in Need or Early Help plan;

· Establishing a safe environment in which students can learn and develop.

 

1.5 We recognise that because of the day to day contact with students, college staff are well placed to identify concerns early and to observe the outward signs of abuse. The college will therefore:

· Establish and maintain an environment where students feel safe, secure, valued and respected and are encouraged to talk, believing they will be listened to;

· Ensure students know that there are adults in the college whom they can approach if they are worried;

· Include opportunities within the curriculum, pastoral sessions and specifically through PSHE and ICT, for students to develop the skills they need to recognise and stay safe from abuse and to know who they should turn to for help.

1.6 We seek to ensure that the child's wishes and feelings are taken into account when determining what action to take and what services to provide to protect students from harm. To this end we will:

· Ensure there are systems in place for students to express their views and give feedback e.g. through college/class councils, safety questionnaires, participation in anti-bullying and e-safety events;

· Ensure that the child's thoughts/wishes and feelings are recorded on all referrals.                          

 

2. Procedures

2.1 We will follow the procedures set out by the Worcestershire Safeguarding Students Board (WSCB) and take account of guidance issued by the Department for Education (DfE).

2.2 The college will:

· Ensure it has a senior leader nominated as Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) who has received appropriate training and support for this role;

· Ensure it has at least one member of staff who will act in the absence of the DSL (deputy DSL);

· Ensure it has a nominated director responsible for safeguarding students; · Ensure every member of staff (including temporary and supply staff and volunteers) and the board of directors knows the name of the DSL and any deputies and understands their role;

· Ensure that the DSL and/or a deputy DSL is always available during college hours and has made adequate and appropriate cover arrangements for any out of hours/out of term time activities;

· Ensure all staff and volunteers understand their responsibilities in being alert to the signs of abuse and neglect, including the specific issues of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE), Students Missing Education (CME) and Radicalisation and Extremism, and maintain an attitude of 'it could happen here';

· Ensure all staff and volunteers understand their responsibility for referring any concerns to the DSL or Head Teacher in a timely manner and are aware that they may raise concerns directly with Students’ Social Care Services if they believe their concerns have not been listened to or acted upon;

· Ensure that parents have an understanding of the responsibility placed on the college and staff for child protection by setting out its obligations in the college policy and publishing it on the college website

· Operate a lettings policy which ensures the suitability of adults working with students on college sites at any time;

· Ensure that community users organising activities for students are aware of, and understand the need for compliance with the college's child protection guidelines and procedures;

· Ensure that the duty of care towards its pupils and staff is promoted by raising awareness of illegal, unsafe and unwise behaviour and assist staff to monitor their own standards and practice;

· Ensure that all staff and volunteers feel able to raise concerns about poor or unsafe practice and are aware of whistleblowing procedures and helplines;

· Be aware of and follow procedures set out by the DfE and the WSCB where an allegation of abuse is made against a member of staff or volunteer, including making a referral to the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO);

· Ensure that a referral is made to the DBS and/or National College for Teaching and Leadership if a person in regulated activity has been dismissed or removed due to safeguarding concerns, or would have been had they not resigned

· Operate safer recruitment practice, ensuring that at least one member on every recruitment panel has completed safer recruitment training.

2.3 Our procedures will be regularly reviewed and updated at least annually unless an incident or new legislation or guidance requires the need for an interim review. We recognise the expertise our staff builds by undertaking safeguarding training and managing safeguarding concerns on a daily basis. We therefore invite staff to contribute to and shape this policy and associated safeguarding arrangements.

 

3. Training

3.1 When staff join our college they will be informed of the safeguarding students arrangements in place. They will be given a copy of this policy including its Appendices, part 1 and Annex A of Keeping Students Safe in Education, the college's code of conduct and told who the DSL is, who acts in their absence and what this role includes;

3.2 All staff will receive induction in safeguarding students. The induction programme will include basic child protection information relating to signs and symptoms of abuse, how to manage a disclosure from a child, when and how to record a concern about the welfare of a child and advice on safe working practice.

3.3 All volunteers, supply staff and regular visitors to our college will be told where our policy is kept, given the name of the DSL and deputy/ies and informed of the college's procedures in reporting concerns.

3.4 All staff will receive training in child protection and safe working practice, updated every three years, in line with WSCB guidance. In addition, they will receive safeguarding and child protection updates as required, but at least annually.

3.5 Staff with specific responsibility for safeguarding students will undertake both single and inter-agency training at a level suitable to their role and responsibilities, updated every two years. In addition to formal training the DSL and deputy/ies will update their knowledge and skills via WSCB newsletters, briefings, meetings and seminars, and independent training at regular intervals, at least annually.

3.6 Staff with leadership responsibilities will undertake further relevant training in safeguarding related issues such as Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE), Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), Radicalisation (WRAP training), Management of Allegations of Abuse and cascade the learning from this training to the rest of the staff.

 

4. Responsibilities

4.1 The Board of Directors will nominate a member to be responsible for safeguarding students and liaise with the DSL and or Headteacher in matters relating to safeguarding. It will ensure that:

· the DSL takes lead responsibility for safeguarding and child protection and does not delegate this responsibility;

· the DSL role is explicit in the role holder’s job description;

· safeguarding policies and procedures are in place, available to parents on the college website or by other means and reviewed at least annually;

· mechanisms are in place to assist staff to understand and discharge their role and responsibilities as set out in Part one of Keeping Students Safe in Education;

· an annual report on the effectiveness of the college's safeguarding procedures is presented to the board of directors and submitted to WSCB to meet s175/157 requirements;

· any weaknesses brought to its attention relating to safeguarding are remedied without delay.

· it complies with all legislative duties, including the duty to report suspected or known cases of FGM and the duty to prevent young people from being drawn into terrorism.

 

4.2 The Headteacher will ensure that:

· The Safeguarding policies and procedures are fully implemented and followed by all staff

· Sufficient resources are allocated to enable the DSL and other staff to discharge their responsibilities with regard to child protection.

· All staff feel able to raise concerns about poor or unsafe practice and that these are handled sensitively and in accordance with the whistleblowing procedures;

· All allegations of abuse are reported to the LADO in a timely manner.

4.3 The DSL will co-ordinate action on safeguarding and promoting the welfare of students within the college setting. The DSL is responsible for:

· Organising child protection induction training for all newly appointed staff, whole staff training, refreshed at least every 3 years with annual updates as required;

· Providing a mechanism to ensure that all staff understand and are able to discharge their role and responsibilities as set out in Part one of Keeping Students Safe in Education;

· Undertaking, in conjunction with the Headteacher and Safeguarding Director, an annual audit of safeguarding procedures, using the County safeguarding checklist or similar;

· Making use of the Levels of Need guidance when making a decision about whether or not the threshold for Early Help or Social Care intervention is met;

· Referring a child to the Family Front Door, when there are concerns about possible abuse and neglect;

· Referring a child to the Channel Panel when there are concerns about possible radicalisation or involvement in extremist groups;

· Keeping written records of concerns about students, including the use of body maps, even where there is no need to refer the matter immediately;

· Ensuring all child protection records are kept securely, separate from the main pupil file, and in locked locations;

· Ensuring that all child protection files are transferred in a safe and timely manner when a child moves settings, both between and across phases, within and out of county;

· Notifying the key worker if there is an unexplained absence of more than two days of a pupil who is subject to a child protection plan;

· Monitoring unauthorised absence, particularly where students go missing on repeated occasions, reporting concerns in line with 'missing students' procedures;

· Developing effective links with relevant agencies and other professionals and co-operating as required with their enquiries regarding safeguarding matters including co-operation with serious case reviews, attendance at strategy meetings, initial and review child protection conferences, core group and child in need review meetings;

· Contributing to assessments and providing a report to initial and review conferences which has been shared with parents first, whenever possible;

· Co-ordinating a programme of safety, health and well-being through the curriculum, including issues of protective behaviours, healthy relationships, staying safe on-line, and the promotion of fundamental British values.

 

 

5. Procedures for Managing Concerns

 

5.1 Our college adheres to child protection procedures that have been agreed locally through the Worcestershire Safeguarding Students Board (WSCB). Where we identify students and families in need of support, we will carry out our responsibilities in accordance with the West Mercia Consortium inter-agency procedures and the WSCB Levels of Need Guidance.  

5.2 Every member of staff, including volunteers working with students at our college, is advised to maintain an attitude of ‘it could happen here’ where safeguarding is concerned. When concerned about the welfare of a child, staff members should always act in the interests of the child and have a responsibility to take action as outlined in this policy

5.3 All staff are encouraged to report any concerns that they have and not see these as insignificant. On occasions, a referral is justified by a single incident such as an injury or disclosure of abuse. More often however, concerns accumulate over a period of time and are evidenced by building up a picture of harm over time; this is particularly true in cases of emotional abuse and neglect. In these circumstances, it is crucial that staff record and pass on concerns in accordance with this policy to allow the DSL to build up a picture and access support for the child at the earliest opportunity. A reliance on memory without accurate and contemporaneous records of concern could lead to a failure to protect.  

5.4 It is not the responsibility of college staff to investigate welfare concerns or determine the truth of any disclosure or allegation. All staff, however, have a duty to recognise concerns and pass the information on in accordance with the procedures outlined in this policy.

5.5 The Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) should be used as a first point of contact for concerns and queries regarding any safeguarding concern in our college. Any member of staff or visitor to the college who receives a disclosure of abuse or suspects that a child is at risk of harm must report it immediately to the DSL or, if unavailable, to the deputy designated lead. In the absence of either of the above, the matter should be brought to the attention of the most senior member of staff.

5.6 All concerns about a child or young person should be reported without delay and recorded in writing using the agreed college template.

5.7 Following receipt of any information raising concern, the DSL will consider what action to take and seek advice from Students’s Services as required. All information and actions taken, including the reasons for any decisions made, will be fully documented.

5.8 All referrals will be made in line with local procedures as detailed on the Worcestershire website.

5.9 If, at any point, there is a risk of immediate serious harm to a child a referral should be made to Students’ Services immediately. Anybody can make a referral. If the child’s situation does not appear to be improving the staff member with concerns should press for re-consideration by raising concerns again with the DSL and/or the Headteacher. Concerns should always lead to help for the child at some point.

5.10 Staff should always follow the reporting procedures outlined in this policy in the first instance. However, they may also share information directly with Students’s Services, or the police if:

· The situation is an emergency and the designated senior person, their deputy and the Headteacher are all unavailable;

· They are convinced that a direct report is the only way to ensure the pupil’s safety.

5.11 Any member of staff who does not feel that concerns about a child have been responded to appropriately and in accordance with the procedures outlined in this policy should raise their concerns with the Headteacher or the Safeguarding Director. If any member of staff does not feel the situation has been addressed appropriately at this point they should contact Children’s Services directly with their concerns.

5.12 Peer on peer abuse

We recognise that students are also vulnerable to physical, sexual and emotional abuse by their peers or siblings. This is most likely to include, but not limited to: bullying (including cyber bullying), gender based violence/sexual assaults and sexting. Abuse perpetrated by students can be just as harmful as that perpetrated by an adult, so it is important to remember the impact on the victim of the abuse as well as to focus on the support for the child or young person exhibiting the harmful behaviour. Such abuse will always be taken as seriously as abuse perpetrated by an adult and the same safeguarding students procedures will apply in respect of any child who is suffering or likely to suffer significant harm; staff must never tolerate or dismiss concerns relating to peer on peer abuse.

Where a child discloses safeguarding allegations against another pupil in the same setting, the DSL should refer to the local procedures on the WSCB website (section 2.12) and seek advice from the Family Front Door or Community Social Worker before commencing its own investigation or contacting parents.

5.13 Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND)

We recognise that students with special educational needs and disabilities can face additional safeguarding challenges and these are discussed in staff training. These additional barriers can include:

· Assumptions that indicators of possible abuse such as behaviour, mood and injury relate to the child’s disability without further exploration;

· Students with SEN and disabilities can be disproportionally impacted by things like bullying without outwardly showing any signs; and

· Communication barriers and difficulties in overcoming these barriers.

5.14 Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE)

We recognise that CSE is a form of child abuse involving criminal behaviours against students and young people which can have a long-lasting adverse impact on a child’s physical and emotional health. Sexual exploitation involves an individual or group of adults taking advantage of the vulnerability of an individual or groups of students or young people. Victims can be boys or girls. Students and young people are often unwittingly drawn into sexual exploitation through the offer of friendship and care, gifts, drugs and alcohol, and sometimes accommodation. It may also be linked to child trafficking.

The college addresses the risks of sexual exploitation in the PSHE and the Sex and Relationship (SRE) curriculum. A common feature of sexual exploitation is that the child often doesn’t recognise the coercive nature of the relationship and doesn’t see themselves as a victim. The child may initially resent what they perceive as interference by staff, but staff must act on their concerns, as they would for any other type of abuse.

All staff are made aware of the indicators of sexual exploitation and all concerns are reported immediately to the DSL.

5.15 'Honour Based' Violence (HBV)

We recognise that our staff are well placed to identify concerns and take action to prevent students from becoming victims of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) and other forms of so-called ‘honour-based’ violence (HBV) and provide guidance on these issues through our safeguarding training. If staff have a concern regarding a child that might be at risk of HBV they should inform the DSL who will activate local safeguarding procedures, using existing national and local protocols for multiagency liaison with police and students’ social care.

Where FGM has taken place, since 31 October 2015 there has been a mandatory reporting duty placed on teachers. Section 5B of the Female Genital Mutilation Act 2003 (as inserted by section 74 of the Serious Crime Act 2015) places a statutory duty upon teachers in England and Wales, to personally report to the police where they discover (either through disclosure by the victim or visual evidence) that FGM appears to have been carried out on a girl under 18. Those failing to report such cases will face disciplinary sanctions. We will provide guidance and support to our teachers on this requirement and further information on when and how to make a report can be found in the following Home Office guidance: 'Mandatory Reporting of Female Genital Mutilation - procedural information' (October 2015).

5.16 Radicalisation and Extremism

We recognise that safeguarding against radicalisation and extremism is no different to safeguarding against any other vulnerability in today’s society. We will ensure that:

· Through training, staff, volunteers and directors have an understanding of what radicalisation and extremism is, why we need to be vigilant in college and how to respond when concerns arise.

· There are systems in place for keeping pupils safe from extremist material when accessing the internet in our college by using effective filtering and usage policies.

· The DSL has received Prevent training and will act as the point of contact within our college for any concerns relating to radicalisation and extremism.

· The DSL will make referrals in accordance with WSCB procedures and will represent our college at Channel meetings as required.

· Through our curriculum, we will promote the spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of pupils. We 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.

 

6. Information Sharing & Confidentiality

 

6.1 We recognise that all matters relating to child protection are confidential.

6.2 The Headteacher or DSL will disclose any information about a pupil to other members of staff on a need to know basis only.

6.3 All staff must be aware that they have a professional responsibility to share information with other agencies in order to safeguard students.

6.4 All staff must be aware that they cannot promise a child to keep secrets which might compromise the child's safety or well-being.

 

7. Communication with Parents

7.1 We recognise that good communication with parents is crucial in order to safeguard and promote the welfare of students effectively.

7.2 We will always undertake appropriate discussion with parents prior to involvement of another agency unless to do so would place the child or an adult at further risk of harm or would impede a criminal investigation.

7.3 We will ensure that parents have an understanding of the responsibilities placed on the college and staff to safeguard students and their duty to co-operate with other agencies in this respect.

 

8. Record Keeping

8.1 Any member of staff receiving a disclosure of abuse from a child or young person, or noticing signs or symptoms of possible abuse, will make notes as soon as possible (within the hour, if possible) writing down exactly what was said, using the child’s own words as far as possible. All notes should be timed, dated and signed, with name printed alongside the signature. Concerns will be recorded using the college’s safeguarding students recording system.

8.2 All records of a child protection nature will be passed to the DSL including case conference or core group minutes and written records of any concerns. Child protection records are kept securely and transferred in a safe and timely manner when a child moves college.

8.3 The DSL will maintain and regularly audit the college's child protection records and ensure that each stand-alone file includes a chronology of significant events.

 

 

9. Supporting Students

9.1 We recognise that students who are abused or witness violence may find it difficult to develop a sense of self-worth. They may feel helplessness, humiliation and some sense of blame.

9.2 We acknowledge that college may be the only stable, secure and predictable element in the lives of students who have been abused or who are at risk of harm.

9.3 We are aware that research shows that at college their behaviour may be challenging and defiant or they may be withdrawn.

9.4 The college will endeavour to support all students by:

· Encouraging self-esteem and self-assertiveness through the curriculum, as well as promoting respectful relationships, challenging bullying and humiliating behaviour;

· Promoting a positive, supportive and secure environment giving pupils a sense of being valued;

· A consistently applied college behaviour policy which is aimed at supporting vulnerable pupils. The college will ensure that the pupil knows that some behaviour is unacceptable but that they are valued and not to be blamed for any abuse which has occurred;

· Liaising with other agencies that support the pupil such as Students’s Social Care Services, Child and Adult Mental Health Service (CAMHS), Educational Psychology Service and those agencies involved in the safeguarding of students;

· The use of Early Help Services, through the Family Front Door, when appropriate;

· Notifying Students’ Social Care Services immediately there is a significant concern;

· Providing continuing support to a child about whom there have been concerns who leaves the college by ensuring that appropriate information is forwarded under confidential cover to the child’s new setting.

 

10. Supporting and Supervision of

10.1 We recognise that staff working in the college who have become involved with a child who has suffered harm, or appears to be likely to suffer harm, may find the situation stressful and upsetting.

10.2 We will support such staff by providing an opportunity to talk through their anxieties with the DSL and to seek further support such as counselling or regular supervision, as appropriate.

10.3 We will enable supervision for the DSL through network meetings, direct consultation with the Senior Adviser or Consultant Social Workers in order to promote best practice and challenge unsatisfactory or poor practice.

10.4 In order to reduce the risk of allegations being made against staff, and ensure that staff are competent, confident and safe to work with students, they will be made aware of safer working practice guidance and will be given opportunities in training to develop their understanding of what constitutes safe and unsafe behaviour.

 

11. Safer Recruitment and Selection of Staff

11.1 The college has a written recruitment and selection policy statement and procedures linking explicitly to this policy. The statement is included in all job advertisements, publicity material, recruitment websites, and candidate information packs.

 

11.2 The recruitment process is robust in seeking to establish the commitment of candidates to support the college’s measures to safeguard students and to identify, deter or reject people who might pose a risk of harm to students or are otherwise unsuited to work with them.

 

11.3 All staff working within our college who have substantial access to students have been checked as to their suitability, including verification of their identity, qualifications and a satisfactory barred list check, enhanced DBS check and a right to work in the UK.

 

11.4 All teachers working within our college have been checked using the Teacher Services website to ensure they have been awarded QTS, they have completed their teacher induction and that there are no prohibitions, sanctions or restrictions in place that might prevent them from taking part in certain activities or working in specific positions.

11.5 Our Directors are subject to an enhanced DBS check without barred list check.

11.6 The college maintains a single central record of recruitment checks for audit purposes.

11.7 Any member of staff working in regulated activity prior to receipt of a satisfactory DBS check will not be left unsupervised and will be subject to a risk assessment.

11.8 Volunteers who are not working in regulated activity, will be supervised at all times.

 

 

 

12. Allegations against staff

12.1 We acknowledge that a pupil may make an allegation against a member of staff.

12.2 If such an allegation is made, which meets the criteria as identified in Part 4 of Keeping Students Safe in Education, the member of staff receiving the allegation will immediately inform the Headteacher, unless the allegation concerns the Headteacher, in which case the Chair of Directors will be informed immediately.

12.3 The Headteacher (or Chair of Directors) on all such occasions will discuss the content of the allegation with LADO, prior to undertaking any investigation.

12.4 The college will follow the DfE and LA procedures for managing allegations against staff, a copy of which is available in college.

12.5 The case manager will be guided by the LADO in all matters relating to the case, including suspension, sharing of information and any follow up investigation. –

 

13. Whistleblowing

13.1 We recognise that students cannot be expected to raise concerns in an environment where staff fail to do so.

13.2 All staff should be aware of their duty to raise concerns, where they exist, about the attitude or actions of colleagues using the college's confidential reporting (whistleblowing) policy.

13.3 Whistleblowing concerns about the Headteacher should be raised with the Chair of Directors.

13.4 Staff will be made aware that if they feel unable to raise a child protection failure internally, they can contact the NSPCC whistleblowing helpline.

 

14. Complaints or Concerns expressed by Pupils, Parents, Staff or Volunteers

14.1 We recognise that listening to students is an important and essential part of safeguarding them against abuse and neglect. To this end, any expression of dissatisfaction or disquiet in relation to an individual child will be listened to and acted upon in order to safeguard his/her welfare.

14.2 We will also seek to ensure that the child or adult who makes a complaint is informed not only about the action the college will take but also the length of time that will be required to resolve the complaint. The college will also endeavour to keep the child or adult regularly informed as to the progress of his/her complaint. The college's complaints procedures are readily available.

 

 

 

 

 

15. Positive Physical Intervention

15.1 Our policy on positive handling is set out in our behaviour policy/a separate policy and acknowledges that staff must only ever use physical intervention as a last resort, and that at all times it must be the minimal force necessary to prevent injury or damage to property.

15.2 We understand that physical intervention of a nature that causes injury or distress to a child may be considered under management of allegations or disciplinary procedures.

15.3 Staff who are likely to need to use physical intervention will be appropriately trained in the Team Teach technique, or equivalent.

15.4 All incidences of physical intervention will be recorded in accordance with the Team Teach recommended procedures.

15.5 We recognise that touch is appropriate in the context of working with students and all staff have been given 'safe working practice' guidance to ensure they are clear about their professional boundaries.

 

16. Abuse of Position of Trust

16.1 We recognise that as adults working in the college, we are in a relationship of trust with pupils in our care and acknowledge that it could be considered a criminal offence to abuse that trust.

16.2 We acknowledge that the principle of equality embedded in the legislation of the Sexual Offenders Act 2003 applies irrespective of sexual orientation: neither homosexual nor heterosexual relationships are acceptable within a position of trust.

16.3 We recognise that the legislation is intended to protect young people in education who are over the age of consent but under 18 years of age.

 

17. Looked After Students

17.1 The most common reason for students becoming looked after is as a result of abuse or neglect. The college ensures that staff have the necessary skills and understanding to keep looked after students safe. Appropriate staff have information about a child’s looked after legal status and care arrangements, including the level of authority delegated to the carer by the authority looking after the child. The designated teacher for looked after students and the DSL have details of the child’s social worker and the name and contact details of the Local Authority’s Virtual Head for students in care.

 

18. Students Missing Education (CME)

18.1 We recognise that a child going missing from education is a potential indicator of abuse or neglect.

18.2 Our procedures for dealing with students that go missing from education are based on the Local Authority and WSCB procedures.

18.3 We will ensure that we follow these procedures for dealing with students that go missing from education, particularly on repeat occasions, to help identify the risk of abuse and neglect, including sexual exploitation, and to help prevent the risks of their going missing in future.

18.4 We will ensure that we report students missing education to the LA CME officer, in line with statutory requirements.

 

19. Racist Incidents 

19.1 Our policy on racist incidents is set out in a separate policy and acknowledges that repeated racist incidents or a single serious incident may lead to consideration under child protection procedures. We maintain a log of racist incidents in college.

 

20. Anti-Bullying

20.1 Our policy on anti-bullying is set out in a separate policy and acknowledges that to allow or condone bullying may lead to consideration under child protection procedures. All incidences of bullying, including cyber-bullying, sexting, racist, homophobic and gender-related bullying, will be dealt with in accordance with our anti-bullying policy. We recognise that students with special needs and/or disabilities are more susceptible to being bullied. We maintain a log of bullying incidents in college.

20.2 We recognise that there will be occasions when bullying incidents will fall within child protection procedures or may be deemed criminal activity and that it may be necessary to report the concerns to the Family Front Door or to the Police.

 

21. E-safety

21.1 All members of staff are trained in and receive regular updates in e-safety and recognising and reporting concerns.

21.2 Our Acceptable Use policy recognises that internet safety is a whole college responsibility (staff, pupils, directors and parents).

21.3 Students and young people may expose themselves to danger, whether knowingly or unknowingly, when using the internet and other technologies. Additionally, some young people may find themselves involved in activities which are inappropriate or possibly illegal.

21.4 We therefore recognise our responsibility to educate our pupils, teaching them the appropriate behaviours and critical thinking skills to enable them to remain both safe and legal when using the internet and related technologies.

21.5 We will ensure that filters are in place to prevent access to unsuitable sites and we will monitor the use of the college network and internet to ensure that any pupil or staff member attempting to access inappropriate, abusive or harmful material is appropriately advised and/or supported.

 

22. Photography and use of images (including hand held devices)

 

22.1 The welfare and protection of our students is paramount and consideration should always be given to whether the use of photography will place our students at risk. Images may be used to harm students, for example as a preliminary to 'grooming' or by displaying them inappropriately on the internet, particularly social networking sites.

22.2 For this reason consent is always sought when photographing students using any means and including iPads, smart phones or cameras and additional consideration given to photographing vulnerable students, particularly Looked After Students or those known to be fleeing domestic violence. Consent must be sought from those with parental responsibility (this may include the Local Authority in the case of Looked after Students).

 

22.3 Many pupils own or have access to hand held devices and parents/carers are encouraged to consider measures to keep their students safe when using the internet and social media at home, in their care homes and in the community.

 

23. Staff/pupil relationships

23.1 The college provides advice to staff regarding their personal online activity and has strict rules regarding online contact and electronic communication with pupils. Staff found to be in breach of these rules may be subject to disciplinary action or child protection investigation.

 

24. Health & Safety

24.1 Our Health & Safety policy, set out in a separate document, reflects the consideration we give to the safeguarding of our students both within the college environment and when away from the college, for example when undertaking college trips and visits.

24.2 Risk Assessments are undertaken and reviewed regularly, in respect of site security, risk of students being drawn into terrorism or exposed to extremist behaviour, risk to and from students displaying harmful behaviour.

 

25. Safe Environment

25.1 The college undertakes appropriate risk assessments and checks in respect of all equipment and of the building and grounds in line with local and national guidance and regulations concerning health and safety.

25.2 The college has adequate security arrangements in place in respect of the use of its grounds and buildings by visitors both in and out of college hours.

25.3 Visitors to the college, for example visiting speakers, theatre groups or curriculum specialists, will be appropriately checked and vetted, to ensure they are not linked to extremist groups or promoting extremist or other harmful material.

 

26. Private fostering arrangements

26.1 A private fostering arrangement occurs when someone other than a parent or a close relative cares for a child for a period of 28 days or more, with the agreement of the child’s parents. It applies to students under the age of 16, or aged under 18 if the child is disabled. Students looked after by the local authority or who are placed in a residential college, students’ home or hospital are not considered to be privately fostered.

26.2 Private fostering occurs in all cultures, including British culture and students may be privately fostered at any age.

26.3 Most privately fostered students remain safe and well but safeguarding concerns have been raised in some cases so it is important that colleges are alert to possible safeguarding issues, including the possibility that a child has been trafficked into the country.

26.4 By law, a parent, private foster carer or other persons involved in making a private fostering arrangement must notify Students’ Services as soon as possible.

26.5 If we become aware of a private fostering arrangement, we will check that Students’ Services have been informed.

 

27. Challenge and Escalation

27.1 We recognise that professional disagreements may arise between any agencies and resolving problems is an integral part of co-operation and joint working to safeguard students.

27.2 As part of our responsibility for safeguarding students, we acknowledge that we must be prepared to challenge each other if we feel that responses to concerns, assessments or the way in which plans are implemented are not safeguarding the child and promoting their welfare.

27.3 We are aware of the WSCB escalation procedures for raising concerns in respect of poor practice and recognise our responsibility to utilise these as and when necessary, in the interests of safeguarding and promoting the welfare of students.

 

28. Monitoring and Evaluation

28.1 Our Safeguarding Students policy and procedures will be monitored and evaluated by:

· Completion of the annual safeguarding audit;

· Completion and return to the LA/WSCB of the annual safeguarding report to the Board of directors;

· Pupil surveys and questionnaires;

· Discussions with students and staff;

· Scrutiny of data and risk assessments;

· Scrutiny of the college's single central record of recruitment checks;

· Scrutiny of Board of director’s minutes;

· Monitoring of logs of bullying/racist/behaviour incidents and PPI records;

· Supervision of staff involved in child protection;

· Case file audits undertaken by the DSL and the WSCB.

 

29. Other Relevant Policies

29.1 The Board of directors’ statutory responsibility for safeguarding the welfare of students goes beyond basic child protection procedures.

29.2 The duty is now to ensure that safeguarding permeates all activity and functions. This policy therefore complements and supports a range of other policies, for instance:

· Staff Behaviour / Staff Code of Conduct

· Allegations of Abuse against Teachers and other Staff

· Complaints Procedure

· Behaviour Management

· Anti-Bullying, including cyber-bullying

· Positive Physical Intervention

· Special Educational Needs

· Trips and visits

· Work experience and extended work placements

· First aid and the administration of medicines

· Health and Safety

· Intimate Care

· Sex and Relationships Education

· Safe and Appropriate Use of Images

· Equal Opportunities

· E-safety and Acceptable Internet Use

· Whistleblowing (Confidential Reporting)

· Preventing Extremism and Radicalisation

 

APPENDIX 1

FORM 1

Logging a Concern about a Child’s Safety and Welfare – all staff and visitors

 

Pupil’s Name:                                                         Pupil's name:                                                       d.o.b.                           

 

Date:

 

Time:

Name:

..................................................…………

Print

 

.................................................………….

Signature

Position:

 

Note the reason(s) for recording the incident.

 

 

 

Details of concern/incident - record the who/what/where/when factually (continue on reverse of sheet if necessary):

 

 

 

 

Any other relevant information (witnesses, immediate action taken)

 

 

 

 

Action taken

 

 

 

Reporting staff signature ………………………………………………  Date ………………

DSL – Response/Outcome

 

 

DSL signature ………………………………………………………….  Date ………………

    Check to make sure your report is clear now - and will also be clear to a stranger reading it next year.

 

PLEASE PASS THIS FORM TO YOUR DESIGNATED SAFEGUARDING

 

APPENDIX 2

Recognition & Identification of Abuse

Taken from Working Together to Safeguard Children 2015, Appendix A

What is abuse?

Abuse and neglect are forms of maltreatment of a child. Somebody may abuse or neglect a child by inflicting harm, or by failing to act to prevent harm. Children may be abused in a family or in an institutional or community setting, by those known to them or, more rarely, by a stranger for example, via the internet. They may be abused by an adult or adults, or another child or children.

Indicators of Abuse

Caution should be used when referring to lists of signs and symptoms of abuse. Although the signs and symptoms listed below may be indicative of abuse there may be alternative explanations. In assessing the circumstances of any child any of these indicators should be viewed within the overall context of the child's individual situation including any disability.

EMOTIONAL ABUSE

Emotional Abuse is the persistent emotional maltreatment of a child such as to cause severe and persistent adverse effects on the child's emotional development. It may involve conveying to children that they are worthless or unloved, inadequate, or valued only insofar as they meet the needs of another person. It may include not giving the child opportunities to express their views, deliberately silencing them or ‘making fun’ of what they say or how they communicate. It may feature age or developmentally inappropriate expectations being imposed on children. These may include interactions that are beyond the child's developmental capability, as well as overprotection and limitation of exploration and learning, or preventing the child participating in normal social interaction. It may involve seeing or hearing the ill-treatment of another. It may involve serious bullying (including cyber-bullying), causing children frequently to feel frightened or in danger, or the exploitation or corruption of children. Some level of emotional abuse is involved in all types of maltreatment of a child, though it may occur alone.

Emotional abuse is difficult to:

- define

- identify/recognise

- prove.

Emotional abuse is chronic and cumulative and has a long-term impact. Indicators may include:

Physical, mental and emotional development lags
Sudden speech disorders
Continual self-depreciation ('I'm stupid, ugly, worthless, etc.')
Overreaction to mistakes
Extreme fear of any new situation
Inappropriate response to pain ('I deserve this')
Unusual physical behaviour (rocking, hair twisting, self-mutilation) - consider within the context of any form of disability such as autism
Extremes of passivity or aggression
Children suffering from emotional abuse may be withdrawn and emotionally flat. One reaction is for the child to seek attention constantly or to be over-familiar. Lack of self-esteem and developmental delay are again likely to be present
Babies – feeding difficulties, crying, poor sleep patterns, delayed development, irritable, non-cuddly, apathetic, non-demanding
Toddler/Pre-School – head banging, rocking, bad temper, ‘violent’, clingy. From overactive to apathetic, noisy to quiet. Developmental delay – especially language and social skills
School age – Wetting and soiling, relationship difficulties, poor performance at school, non-attendance, antisocial behaviour. Feels worthless, unloved, inadequate, frightened, isolated, corrupted and terrorised
Adolescent – depression, self-harm, substance abuse, eating disorder, poor self-esteem, oppositional, aggressive and delinquent behaviour
Child may be underweight and/or stunted
Child may fail to achieve milestones, fail to thrive, experience academic failure or under achievement
Also consider a child's difficulties in expressing their emotions and what they are experiencing and whether this has been impacted on by factors such as age, language barriers or disability

 

NEGLECT

Neglect is the persistent failure to meet a child's basic physical and/or psychological needs, likely to result in the serious impairment of the child's health or development. Neglect may occur during pregnancy as a result of maternal substance abuse. Once a child is born, neglect may involve a parent or carer failing to provide adequate food, clothing and shelter (including exclusion from home or abandonment), failing to protect a child from physical and emotional harm or danger, failure to ensure adequate supervision (including the use of inadequate care-givers) or failure to ensure access to appropriate medical care or treatment. It may also include neglect of, or unresponsiveness to, a child's basic emotional needs.

There are occasions when nearly all parents find it difficult to cope with the many demands of caring for children. But this does not mean that their children are being neglected. Neglect involves ongoing failure to meet a child's needs.

Neglect can often fit into six forms which are:

Medical – the withholding of medical care including health and dental.
Emotional – lack of emotional warmth, touch and nurture
Nutritional – either through lack of access to a proper diet which can affect in their development.
Educational – failing to ensure regular school attendance that prevents the child reaching their full potential academically
Physical – failure to meet the child’s physical needs
Lack of supervision and guidance – meaning the child is in dangerous situations without the ability to risk assess the danger.[1]

Common Concerns:

With regard to the child, some of the regular concerns are:

The child’s development in all areas including educational attainment
Cleanliness
Health
Children left at home alone and accidents related to this
Taking on unreasonable care for others
Young carers

Neglect can often be an indicator of further maltreatment and is often identified as an issue in serious case reviews as being present in the lead up to the death of the child or young person. It is important to recognise that the most frequent issues and concerns regarding the family in relation to neglect relate to parental capability. This can be a consequence of:

Poor health, including mental health or mental illness
Disability, including learning difficulties
Substance misuse and addiction
Domestic violence

School staff need to consider both acts of commission (where a parent/carer deliberately neglects the child) and acts of omission (where a parent’s failure to act is causing the neglect). This is a key consideration with regard to school attendance where parents are not ensuring their child attend school regularly.

Many of the signs of neglect are visible.  However school staff may not instinctively know how to recognise signs of neglect or know how to respond effectively when they suspect a pupil is being neglected. Children spend considerable time in school so staff have opportunities to identify patterns over time and recognise and respond to concerns about their safety and welfare. All concerns should be recorded and reflected upon, not simply placed in a file.

Here are some signs of possible neglect:

Physical signs:

Constant hunger
Poor personal hygiene
Constant tiredness
Emaciation
Untreated medical problems
The child seems underweight and is very small for their age
The child is poorly clothed, with inadequate protection from the weather
Neglect can lead to failure to thrive, manifest by a fall away from initial centile lines in weight, height and head circumference. Repeated growth measurements are crucially important
Signs of malnutrition include wasted muscles and poor condition of skin and hair. It is important not to miss an organic cause of failure to thrive; if this is suspected, further investigations will be required
Infants and children with neglect often show rapid growth catch-up and improved emotional response in a hospital environment
Failure to thrive through lack of understanding of dietary needs of a child or inability to provide an appropriate diet; or may present with obesity through inadequate attention to the child’s diet
Being too hot or too cold – red, swollen and cold hands and feet or they may be dressed in inappropriate clothing
Consequences arising from situations of danger – accidents, assaults, poisoning
Unusually severe but preventable physical conditions owing to lack of awareness of preventative health care or failure to treat minor conditions
Health problems associated with lack of basic facilities such as heating
Neglect can also include failure to care for the individual needs of the child including any additional support the child may need as a result of any disability

Behavioural signs:

No social relationships
Compulsive scavenging

Destructive tendencies

If they are often absent from school for no apparent reason
If they are regularly left alone, or in charge of younger brothers or sisters

Lack of stimulation can result in developmental delay, for example, speech delay, and this may be picked up opportunistically or at formal development checks

Craving attention or ambivalent towards adults, or may be very withdrawn
Delayed development and failing at school (poor stimulation and opportunity to learn)
Difficult or challenging behaviour

 

PHYSICAL ABUSE

Physical abuse may involve hitting, shaking, throwing, poisoning, burning or scalding, drowning, suffocating, or otherwise causing physical harm to a child. Physical harm may also be caused when a parent or carer fabricates the symptoms of or deliberately induces illness in a child.

When dealing with concerns regarding physical abuse, refer any suspected non-accidental injury to the Designated Safeguarding Lead without delay so that they are able to seek appropriate guidance from the police and/or Children’s Services in order to safeguard the child.

Staff must be alert to:

Unexplained recurrent injuries or burns; improbable excuses or refusal to explain injuries;
Injuries that are not consistent with the story: too many, too severe, wrong place or pattern, child too young for the activity described.

Physical signs:

Bald patches

Bruises, black eyes and broken
Untreated or inadequately treated injuries

Injuries to parts of the body where accidents are unlikely, such as thighs, back, abdomen 
Scalds and burns
General appearance and behaviour of the child may include:

- Concurrent failure to thrive: measure height, weight and, in the younger child, head circumference;

- Frozen watchfulness: impassive facial appearance of the abused child who carefully tracks the examiner with his eyes.

Bruising:

- Bruising patterns can suggest gripping (finger marks), slapping or beating with an object.

- Bruising on the cheeks, head or around the ear and black eyes can be the result of non-accidental injury.

 

Other injuries:

- Bite marks may be evident from an impression of teeth

- Small circular burns on the skin suggest cigarette burns

- Scalding inflicted by immersion in hot water often affects buttocks or feet and legs symmetrically

- Red lines occur with ligature injuries

- Retinal haemorrhages can occur with head injury and vigorous shaking of the baby

- Tearing of the frenulum of the upper lip can occur with force-feeding. However, any injury of this type must be assessed in the context of the explanation given, the child’s developmental stage, a full examination and other relevant investigations as appropriate.

- Fractured ribs: rib fractures in a young child are suggestive of non-accidental injury

- Other fractures: spiral fractures of the long bones are suggestive of non-accidental injury

Behavioural signs:

Wearing clothes to cover injuries, even in hot weather
Refusal to undress for gym
Chronic running away
Fear of medical help or examination
Self-destructive tendencies
Fear of physical contact - shrinking back if touched
Admitting that they are punished, but the punishment is excessive (such as a child being beaten every night to 'make him study')
Fear of suspected abuser being contacted
Injuries that the child cannot explain or explains unconvincingly
Become sad, withdrawn or depressed
Having trouble sleeping
Behaving aggressively or be disruptive
Showing fear of certain adults
Having a lack of confidence and low self-esteem

Using drugs or alcohol

Repetitive pattern of attendance: recurrent visits, repeated injuries
Excessive compliance
Hyper-vigilance

 

 

SEXUAL ABUSE

Sexual Abuse involves forcing or enticing a child or young person to take part in sexual activities, not necessarily involving a high level of violence, whether or not the child is aware of what is happening. The activities may involve physical contact, including assault by penetration (for example rape or oral sex) or non-penetrative acts such as masturbation, kissing, rubbing and touching outside of clothing. They may include non-contact activities, such as involving children in looking at or in the production of, sexual images, watching sexual activities, encouraging children to behave in sexually inappropriate ways, or grooming a child in preparation for abuse (including via the internet). Sexual abuse is not solely perpetrated by adult males. Women can also commit acts of sexual abuse, as can other children.

Sexual abuse is usually perpetrated by people who are known to and trusted by the child – e.g. relatives, family friends, neighbours, people working with the child in school or through other activities.

Characteristics of child sexual abuse:

It is usually planned and systematic – people do not sexually abuse children by accident, though sexual abuse can be opportunistic;
Grooming the child – people who abuse children take care to choose a vulnerable child and often spend time making them dependent. This can be done in person or via the internet through chat-rooms and social networking sites;
Grooming the child’s environment – abusers try to ensure that potential adult protectors (parents and other carers especially) are not suspicious of their motives. Again, this can be done in person or via the internet through chat-rooms and social networking sites.

 

 

 

 

 

In young children behavioural changes may include:

Regressing to younger behaviour patterns such as thumb sucking or bringing out discarded cuddly toys

Being overly affectionate - desiring high levels of physical contact and signs of affection such as hugs and kisses

Lack of trust or fear of someone they know well, such as not wanting to be alone with a babysitter or child minder

They may start using sexually explicit behaviour or language, particularly if the behaviour or language is not appropriate for their age
Starting to wet again, day or night/nightmares

In older children behavioural changes may include:

Extreme reactions, such as depression, self-mutilation, suicide attempts, running away, overdoses, anorexia
Personality changes such as becoming insecure or clinging
Sudden loss of appetite or compulsive eating
Being isolated or withdrawn
Inability to concentrate
Become worried about clothing being removed
Suddenly drawing sexually explicit pictures
Trying to be 'ultra-good' or perfect; overreacting to criticism
Genital discharge or urinary tract infections

Marked changes in the child's general behaviour. For example, they may become unusually quiet and withdrawn, or unusually aggressive. Or they may start suffering from what may seem to be physical ailments, but

“Leaders have created a cohesive teaching and pastoral care team. The team's skills in teaching, learning and behavioural support ensure that pupils make good progress.”

Ofsted Report May 2018


Outstanding for Personal Development, Behaviour and Welfare!
31 May 2018

Ofsted May 2018 finds Norton College to be a Good school for overall effectiveness.   ​Effectiveness of leadership and management Good  Quality...

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