Educational Diversity

Child protection

and

Safeguarding Policy

September 2018

To be reviewed September 2019

EDUCATIONAL DIVERSITY

Child protection and safeguarding policy

Policy

Rationale

Educational Diversity fully recognises its responsibilities for child protection and safeguarding.  Our policy applies to all staff, Management Committee members and volunteers working in the school.  These are the following elements to our policy:

All children have the right to live without being abused, or live in the fear of being abused.  Here within Educational Diversity, we firmly believe that our children matter and it is our responsibility to protect any child in our care who we know to be at risk of being abused, or who has been abused.  The following policies should be adhered to:

“Guidance for safer working practice for those working with children and young people in education settings” October 2015

“Working Together to Safeguard Children” (2018)

“Keeping Children Safe in Education” (2018)

“What to do if you are worried a child is being abused?” (2015)

“Information sharing” (2018)

“Prevent Duty” (2015)

 

Care of individuals is central to the school.

All staff working within Educational Diversity and any new staff into the school have the minimum of Level 1 Child Protection training and a number of staff have completed Level 2 ”Working Together”.  The training is renewed in line with statutory requirements and is facilitated through the Assistant Headteacher, with responsibility for safeguarding. This information is held on the Single Central Register (SCR)(Fiona Shaw). As of October 2018, further opportunities are  planned around the specified DSL training and Level 3 training is also planned.

Within each Centre, we have a Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) for child protection who has received appropriate training and support in this role.  Safeguarding is led across the whole school by Mrs Anna Dootson (AHT) and Mrs Wendy Casson (The Headteacher).  The nominated member of the management committee with responsibility for safeguarding is Tammy Hackney.

We will follow the procedures set out by the LSCB and take account of guidance issued by the Department for Education. www.blackpoolsafeguarding.org.uk

This policy is a stand-alone policy, but should be read in conjunction with other statutory Educational Diversity policies which can be accessed through our website:  www.eddiversity.com

Scope of our commitment

We are fully committed to safeguarding and continually aim to create a culture of vigilance

At our school safeguarding encompasses child protection, safer recruitment and managing allegations against members of staff as well our approach to the Early Help Assessment Framework.  It is also supported by our approach to behaviour management, our response to managing bullying, our response to positive handling, our response to children who are absent from Educational Diversity and our response to

the use of information technology in school and our health and safety procedures. These are documented in separate policies which can be accessed through our website.

Throughout our work, we have a clear commitment to supporting families. We aim to work well in partnership with parents/carers and any other appropriate agencies to promote the welfare of our children.

Child Protection Procedures

At Educational Diversity, we follow the policies and procedures generated by Blackpool’s Local Safeguarding Children Board (BSCB).

Blackpool Child Protection Procedures 

The Pan-Lancashire Child Protection Procedures   http://proceduresonline.com/panlancs/scb/

http://www.blackpoolsafeguarding.org.uk

Purpose

Guidelines

The Headteacher is ultimately responsible for child protection within the school alongside the DSL.

Guidance on recognising abuse

Child abuse is a term used to describe ways in which children are harmed by someone often in a position of power.  It is not the responsibility of Educational Diversity staff to decide whether child abuse is occurring but we are required to act on any concerns and report it to the appropriate party.  The health, safety and protection of a child are paramount.

Abuse might fall into the categories of:

Contextual safeguarding (the consideration of wider environmental factors in a child’s life that may be a threat to their safety and/or welfare) is an important issue also.

Signs and symptoms of abuse

The signs and symptoms of abuse are many and varied. We acknowledge the fact that children with special educational needs and disabilities can face additional safeguarding challenges.  The following is a list of those signs, which are more clearly recognisable

Physical abuse

Emotional abuse

Sexual abuse

Neglect

Designated Staff

The Headteacher and AHT

Partnership with Parents

Parents’ and children’s privacy should be respected.  However, the priority is the needs of the child and effective liaison is crucial in this. At least 2 emergency contacts should be held by school for each child at all times.

Where possible staff should work with and share information with parents.  Permission for liaison and information sharing with outside agencies should be sought unless it places the child at risk.  In these cases it is preferable to seek advice from Social Care or make a Child Protection referral.

Confidentiality

Where children are deemed to be at risk and leave Educational Diversity, the designated staff must inform the receiving school and the relevant designated staff as soon as possible and within 5 working days  All Child Protection files are hand delivered to the receiving school Designated Officer who signs to acknowledge receipt.  If the child leaves with no receiving school, details should be passed to the Pupil Welfare Office.

Education staff have a professional responsibility to share relevant information about the protection of children with the investigative agencies.  Members of staff should not promise confidentiality but let the child know that only those that need to know may be informed and only for the child’s sake.

Time should be taken to reassure the child and confirm that information given will be treated sensitively.  Reassurance should be given and the adult involved listen sympathetically and non- judgmentally.

All Child Protection records are kept stored in a locked cabinet, separate from their individual pupil files.  The HT, AHT and DSL have access to these.  When necessary they may be shared with other relevant staff and then placed immediately back into the locked cabinets.  These documents must be read only in school.

As stated in KCSIE (2018) paragraph 75: The Data Protection Act 2018 and GDPR do not prevent, or limit, the sharing of information for the purposes of keeping children safe. Also, from paragraph 77: This includes allowing practitioners to share information without consent.

Preventing sexual exploitation and criminal exploitation

At Educational Diversity, we are committed to contributing to support local and national bodies as they work to reduce child sexual exploitation and criminal exploitation (including County Lines).  To support this process, our staff report any concerns they have about our children in this respect to the AHT or DSL in school.  The AHT and the DSL will seek guidance form BCSB online, LADO, Awaken and our Police Community Support Officer (PCSO) who will contact the police or other relevant personnel for further advice and support.

Female Genital Mutilation

Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) FGM involves cutting, and sometimes sewing the girl’s genitalia, normally without anaesthetic, and can take place at any time from birth onwards. It is sometimes referred to as ‘female circumcision’ but this misnomer belies the invasive and irreversible nature of the procedure. It is now more correctly termed female genital mutilation. The procedure has a cultural, rather than religious, origin and is practised by disparate ethnic communities in many countries, including Ethiopia, Somalia, Sudan, Egypt, Nigeria, India, Pakistan, Yemen and Iraq. The Female Genital Mutilation Act 2003 makes it a criminal offence, not only to carry out FGM in England, Scotland and Wales on a girl who is a UK national or permanent resident but also to take a girl out of the UK to have FGM performed abroad, even to countries where FGM is still legal. The indicators of FGM may initially mirror those of sexual abuse. You may notice, for example, that a girl or young woman shows signs of pain or discomfort, needs to visit the toilet constantly, has vaginal blood loss or is unable to sit comfortably. She may make excuses to avoid PE and other physical activity or refuse to use the school showers. She may also become evasive or fearful if you enquire if she is unwell, and assure you that she is fine when she clearly is not. If she is a BME child, has recently arrived back from a ‘holiday’ abroad or a period of absence from school, seems to be in pain and has not been taken by her family to see a doctor, you should consider FGM, alongside other possible explanations.  Any suspicion of this should be treated as a Child Protection Case and all statutory guidelines will be followed “Trafficking Admissions staff should be aware of any suspicion of this by: Checking school/LA records carefully.   Anyone entering from another country (outside UK), should be cross checked with immigration”.

Any suspicion of this within Educational Diversity will be treated as a Child Protection Case and all mandatory reporting duties and procedures should be followed.

‘Honour based’ violence

So-called ‘honour based’ violence (HBV) encompasses crimes which have been committed to protect or defend the honour of the family and/or community, including FGM, forced marriage and practices such as breast ironing. All forms of so called HBV are abuse (regardless of the motivation) and should be handled and escalated as such. Any suspicion of this within Educational Diversity will be treated as a Child Protection Case and all procedures should be followed.

Radicalisation/PREVENT

In Educational Diversity, we are committed to the promotion of community cohesion and reducing the likelihood that our children will become radicalised.  To support this process, all staff have completed the online Channel General Awareness Course developed by the Metropolitan Policing Service in the Autumn Term 2015. The Prevent team are delivering training to all staff to enable us to have a better understanding of the issues concerned.  We have an  overall approach to the school’s work on promoting life in Modern Britain which is underpinned throughout the curriculum. Lettings are vetted and monitored by the School Business Manager, who is directly line-managed by the Headteacher.

All Channel concerns are made to channel-referrals@Lancashire.pnn.police.uk

 Information and guidance can also be obtained from the DFE Website “Prevent”

Any suspicion of issues highlighted - should be treated as a Child Protection Case and all procedures should be followed.

Domestic abuse reports / Information sharing

The HT and identified personnel from each Centre receives DV reports from the LA which are forwarded to them by the police.  These reports are password protected and only identified staff can access the contents.  The information helps us understand the issues around a particular child which can help meet individual needs.  These are never shared with the child until they have reached the age of 16 years.  The HT will print one hard copy of this report and then delete all evidence of this from the computer.  This hard copy is stored in a locked cabinet and kept for one year.  If the child leaves the school, the paper copy is shredded.

Domestic abuse within BSCB is any incident or threatening behaviour, violence or abuse (psychological, physical, sexual, financial or emotional) between adults who are, or have been, intimate partners or family members, regardless of gender or sexuality.  It includes forced marriage, honour based abuse and female genital mutilation.

Child Protection Procedures

  1. FIRST LEVEL OF VIGILANCE - If a staff member has a minor concern about unusual or unexplained changes in a child’s appearance, behaviour, attendance or basic needs then the staff member has a duty to report and record the concern to the DSL within each setting responsible for safeguarding. This is initially logged on My Concern which alerts the DSL. (See– safeguarding files).

  1. When staff receive a disclosure or notice something which leads them to suspect that abuse may have taken place the information is reported verbally to the DSL or in their absence, the Assistant Headteacher with responsibility for Safeguarding or Headteacher. (Under the direction of the DSL / AHT, the concern is recorded on My Concern.)

  1.  If physical abuse is suspected a ‘body map’ will be used to record the site and extent of any injury that has been noticed.  These are both passed in a sealed envelope to the DSL or in their absence the AHT or HT as soon as possible.  This record should include:

When information technology is involved we retain the evidence provided by the child and/or their family (e.g. screen shots/emails/text messages) and use it to support the concern.  However, we do not search family mobile phones or computers to gain further information. Instead we seek advice from the Police via the Public Protection and Investigation Unit (01253 604080) about gathering evidence.

Upon receiving the cause of concern) the DSL / AHT follows the procedures endorsed by Blackpool’s Local Children Safeguarding Board. Action must be taken within the same working day and as early as possible.

  1. Where abuse is suspected a referral will be made to Social Care (01253 477299).  The expectation is that a verbal referral will be supported in writing, usually by the completion of the Early Help Assessment form, in line with local procedures.

  1. The supporting documentation should be e-mailed or faxed to the Duty Team on (01253 477299) who will decide the outcome of the referral.

Outlining process for Child Protection detailed in procedures

                        


The content of the referral will be discussed with parents/carers where this is appropriate.  Advice may be sought from Social Care concerning this aspect of information sharing.  It is recognised that parents/carers are unlikely to be told that a referral is being made if sexual abuse or fabricated illness are suspected.  

Staff must not discuss any issues with parents/carers unless they are told to do so by

the AHT or DSL. Social Care will then lead the process which could involve the children going onto child protection plans or for assessment by the Duty and Assessment Team. If a referral is passed to The Duty and Assessment Team they will determine the best course of action and which professionals are best placed to deal with the issues.

NO ATTEMPT SHOULD BE MADE BY OUR STAFF TO CONDUCT AN INVESTIGATION INTO CASES OF SUSPECTED ABUSE.

NO CHILD SHOULD BE TOUCHED, CHECKED OR EXAMINED unless directed by Social Care and carried out by at least 2 members of staff, one of whom must be from the Designated Team.

Social Care and the police are responsible for undertaking investigations. Inappropriate actions by others may negate or contaminate evidence.

At Educational Diversity staff must co-operate with those investigating abuse following

a referral.  It will be the responsibility of those investigating the case to ensure that parents/carers are fully informed about the investigation.  

Throughout this process the Designated Team can seek advice from

Social Care (01253 477299) – (may need to speak to the Senior Practitioner/Duty Social Worker)

        The Safeguarding Board/LADO (01253 477541) in relation to allegations.

Training and Support

the certificate is stored centrally

Early Support

Information for parents / carers

It is made very clear to all parents / carers that all our staff are legally obliged to follow up any concerns they may have around child protection.

The Designated Team (Level of training and dates evidenced on SCR)

At Educational Diversity we are committed to the safer recruitment practices outlined in Safeguarding Children and Safer Recruitment Consortium (2015)

We ensure that all appointments in our school are made by a panel which comprises of at least one person who has completed the ‘safer recruitment’ training package.  

Our safer recruitment practices include:

  1. Ensuring that all our adverts include a statement which explains our commitment to safeguarding children
  2. Ensuring that all our posts are detailed accurately through specific job descriptions and person specifications which state the contact that the post-holder will have with children and their responsibilities associated with safeguarding children and vulnerable adults
  3. Discarding any applications that are made by any applicant who submit a CV instead of the required application form, requiring them to complete an application form for all posts advertised
  4. Our HR team request references prior to interview, using a detailed reference request form
  5. Scrutinising the application form when possible and references, to identify any gaps in employment, or inconsistencies in the information presented.  We use this information to formulate candidate specific questions that will be used during the interview
  6. Checking the validity of qualifications (original documentation should be verified), along with QTS from National College
  7. Checking the identity of the individual concerned
  8. Checking the eligibility of the candidate to work in the UK along with a prohibition from teaching check and a section 128 prohibition for Senior Leadership Team which is completed by HR
  9. The recruitment panel will ensure they ask specific questions during the interview that relate to safeguarding children.  (We expect candidates to discuss individual experiences rather than talking hypothetically where possible)
  10. Collecting the information in relation to Disclosures and Barring (Disclosures and Barring Service)
  11. Discussing any self-declared information with the candidate in a non-prejudicial way during the interview and not using the information as part of the short listing process
  12. Reserving the right to call candidates back for further questioning if anything emerges either through the DBS process or late references (conditional offer of employment)
  13. Reserving the right to dismiss a candidate if false information has been submitted during the recruitment process or if information comes to light that the candidate failed to disclose (due to conditional offer of appointment).

In addition:

  1. We maintain our Single Central Record for our own employees, volunteers, adults and members of the Management Committee also need to be cleared by the LA using the DBS system).
  2. Ensure that all visitors to our school are met at Reception and asked to sign in, are given a visitors’ pass/badge and escorted to the appropriate areas.  ID badges will always be checked.  There may be some cases where this does not happen (e.g. known regular deliveries or services e.g. refuse collection, but these must be monitored by school staff).
  3. Ensure that where appropriate (LA officers/contractors) visitors are asked to show their formal identity badges to link them to a known organisation. They are only admitted to complete known and verifiable duties and they must all sign in at Reception.
  4. Any college student placements have DBS check undertaken centrally before being deployed in the school.
  5. The Headteacher, leaders and the Management Committee access Safer Recruitment courses provided by the Local Authority (renewal every 3 years). They also keep themselves abreast of developments via the LA training/briefing sessions and supporting documentation.
  6. In the case of a new staff member who is awaiting clearance a Pre-Employment Risk Assessment will be completed before the staff member commences their post, which is signed off by the Director of Children’s Services.  Copies of these are held by the Headteacher electronically.

Managing allegations against members of staff or volunteers

All the staff at Educational Diversity are aware that they have a duty to report any

concerns they have about the conduct of another member of staff, volunteer or Management Committee member to the Headteacher.  They are also informed of the purpose of the Whistleblowing Policy. If the concerns are about the Headteacher they are aware that they report the matter to the Chair of the Management Committee or the Deputy Director of Children’s Services.  

The relationships and associations that staff have in school and outside (including online) may have an implication for the safeguarding of children in the school. Where this is the case, the member of staff must speak to the school. This is to safeguard themselves as well as the child.

When an allegation has been made against a member of staff, the Headteacher will consider whether the allegation suggests that the individual has:

If any of the above may have happened the Headteacher must record the concerns, and contact the Local Area Designated Officer (LADO: 01253 477541) to ask for advice about how to proceed.  The LADO will advise the Headteacher about whether to complete related forms or treat the matter internally via other policies (eg. disciplinary/capability). For additional information about the process we refer to HR.

 

We recognise our duty to refer colleagues to the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) under section 35 of the Safeguarding and Vulnerable Groups Act (2006) for their consideration about whether a colleague should be barred from the children’s workforce.  

We have a duty to refer colleagues to ‘prohibition of teachers’, misconduct of teachers NCTL route as detailed in KCSIE September 2018 and to the Guidance provided by the DBS on www.gov.uk/disclosure-and-barring-service are met.

We have a duty to refer concerns around colleagues or malpractice in accordance with our Whistleblowing Policy and our Complaints Policy which can be found on the website and on Google Drive.

Managing allegations against other children

We recognise that some children will sometimes negatively affect the learning and wellbeing of others and their behaviour will be dealt with under our Promoting Positive Behaviour Policy.

Peer on peer abuse

Occasionally, allegations may be made against children by others in the school, which are of a safeguarding nature. Safeguarding issues raised in this way may include physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse and sexual exploitation. It is likely that to be considered a safeguarding allegation against a child, some of the following features will be found.

The allegation:

Examples of safeguarding issues against a student could include:

Sexting

Sexting is when someone sends or receives a sexually explicit text, image or video. This includes sending ‘nude pics’, ‘rude pics’ or ‘nude selfies’. Pressuring someone into sending a nude picture can happen in any relationship and to anyone, regardless of their age, gender or sexual preference. However, once the image is taken and sent, the sender has lost control of the image and these images could end up anywhere. By having in their possession, or distributing, indecent images of a person under 18 on to someone else, young people are not even aware that they could be breaking the law as stated as these are offences under the Sexual Offences Act 2003. The UK Safer Internet Centre has worked together with the UK Council for Child Internet Safety (UKCCIS) to develop new advice for schools and colleges about responding to sexting incidents and safeguarding young people. Sexting in schools and colleges: Responding to incidents and safeguarding young people.

Sexual Exploitation

Minimising the risk of safeguarding concerns towards children from other children

On occasion, some children will present a safeguarding risk to other children. The school should be informed that the child raises safeguarding concerns, for example, they are coming back into school following a period in custody or they have experienced serious abuse themselves. These children will need an individual risk management plan to ensure that other children are kept safe and they themselves are not laid open to malicious allegations. There is a need to balance the tension between privacy and safeguarding.

What to do

When an allegation is made by a child against another child, members of staff

should consider whether the complaint raises a safeguarding concern. If there is a safeguarding concern the Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) should be informed. A factual record should be made of the allegation, but no attempt at this stage should be made to investigate the circumstances. The DSL should contact Social Care to discuss the case. It is possible that Social Care are already aware of safeguarding concerns around this child. The DSL will follow through the outcomes of the discussion and make a Social Care referral where appropriate.

The DSL will make a record of the concern, the discussion and any outcome and

keep a copy in the files of both children. If the allegation indicates a potential criminal offence has taken place, the police should be contacted at the earliest opportunity and parents informed (of both the child being complained about and the alleged victim). It may be appropriate to exclude the child being complained about for a period of time according to the behaviour policy and procedures. Where neither Social Care nor the police accept the complaint, a thorough school investigation should take place into the matter using the school’s usual disciplinary procedures.

In situations where the school considers a safeguarding risk is present, a risk

assessment should be prepared along with a preventative, supervision plan.

The plan should be monitored and a date set for a follow-up evaluation with

everyone concerned.

Online safety – Social Media Guidance

All the staff in our school are aware that they have a duty to protect themselves, children and the families they serve, fellow school colleagues and their employer in relation to

online safety. BSCB Social Media guidance is provided in our online safety policy.  We are also protected by the firewall and filtering system provided through the LA.

Ged McNally is the named person for online safety as anti- bullying lead across the authority.  He has completed the training to become a verifier of the E Safety mark and has offered advice to schools on issues surrounding online safety.

We have an online safety policy that complies with Ofsted recommendations.  All our staff have received training in online safety and this is also promoted in lessons for the benefit of the children to ensure they are helped to keep themselves and others safe online. KCSIE (2018) highlights the need for managing children’s use of their own devices whilst in school.

Private Fostering

Education, health and other professionals should notify the local authority of a private fostering arrangement that comes to their attention, where they are not satisfied that the local authority have been, or will be, notified of the arrangement, so that the local authority can then discharge its duty to satisfy itself that the welfare of the privately fostered child concerned is satisfactorily safeguarded and promoted.

The wider safeguarding agenda

This policy and procedures should also be read in conjunction with other school policies relating to safeguarding.

All guidance online in The Pan-Lancashire Child Protection Procedures   http://proceduresonline.com/panlancs/scb/                                                                  http://www.blackpoollscb.org.uk

Serious Case Reviews

At Educational Diversity we are committed to taking account of any recommendations that are made from local and national Serious Case Reviews and consequently share appropriate recommendations with relevant staff.  We are aware that our school may become involved in a Serious Case Review and we are committed to supporting the process.  As such we will ensure that the files and records that pertain to a child involved in an incident that may lead to a Serious Case Review are preserved in school and we will co-operate with the representatives from the BSCB who are undertaking the review.

Safeguarding Audit

BSCB recommend that all schools undertake the self -evaluation SECTION 175 self- audit and the outcomes of such are reflected in developments / training / priority actions within the school.

This was completed in September 2017 and was audited by Paul Turner, the safeguarding officer within the authority in October 2017.  A further audit is due to be completed in September 2018.

Reviewed September 2018

To be reviewed:  September 2019

This is a document under review and is currently out for consultation to be agreed at the Management Committee meeting on the ___________.

Headteacher’s Signature:                                             

Date: _                                 

Chair of Management Committee’s Signature:  

Date: ________________

Implementation Date: September 2018

Adopted by Management Committee: November 2018 (see above)

Review period: Annually

Date policy last reviewed: September 2018

Person Responsible for Policy: Wendy Casson and Anna Dootson


Appendix 1

Educational Diversity Safeguarding Chronology

Name of Child:                                                          Centre:

Date

Concern

Report

sign

See CP File

Tick if appropriate

Action

Sign

Outcome