2018 Child Protection and
Safeguarding Policy for
HAGBOURNE C.E. PRIMARY SCHOOL
‘Preparing each child for their future in an ever-changing world’
CARE - COURAGE - RESPECT - RESPONSIBILITY
In line with Keeping Children Safe in Education 2018
This policy was updated on …4th September 2018
The policy must be reviewed and updated at least every 12 months.
Hagbourne CE Primary School recognises its responsibility for safeguarding and child protection.
The role of school and college staff
What school and college staff need to know
What school and college staff should look out for
What school and college staff should do if they have concerns about a child
What schools and college staff should do if a child is in danger or at risk of harm
What school and college staff should do if they have concerns about another staff member
What school and college staff should do if they have concerns about safeguarding practices within the school or college
Key personnel at our school
Roles and responsibilities
Allegations against staff
Physical Intervention/Positive Handling
Health & Safety
Children with Special Educational Needs
Types of abuse and neglect
Specific safeguarding issues
Opportunities to teach safeguarding
Allegations of abuse made against other children (peer on peer abuse)
Dealing with Disclosures
Appendix A: Specific Safeguarding Issues including Children and the court system, Children missing from education, Children with family members in prison, Child Sexual Exploitation, County Lines, Domestic abuse, Homelessness, Honour based violence, Female, Genital Mutilation, Forced marriage, Prevent, Sexting in schools, and Sexual violence.
Appendix B: Allegations flowchart
Appendix C: Actions where there are concerns about a child (flowchart)
This policy has been developed in accordance with the principles established by the Children Act 1989; and in line with the following:
The Governing Body/management committee/proprietor takes seriously its responsibility under Section 11 of the Children Act and duties under “working together” to safeguard and promote the welfare of children; to work together with other agencies to ensure adequate arrangements exist within our setting to identify, and support those children who are suffering harm or are likely to suffer harm.
We recognise that all staff and governors have a full and active part to play in protecting our pupils from harm, and that the child’s welfare is our paramount concern.
Our school should provide a safe, caring, positive and stimulating environment that promotes the social, physical and moral development of the individual child free from discrimination or bullying where children can learn and develop happily.
This policy applies to all staff, governors and volunteers working in our school.
This policy has been written in line with Keeping Children Safe in Education 2018
All staff will sign to confirm they have read and understood this policy.
Safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children refers to the process of protecting children from abuse or neglect, preventing the impairment of their health or development, ensuring that children grow up in circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective and nurturing care and undertaking that role so as to enable those children to have optimum life chances and to enter adulthood successfully.
Child Protection refers to the processes undertaken to meet statutory obligations laid out in the Children Act 1989 and associated guidance (see Working Together to Safeguard Children, An Interagency Guide to Safeguard and Promote the Welfare of Children) in respect of those children who have been identified as suffering, or being at risk of suffering harm.
Staff refers to all those working for or on behalf of the school, full time or part time, in either a paid or voluntary capacity.
Child refers to all young people who have not yet reached their 18th birthday.
Parent refers to birth parents and other adults who are in a parenting role, for example step-parents, foster carers and adoptive parents
DSL: Designated Safeguarding Lead
To provide all staff with the necessary information to enable them to meet their statutory responsibilities to promote and safeguard the wellbeing of children
To ensure consistent good practice across the school
To demonstrate the school’s commitment with regard to safeguarding children
The role of school staff
Our School staff are particularly important as they are in a position to identify concerns early, provide help for children, and prevent concerns from escalating.
All our school staff have a responsibility to provide a safe environment in which children can learn.
Our school has a DSL who will provide support to our staff members to carry out their safeguarding duties and who will liaise closely with other services such as children’s social care. The DSL (and any deputies) are most likely to have a complete safeguarding picture and be the most appropriate person to advise on the response to safeguarding concerns.
All our staff should be prepared to identify children who may benefit from early help. Early help means providing support as soon as a problem emerges at any point in a child’s life, from the foundation years through to the teenage years.
Any of our staff members who have a concern about a child’s welfare should follow the referral processes (detailed on page 6). Staff should expect to support Social Workers and other agencies following any referral.
The Teachers’ standards 2012 state that teachers, including headteachers, should safeguard children’s wellbeing and maintain public interest in the teaching professions as part of their professional duties.
What school staff need to know
All our staff members are aware of the systems within our school which support safeguarding, these are explained to them as part of their induction and include:
All staff should receive appropriate safeguarding and child protection training which is regularly updated. In addition, all staff should receive safeguarding and child protection updates (for example, via email, e-bulletins and staff meetings), as required, and at least annually, to provide them with relevant skills and knowledge to safeguard children effectively.
All staff are made aware of the early help process, and understand their role in this.
All staff are aware of the process for making child protection referrals to children’s social care and for statutory assessments under the Children Act 1989, especially section 17(children in need) and section 47 (a child suffering, or likely to suffer, significant harm) that may follow a referral, along with the role that might be expected to play in such assessments.
All staff know what to do if a child tells them he/she is being abused or neglected. Staff understand how to maintain an appropriate level of confidentiality. They understand that this means only to involve those who need to be involved, such as the DSL (or a deputy) and children’s social care.
Staff will never promise a child that they will not tell anyone about the allegation/disclosure that the child has made, as this may ultimately not be in the best interests of the child.
What school staff should look out for
Any child may benefit from early help, but our school and college staff are particularly alert to the potential need for early help for a child who:
All school staff members are aware of the indicators of abuse and neglect so they are able to identify children who may be in need of help or protection (see part 2 of this policy for the definitions).
Departmental advice: What to do if you are worried a child is being abused- Advice for practitioners provides more information on understanding and identifying abuse and neglect.
Staff members at our school are 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 best interests of the child.
Knowing what to look for is vital to the early identification of abuse and neglect. If staff members are unsure they should always speak to the DSL (or deputy).
What our school staff should do if they have concerns about a child
If our staff have any concerns about a child’s welfare, they should act on them immediately. See page 29 for a flow chart setting out the process for our staff when they have concerns about a child.
If staff have a concern, they should follow this child protection policy and speak to the DSL (or deputy).
Options will then include:
The DSL or a deputy should always be available to discuss safeguarding concerns. If in exceptional circumstances, the DSL (or deputy) is not available, this should not delay appropriate action being taken. Staff should consider speaking to a member of the senior leadership team and/or take advice from local children’s social care. In these circumstances, any action taken should be shared with the designated safeguarding lead (or deputy) as soon as is practically possible.
Our staff should not assume a colleague or another professional will take action and share information that might be critical in keeping children safe. They should be mindful that early information sharing is vital for effective identification, assessment and allocation of appropriate service provision. Information sharing:
If early help is appropriate, the designated safeguarding lead (or deputy) will generally lead on liaising with other agencies and setting up an inter-agency assessment as appropriate. Staff may be required to support other agencies and professionals in an early help assessment, in some cases acting as the lead professional. Any such cases should be kept under constant review and consideration given to a referral to children’s social care for assessment for statutory services, if the child’s situation does not appear to be improving or is getting worse.
Where a child is suffering, or is likely to suffer from harm, it is important that a referral to children’s social care (and if appropriate the police) is made immediately.
Female Genital Mutilation mandatory reporting duty for teachers
Whilst our staff should speak to the DSL (or deputy) with regard to any concerns about female genital mutilation (FGM), there is a specific legal duty on teachers. If a teacher, in the course of their work in the profession, discovers that an act of FGM appears to have been carried out on a girl under the age of 18, the teacher must report this to the police.
All concerns, discussions and decisions made, and the reasons for those decisions, should be recorded in writing. If in doubt about recording requirements, staff should discuss with the DSL (or deputy).
Why is all of this important?
It is important for children to receive the right help at the right time to address risks and prevent issues escalating. Research and serious case reviews have repeatedly shown the dangers of failing to take effective action. Examples of this poor practice include:
• failing to act on and refer the early signs of abuse and neglect;
• poor record keeping;
• failing to listen to the views of the child;
• failing to re-assess concerns when situations do not improve;
• not sharing information;
• sharing information too slowly; and
• a lack of challenge to those who appear not to be taking action.
What school staff should do if a child is in danger or at risk of harm
What school staff should do if they have concerns about another staff member
If our staff members have concerns about another staff member then;
Full details can be found in Part 2 of this Policy.
What school staff should do if they have concerns about safeguarding practices within the school or college
Key personnel at our school:
The Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) for child protection for this school is:
The Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) for this school is:
Sarah Jane Lewis, Chris Duffy and Kathy Jolley (ASC)
The nominated Child Protection/Safeguarding Governor for this school is:
The Headteacher is:
Roles and responsibilities
All schools must nominate a senior member of staff to coordinate child protection arrangements and this person is named in this policy guidance. Our school will ensure that the Designated Safeguarding Lead or a deputy is available (during school hours) to discuss safeguarding concerns. Our school will also ensure that there are adequate and appropriate measures in place to cover out of hour/out of term activities.
The Governing Body
The Governing Body/Proprietor of our school undertakes the regular review of safeguarding related policies and procedures that operate in our school.
The Governing Body/Proprietor have a crucial role in monitoring and challenging staff on the effectiveness of safeguarding arrangements
Our Governing Body ensure that:
The head teacher:
The school has ensured that the DSL:
Is appropriately trained and, in the absence of the designated safeguarding lead, carries out those functions necessary to ensure the ongoing safety and protection of children. In the event of the long-term absence of the designated person, the deputy will assume all of the functions above.
All staff will:
Follow the Oxfordshire Safeguarding Children Board Procedures/Local Authority guidance in all cases of abuse, or suspected abuse (these can be found at www.OSCB.org.uk).
We will therefore:
Our school will support all children and young people by:
Allegations against staff
Alison Beasley, Designated Officer (01865 815956),
LADO team 01865 810603 or
Contact must be made with the Designated Officer or one of the Assistant Designated Officer’s before any internal investigation is commenced
See flowchart appendix B for further details
Physical Intervention/Positive Handling
Health & Safety
Children with Special Educational Needs
At our setting we recognise that children with special educational needs (SEN) and disabilities can face additional safeguarding challenges. This policy reflects the fact that additional barriers can exist when recognising abuse and neglect in this group of children. This can include:
Types of abuse and neglect
All school and college staff should be aware that abuse, neglect and safeguarding issues are rarely standalone events that can be covered by one definition or label. In most cases multiple issues will overlap with one another.
Specific safeguarding issues
At our setting our pupils increasingly work online, we recognise that it is crucial to safeguard our pupils from potentially harmful and inappropriate online material. As such we ensure appropriate filters and appropriate monitoring systems are in place.
Opportunities to teach safeguarding
In our setting we ensure our pupil are taught about safeguarding, including online, through teaching and learning opportunities, as part of providing a broad and balanced curriculum. This may include covering relevant issues through personal, social, health and economic education (PSHE), tutorials (in FE colleges) and/or – for maintained schools and colleges – through sex and relationship education (SRE).
Allegations of abuse made against other children (Peer on Peer abuse)
Our staff recognise that children are capable of abusing their peers. In a situation where child abuse is alleged to have been carried out by another child, our child protection procedures should be adhered to for both the victim and the alleged abuser; this means it should be considered as a child care and protection issue for both children.
Peer on peer abuse can take many forms, and gender issues can be prevalent when dealing with this type of abuse this could for example include girls being sexually touched/assaulted or boys being subject to initiation/hazing type violence.
Please see our full Managing allegations against other pupil’s/Peer on Peer abuse policy for further details.
Annex A contains important additional information about specific forms of abuse and safeguarding issues.
Dealing with Disclosures
Always stop and listen straight away to someone who wants to tell you about incidents or suspicions of abuse. Listen quietly and actively, giving your undivided attention. Allow silences when needed. Do not show shock or disbelief and take what is said seriously.
It is important to stay calm, make no judgements and empathise. Never make a promise to keep what a child has said a secret. Give reassurance that only those who need to know will be told. Reassure the young person that they were right to tell you.
React to the student only as far as is necessary for you to establish whether or not you need to refer this matter, but don’t interrogate for full details.
Refrain from asking leading questions.
If you need to try to get more detail about what has been disclosed, use questions such as tell me, explain to me and describe to me.
If you do ask further questions, please remember to record the questions you have asked as well as the responses provided.
Do not criticize the perpetrator; the student may have affection for him/her.
Explain your next steps to the student, i.e. who you will be speaking to and what will happen next.
If possible make brief notes about what they are telling you at the time. Keep these notes, however rough they are. If you are unable to make notes at the time write down what was said as soon as you can.
Record what was actually said by the student rather than your interpretation of what they are telling you, be factual at all times.
Record the date, time, place and any noticeable nonverbal behaviour.
Report the incident to the designated teacher and do not tell any other adults or students what you have been told.
The DSL (and deputy) for child protection are responsible for ensuring that the necessary paperwork is completed and sent to the relevant people and stored in a safe and confidential place. This means that the records will be a coherent factual record of the concerns that are stored on individual children in a clear chronological order.
Front page chronologies should be used and be part of all individual safeguarding files.
Annex A Specific safeguarding issues
Children and the court system
Children are sometimes required to give evidence in criminal courts, either for crimes committed against them or for crimes they have witnessed. There are two age appropriate guides to support children 5-11-year olds and 12-17 year olds.
They explain each step of the process and support and special measures that are available. There are diagrams illustrating the courtroom structure and the use of video links is explained.
Making child arrangements via the family courts following separation can be stressful and entrench conflict in families. This can be stressful for children. The Ministry of Justice has launched an online child arrangements information tool with clear and concise information on the dispute resolution service. This may be useful for some parents and carers.
Children missing from education
All staff should be aware that children going missing, particularly repeatedly, can act as a vital warning sign of a range of safeguarding possibilities. This may include abuse and neglect, which may include sexual abuse or exploitation and child criminal exploitation. It may indicate mental health problems, risk of substance abuse, risk of travelling to conflict zones, risk of female genital mutilation or risk of forced marriage. Early intervention is necessary to identify the existence of any underlying safeguarding risk and to help prevent the risks of a child going missing in future. Staff should be aware of their school or college’s unauthorised absence and children missing from education procedures.
Children with family members in prison
Approximately 200,000 children have a parent sent to prison each year. These children are at risk of poor outcomes including poverty, stigma, isolation and poor mental health. NICCO provides information designed to support professionals working with offenders and their children, to help mitigate negative consequences for those children.
Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE)
The sexual exploitation of children and young people under 18 involves exploitative situations, contexts and relationships where young people, (or a third person or persons) receive something, (e.g. food, accommodation, drugs, alcohol, cigarettes, affections, gifts, money) as a result of them performing and/or others performing on them, sexual activities. Child sexual exploitation can occur through the use of technology without the child’s immediate recognition; for example being persuaded to post sexual images on the internet/mobile phones without immediate payment or gain. In all cases those exploiting the child/young person have power over them by virtue of their age, gender, intellect, physical strength and/or economic or other resources. Violence, coercion and intimidations are common, involvement in exploitative relationships being characterised in the main by the child’s or young person’s limited availability of choice, resulting from their social/economic and/or emotional vulnerability. (DCSF 2009).
Key Facts about CSE
Sexual violence or abuse against children represents a major public health and social welfare problem within UK society, affecting 16% of children under 16. That is approximately 2 million children.
Good practice – Individuals
Good practice – Organisations
Child Criminal Exploitation: County Lines
Criminal exploitation of children is a geographically widespread form of harm that is a typical feature of county lines criminal activity: drug networks or gangs groom and exploit children and young people to carry drugs and money from urban areas to suburban and rural areas, market and seaside towns. Key to identifying potential involvement in county lines are missing episodes, when the victim may have been trafficked for the purpose of transporting drugs and a referral to the National Referral Mechanism12 should be considered. Like other forms of abuse and exploitation, county lines exploitation:
The cross-government definition of domestic violence and abuse is:
Any incident or pattern of incidents of controlling, coercive, threatening behaviour, violence or abuse between those aged 16 or over who are, or have been, intimate partners or family members regardless of gender or sexuality. The abuse can encompass, but is not limited to:
Exposure to domestic abuse and/or violence can have a serious, long lasting emotional and psychological impact on children. In some cases, a child may blame themselves for the abuse or may have had to leave the family home as a result. Domestic abuse affecting young people can also occur within their personal relationships, as well as in the context of their home life.
Being homeless or being at risk of becoming homeless presents a real risk to a child’s welfare. The designated safeguarding lead (and any deputies) should be aware of contact details and referral routes in to the Local Housing Authority so they can raise/progress concerns at the earliest opportunity. Indicators that a family may be at risk of homelessness include household debt, rent arrears, domestic abuse and anti-social behaviour, as well as the family being asked to leave a property. Whilst referrals and or discussion with the Local Housing Authority should be progressed as appropriate, this does not, and should not, replace a referral into children’s social care where a child has been harmed or is at risk of harm.
The Homelessness Reduction Act 2017 places a new legal duty on English councils so that everyone who is homeless or at risk of homelessness will have access to meaningful help including an assessment of their needs and circumstances, the development of a personalised housing plan, and work to help them retain their accommodation or find a new place to live. The following factsheets usefully summarise the new duties: Homeless Reduction Act Factsheets. The new duties shift focus to early intervention and encourage those at risk to seek support as soon as possible, before they are facing a homelessness crisis.
In most cases school and college staff will be considering homelessness in the context of children who live with their families, and intervention will be on that basis. However, it should also be recognised in some cases 16 and 17 year olds could be living independently from their parents or guardians, for example through their exclusion from the family home, and will require a different level of intervention and support. Children’s services will be the lead agency for these young people and the designated safeguarding lead (or a deputy) should ensure appropriate referrals are made based on the child’s circumstances. The department and the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government have published joint statutory guidance on the provision of accommodation for 16 and 17 year olds who may be homeless and/ or require accommodation.
So-called ‘honour-based’ violence
So-called ‘honour-based’ violence (HBV) encompasses incidents or crimes which have been committed to protect or defend the honour of the family and/or the community, including female genital mutilation (FGM), forced marriage, and practices such as breast ironing. Abuse committed in the context of preserving “honour” often involves a wider network of family or community pressure and can include multiple perpetrators. It is important to be aware of this dynamic and additional risk factors when deciding what form of safeguarding action to take. All forms of HBV are abuse (regardless of the motivation) and should be handled and escalated as such. Professionals in all agencies, and individuals and groups in relevant communities, need to be alert to the possibility of a child being at risk of HBV, or already having suffered HBV.
If staff have a concern regarding a child that might be at risk of HBV or who has suffered from HBV, they should speak to the designated safeguarding lead (or deputy). As appropriate, they will activate local safeguarding procedures, using existing national and local protocols for multiagency liaison with police and children’s social care. Where FGM has taken place, since 31 October 2015 there has been a mandatory reporting duty placed on teachers that requires a different approach (see following section).
Female Genital Mutilation FGM
FGM is child abuse and a form of violence against women and girls, and therefore should be dealt with as part of existing child safeguarding/protection structures, policies and procedures.
FGM is illegal in the UK. In England, Wales and Northern Ireland, the practice is illegal under the Female Genital Mutilation Act 2003.
Other than in the excepted circumstances, it is an offence for any person (regardless of their nationality or residence status) to:
Forced Marriage (FM)
FM is now a specific offence under s121 of the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014 that came into force on 16 June 2014.
A FM is a marriage conducted without the valid consent of one or both parties, and where duress is a factor Forced marriage is when someone faces physical pressure to marry (e.g. threats, physical violence or sexual violence) or emotional and psychological pressure (e.g. if someone is made to feel like they’re bringing shame on their family). This is very different to an arranged marriage where both parties give consent.
FM is illegal in England and Wales. This includes:
The Counter Terrorism & Security Act 2015
The Act places a Prevent duty on specified schools to have “due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism”. The education and childcare specified authorities in Schedule 6 to the Act are as follows:
Schools/settings subject to the Prevent Duty will be expected to demonstrate activity in the following areas –
Sexting in schools
Sexual violence and sexual harassment between children in schools and colleges
Sexual violence and sexual harassment can occur between two children of any age and sex. It can also occur through a group of children sexually assaulting or sexually harassing a single child or group of children.
Children who are victims of sexual violence and sexual harassment will likely find the experience stressful and distressing. This will, in all likelihood, adversely affect their educational attainment. Sexual violence and sexual harassment exist on a continuum and may overlap, they can occur online and offline (both physical and verbal) and are never acceptable. It is important that all victims are taken seriously and offered appropriate support. Staff should be aware that some groups are potentially more at risk. Evidence shows girls, children with SEND and LGBT children are at greater risk.
Staff should be aware of the importance of:
What is Sexual Violence and Sexual Harassment?
It is important that school and college staff are aware of sexual violence and the fact children can, and sometimes do, abuse their peers in this way. When referring to sexual violence we are referring to sexual offences under the Sexual Offences Act 200319 as described below:
Rape: A person (A) commits an offence of rape if: he intentionally penetrates the vagina, anus or mouth of another person (B) with his penis, B does not consent to the penetration and A does not reasonably believe that B consents.
Assault by Penetration: A person (A) commits an offence if: s/he intentionally penetrates the vagina or anus of another person (B) with a part of her/his body or anything else, the penetration is sexual, B does not consent to the penetration and A does not reasonably believe that B consents.
Sexual Assault: A person (A) commits an offence of sexual assault if: s/he intentionally touches another person (B), the touching is sexual, B does not consent to the touching and A does not reasonably believe that B consents.
What is consent? Consent is about having the freedom and capacity to choose. Consent to sexual activity may be given to one sort of sexual activity but not another, e.g.to vaginal but not anal sex or penetration with conditions, such as wearing a condom. Consent can be withdrawn at any time during sexual activity and each time activity occurs. Someone consents to vaginal, anal or oral penetration only if s/he agrees by choice to that penetration and has the freedom and capacity to make that choice.
When referring to sexual harassment we mean ‘unwanted conduct of a sexual nature’ that can occur online and offline. When we reference sexual harassment, we do so in the context of child on child sexual harassment. Sexual harassment is likely to: violate a child’s dignity, and/or make them feel intimidated, degraded or humiliated and/or create a hostile, offensive or sexualised environment.
Whilst not intended to be an exhaustive list, sexual harassment can include:
It may include:
The response to a report of sexual violence or sexual harassment
The initial response to a report from a child is important. It is essential that all victims are reassured that they are being taken seriously and that they will be supported and kept safe. A victim should never be given the impression that they are creating a problem by reporting sexual violence or sexual harassment. Nor should a victim ever be made to feel ashamed for making a report.
If staff have a concern about a child or a child makes a report to them, they should follow the referral process as set out from paragraph in part one of this policy. As is always the case, if staff are in any doubt as to what to do they should speak to the designated safeguarding lead (or a deputy).
If you have a concern that a person who works with children and young people may have behaved inappropriately or you have received information that may constitute an allegation you must:
Please note POT : Position of Trust Meeting
Please note the referrer should always receive feedback after a referral is made, or be involved in any ongoing meetings if the case progresses
This policy is in line with Keeping Children Safe in Education 2018
Updated August 2018Page