CHILD PROTECTION POLICY
In any suspicion of child abuse, the safety and welfare of the child must be the primary consideration and the agreed procedure followed. It is vital that all suspicions, or disclosures, are acted upon.
Rabbi Dovid Benarroch is the designated person (DSL) for any concerns related to the welfare of a child. He will liaise with Bury Children Services and Jewish Social Services (The FED) as necessary. In the event Rabbi Benarroch is not available, contact Yisroel Denderowicz or Rabbi Sulzbacher. (Principal).
This policy has been developed in accordance with the principles established by the Children Acts 1989 and 2004; the Education Act 2002/2011, and in line with government publications:
‘Working Together to Safeguard Children’ 2015, Revised Safeguarding Statutory Guidance 2
‘Framework for the Assessment of Children in Need and their Families’ 2014, Child Abuse
Concerns March 2015‘. The guidance reflects, ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education’ 5/09/2016.
Keeping children safe in education (2016): https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/keeping-children-safe-in-education--2
The Governing body takes seriously its responsibility under section 175 of the Education Act 2002 to safeguard and promote the welfare of children; and to work together with other agencies to ensure adequate arrangements within our school to identify, assess, and support those children who are suffering harm.
All adults, including temporary staff, volunteers 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.
Wherever the word “staff” is used, it covers ALL staff on site, including ancillary supply and self-employed staff, contractors, volunteers working with children etc and governors.
In any suspicion of child abuse, the safety and welfare of the child must be the primary consideration and the agreed procedure followed. It is vital that all suspicions, or disclosures, are acted upon.
Rabbi Dovid Benarroch is the designated person (DSL) for any concerns related to the welfare of a child. He will liaise with Bury Children Services and Jewish Social Services (The FED) as necessary. In the event Rabbi Benarroch is not available, contact Mr Yisroel Denderowicz, Deputy Officer or Rabbi Sulzbacher, Principal.
All staff believe that our school should provide a caring, positive safe and stimulating environment that promotes the social, physical and moral development of the individual child.
The aims of this policy are:
· To support the child’s development in ways that will foster security, confidence and independence.
· To provide an environment in which children and young people feel safe, secure, valued and respected, and feel confident, and know how to approach adults if they are in difficulties, believing they will be effectively listened to.
· To raise the awareness of all teaching and non-teaching staff of the need to safeguard children and of their responsibilities in identifying and reporting possible cases of abuse
· To provide a systematic means of monitoring children known or thought to be at risk of harm, and ensure we, the school, contribute to assessments of need and support packages for those children.
· To emphasise the need for good levels of communication between all members of staff.
· To develop a structured procedure within the school which will be followed by all members of the school community in cases of suspected abuse.
· To develop and promote effective working relationships with other agencies, especially the Police and Social Care.
· To ensure that all staff working within our school who have substantial or independent access to children have been checked as to their suitability, including verification of their identity, qualifications, and a satisfactory DBS check and a central record is kept for audit.
· Any contractors carrying out work on the school site during term time will only be allowed on site if their DBS information has been received by the school office, prior to the commencement of work.
· Any external visitor teaching pupils must be supervised at all times by a member of staff from the school. Any visitor conducting sessions involving interactive teaching must have a DBS check before the session goes ahead.
Safe School, Safe Staff
All members of the governing body understand and fulfil their responsibilities, namely to ensure that:
· There is a Child Protection Policy together with the staff Disciplinary Policy which is adhered to
· The school operates safer recruitment procedures by ensuring that there is at least one person on every recruitment panel that has completed Safer Recruitment training
· The school has procedures for dealing with allegations of abuse against staff and volunteers. This includes if a person in regulated activity has been dismissed or removed due to safeguarding concerns, or would have had if they had not resigned.
· A senior leader has Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) responsibility on appointment, the DSLs undertake interagency training and an ‘update’ course every 2 years
· all other staff have Safeguarding training updated as appropriate
· Any weaknesses in Child Protection are remedied immediately by means of a full Safeguarding Team meeting.
· The DSL and Principal is nominated to liaise with the LA on Child Protection issues in conjunction with the nominated Safeguarding Governor. In the event of an allegation of abuse made against the Principal the remainder of the SLT will liaise with the Governing body and the LA.
· Child Protection policies and procedures are reviewed regularly and that the Child Protection policy is available on the school website and in hard copy as requested.
· The Governing Body considers how children may be taught about safeguarding. This may be part of a broad and balanced curriculum covering relevant issues through personal social health and economic education (PSHE).
· That enhanced DBS checks are in place for all Governors
· The Lead DSL, Rabbi D Benarroch, is a member of the Senior Leadership Team. The Deputy Designated Officers is Mr Y Denderowicz. These Officers have undertaken the relevant training, and, upon any new appointment staff will undertake ‘DSL new to role’ training.
· The DSL’s who are involved in recruitment and at least one member of the governing body will also complete safer recruitment training (currently with NSPCC) to be renewed every 5 years
· All members of staff and volunteers
· are provided with child protection awareness information at induction, including in their arrival pack, the school safeguarding statement so that they know who to discuss a concern with.
· All parents/carers are made aware of the responsibilities of staff members with regard to child protection procedures through publication of the school’s Child Protection Policy.
· We will ensure that child protection type concerns or allegations against adults working in the school are referred to the LADO for advice, and that any member of staff found not suitable to work with children will be notified to the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) for consideration for barring, following resignation, dismissal, or when we cease to use their service as a result of a substantiated allegation, in the case of a volunteer.
Our procedures will be regularly reviewed and up-dated. The name of the designated members of staff for Child Protection, the Designated Child Protection Officers, will be clearly advertised in the school, with a statement explaining the school’s role in referring and monitoring cases of suspected abuse.
The designated DSLs are responsible for:
· Referring a child if there are concerns about possible abuse, to the Local Authority, and acting as a focal point for staff to discuss concerns. If there is no immediate danger the DSL will either telephone Bury Local Authority Safeguarding Hub on 0161 253 5678 and complete the online Inter Agency Referral Form.
· Keeping written records of concerns about a child even if there is no need to make an immediate referral.
· Ensuring that all such records are kept confidentially and securely and are separate from pupil records.
· Ensuring that an indication of the existence of the additional file above is marked on the pupil records.
· Liaising with other agencies and professionals.
· Ensuring that either they or the staff member attend case conferences, core groups, or other multi-agency planning meetings, contribute to assessments and provide a report.
· Ensuring that any pupil currently with a child protection plan who is absent in the educational setting without explanation for two days is referred to their key worker’s Social Care Team and notify the School Attendance Officer.
· Organising child protection/safeguarding training every 3 years, for all school staff.
· Providing, with the Principal, an annual report for the governing body, detailing any changes to the policy and procedures; training undertaken by the DSL, and by all staff and governors; number and type of incidents/cases, and number of children on the child.
· We recognise that a child who is abused or witnesses violence may feel helpless and humiliated, may blame themselves, and find it difficult to develop and maintain a sense of self-worth.
· We recognise that the school may provide the only stability in the lives of children who have been abused or who are at risk of harm.
· We accept that research shows that the behaviour of a child in these circumstances may range from that which is perceived to be normal to aggressive or withdrawn.
Our school will support all children by:
· Encouraging self-esteem and self-assertiveness, through the curriculum as well as our relationships, whilst not condoning aggression or bullying.
· Promoting a caring, safe and positive environment within the school.
· Liaising and working together with all other support services and those agencies involved in the safeguarding of children.
· Notifying Social Care as soon as there is a significant concern.
· We recognise that all matters relating to child protection are confidential.
· The Principal or DSLs will disclose any information about a child to other members of staff on a need to know basis only.
· All staff must be aware that they have a professional responsibility to share information with other agencies in order to safeguard children.
· All staff must be aware that they cannot promise a child to keep secrets which might compromise the child’s safety or wellbeing.
· We will always undertake to share our intention to refer a child to Social Care with their parents /carers unless to do so could put the child at greater risk of harm, or impede a criminal investigation. If in doubt, we will consult with Manchester Social Services/Manchester Jewish Federation on this point.
· We recognise that staff working in the school 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.
· We will support such staff by providing an opportunity to talk through their anxieties with the DSLs and to seek further support as appropriate.
Allegations against staff
· All school staff should take care not to place themselves in a vulnerable position with a child. It is always advisable for interviews or work with individual children or parents to be conducted in view of other adults.
· Guidance about conduct and safe practice including safe use of mobile phones by staff and volunteers can be found in the ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education’ booklet which all staff receive.
· We understand that a pupil may make an allegation against a member of staff.
· If such an allegation is made, or information is received which suggests that a person may be unsuitable to work with children, the member of staff receiving the allegation or aware of the information, will immediately inform the Principal.
· The Principal on all such occasions will discuss the content of the allegation with the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO)
· If the allegation made to a member of staff concerns the Principal the person receiving the allegation will immediately inform the Chair of Governors who will consult with the LADO without notifying the Principal first.
· The school will follow the LOCAL procedures for managing allegations against staff.
· Suspension of the member of staff, excluding the Principal, against whom an allegation has been made, needs careful consideration, and the Principal will seek the advice of the LADO and Personnel Consultant in making this decision.
· In the event of an allegation against the Principal, the decision to suspend will be made by the Chair of Governors with advice from the LADO.
· We recognise that children cannot be expected to raise concerns in an environment where staff fail to do so.
· All staff should be aware of their duty to raise concerns, where they exist, about the management of child protection, which may include the attitude or actions of colleagues. The School Grievance Procedure and the Safer Working Practice document should be followed. If it becomes necessary to consult outside the school, staff should speak to the LADO following the Grievance Procedure Policy.
· Grievances re the Principal should be made to the Chair of the Governing Body whose contact details are readily available to staff (as pertinent to setting).
· We acknowledge that staff must only ever use physical intervention as a last resort, when a child is endangering him/herself or others, and that at all times it must be the minimal force necessary to prevent injury to another person.
· Such events must be recorded and signed by a witness.
· We understand that physical intervention of a nature which causes injury or distress to a child may be considered under child protection or disciplinary procedures.
· We recognise that touch is appropriate in the context or working with children, and all staff have been given the ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education’ booklet to ensure they are clear about their professional boundary.
Our school policy on anti-bullying is set out in a separate document and acknowledges that to allow or condone bullying may lead to consideration under child protection procedures. This includes all forms e.g. verbal, cyber, racist, homophobic and gender related bullying. We keep a record of known bullying incidents. All staff are aware that children with SEND and / or differences/perceived differences are more susceptible to being bullied / victims of abuse.
Our policy on racist incidents is set out separately, and acknowledges that repeated racist incidents or a single serious incident may lead to consideration under child protection procedures. We keep a record of racist incidents.
We recognise that the school plays a significant part in the prevention of harm to our children by providing children with good lines of communication with trusted adults, supportive friends and an ethos of protection.
The school community will therefore:
· Work to establish and maintain an ethos where children feel secure and are encouraged to talk and are always listened to.
· The names and pictures of whom pupils can speak to, to discuss any concerns is clearly displayed in the school corridor.
· Ensure that all children know there is an adult in the school whom they can approach if they are worried or in difficulty.
· Regularly safety sessions are in place throughout the year teaching children how to remain safe in and out of school. Topics covered are bullying, e-safety/cyber bullying, being streetwise, drug and alcohol awareness etc. Pupils are issued with a ‘keeping safe booklet’ to reinforce the topics from the above sessions.
· All pupils are issued with a student hand book detailing what to do and whom to speak to if they have any concerns in or out of school.
The above procedures will also be followed when pupils are undertaking work experience.
Monitoring and Evaluation
Our Child Protection Policy and Procedures will be monitored and evaluated by:
· Governing Body visits to the school
· SLT ‘drop ins’ and regular discussions with children and staff
· Scrutiny of Attendance data
· Scrutiny of range of risk assessments
· Scrutiny of GB minutes
· Logs of bullying/racist/behaviour incidents for SLT and GB to monitor
FORMS OF ABUSE
Child abuse can take many forms and may involve deliberate acts of cruelty or a persistent failure to provide adequate standards of care, whether physical or emotional. The procedures set out in the school policy should be followed in all cases where child abuse is suspected on the basis of the following criteria:
Actual or physical injury to a child, or failure to prevent injury or suffering.
The persistent or severe neglect of a child, or failure to protect a child from exposure to any kind of danger, including cold or starvation, or extreme failure to carry out important aspects of care, resulting in the significant impairment of the child's health or development.
Actual or likely severe adverse effect on the emotional or behavioural development of a child caused by persistent or severe emotional ill-treatment or rejection. This category should be used when it is the main or sole form of abuse.
Actual or likely sexual exploitation of a child or adolescent.
OBSERVATION OF ABUSE
Staff who have any concerns about any child which may indicate abuse or neglect, or who observe injuries which appear to be non-accidental, must report their concerns to the designated Safeguarding Officer or Deputy Safeguarding Officer.
Staff procedures for disclosure of abuse.
If a child tells you that he has been abused it is very important to realise that the information given to you, and the way the situation is managed, needs to comply with the rules of evidence which apply in the criminal court. The following points are ones you must be familiar with so you can feel reasonably comfortable should the event of disclosure arise.
1 Listen carefully.
2 Give time and attention.
3 Allow the child to give a spontaneous account.
4 Do not ask leading questions or put words into the child's mouth by expressing what you think they are “trying to say”. Staff must not interrogate the child or use questions which implicate, involve or try to gain information regarding persons who are allegedly involved.
5 Do not offer confidentiality even if this means the child fails to disclose on this occasion. It is essential that the child who is making the disclosure understands that the listening adult may have to share the information if necessary.
7 Reassure the child:
a) that you are glad they told you
b) that they have done nothing wrong in telling you
c) what you are going to do next (this might be to ask Rabbi Benarroch or senior management for advice).
8 Record (always keep all original handwritten notes):
a) what was said
b) the context in which it was said
c) who was present during the discussion
Use the school cause for concern sheet which can be obtained in the staff room or from the SENCO office.
9 Hand the completed cause for concern sheet in person to the designated person within 24 hours. If the designated person is unavailable, the sheet should be handed in to the Principal or Mr Denderowicz.
10 The minimum response is to take advice as above. A programme of careful monitoring may be suggested. The named person, in conjunction with the Principal will decide on the appropriate course of action.
11 Do not investigate.
Abuse resulting from bullying within school will be identified and dealt with as outlined in the Bullying Policy.
Staff should be alert to changes in children’s behaviour which could indicate that they may be in need of help or protection. Children at risk of radicalisation may display different signs or seek to hide their views. School staff should use their professional judgement in identifying children who might be at risk of radicalisation and act proportionately. If the DSL has any concerns regarding radicalization of a pupil, advice will be sought from the LADO. For further guidance refer to the Prevent Duty Document.
Ø The part played by staff within schools in detecting child abuse and monitoring children cannot be over estimated.
Ø The safety and welfare of the child must be the primary consideration.
Ø If you are in any doubt, seek advice. Don't delay. It is important to act on suspicions. However, bear in mind that what you are told might be exaggerated or even complete fantasy.
This guide highlights the responsibility of staff within schools and outlines their role in Bury's Child Protection Procedures. Please refer to document Guidance for Safer Working Practice.
All Staff are given a copy of Keeping Children Safe in Education (Prevent) documentation. They are required to read this document and sign confirmation this has been done.