We are committed to ensuring the safety and welfare of our children, and follow the child protection procedures in accordance with guidelines from Luton Safeguarding Children Board.
The designated people responsible for safeguarding are Julia Miller, Emma Pobjoy, Helen Mumford and Maria Sage.
In the interest of protecting your children:-
- Our centre is a mobile-free zone – if you are staying to settle a new child, please turn your phone off.
- Taking photographs in nursery is not allowed unless agreed with a member of staff.
- Please do not ask a member of staff to join your social networking site (e.g. facebook)
SAFEGUARDING and CHILD PROTECTION POLICY
1. Purpose of this Policy
This policy is compliant with the LSCB procedures and section 11 of the Children Act 2004
The purpose of Pastures Way Nursery School Safeguarding children policy is to ensure that procedures are in place so that every child who is a registered pupil at our School is safe and protected.
This policy will give clear direction to staff, volunteers and regular visitors about how concerns are managed. It is widely promoted and publicised. Staff and volunteers receive training on this policy and its implementation.
The policy and the procedures that lie within are checked for accuracy annually and formally reviewed at least every 3 years. Both are revised as required by legislation, government guidance or feedback from service users.
Our School fully recognises the contribution it can make in protecting children from harm and supporting and promoting the welfare of all children who are registered pupils at our School. The key elements of our policy are prevention, protection and support.
All children have equal rights to protection. Procedures, guidance and training help staff and volunteers to recognise the additional vulnerability of some children because of their race, gender, disability, language, sexual orientation, special need or culture.
Adults and children have a responsibility to treat each other with dignity and respect. Discriminatory, offensive or violent behaviour or language is unacceptable and complaints will be acted upon.
The Children Acts’ 1989 and 2004 state that a child is anyone who has not yet reached their 18th birthday. Therefore when this policy uses the word ‘child’ or ‘children’ it is referring to ‘children and young people’.
This policy applies to all staff, parents, governors, volunteers, visitors and pupils.
3. Our Ethos
Our School promotes an ethos where our pupils feel secure, are encouraged to talk and are listened to.
We recognise that children who are abused or witness abuse may find it difficult to develop a sense of self-worth or view the world in a positive way. For such children, our School may be one of the few stable, secure and predictable components in their life. Other children may be vulnerable because they have a disability or they are in care. We seek to provide all our children with the necessary support to keep them safe and build their self-esteem and self-confidence.
We want children at our School to feel able to talk freely to any member of staff, volunteer or regular visitor if they are worried or concerned about something.
All staff, students and volunteers will, through induction and training, know how to recognise concerns about a child and know how to manage a disclosure made by a child.
We will not make promises to a child we cannot keep and we will not keep secrets. Every child will be told, by the adult they have chosen to talk to, what will happen next.
Pastures Way Nursery School will endeavour to provide activities and opportunities in the PHSE curriculum that will equip our children with the skills they need to stay safe. This will also be extended to include material that will encourage our children to develop essential life skills.
At all times we will work to establish effective working relationships with parents, carers and colleagues from other agencies such as Health or Social Care (Children and Families, within the Children and Learning Department).
When new staff join our School they will be informed of the Safeguarding Children arrangements in place. They will be given a copy of this policy and told who the Designated Senior Member of Staff for Safeguarding is and who acts in their absence. There is also a Code of Conduct describing appropriate behaviour for all staff and volunteers which is given out as part of their induction.
The induction programme will include basic Safeguarding 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.
All regular visitors and volunteers to our School will be told where our policy is kept and who is the Designated Senior Member of Staff for Safeguarding.
When new pupils join our School, all parents and carers will be informed that we have a Safeguarding policy. This will be offered to parents should they request a copy. It will also be available on our school website. Parents and carers will be informed of our legal duty to assist our colleagues in social care with child protection enquiries and what happens should we have cause to make a referral to another agency.
5. Safeguarding Children Training
Working Together to Safeguard Children 2013 states that early years providers should ensure that staff complete safeguarding training that enables them to recognise signs of potential abuse and neglect; and that they have a practitioner who is designated to take lead responsibility for safeguarding children within the setting.
All staff in our School who are in regular contact with children will need to attend basic Safeguarding children training every 3 years. This is referred to as ‘Level 1’ Safeguarding children training and is provided, in our School, by the Local Authority.
Those staff who have ‘particular responsibilities’2 with regard to Safeguarding children will attend more comprehensive level 1 training and further training provided by the Local Safeguarding Children Board (LSCB)
2 Working Together to Safeguard Children 2013 Organisational responsibilities
6. Recording and reporting concerns about the safety and welfare of a child
All staff, volunteers and visitors have a responsibility to take prompt action if they are concerned about the safety and welfare of a child.
If a child is suffering or likely to suffer ‘significant harm’ (see appendix A) action must be taken immediately.
All concerns about the safety and welfare of a child must be taken seriously. The protection of the child is the most important consideration.
All staff, volunteers and visitors should:
- Record the concern, using the School Safeguarding children recording system.
- Speak to the Schools Designated Senior Member of Staff for Child Protection or the person who acts in their absence.
- Agree with this person what action should be taken, by whom and when it will be reviewed.
Non-urgent or low level concerns
All concerns about a child should initiate some form of action.
Concerns that are of a non-urgent or low-level nature3 should still be recorded centrally using the Schools Safeguarding children recording system. (the CHRONOLOGIES folder which is kept in the Headteacher’s office) and discussed with the Family Worker or Headteacher. If neither of them are available, the Assistant Head or SENCo should be told. Parents or carers should be informed of the concern, unless informing them would put the child at risk of harm.
Recording and acting upon low level or non-urgent concerns about a child is important in order to recognise the cumulative effect of some types of abuse.
Transferring of records/case note handover
Records are passed onto receiving schools/settings immediately after a child has started in that new setting. They are hand delivered where possible and a handover letter is filled in and signed by both settings. A record of that is kept by our school for six years.
7. Informing Parents and Carers
We ensure that parents and carers have an understanding of our responsibility to promote the safety and welfare of pupils by making our obligations clear in our prospectus.
In most cases parents and carers should be informed when concerns have been raised about their child. It is important that parents and carers are given an opportunity to address concerns raised.
Parents and carers should generally be informed if a referral is to be made to the Children and Families Service within Children and Learning or any other agency.
3 A concern that, in itself, does not reach the threshold of significant harm, however a pattern of concerns may suggest emotional abuse or neglect.
Parents must not be informed if it is believed that by doing so would put the child at risk, for example if the child has made a disclosure of sexual or physical abuse.
In this event immediate advice should be sought from the Children and Families Service’s Initial Assessment Team.
8. The Role of the Head Teacher
The Headteacher of the School will ensure that:
- the policies and procedures adopted by the Governing Body are fully implemented, and followed by all staff
- sufficient resources and time are allocated to enable the Designated Senior Member of Staff for Child Protection and other staff to discharge their responsibilities, including taking part in strategy discussions and other inter-agency meetings, and contributing to the assessment of children;
- all staff and volunteers feel able to raise concerns about poor or unsafe practice in regard to children, and such concerns are addressed sensitively and effectively in a timely manner.
9. The Role of the Governing Body
The Governing Body of the School will ensure:
- a member of the Governing Body is responsible for championing Safeguarding children issues. This person liaises with the Schools Designated Senior Member of Staff for Child Protection and provides information to the Governing Body. This person is Julius Kandekore.
- there is a senior member of the School’s leadership team who is designated to take lead responsibility for dealing with Safeguarding children issues (Designated Senior Member of Staff for Child Protection). This person will have undertaken appropriate training and attended refresher training every 2 years.
the School follows local Safeguarding procedures and the School’s Safeguarding children policy is reviewed annually.
the School operates safe recruitment practices, including appropriate use of references and checks on new staff and volunteers.
- there are procedures for dealing with allegations of abuse against members of staff and volunteers and these are in line with Local Authority procedures. (See Whistleblowing policy)
all staff and volunteers who are in ‘regular contact’ 4 with children, undertake appropriate training which is kept up-to-date by refresher training at three-yearly intervals; and temporary staff and volunteers who work with children are made aware of the School’s Safeguarding children arrangements.
- any deficiencies or weaknesses that are brought to the attention of the
- Governing Body are rectified.
10. The Role of the Designated Senior Member of Staff for Child Protection
The Designated Senior Member of Staff for Child Protection has a specific responsibility for championing the importance of Safeguarding and promoting the welfare of all children and young people registered at the School.
The role of the Designated Senior Member of Staff for Child Protection includes:
Liaising with the Governing Body and Local Authority
- acting as the first point of contact with the Local Authority with regard to Safeguarding children matters.
- provision of information to the Local Authority on how the School discharges its duties with regard to Safeguarding children.
- liaison with the Governing Body and Local Authority with regard to any deficiencies of practice or procedure and how these may be rectified.
Referrals to the Children and Families Department and other agencies
- ensuring all actions are in line with the LSCB’s Safeguarding Inter-Agency Procedures.
- supporting and enabling staff to make effective referrals to the Children and Families Service and other agencies where there are concerns that a child is being abused
- holding a copy of all referrals made to the Children and Families Service and referrals to other agencies related to Safeguarding children matters
- liaison with the Head Teacher (where the role is not carried out by the Head Teacher) to inform him/her of any issues and ongoing investigations and ensure there is always cover for this role.
4 Working Together 2013 organisational responsibilities
- ensuring that staff have received information on Safeguarding children at induction.
- making sure the School receives LSCB approved Safeguarding training at least every 3 years and all staff receive training appropriate to their role. ensuring all staff with specific responsibility for Safeguarding children attend more in depth training.
- ensuring all staff understand internal reporting and recording systems and are clear about what to do if they are worried about a child.
- ensure all staff and volunteers are aware of the School’s Safeguarding children policy and it is readily available and reviewed annually
- keep up to date with changes in local policy and procedure and take account of guidance issued by the Department for Education.
- managing the School’s Safeguarding children recording system.
- when children leave the establishment, ensuring their child protection or Safeguarding file relating to them is copied for new establishment as soon as possible, but transferred separately from the main pupil file
11. Child Protection Conferences and Core Groups
Members of staff may be asked to attend a child protection conference and/or relevant core group meetings, on behalf of the School, in respect of individual children.
The person attending from School will often be the Head Teacher or Designated Senior Member of Staff for Child Protection, however another member of staff may be asked to attend depending on their role or involvement with the child. The person attending will need to have as much relevant up to date information about the child as possible.
A child protection conference will be convened if it is considered the child/ren are suffering or at risk of suffering significant harm. Review conferences and regular core group meetings will be held to monitor the child protection plan.
All reports for child protection conferences will be prepared in advance of the meeting. The information contained in the report will be shared with parents at the conference and will include information relating to the child’s physical, emotional and intellectual development.
Child protection conferences can be upsetting for parents/carers and we recognise that School staff are likely to have more contact with parents than other professionals involved. We will work in an open and honest way with all parents and carers. Our responsibility is to safeguard and promote the welfare of all children and our aim is to achieve this in partnership with our parents.
12. Managing Allegations and Concerns Against Staff and Volunteers
Any allegation made against a teacher of other member of staff or volunteer will be dealt with fairly, quickly and consistently, in a way that provides effective protection for the child, and at the same time supports the person who is subject to the allegation.
- This School follows the procedures set out by the Local Safeguarding Children’s Board. All concerns will be shared with Paul James, who is the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO). He can be contacted on 01582 548069.
- No-one is to carry a mobile phone with them. They must be locked securely in the personal lockers. If staff have to be contactable, they must leave their phone in the reception office, or ask office staff to take a message for them.
- Permission to carry phones will need to be given by the Headteacher.
- Cameras of any kind (on a phone, Ipad or tablet) are not allowed in the bathroom areas at any time
- Uploaded images are saved on PC’s in the staff/work room. These are checked regularly by our IT technician
- No students, visitors or volunteers must be left alone with children at any time
- Staff who are waiting for DBS clearance must also not be left alone with children
- We ask staff to be vigilant when passing by nappy changing areas-check that changing is being done in a respectful and decent manner
- Remember that the whistleblowing procedure allows you to speak to Senior managers in confidence about any concerns you may have about other staff
13. Safe Recruitment and Selection of Staff
The School’s recruitment processes conform to the guidance set out in “Safeguarding Children and Safer Recruitment in Education Settings” (DFES, January 2007).
There is a clear procedure for recruiting staff, Governors and volunteers who have contact with children and young people and for assessing their suitability. This is compatible with the Independent Safeguarding Authority and LSCB procedures.
There is explicit guidance about the expectations of students undertaking work experience or student placements, which ensures they do not have unsupervised contact with children and young people using the service.
14. Complaints or Concerns Expressed by Pupils, Staff or Volunteers
Pastures Way Nursery School recognises that listening to children 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 to in order to safeguard his/her welfare.
We will also seek to ensure that the child or adult who makes a complaint is informed not only about the action the School will take but also the length of time that will be required to resolve the complaint. The School will also endeavour to keep the child or adult regularly informed as to the progress of his/her complaint.
15. Other Types of Safeguarding Issues
Other types of safeguarding issues that we may need to concern ourselves with have been highlighted in the National Press, such as child sexual exploitation, forced marriage, radicalisation, female genital mutilation, gun violence or gang culture. Any concerns about these issues coming to light involving children in our care, their families, friends or neighbours need to be reported as would any other Child Safeguarding concern, as it may have a significant and harmful effect on the child. Training for staff in these matters will be shared regularly to ensure we keep up to date with changing information, legislation and data.
16. Other Relevant Policies
The Governing Body’s legal responsibility for Safeguarding the welfare of children goes beyond basic child protection procedures.
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:
- Managing Allegations and Concerns Against Staff and Volunteers
- Behaviour Management
- Special Educational Needs
- Trips and visits
- Work experience and extended work placements
- First aid and the administration of medicines
- Health and Safety
- Site Security
- Equal Opportunities
- Toileting/Intimate care
- ICT and access to the internet
- Disciplinary procedures
- Distinguishing between healthy and abusive sexual behaviours in children and young peopleThe above list is not exhaustive but when undertaking development or planning of any kind the School will to consider Safeguarding matters.
Designated Senior Member of Staff for Child Protection
Maria Sage, Helen Mumford or Emma Pobjoy Tel: 01582 600691 ext 218/219/217
These people will act in the absence of the Designated Senior Member of Staff
Meadows Children’s Centre
Gill Davidson – Hub Manager 220
Governor responsible for Safeguarding children –
Referral & Assessment Team 547653
Emergency Duty Team 01525 405109 or 0300 3008123
Police Child Abuse Investigation Team 401212
Local Authority designated person (Paul James) 548069
The threshold that justifies compulsory intervention in family life and gives Local Authorities a duty to make enquiries to decide whether they should take action to safeguard or promote the welfare of a child who is suffering or likely to suffer significant harm.
A form of abuse which 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 an illness in a child.
Working Together 2013
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 over protection and the limitation of exploration and learning or preventing a child in 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 to frequently 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.
Working Together 2013
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 also 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
Working Together 2013
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 for example. Once a child is born, neglect may involve a parent or carer failing to:
- provide adequate food and clothing, shelter (including exclusion from home or abandonment)
- protect a child from physical and emotional harm or danger
- ensure adequate supervision (including the use of inadequate care-takers)
- ensure access to appropriate medical care or treatment.
It may also include neglect of, or unresponsiveness to, a child’s basic emotional needs.
Working Together 2013