Plasnewydd Primary School Child Protection Policy Plasnewydd Primary School SCHOOL – CHILD PROTECTION POLICY SAFEGUARDING CHILDREN IS A CONCERN FOR THE WHOLE SCHOOL A safe child: is valued has self-esteem is self-confident has the skills and knowledge to protect themselves A safe child knows: ‘I have the right to be safe‟. „I have rights over my body‟. „It‟s ok to say no‟. How to be assertive. A safe child understands: The difference between good and bad secrets. What might be a potentially dangerous situation. Who can help or be trusted. The difference between appropriate and inappropriate touches. A safe child is able to: Trust, recognise and express their feelings. Solve problems. Make judgements. Make decisions. Be assertive. 1 Plasnewydd Primary School Child Protection Policy A WHOLE SCHOOL POLICY ON CHILD PROTECTION The purpose of a child protection policy is: To create an ethos within the school which helps children to feel secure and able to talk freely, in the belief that they will be listened to and that their point of view will be valued. To raise the awareness of all staff about their responsibility to identify and report possible cases of abuse. To provide a systematic means of monitoring children thought to be at risk. To provide suitable support and guidance to staff so that children have a range of adults whom they feel confident to approach if they are in difficulty. To develop a structured internal procedure to be followed by all members of the school community in cases of suspected abuse. To promote good communication between staff over concerns about children and young people. The statutory basis of a child protection policy The work of the school in child protection is governed by a collection of documents, circulars and guides to good practice. These are: Working Together under the Children Act (Revised 2001 – N.A.W.G.) Welsh Office Circular 52/95 Protecting Children from Abuse: the role of the Education Service. The All Wales Child Protection Procedures The Framework for the Assessment of Children In Need and Their Families. L.E.A. pack “The Umbrella of Safety” 2 Plasnewydd Primary School Child Protection Policy The two major elements involved in a whole school child protection policy: The effective prevention of harm by helping pupils and students to acquire the relevant information, skills and attitudes both to resist harm in their own lives and to prepare them for the responsibilities of their adult lives, including parenthood. The effective management of suspicions of significant harm to children and subsequent referrals. The Role of the Liaison Teacher The Liaison Teacher for Child Protection shall ensure that she/he is fully conversant with the ACPC Child Protection Procedures and will co- ordinate action on child abuse within school, ensuring that all staff are aware of their own responsibilities in relation to child protection. She/he is responsible for referring individual cases of suspected abuse to the social services department, and for liaising with the social services department and other agencies on these and other general issues relating to child protection. She/he has responsibility to participate in training on all aspects of child protection within the school and acts as a point of reference on child protection issues for other staff. She/he will ensure that the school is represented at child protection conferences and a written report is prepared. She/he will also ensure that any recommendations made by the conference, which involve school staff, are carried out as agreed at the conference. Should the alleged perpetrator of abuse be a member of staff, the Headteacher will consult Mr. G. Avery, Assistant Director in line with LEA guidelines. Tel. No. 01656 622611 Working with other agencies We recognise that we are an agent of referral and not of investigation. We fully accept that the investigation of child abuse is the responsibility of the social services department and the police and will do everything possible to support and assist them in their task. 3 Plasnewydd Primary School Child Protection Policy We will endeavour to build relationships with other agencies so that understanding, trust and confidence can be built which will help to secure effective co-operation in cases of actual or suspected abuse. Record Keeping Any member of staff receiving a disclosure of abuse from a child or young person, or noticing signs or symptoms of possible abuse in a child or young person, will make notes as soon as possible (e.g. within an hour), writing down as exactly as possible, what was said or seen, putting the scene into context, and giving the time and location. Dates and times of events should be recorded as accurately as possible, together with a note of when the record was made. This should be signed and dated and given to the liaison teacher. All records of a child protection nature should be handed to the Liaison Teacher and will be kept securely by him/her. Access to these records is on a „need to know‟ basis and decisions about access will be made by the Liaison Teacher. All hand written notes will be kept, even if they are subsequently typed up in a more formal report. When a child who is on the Child Protection Register leaves the school the Liaison Teacher will inform the child‟s new school immediately and discuss with the child‟s key worker the transfer of any confidential information the school may hold. Support for children/staff/families For any child undergoing a child protection referral and investigation, the need for support will be great and quite often such support will be limited to what the school can offer. The school has a statutory responsibility to work with children on a daily basis and, despite heavy workloads and limited resources, we aim to meet their needs for support whenever possible. We aim at least to provide a secure classroom environment in which the child feels valued and protected. The liaison teacher will make himself/herself available to discuss individual children or situations with concerned members of staff whenever necessary. The school will offer support, where possible, to the family of a child or children involved in a child protection investigation, within the time and expertise constraints of its role and always remembering the limits of confidentiality on all members of staff and the fact that it is the welfare of the child that is paramount. 4 Plasnewydd Primary School Child Protection Policy Staff awareness of what child harm is Through training Reading „The A.C.P.C. & L.E.A. Guidelines‟. Support for victim, Familiarity with Area staff and parents Guidelines and Procedures Staff in school may be identified as key Staff should be aware people in providing of the location of this multi-disciplinary document and familiar support for children EFFECTIVE with the need for a and families. MANAGEMENT multi disciplinary approach to the Staff also need management of child support to protection. understand their own feelings and anxieties. Liaison with other agencies Clear Communication and procedures within school to Working together with professionals cover: in other agencies is essential for the effective management of child Monitoring (when and how) protection. Record-keeping (how and when, storage) Effective communication with other agencies needs to be promoted. Handling disclosures and sensitive issues. Confidentiality 5 N.B. All staff need to be aware of these. Plasnewydd Primary School Child Protection Policy Classroom Caring school ethos Management One which actively promotes the Which encourages self-esteem of the individual. independence, self-confidence One which has a child centred and assertiveness philosophy. Clear policies for: A curriculum Sex education. Which offers Health education. opportunities to discuss: EFFECTIVE Equal Emotions opportunities. PREVENTION Relationships Behaviour/bullying (creating safe children) Good and bad secrets depends upon Safe & unsafe touches Bullying Respect for the child’s: Assertiveness Colour Parenting with: (older A curriculum Good links skills children) Gender Which offers Parents or carers; opportunities to: Race Other professionals Solve working with children Creed problems in your area. Form judgements. Make decisions. 6 Make choices.