Child Protection and Safeguarding Policy


Child Protection and Safeguarding Policy

Child Protection and Safeguarding Policy
Updated: 23/01/2019 525 KB
Click here for a printable version of our Child Protection and Safeguarding Policy

 

 

 

Child Protection - Safeguarding Children Policy

This policy has been agreed and adopted by the Governors.

Signed by Chair of Governors:                                                                   Date: January 2019

Policy history:

Reviewed:                   Spring 2019

Next review:                Spring 2020

 

This policy is based on the model child protection and safeguarding policy - Lambeth - Sept 2018.

 

 

The Senior Designated Safeguarding Lead is:

 

Name:  Glenda King

 

In her/his absence the Deputy Designated Safeguarding Leads are:

Name: (1):  Bolu Heather, Children’s Centre

Name: (2):  Cathy Byrne, Nursery School

Name: (3):  Charmaine Cummings, Children’s Centre

 

The chair of governors is: Bruce MacInnes

Contact details:  bmacinnes@maytree-school.org.uk (Secure email address)

 

The governor for safeguarding children is:  Victoria Ling

Contact details:  vling@holmewoodnurseryschool.org.uk

 

Local Authority Contacts

 

 

 

Lambeth Integrated Referral Hub: 020 7926 3100

 

Out of hours: 020 7926 1000

 

 

Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO): Andrew Zachariades

 

020 7926 4579      mobile: 07720 828700            lado@lambeth.gcsx.gov.uk

 

 

 

LA safeguarding lead (primary schools, high schools and colleges): Sarwan Singh Jandu

 

020 7926 9643     mobile: 0797 649 0051        sjandu@lambeth.gov.uk

 

 

 

LA safeguarding lead (early years provision and primary schools): Denys Rasmussen

 

020 7926 8915     mobile: 07785 660426           drasmussen@lambeth.gov.uk

 

 

 

Education Prevent Officer: Lydia Nixon

 

020 7926 3668            lnixon@lambeth.gov.uk

 

 

 

Head of Inclusion, Education and Learning: Stuart Boffin

 

020 7926 0296           sboffin@lambeth.gov.uk

 

 

 

CSE Co-ordinator Children’s Services: Cathy Henchion

 

020 7926 0296          chenchion@lambeth.gov.uk

 

 

 

Key Contacts - Safeguarding / Whistleblowing - LINK

 

 

 

CONTENTS

1

Roles and responsibilities

2

Working with parents and carers

3

Confidentiality  & Information sharing

4

Referral to Lambeth children’s social care

5

Definition and Indicators of abuse

6

Training

7

Teaching children about safeguarding

8

Physical intervention / positive handling

9

Changing wet clothes re. water play

10

Intimate care

11

Record keeping

12

Inter-agency work (including Early Help)

13

Safer recruitment

14

Single central record

15

Allegation of abuse made against staff

16

On-line safety

17

Peer on peer abuse

18

Bullying

19

Child on child sexual violence and sexual harassment

20

Looked after children

21

Children with special educational needs and disabilities

22

Children missing from education

23

Child Sexual exploitation

24

Child criminal exploitation: county lines

25

Domestic violence

26

Homelessness

27

Honour based violence

28

Female Genital Mutilation

29

Forced marriage

30

Extremism and radicalisation

31

Children staying with host families

32

Private fostering

33

Raising concerns about safeguarding practice

 

 

Introduction

 

Ethelred Nursery School is committed to providing an environment where children feel safe and are kept safe and all staff contribute to the culture of vigilance which is embedded in our school. All staff form part of the wider safeguarding system for children. This system is described in statutory guidance Working together to safeguard children (2018).

 

Safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children is everyone’s responsibility. Everyone who comes into contact with children and their families and carers has a role to play in safeguarding children. In order to fulfil this responsibility effectively, all staff should make sure their approach is child-centred. This means that they should consider, at all times, what is in the best interests of the child. No single professional can have a full picture of a child’s needs and circumstances. If children and families are to receive the right help at the right time, everyone who comes into contact with them has a role to play in identifying concerns, sharing information and taking prompt action.

Safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children is defined for the purposes of this guidance as:

  • protecting children from maltreatment
  • preventing impairment of children’s health or development
  • ensuring that children grow up in circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective care
  • taking action to enable all children to have the best outcomes.

 

There are three elements to our policy to safeguard children:

 

Prevention focuses on:

Providing an environment in which children and young people feel safe, secure, valued and respected, feel confident and know how to approach adults if they are in difficulties;

Raising the awareness of all staff, of the need to safeguard children and of their responsibilities in identifying and reporting possible cases of abuse;

Ensuring that all adults within our school who have access to children have been rigorously checked as to their suitability, using safe recruitment procedures.

 

Protection

Through the establishment of a systematic means of monitoring children, known or thought to be at risk of harm;

Through the establishment of structured procedures within the school which will be followed by all members of the school community in cases of suspected abuse. All staff to receive regular training and up-dates;

Through the development of effective working relationships with all other agencies involved in safeguarding children

 

Support

Ensuring that key concepts of child protection are integrated within the curriculum and children and parents are educated about risks associated with new digital technologies;

Ensuring that children are listened to and their concerns taken seriously and are acted upon; Working with others to support children who may have been abused, to access the curriculum and take part in school life.

 

Key documents that inform this policy are:

 

  • Keeping children safe in education (Sept 2018)
  • Working together to safeguard children (July 2018)
  • Statutory framework for the early years foundation stage (March 2017)
  • What to do if you worried a child is being abused (March 2015)

 

Our school procedures for safeguarding children will be in line with the Lambeth safeguarding children board child protection procedures which are based on the London child protection procedures.

 

  1. Role and responsibilities

 

    1. The role of the Governing Body

 

The governing body will ensure that Ethelred meets its statutory duties with regard to safeguarding and protecting children in line with the provisions set out in the statutory guidance, ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education’ (2018).

 

The governing body will challenge the school’s senior leadership team on the delivery of this policy and monitor its effectiveness.

 

Governors will review this policy every year and may amend and adopt it in accordance with any new legislation or guidance.

 

The governing body will ensure that the following are in place:

 

  • Safeguarding and child protection policies and procedures that are consistent with Lambeth Safeguarding Children Board (LSCB) procedures.

 

  • A staff code of conduct policy and acceptable use of digital technology include policies covering staff/child/parent relationships and communication and staff use of social media.

 

  • A senior member of staff is appointed as the Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) with responsibilities for carrying out the statutory duties as set out in this policy.

 

The school has a designated governor responsible for advocating child protection and safeguarding issues within the school. This governor will liaise with the Headteacher as DSL and report to the governing body on safeguarding matters.

 

    1. The role of the headteacher

 

The Headteacher will ensure that policies and procedures adopted by the governing body are followed by all staff.

 

    1. The role of the Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL)

 

The Designated Safeguarding Lead is appointed from the senior leadership team and will take the lead responsibility for safeguarding and child protection (including online safety). This is explicit in the role holder’s job description.

Annex B of the DfE Guidance; Keeping Children safe in Education (2018), describes the broad areas of responsibility and activities related to this role.

 

Deputy Safeguarding Lead(s) have also been appointed to take on the responsibility in the absence of the Designated Safeguarding Lead. The ultimate responsibility for safeguarding and child protection remains with the Designated Safeguarding Lead and this lead responsibility will not be delegated.

 

The Designated Safeguarding Lead co-ordinates the school’s representation at child protection conferences/core groups and the submission of written reports for such meetings. The Designated Safeguarding Lead will ensure that if staff members attend a child protection meeting, they have the authority to make decisions and commit resources on behalf of the school.

 

The Designated Safeguarding Lead will have oversight of the delivery of school recommendations within child protection plans and will disseminate information to relevant staff members as appropriate. During term time the Designated Safeguarding Lead and or a deputy will be available during term-time hours for staff to discuss any safeguarding concerns. The Designated Safeguarding Lead will ensure that there is adequate and appropriate cover arrangements for any out of hours/out of term activities in line with Section ‘Availability’ p92 Keeping Children Safe in Education Sept 2018, see Appendix A.

 

    1. The role of the staff

 

Staff are particularly important as they are in a position to identify concerns early, provide help for children and prevent concerns from escalating. If staff members have any concerns about a child’s welfare they should report the matter to the Designated Safeguarding Lead using the Concerns form and HISTORY document.   See Appendix B – Responding to a disclosures of abuse and Appendix C - Detailed guidance for recording and reporting concerns about a child’s welfare.

 

If a child is in immediate danger or is at risk of harm, the Safeguarding Designated Lead will refer to children’s social care and/or the police immediately.

 

Although the responsibility to refer to children’s social care lies with the Designated Safeguarding Lead, anyone can make a referral. Where referrals are not made by the Designated Safeguarding Lead they should be informed as soon as possible via a comment’ from the form, that a referral has been made.

 

  1. Working with parents and carers

 

We recognise the importance of working together in partnership with parents and carers to ensure the welfare and safety of children.

 

We will:

  • make parents aware of their statutory role in safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children, including the duty to refer children when necessary

 

  • policies will be available on the website and on request

 

  • involve parents and carers in the development of our policies to ensure their views are taken into account.

We will ensure a robust complaints procedure is in place to deal with issues raised by parents and carers and will be made available on the school website.

 

Information for parents regarding Child Protection is included in the following:

 

  • School Information Booklet/Stay and Play leaflets and crèches
  • Safeguarding Children and Child Protection Information notices

 

  1. Confidentiality and information sharing

 

All our children are under 12, therefore, consent to share information about them must be obtained from their parents or carers.

 

Parental consent to refer to Lambeth children’s social care can be dispensed with if seeking consent is likely to cause significant harm, the School has a legal duty to share this information with Lambeth children’s social care.

 

If a child is subject to a child protection investigation, we will share any information about the child requested by Lambeth children’s social care.

 

  1. Referral to Lambeth children’s social care

 

Referral to Lambeth Integrated Referral Hub will be made using a multi-agency referral form (MARF).  See Appendix C for Detailed guidance for recording and reporting concerns about a child’s welfare.

 

Telephone: 020 7926 3100 - Out of hours telephone: 020 7926 1000

helpandprotection@lambeth.gov.uk or help.protection@lambeth.cjsm.net (secure email)

 

  1. Definitions and Indicators of abuse

 

For definitions and indicators of abuse, refer to Appendix D - Types of abuse and their symptoms.

For guidance on responding to a disclosure of abuse, refer to Appendix B.

 

  1. Training

 

All members of staff

Our Governing Body will monitor that all staff members complete safeguarding and child protection training at induction. The training will be updated at least every three years and is in line with advice from the Lambeth safeguarding children board. Staff will be given an explanation of and a copy of:

 

  • The child protection and safeguarding policy incorporating:
    • The safeguarding response to children who go missing from education (incorporated into this policy)
    • The role of the Designated Safeguarding Lead (including the identity of the Designated Safeguarding Lead and any deputies)

 

  • The behaviour policy

 

  • The code of conduct

 

  • Part one of Keeping Children Safe in Education (2018)

 

  • Annex A of Keeping Children Safe in Education (2018)

 

Designated Safeguarding Leads and Deputies

The Designated Safeguarding Lead and any deputies will undergo training to provide them with the knowledge and skills required to carry out the role. The training will be updated every two years. The Designated Safeguarding Lead will undertake Prevent awareness training.   At least one member of staff must be on duty with this level of training whilst children are on site; during normal nursery session times, during breakfast and after-school club and during school holidays when the children’s centres and/or holiday club are open.  Only in exceptional circumstances could this person be off-site.

 

All staff members will receive regular safeguarding and child protection updates (for example, via email, e-bulletins, staff meetings), as required, but at least annually, to provide them with relevant skills and knowledge to safeguard children effectively.

Opportunities will be provided for staff to contribute to and shape safeguarding arrangements and child protection policy.

 

 

Governor with responsibility for child protection

Child Protection Governors training – refresher training every 2 years.

 

Safer Recruitment Training

The Headteacher and one other member of the recruitment panel on the governing body must have attended training and passed the test - certificate lasts for 5 years.  Those who have passed the test will undertake the ½ day refresher training offered by Lambeth Schools HR after 5 years.  Safer recruitment online training is also available from the NSPCC (4 hrs @£30)

 

Records of all training are detailed on the Training Poster which is displayed at the school and children’s centre.

 

  1. Teaching children about safeguarding and providing information to parents

 

Our Governing Body will ensure children are taught about keeping themselves safe as part of providing a broad and balanced curriculum.  Information will be shared with parents about children keeping themselves safe, including online safety, through newsletters, text messages, one-to-one meetings.

 

  1. Physical intervention / positive handling / reasonable force

 

All staff (paid and voluntary) are expected to adhere to a code of conduct in respect of their contact with children and their families. Whilst it would be unrealistic and undesirable to preclude all physical contact between adults and children, staff should avoid placing themselves in a position where their actions might be open to criticism or misinterpretation. ‘Reasonable force’ is taken to mean ‘using no more force than is necessary’. The use of force may involve either passive physical contact, such as standing between children or blocking a child’s path, or active physical contact such as leading a child out of the classroom by holding their elbow.  To reduce the occurrence of challenging behaviour and the need to use reasonable force, individual behaviour plans will be completed for more vulnerable children with the agreement of their parents/carers.

 

Our Use of Reasonable Force procedures are in line with DfE Guidance on the Use of Reasonable Force (2013).

 

Refer to our separate behaviour policy and our physical handling policy for further details on positive handling / restraint and the reasonable use of force.

 

  1. Changing children who have wet clothes through water play

 

The following is based on guidance from the NSPCC about changing for P.E.

 

Changing wet clothes, with or without the support from an adult can cause anxiety for some children.  This can influence their perception of the subject and determine whether it is an enjoyable and positive experience or not. Being in a state of undress can also cause some children to feel vulnerable, particularly those who have experienced abuse, and cause them to misunderstand or misinterpret the actions of an adult.  Staff should be aware of this and be sensitive to the child’s feelings and needs.

 

  1. Intimate care

           

We aim to protect children from abuse and our staff from false allegations.  If a child needs a change of clothes a member of staff will do this in the designated space where they can be viewed by other members of staff.  Where possible children will be encouraged to undress and dress themselves.  Changing children can cause anxiety, particularly those who have experienced abuse, and may lead them to misunderstand or misinterpret the actions of an adult. If a nappy is changed the member of staff will inform a colleague.  The changing areas can be seen by other members of staff whilst offering privacy to the child.   We will obtain parents/carers permission to change children when needed.  When changing involves removing underwear or a nappy this will be recorded to include the child’s name, adult changing, date and time.  This will be stored for one term and then shredded.  See Retention and archiving schedule.  For some SEND children intimate care will be agreed as part of a care plan.

 

  1. Record keeping

 

The Designated Safeguarding Lead will ensure that all child protection records and safeguarding concerns are kept separately from pupil records. The records will be stored securely.  Electronic records are protected by specific ‘sharing’ procedures’.  Paper records are secured in a locked cupboard with restricted access. Information from the records may be shared with staff on a need to know basis.

 

When a child transfers to a new school child protection records are addressed to the Designated Safeguarding Lead and sent separately and securely from the general records to the new school and a confirmation of receipt will be obtained. The Designated Safeguarding Lead will contact the school to share information before the end of term if it will support the transition for that child.

 

Retention of Child Protection Records and Concerns are specified in the Retention and archiving schedule in line with the Information Management Toolkit for Schools produced by the Information and Records Management Society.

 

  1. Inter-agency working (including Early Help)

 

The Governing Body will ensure that all settings contribute to inter-agency working in line with statutory guidance Working Together to Safeguard Children (2018). Staff will work with social care, the police, health services, local authority and other services to promote the welfare of children and protect them from harm. This includes providing a co-ordinated offer of early help when additional needs of children are identified and contributing to inter-agency plans to provide additional support to children subject to child protection plans.

 

All schools should allow access for children’s social care to conduct, or to consider whether to conduct, a section 17 or a section 47 assessment.

 

  1. Safer recruitment

 

We have adopted safer recruitment procedures that help deter, identify and reject people who might abuse children. We adhere to the statutory guidance Keeping Children Safe in Education 2018 part 3, to ensure that all staff working in our school are subject to the appropriate checks.

 

The School Staffing (England) Regulations 2009 require governing bodies of maintained schools to ensure that at least one person on any appointment panel has undertaken safer recruitment training, this is adhered to by the Federation.

 

Staff working in the school, engaged in regulated activity, require an enhanced DBS certificate, which includes barred list check, this is adhered to by the Federation.

 

All staff employed to teach require an additional check to ensure that they are not prohibited from teaching, this is adhered to by the Federation.

 

Where, in exceptional circumstances and rarely, an individual starts work in regulated activity before the DBS certificate is available, we ensure that the individual is appropriately supervised and that all other checks, including a separate barred list check, have been completed.

 

We will carry out a risk assessment and put in place any necessary measures to ensure that the children are safe whilst waiting for an outcome of the DBS check or where there is a disclosure on the DBS certificate.

 

We will make arrangements to ensure that we do not knowingly employ any persons who have been disqualified from such work under the Childcare Act 2006 as set out in the Childcare (Disqualification) Regulations 2018. All staff are asked to make the relevant declarations.

 

Teacher prohibition orders prevent a person from carrying out teaching work in schools.  A person who is prohibited from teaching will not be appointed to work as a teacher in this setting, all prospective members of staff are checked against this list.

 

Volunteers - We will ensure that under no circumstances a volunteer is allowed to work with children unsupervised. For a volunteer not involved in regulated activity, the DBS certificate will not include a barred list check. Checks carried out on volunteers, will be recorded on the single central record.

 

Volunteers not engaging in regulated activity will be subject to a risk assessment to allow us to use our professional judgement and experience when deciding whether to obtain an enhanced DBS certificate this will not include a barred list check as they are not in regulated activity.

 

Volunteers will work under the direct management of a staff member, who is in regulated activity and vetted accordingly, and all volunteers will be subject to the same code of conduct as paid employees of our school. They will have a ‘job description’ pertaining to the volunteering role provided with appropriate induction.

 

Supply staff – the school will request written confirmation that the employment agency supplying the member of supply staff has carried out the relevant checks and obtained the appropriate certificates, whether any enhanced DBS check certificate has been provided in respect of the member of supply staff, and the date that confirmation was received. Checks will also be made to ensure the person presenting themselves for work is the same person on whom the checks were carried out.

 

  1. Single central record (SCR)

 

We keep a single central record for all staff (including supply staff, and teacher trainees on salaried routes).

 

The following information will be recorded for all staff including teacher trainees on salaried routes.  The SCR is verification that the following checks have been carried out or certificates obtained, and the date on which each check was completed/certificate obtained:

 

  • an identity check

 

  • a barred list check

 

  • an enhanced DBS check/certificate

 

  • a prohibition from teaching check

 

  • further checks on people who have lived or worked outside the UK; including recording checks for EEA teacher sanctions and restrictions

 

  • a check of professional qualifications; where required and

 

  • a check to establish the person’s right to work in the United Kingdom.

 

We will ensure that DBS checks are renewed every 3 years for all staff, and will be a condition of service. Staff may subscribe to the DBS Update Service allowing a status check to be carried out without applying for another DBS.

 

We will ensure that all staff in regulated activity are checked against the DBS’ Children’s Barred List prior to their appointment as part of the vetting process. A separate DBS will be carried out if application for the checks has not been completed by the start date.

 

We have a legal duty to refer to the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) anyone who has harmed, or poses a risk of harm, to a child or if we have a reason to believe the member of staff has committed one of a number of listed offences and as a result we have removed them from working in regulated activitySuch referrals to the DBS apply to paid or unpaid staff where we are the employer and also applies where we would have removed that person from regulated activity had that person not resigned from our employment.

 

  1. Allegation of abuse made against teachers and other staff

 

It is a legal requirement to inform Lambeth LA.  The Disclosure and Barring Service and the Teaching Regulation Agency may also need to be informed.

 

Parents have the right to make a formal complaint against the action of the school and/or its employees and such complaints will be dealt with in line with our Complaints Procedures. This can be found on our website.

 

Where it is alleged that a member of staff (including volunteers) has:

  • behaved in a way that has harmed a child, or may have harmed a child including incidents that may have happened in a person’s private life;

 

  • possibly committed a criminal offence against or related to a child; or

 

  • behaved towards a child or children in a way that indicates he or she would pose a risk of harm to children

 

The matter will be dealt with in line with the allegations procedures as set out in Part Four of Keeping Children Safe in Education (2018).

 

Allegations against staff must be brought immediately to the attention of the Headteacher. The Headteacher will only carry out initial enquiries (not an investigation) prior to a discussion with the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO).

 

Any allegation relating to the Headteacher must be brought to the attention of the Chair of Governors who will contact the LADO.

 

Outcomes of all investigations into allegations made against staff will be notified to schools, colleges and early years safeguarding leads (Sarwan Singh Jandu / Denys Rasmussen) on completion.

 

Allegations against a teacher who is no longer teaching or allegations that are historical will be referred to the police.

 

  1. On-line safety

 

The use of technology and social media has become a significant component of many safeguarding issues. It is essential that children are safeguarded from potentially harmful and inappropriate online material.  As such the Governing Body will ensure the schools have appropriate filters and appropriate monitoring systems in place.  Where child sexual exploitation; radicalisation and sexual predation occur: technology often provides the platform that facilitates harm.  At our settings our role is to highlight these dangers to parents.  The approach to online safety is to protect and educate the whole school community in their use of technology and establishes mechanisms to identify, intervene and escalate any incident where appropriate. Please see the Acceptable use of digital technologies policy.

 

Children will be taught to recognise risk and build resilience in order to manage risk themselves appropriate to their age. Children are encouraged to talk to their Key Person about any concerns or worries they may have.

 

  1. Peer on peer abuse

 

Child on Child/Peer on Peer abuse, Bullying and Child on Child sexual violence and Sexual harassment are specific forms of abuse which may be prevalent in schools, however less so with nursery aged children.

 

Staff are fully aware of the seriousness of this and will follow procedures in this policy or the schools’ behaviour policies.

 

We recognise that children who harm others are likely to have considerable needs themselves and may have witnessed violence in the family or have been exposed to physical or sexual harm, or may have committed other offences.

 

  1. Bullying

See 17 above.

 

19.   Child on child sexual violence and sexual harassment

See 17 above.

 

  20.   Looked after children and previously looked after

 

The most common reason for children becoming looked after is as a result of abuse and/or neglect. Our Governing Body monitors that staff have the skills, knowledge and understanding necessary to keep looked after children safe.

 

Our designated teacher for looked after children is:

 

Name: Glenda King

 

We will ensure that appropriate staff have the information they need in relation to a child’s looked after legal status (or previously looked after) (whether they are looked after under voluntary arrangements with consent of parents or on an interim or full care order) and contact arrangements with birth parents or those with parental responsibility. They will also have information about the child’s care arrangements and the levels of authority delegated to the carer by the authority looking after him/her. The DSL will have details of the child’s social worker and the name of the virtual school head in the authority that looks after the child.

 

Virtual school heads receive pupil premium plus additional funding based on the latest published numbers of children looked after in the authority. The designated teacher for looked after children will work with the virtual school head to discuss how that funding can be best used to support the progress of looked after children in the school and meet the needs identified in the child’s personal education plan.

 

21. Children with special educational needs and disabilities

 

Children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) can face additional safeguarding challenges. The child protection policy reflects the fact that additional barriers can exist when recognising abuse and neglect in this group of children. This can include:

 

  • assumptions that indicators of possible abuse such as behaviour, mood and injury relate to the child’s disability without further exploration
  • being more prone to isolation than other children
  • communication barriers and difficulties in overcoming these barriers.

 

Awareness of these additional barriers is reflected in the training for staff.

 

  1. Children missing from education 

 

A child going missing from education is a potential indicator of abuse or neglect. We will follow our procedures for unauthorised absence, particularly on repeat occasions, to help identify the risk of abuse and neglect and to help prevent the risks of going missing in future.  Children missing in education legislation applies to children of school age only.  However, where we have concerns about a child who leaves, we will endeavour to find out which school they have moved to or inform social care so information can be shared. 

 

It is essential that staff are alert to signs to look out for and individual triggers to be aware of, when considering the risks of potential safeguarding concerns such as travelling to conflict zones, Child Sexual Exploitation, Female Genital Mutilation, etc.

 

We will transfer the child’s electronic file to the DfE secure access database.

 

23. Child sexual exploitation

 

Child sexual exploitation is a form of sexual abuse where children are sexually exploited for money, power or status. This applies to children above nursery school age.  However it is still an important issue for staff to understand as our families have older children and also young parents, particularly vulnerable adults may be exploited in this way.  It can involve violent, humiliating and degrading sexual assaults. In some cases, young people are persuaded or forced into exchanging sexual activity for money, drugs, gifts, affection or status. Consent cannot be given, even where a child may believe they are voluntarily engaging in sexual activity with the person who is exploiting them. Child sexual exploitation does not always involve physical contact and can happen online. A significant number of children who are victims of sexual exploitation go missing from home, care and education at some point.

 

Some of the following signs may be indicators of sexual exploitation:

  • children who appear with unexplained gifts or new possessions;

 

  • children who associate with other young people involved in exploitation;

 

  • children who have older boyfriends or girlfriends;

 

  • children who suffer from sexually transmitted infections or become pregnant;

 

  • children who suffer from changes in emotional well-being;

 

  • children who misuse drugs and alcohol;

 

  • children who go missing for periods of time or regularly come home late; and

 

  • children who regularly miss school or education or do not take part in education

 

Staff will report any concerns to the designated safeguarding lead.

 

 24. Child criminal exploitation: county lines

 

This applies to children above nursery school age, it is however still an important issue for staff to understand as our families have older children who may be exploited in this way.  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.

 

25. Domestic violence (DV)

 

The definition of Domestic Violence includes, any pattern of controlling or coercive or threatening behaviour, (psychological, physical, sexual, financial or emotional) between those aged 16 or over who are or who have been intimate partners or family members regardless of gender or sexuality.

 

The definition of harm as amended the Adoption & Children Act 2002:

Impairment suffered from seeing or hearing the ill treatment of another particularly in the home, even though they themselves have not been directly assaulted or abused

 

We recognise that DV will have an impact on aspects of a child’s life. The harm suffered will vary according to the child’s resilience or otherwise to his or her particular circumstances. We recognise that the victim’s capacity to protect their child/ren is diminished through anxiety about their own circumstances.

 

Abused partners will be encouraged and supported to disclose the harm. We will ensure that all information is dealt with securely and sensitively and refer the matter to Lambeth children’s social care where there is a child/ren at risk of significant harm and/or neglect.

 

26.   Homelessness

 

Being homeless or being at risk of becoming homeless presents a real risk to a child’s welfare. The designated safeguarding lead and deputy will be aware of the contact details and referral routes in to the Local Housing Authority to 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 behavior as well as the family being asked to leave the property.

 

27.   Honour based violence

 

‘Honour-based’ violence (HBV) encompasses 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. All forms of so called HBV are abuse (regardless of the motivation) and will be handled and escalated as such.

 

 28.   Female genital mutilation (FGM)

 

FGM is considered child abuse and a grave violation of the human rights of girls and women. It comprises procedures involving partial or total removal of the external female genitalia or other injury to the female genital organs. It is illegal to subject any child to FGM in the UK and to take a child abroad to undergo FGM.

 

Section 5B of the Female Genital Mutilation Act 2003 (as inserted by section 74 of the Serious Crime Act 2015) places a statutory duty upon teachers in England and Wales, to personally report to the police where they discover (either through disclosure by the victim or visual evidence) that FGM appears to have been carried out on a girl under 18. Those failing to report such cases will face disciplinary sanctions.

 

It will be rare for teachers to see visual evidence, and they should not be examining pupils. Any member of staff who has an FGM concern should discuss with the designated safeguarding lead who will involve children’s social care as appropriate.

 

Typical identifiers / triggers may be:

 

  • Family comes from a community known to practice FGM

 

  • Family / child may confide that she is going to a ‘special ceremony’ when on holiday

 

  • Female child is known to have a sister that has already undergone FGM

 

29. Forced marriage

 

It is important that staff are aware of these issues, however they are unlikely to relate to nursery aged children. Staff have close relationships with parents who may disclose / cause concern in relation to this.  Forcing a person into a marriage is a crime in England and Wales. A forced marriage is one entered into without the full and free consent of one or both parties and where violence, threats or any other form of coercion is used to cause a person to enter into a marriage. Threats can be physical or emotional and psychological. A lack of full and free consent can be where a person does not consent or where they cannot consent (if they have learning disabilities, for example). Nevertheless, some communities use religion and culture as a way to coerce a person into marriage.

 

If any member of staff receives a disclosure or is aware that a Forced Marriage is about to happen this must be disclosed to the designated safeguarding lead without delay for appropriate action to be taken. Where there is a risk that a child may be or has been taken out of the country, the school will contact the Forced Marriage Unit as well as local authority social care.

FMU contact: 020 7008 0151 or email: fmu@fco.gov.uk

 

30. Extremism and radicalisation

 

Refer to our policy on ‘Preventing extremism and radicalisation’

 

From 1 July 2015, schools are subject to a duty under section 26 of the Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015 of the need to prevent from people from being drawn into terrorism. This duty is known as the Prevent duty.

 

Protecting children from the risk of radicalisation is seen as part of school’s wider safeguarding duties, and is similar in nature to protecting children from other forms of harm and abuse. Radicalisation refers to the process by which a person comes to support terrorism and extremist ideologies associated with terrorist groups. The internet and the use of social media in particular has become a major factor in the radicalisation of young people.

 

As with other safeguarding risks, staff should be alert to changes in children’s behaviour which could indicate that they may be in need of help or protection. Staff should use their judgement in identifying children who might be at risk of radicalisation.

 

Extremism refers to the vocal or active opposition to our fundamental values, including rule of law, individual liberty and the mutual respect and tolerance of different faiths and beliefs.

 

Our staff have undertaken Prevent awareness training to equip them to identify children at risk of being drawn into terrorism and to challenge extremist ideas.

 

31. Children staying with host families

 

This does not relate to our nursery-aged children. 

 

32. Private fostering

 

Where we become aware that a child under the age of 16 (or 18 if disabled) is provided with care and accommodation by someone to whom they are not related in that person’s home, they should raise this in the first instance with the designated safeguarding lead. The school will notify the local authority of the circumstances, and the local authority will check that the arrangement is suitable and safe for the child.

 

The definition of a close family member is:

  • parent or step-parent (or someone who holds parental responsibility)
  • grandparent
  • aunt or uncle (whether related to the child by blood or through marriage)
  • sibling (including half-siblings and step-siblings)
  • anyone who holds a court order in relation to the child (for example, a residence order).

A person who is barred from regulated activity will themselves be committing an offence under the Children Act 1989 and under the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006 if they privately foster a child.

 

33. Raising concerns about safeguarding practice

 

Initially concerns will be raised with the designated safeguarding lead on site. The concern should be escalated to the Chair of Governors if it has not been addressed to the satisfaction of the person raising the concern.  Where staff feel unable to raise an issue or feel that their concern is not being addressed, follow the whistle blowing procedures or contact the NSPCC.

 

Appendix A – Designated Safeguarding Lead - Availability from Keeping Children Safe in Education Sept 2018 p92

 

Availability

During term time the designated safeguarding lead (or a deputy) should always be available (during school hours) for staff in the school to discuss any safeguarding concerns. Whilst generally speaking the designated safeguarding lead (or deputy) would be expected to be available in person, it is a matter for individual schools and colleges, working with the designated safeguarding lead, to define what “available” means and whether in exceptional circumstances availability via phone and or Skype or other such media is acceptable. It is a matter for individual schools and colleges and the designated safeguarding lead to arrange adequate and appropriate cover arrangements for any out of hours/out of term activities.

 

Appendix B – Responding to disclosures of abuse

 

  • Always stop & listen to someone who wants to tell you about incidents or suspicions of abuse, without displaying shock and disbelief
  • Take the child seriously. Always assume that he/she is telling the truth
  • Do not promise confidentiality; you have a duty to refer to the designated senior person for child protection concerns
  • Do reassure and alleviate guilt

 

For example you could say; “you are not to blame.”

“You have done the right thing to tell someone.”

  • Do not ask leading questions

For example, “What did she do next?” (this assumes that she did), or “did he touch your private parts”.

  • In cases where criminal proceedings occur, such questioning can cause evidence to become invalid
  • Do not ask the child to repeat the incident for another member of staff

     The child may well have to tell the story again, and to do so repeatedly will cause undue

     stress.

  • End by summarising what has been said and what action has been agreed
  • Be clear about what you intend to do next
  • Discuss your concern/disclosure with the designated child protection person at the school
  • Record carefully what has been said and what actions have been agreed.

 

Appendix C – Detailed guidance for recording and reporting concerns about a child’s welfare

 

A referral to Children’s Social Care Integrated Referral Hub will be made using a multi-agency referral form (MARF).

 

At the time of disclosure

A disclosure may be made by a child or parent/carer openly talking about an incident or when responding to a member of staff’s question about a mark, bruise or other concern about the child/family.  Disclosures may be received from any adult on site, including a contractor for example, or a concerned member of the public.  Where a member of the public informs us of a concern we must encourage them to report themselves, they can do this via the LSCB website.  We can also refer this but must make sure this is from a third-party, naming the informant where possible.

 

Your role

  • do not promise confidentiality
  • listen, and do not interrupt, if the child/parent/carer is recalling significant events
  • keep calm and be patient
  • ask questions to clarify what the child/parent/carer is saying, questions should be framed in an open manner and not lead the child/parent/carer in any way
  • do not be intimidated or afraid of talking to a child/parent/carer about child protection issues - this may mean the difference in their lives that they are looking for
  • reassure the child/parent/carer that they have done the right thing by telling you
  • tell them what you are going to do next
  • make a note of the conversation as soon as is reasonably practical (but within 1 hour)

 

RECORD     -  name of child/parent/carer

                     -  your name

                     - date and time

                     - place of discussion

                     - other people present

                     - what the child/parent/carer actually said as far as possible

                     - the facts you need to report

 

REPORT     -  to the Designated Safeguarding Lead

                     do not hesitate when reporting.  You must interrupt the member of staff immediately, no matter what the circumstances and clearly state you need to report a safeguarding issue.  Remember you may not know all the information about this child/family and your information could make a very significant difference to a child’s life.

 

You will receive information from the Designated Safeguarding Lead about the action they will take/have taken.  If you are not satisfied with the outcome and you still have concerns regarding the child’s welfare you are responsible for contacting Children’s Social Care or Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO). (See Key Contacts - Child Protection poster)

 

If the Designated Safeguarding Lead is the alleged abuser contact Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO). (See Key Contacts - Child Protection poster)

 

If in exceptional circumstances, the designated safeguarding lead (or deputy) is not available, this should not delay appropriate action being taken - contact Children’s Social Care. (See Key Contacts - Child Protection poster)

 

Role of Designated Safeguarding Lead in response to any disclosure

Listen to the concern

  • Complete/update the ‘Concerns form and HISTORY’.
  • Access all key information about the child and family.
  • Alert another DSL trained member of staff to discuss.
  • If you do not refer you must record your decisions for not doing so.

 

YOU MUST REFER FOR THE FOLLOWING CONCERNS:

 

  • THERE IS CLEAR EVIDENCE OF ABUSE OR CONCERN FOR A CHILD’S IMMEDIATE SAFETY (eg. If a child has indicated they have been hit by an adult and there is a mark or a bruise)
  • A CHILD MAY BE IN NEED, INCLUDING CONCERNS ABOUT SIGNIFICANT HARM
  • DOMESTIC VIOLENCE - where a child has witnessed domestic violence or is in need, suffered significant harm or risk of suffering significant harm due to DV, see Barnardo’s domestic violence risk identification matrix stored in Google Drive
  • DOMESTIC VIOLENCE - where there is a child under 12 months old or an unborn child (even if the child was not present) any single incident of domestic violence must trigger a referral to Social Care.
  • SUSPICIOUS INJURY REQUIRING URGENT MEDICAL TREATMENT - In circumstances where a child has a suspicious injury that requires urgent medical attention, the CP referral process should not delay, the administration of first aid or emergency assistance.  If a child is thought to be at immediate risk (because of parental violence or intoxication, for example) urgent police intervention should be requested.

 

CHILD SUBJECT TO A CHILD PROTECTION PLAN – Particular vigilance will be exercised in respect of children who are subject to a Child Protection Plan and any incidents or concern involving these children will be reported immediately to Social Care and confirmed in writing.  This will also be the case for other children who may be considered vulnerable such as disabled children, SEN children or Children Looked After or Previously Looked After for example. In all cases of injury to a child consideration will always be given as to whether an urgent paediatric medical assessment is required to document injuries or to protect any forensic evidence.

 

Where it is suspected that a child may be at further risk of significant harm if the parent is spoken to, nothing will be said to the child’s parent/carer without first discussing the matter with Lambeth Children’s Social Care Integrated Referral Hub (IRH).

 

All staff must understand that there are no circumstances under which a member of staff may promise a child that they will keep any disclosure a secret or confidential – they must always pass this information on in the best interest of the child.

 

YOU MUST ACT AND CONTACT CHILDREN’S SOCIAL CARE IMMEDIATELY, IF A CRIME HAS BEEN COMMITTED CONTACT THE POLICE

 

MAKING A REFERRAL

 

  • To make the referral or take advice by telephoning Lambeth’s Integrated Referral Hub or the Police. 
  • Following their advice a Multi-Agency Referral Form (MARF) will be completed and sent by egress switch (secure email).  The Designated Safeguarding Lead (and relevant Head of School & Children’s Centre Manager if not already involved) will be informed of the referral through a ‘document comment’.
  • Inform the member of staff initially involved and the child’s key person of your action.
  • Referrals will be shared with the family and should be made with their knowledge and agreement unless this would jeopardise the child’s safety. However, if a child makes a clear disclosure do not contact the parents until advice has been sought about whether to do so from Social Care or the Police.
  • Social Care are required to respond within 1 working day to inform us of the outcome of the referral.  Staff will follow up on a referral should this information not be forthcoming. 

 

If you do not feel that a referral is required advice can be sought from Lambeth Social Care about any worries/concerns have about a child’s welfare.  You may consider contacting the Lambeth Safeguarding Lead Officers, the LADO or the Social Worker Link contact for advice.  If you do not discuss the concern within 2 hours (or less if the child’s session is nearing the end)

DO NOT DELAY IN CONTACTING THE INTEGRATED REFERRAL HUB FOR ADVICE.  

 

Appendix D – Types of abuse and their symptoms

 

  1. Physical abuse

 

Physical abuse 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 fabricates the symptoms of, or deliberately induces, illness in a child.

 

            Physical abuse indicators

Physical indicators

Behavioural indicators

  • Unexplained injuries – bruises /

abrasions / lacerations

  • The account of the accident may be vague or may vary from one telling to another.
  • Unexplained burns
  • Regular occurrence of unexplained injuries
  • Most accidental injuries occur on parts of the board where the skin passes over a bony protrusion.

 

  • Withdrawn or aggressive behavioural extremes
  • Uncomfortable with physical contact
  • Seems afraid to go home
  • Complains of soreness or moves uncomfortably
  • Wears clothing inappropriate for the weather, in order to cover board.
  • The interaction between the child and its carer

 

  1. Neglect

 

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 involve a parent failing to:

  • provide adequate food, clothing and shelter
  • protect a child from physical and emotional harm or danger
  • ensure adequate supervision (including the use of inadequate care-givers)
  • ensure access to appropriate medical care or treatment.

 

It may also include neglect of, or unresponsiveness to, a child’s basic emotional needs.

 

            Neglect  indicators

Physical indicators

Behavioural indicators

  • Unattended medical need
  • Underweight or obesity
  • Recurrent infection
  • Unkempt dirty appearance
  • Smelly
  • Inadequate / unwashed clothes
  • Consistent lack of supervision
  • Consistent hunger
  • Inappropriately dressed

 

  • Poor social relationships
  • Indiscriminate friendliness
  • Poor concentration
  • Low self-esteem
  • Regularly displays fatigue or lethargic Frequently falls asleep in class
  • Frequent unexplained absences

 

  1. Emotional abuse

 

Emotional abuse is the persistent emotional maltreatment of a child such as to cause severe and persistent effects on the child’s emotional development, and may involve:

 

  • Conveying to children that they are worthless or unloved, inadequate, or valued only insofar as they meet the needs of another person;
  • Imposing age or developmentally inappropriate expectations on children. These may include interactions that are beyond the child’s developmental capability, as well as overprotection and limitation of exploration and learning, or preventing the child participating in normal social interaction;
  • Seeing or hearing the ill-treatment of another;
  • Serious bullying, causing children frequently to feel frightened or in danger, or the exploitation or corruption of children.

 

                Emotional abuse  indicators

Physical indicators

Behavioural indicators

  • Poor attachment relationship
  • Unresponsive / neglectful behaviour towards the child’s emotional needs
  • Persistent negative comments about the child
  • Inappropriate or inconsistent expectations
  • Self-harm

 

  • Low self-esteem
  • Unhappiness, anxiety
  • Withdrawn, insecure
  • Attention seeking
  • Passive or aggressive behavioural extremes

 

  1. Sexual abuse

 

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.

 

            Sexual abuse  indicators

Physical indicators

Behavioural indicators

  • Sign of blood / discharge on the child’s underclothing
  • Awkwardness in walking / sitting
  • Pain or itching – genital area
  • Bruising, scratching, bites on the inner thighs / external genitalia
  • Self-harm
  • Eating disorders
  • Enuresis / encopresis
  • Sudden weight loss or gain

 

  • Sexually proactive behaviour or knowledge that is incompatible with the child’s age & understanding
  • Drawings & or written work that is sexually explicit
  • Self-harm / Suicide attempts
  • Running away
  • Substance abuse
  • Significant devaluing of self
  • Loss of concentration

Lambeth Integrated Referral Hub: 020 7926 3100

Out of hours: 020 7926 1000

Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO): Andrew Zachariades

020 7926 4579      mobile: 07720 828700            lado@lambeth.gcsx.gov.uk

LA safeguarding lead (primary schools, high schools and colleges): Sarwan Singh Jandu

020 7926 9643     mobile: 0797 649 0051        sjandu@lambeth.gov.uk

LA safeguarding lead (early years provision and primary schools): Denys Rasmussen

020 7926 8915     mobile: 07785 660426           drasmussen@lambeth.gov.uk

Education Prevent Officer: Lydia Nixon

020 7926 3668            lnixon@lambeth.gov.uk

Head of Inclusion, Education and Learning: Stuart Boffin

020 7926 0296           sboffin@lambeth.gov.uk

CSE Co-ordinator Children’s Services: Cathy Henchion

020 7926 0296          chenchion@lambeth.gov.uk

Key Contacts - Safeguarding / Whistleblowing - LINK

Contents

 

1

Roles and responsibilities

2

Working with parents and carers

3

Confidentiality  & Information sharing

4

Referral to Lambeth children’s social care

5

Definition and Indicators of abuse

6

Training

7

Teaching children about safeguarding

8

Physical intervention / positive handling

9

Changing wet clothes re. water play

10

Intimate care

11

Record keeping

12

Inter-agency work (including Early Help)

13

Safer recruitment

14

Single central record

15

Allegation of abuse made against staff

16

On-line safety

17

Peer on peer abuse

18

Bullying

19

Child on child sexual violence and sexual harassment

20

Looked after children

21

Children with special educational needs and disabilities

22

Children missing from education

23

Child Sexual exploitation

24

Child criminal exploitation: county lines

25

Domestic violence

26

Homelessness

27

Honour based violence

28

Female Genital Mutilation

29

Forced marriage

30

Extremism and radicalisation

31

Children staying with host families

32

Private fostering

33

Raising concerns about safeguarding practice

Introduction

Ethelred Nursery School is committed to providing an environment where children feel safe and are kept safe and all staff contribute to the culture of vigilance which is embedded in our school. All staff form part of the wider safeguarding system for children. This system is described in statutory guidance Working together to safeguard children (2018).

Safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children is everyone’s responsibility. Everyone who comes into contact with children and their families and carers has a role to play in safeguarding children. In order to fulfill this responsibility effectively, all staff should make sure their approach is child-centred. This means that they should consider, at all times, what is in the best interests of the child. No single professional can have a full picture of a child’s needs and circumstances. If children and families are to receive the right help at the right time, everyone who comes into contact with them has a role to play in identifying concerns, sharing information and taking prompt action.

Safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children is defined for the purposes of this guidance as:

  • protecting children from maltreatment
  • preventing impairment of children’s health or development
  • ensuring that children grow up in circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective care
  • taking action to enable all children to have the best outcomes.

There are three elements to our policy to safeguard children:

Prevention focuses on:

Providing an environment in which children and young people feel safe, secure, valued and respected, feel confident and know how to approach adults if they are in difficulties;

Raising the awareness of all staff, of the need to safeguard children and of their responsibilities in identifying and reporting possible cases of abuse;

Ensuring that all adults within our school who have access to children have been rigorously checked as to their suitability, using safe recruitment procedures.

Protection

Through the establishment of a systematic means of monitoring children, known or thought to be at risk of harm;

Through the establishment of structured procedures within the school which will be followed by all members of the school community in cases of suspected abuse. All staff to receive regular training and up-dates;

Through the development of effective working relationships with all other agencies involved in safeguarding children

Support

Ensuring that key concepts of child protection are integrated within the curriculum and children and parents are educated about risks associated with new digital technologies;

Ensuring that children are listened to and their concerns taken seriously and are acted upon; Working with others to support children who may have been abused, to access the curriculum and take part in school life.

Key documents that inform this policy are:

  • Keeping children safe in education (Sept 2018)
  • Working together to safeguard children (July 2018)
  • Statutory framework for the early years foundation stage (March 2017)
  • What to do if you worried a child is being abused (March 2015)

Our school procedures for safeguarding children will be in line with the Lambeth safeguarding children board child protection procedures which are based on the London child protection procedures.

  1. Role and responsibilities
  • The role of the Governing Body

The governing body will ensure that Ethelred meets its statutory duties with regard to safeguarding and protecting children in line with the provisions set out in the statutory guidance, ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education’ (2018).

The governing body will challenge the school’s senior leadership team on the delivery of this policy and monitor its effectiveness.

Governors will review this policy every year and may amend and adopt it in accordance with any new legislation or guidance.

The governing body will ensure that the following are in place:

  • Safeguarding and child protection policies and procedures that are consistent with Lambeth Safeguarding Children Board (LSCB) procedures.
  • A staff code of conduct policy and acceptable use of digital technology include policies covering staff/child/parent relationships and communication and staff use of social media.
  • A senior member of staff is appointed as the Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) with responsibilities for carrying out the statutory duties as set out in this policy.

The school has a designated governor responsible for advocating child protection and safeguarding issues within the school. This governor will liaise with the Headteacher as DSL and report to the governing body on safeguarding matters.

  • The role of the headteacher

The Headteacher will ensure that policies and procedures adopted by the governing body are followed by all staff.

  • The role of the Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL)

The Designated Safeguarding Lead is appointed from the senior leadership team and will take the lead responsibility for safeguarding and child protection (including online safety). This is explicit in the role holder’s job description.

Annex B of the DfE Guidance; Keeping Children safe in Education (2018), describes the broad areas of responsibility and activities related to this role.

Deputy Safeguarding Lead(s) have also been appointed to take on the responsibility in the absence of the Designated Safeguarding Lead. The ultimate responsibility for safeguarding and child protection remains with the Designated Safeguarding Lead and this lead responsibility will not be delegated.

The Designated Safeguarding Lead co-ordinates the school’s representation at child protection conferences/core groups and the submission of written reports for such meetings. The Designated Safeguarding Lead will ensure that if staff members attend a child protection meeting, they have the authority to make decisions and commit resources on behalf of the school.

The Designated Safeguarding Lead will have oversight of the delivery of school recommendations within child protection plans and will disseminate information to relevant staff members as appropriate. During term time the Designated Safeguarding Lead and or a deputy will be available during term-time hours for staff to discuss any safeguarding concerns. The Designated Safeguarding Lead will ensure that there is adequate and appropriate cover arrangements for any out of hours/out of term activities in line with Section ‘Availability’ p92 Keeping Children Safe in Education Sept 2018, see Appendix A.

  • The role of the staff

Staff are particularly important as they are in a position to identify concerns early, provide help for children and prevent concerns from escalating. If staff members have any concerns about a child’s welfare they should report the matter to the Designated Safeguarding Lead using the Concerns form and HISTORY document.   See Appendix B – Responding to a disclosures of abuse and Appendix C - Detailed guidance for recording and reporting concerns about a child’s welfare.

If a child is in immediate danger or is at risk of harm, the Safeguarding Designated Lead will refer to children’s social care and/or the police immediately.

Although the responsibility to refer to children’s social care lies with the Designated Safeguarding Lead, anyone can make a referral. Where referrals are not made by the Designated Safeguarding Lead they should be informed as soon as possible via a ‘comment’ from the form, that a referral has been made.

  1. Working with parents and carers

We recognise the importance of working together in partnership with parents and carers to ensure the welfare and safety of children.

We will:

  • make parents aware of their statutory role in safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children, including the duty to refer children when necessary
  • policies will be available on the website and on request
  • involve parents and carers in the development of our policies to ensure their views are taken into account.

We will ensure a robust complaints procedure is in place to deal with issues raised by parents and carers and will be made available on the school website.

Information for parents regarding Child Protection is included in the following:

  • School Information Booklet/Stay and Play leaflets and crèches
  • Safeguarding Children and Child Protection Information notices
  1. Confidentiality and information sharing

All our children are under 12, therefore, consent to share information about them must be obtained from their parents or carers.

Parental consent to refer to Lambeth children’s social care can be dispensed with if seeking consent is likely to cause significant harm, the School has a legal duty to share this information with Lambeth children’s social care.

If a child is subject to a child protection investigation, we will share any information about the child requested by Lambeth children’s social care.

  1. Referral to Lambeth children’s social care

Referral to Lambeth Integrated Referral Hub will be made using a multi-agency referral form (MARF).  See Appendix C for Detailed guidance for recording and reporting concerns about a child’s welfare.

Telephone: 020 7926 3100 - Out of hours telephone: 020 7926 1000

helpandprotection@lambeth.gov.uk or help.protection@lambeth.cjsm.net (secure email)

  1. Definitions and Indicators of abuse

For definitions and indicators of abuse, refer to Appendix D - Types of abuse and their symptoms.

For guidance on responding to a disclosure of abuse, refer to Appendix B.

  1. Training

All members of staff

Our Governing Body will monitor that all staff members complete safeguarding and child protection training at induction. The training will be updated at least every three years and is in line with advice from the Lambeth safeguarding children board. Staff will be given an explanation of and a copy of:

  • The child protection and safeguarding policy incorporating:
    • The safeguarding response to children who go missing from education (incorporated into this policy)
    • The role of the Designated Safeguarding Lead (including the identity of the Designated Safeguarding Lead and any deputies)
  • The behaviour policy
  • The code of conduct
  • Part one of Keeping Children Safe in Education (2018)
  • Annex A of Keeping Children Safe in Education (2018)

Designated Safeguarding Leads and Deputies

The Designated Safeguarding Lead and any deputies will undergo training to provide them with the knowledge and skills required to carry out the role. The training will be updated every two years. The Designated Safeguarding Lead will undertake Prevent awareness training.   At least one member of staff must be on duty with this level of training whilst children are on site; during normal nursery session times, during breakfast and after-school club and during school holidays when the children’s centres and/or holiday club are open.  Only in exceptional circumstances could this person be off-site.

All staff members will receive regular safeguarding and child protection updates (for example, via email, e-bulletins, staff meetings), as required, but at least annually, to provide them with relevant skills and knowledge to safeguard children effectively.

Opportunities will be provided for staff to contribute to and shape safeguarding arrangements and child protection policy.

Governor with responsibility for child protection

Child Protection Governors training – refresher training every 2 years.

Safer Recruitment Training

The Headteacher and one other member of the recruitment panel on the governing body must have attended training and passed the test - certificate lasts for 5 years.  Those who have passed the test will undertake the ½ day refresher training offered by Lambeth Schools HR after 5 years.  Safer recruitment online training is also available from the NSPCC (4 hrs @£30)

Records of all training are detailed on the Training Poster which is displayed at the school and children’s centre.

  1. Teaching children about safeguarding and providing information to parents

Our Governing Body will ensure children are taught about keeping themselves safe as part of providing a broad and balanced curriculum.  Information will be shared with parents about children keeping themselves safe, including online safety, through newsletters, text messages, one-to-one meetings.

  1. Physical intervention / positive handling / reasonable force

All staff (paid and voluntary) are expected to adhere to a code of conduct in respect of their contact with children and their families. Whilst it would be unrealistic and undesirable to preclude all physical contact between adults and children, staff should avoid placing themselves in a position where their actions might be open to criticism or misinterpretation. ‘Reasonable force’ is taken to mean ‘using no more force than is necessary’. The use of force may involve either passive physical contact, such as standing between children or blocking a child’s path, or active physical contact such as leading a child out of the classroom by holding their elbow.  To reduce the occurrence of challenging behaviour and the need to use reasonable force, individual behaviour plans will be completed for more vulnerable children with the agreement of their parents/carers.

Our Use of Reasonable Force procedures are in line with DfE Guidance on the Use of Reasonable Force (2013).

Refer to our separate behaviour policy and our physical handling policy for further details on positive handling / restraint and the reasonable use of force.

  1. Changing children who have wet clothes through water play

The following is based on guidance from the NSPCC about changing for P.E.

Changing wet clothes, with or without the support from an adult can cause anxiety for some children.  This can influence their perception of the subject and determine whether it is an enjoyable and positive experience or not. Being in a state of undress can also cause some children to feel vulnerable, particularly those who have experienced abuse, and cause them to misunderstand or misinterpret the actions of an adult.  Staff should be aware of this and be sensitive to the child’s feelings and needs.

  1. Intimate care            

We aim to protect children from abuse and our staff from false allegations.  If a child needs a change of clothes a member of staff will do this in the designated space where they can be viewed by other members of staff.  Where possible children will be encouraged to undress and dress themselves.  Changing children can cause anxiety, particularly those who have experienced abuse, and may lead them to misunderstand or misinterpret the actions of an adult. If a nappy is changed the member of staff will inform a colleague.  The changing areas can be seen by other members of staff whilst offering privacy to the child.   We will obtain parents/carers permission to change children when needed.  When changing involves removing underwear or a nappy this will be recorded to include the child’s name, adult changing, date and time.  This will be stored for one term and then shredded.  See Retention and archiving schedule.  For some SEND children intimate care will be agreed as part of a care plan.

  1. Record keeping

The Designated Safeguarding Lead will ensure that all child protection records and safeguarding concerns are kept separately from pupil records. The records will be stored securely.  Electronic records are protected by specific ‘sharing’ procedures’.  Paper records are secured in a locked cupboard with restricted access. Information from the records may be shared with staff on a need to know basis.

When a child transfers to a new school child protection records are addressed to the Designated Safeguarding Lead and sent separately and securely from the general records to the new school and a confirmation of receipt will be obtained. The Designated Safeguarding Lead will contact the school to share information before the end of term if it will support the transition for that child.

Retention of Child Protection Records and Concerns are specified in the Retention and archiving schedule in line with the Information Management Toolkit for Schools produced by the Information and Records Management Society.

  1. Inter-agency working (including Early Help)

The Governing Body will ensure that all settings contribute to inter-agency working in line with statutory guidance Working Together to Safeguard Children (2018). Staff will work with social care, the police, health services, local authority and other services to promote the welfare of children and protect them from harm. This includes providing a co-ordinated offer of early help when additional needs of children are identified and contributing to inter-agency plans to provide additional support to children subject to child protection plans.

All schools should allow access for children’s social care to conduct, or to consider whether to conduct, a section 17 or a section 47 assessment.

  1. Safer recruitment

We have adopted safer recruitment procedures that help deter, identify and reject people who might abuse children. We adhere to the statutory guidance Keeping Children Safe in Education 2018 part 3, to ensure that all staff working in our school are subject to the appropriate checks.

The School Staffing (England) Regulations 2009 require governing bodies of maintained schools to ensure that at least one person on any appointment panel has undertaken safer recruitment training, this is adhered to by the Federation.

Staff working in the school, engaged in regulated activity, require an enhanced DBS certificate, which includes barred list check, this is adhered to by the Federation.

All staff employed to teach require an additional check to ensure that they are not prohibited from teaching, this is adhered to by the Federation.

Where, in exceptional circumstances and rarely, an individual starts work in regulated activity before the DBS certificate is available, we ensure that the individual is appropriately supervised and that all other checks, including a separate barred list check, have been completed.

We will carry out a risk assessment and put in place any necessary measures to ensure that the children are safe whilst waiting for an outcome of the DBS check or where there is a disclosure on the DBS certificate.

We will make arrangements to ensure that we do not knowingly employ any persons who have been disqualified from such work under the Childcare Act 2006 as set out in the Childcare (Disqualification) Regulations 2018. All staff are asked to make the relevant declarations.

Teacher prohibition orders prevent a person from carrying out teaching work in schools.  A person who is prohibited from teaching will not be appointed to work as a teacher in this setting, all prospective members of staff are checked against this list.

Volunteers - We will ensure that under no circumstances a volunteer is allowed to work with children unsupervised. For a volunteer not involved in regulated activity, the DBS certificate will not include a barred list check. Checks carried out on volunteers, will be recorded on the single central record.

Volunteers not engaging in regulated activity will be subject to a risk assessment to allow us to use our professional judgement and experience when deciding whether to obtain an enhanced DBS certificate this will not include a barred list check as they are not in regulated activity.

Volunteers will work under the direct management of a staff member, who is in regulated activity and vetted accordingly, and all volunteers will be subject to the same code of conduct as paid employees of our school. They will have a ‘job description’ pertaining to the volunteering role provided with appropriate induction.

Supply staff – the school will request written confirmation that the employment agency supplying the member of supply staff has carried out the relevant checks and obtained the appropriate certificates, whether any enhanced DBS check certificate has been provided in respect of the member of supply staff, and the date that confirmation was received. Checks will also be made to ensure the person presenting themselves for work is the same person on whom the checks were carried out.

  1. Single central record (SCR)

We keep a single central record for all staff (including supply staff, and teacher trainees on salaried routes).

The following information will be recorded for all staff including teacher trainees on salaried routes.  The SCR is verification that the following checks have been carried out or certificates obtained, and the date on which each check was completed/certificate obtained:

  • an identity check
  • a barred list check
  • an enhanced DBS check/certificate
  • a prohibition from teaching check
  • further checks on people who have lived or worked outside the UK; including recording checks for EEA teacher sanctions and restrictions
  • a check of professional qualifications; where required and
  • a check to establish the person’s right to work in the United Kingdom.

We will ensure that DBS checks are renewed every 3 years for all staff, and will be a condition of service. Staff may subscribe to the DBS Update Service allowing a status check to be carried out without applying for another DBS.

We will ensure that all staff in regulated activity are checked against the DBS’ Children’s Barred List prior to their appointment as part of the vetting process. A separate DBS will be carried out if application for the checks has not been completed by the start date.

We have a legal duty to refer to the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) anyone who has harmed, or poses a risk of harm, to a child or if we have a reason to believe the member of staff has committed one of a number of listed offences and as a result we have removed them from working in regulated activity.  Such referrals to the DBS apply to paid or unpaid staff where we are the employer and also applies where we would have removed that person from regulated activity had that person not resigned from our employment.

  1. Allegation of abuse made against teachers and other staff

It is a legal requirement to inform Lambeth LA.  The Disclosure and Barring Service and the Teaching Regulation Agency may also need to be informed.

Parents have the right to make a formal complaint against the action of the school and/or its employees and such complaints will be dealt with in line with our Complaints Procedures. This can be found on our website.

Where it is alleged that a member of staff (including volunteers) has:

  • behaved in a way that has harmed a child, or may have harmed a child including incidents that may have happened in a person’s private life;
  • possibly committed a criminal offence against or related to a child; or
  • behaved towards a child or children in a way that indicates he or she would pose a risk of harm to children

The matter will be dealt with in line with the allegations procedures as set out in Part Four of Keeping Children Safe in Education (2018).

Allegations against staff must be brought immediately to the attention of the Headteacher. The Headteacher will only carry out initial enquiries (not an investigation) prior to a discussion with the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO).

Any allegation relating to the Headteacher must be brought to the attention of the Chair of Governors who will contact the LADO.

Outcomes of all investigations into allegations made against staff will be notified to schools, colleges and early years safeguarding leads (Sarwan Singh Jandu / Denys Rasmussen) on completion.

Allegations against a teacher who is no longer teaching or allegations that are historical will be referred to the police.

  1. On-line safety

The use of technology and social media has become a significant component of many safeguarding issues. It is essential that children are safeguarded from potentially harmful and inappropriate online material.  As such the Governing Body will ensure the schools have appropriate filters and appropriate monitoring systems in place.  Where child sexual exploitation; radicalisation and sexual predation occur: technology often provides the platform that facilitates harm.  At our settings our role is to highlight these dangers to parents.  The approach to online safety is to protect and educate the whole school community in their use of technology and establishes mechanisms to identify, intervene and escalate any incident where appropriate. Please see the Acceptable use of digital technologies policy.

Children will be taught to recognise risk and build resilience in order to manage risk themselves appropriate to their age. Children are encouraged to talk to their Key Person about any concerns or worries they may have.

  1. Peer on peer abuse

Child on Child/Peer on Peer abuse, Bullying and Child on Child sexual violence and Sexual harassment are specific forms of abuse which may be prevalent in schools, however less so with nursery aged children.

Staff are fully aware of the seriousness of this and will follow procedures in this policy or the schools’ behaviour policies.

We recognise that children who harm others are likely to have considerable needs themselves and may have witnessed violence in the family or have been exposed to physical or sexual harm, or may have committed other offences.

  1. Bullying

See 17 above.

19.   Child on child sexual violence and sexual harassment

See 17 above.

  20.   Looked after children and previously looked after

The most common reason for children becoming looked after is as a result of abuse and/or neglect. Our Governing Body monitors that staff have the skills, knowledge and understanding necessary to keep looked after children safe.

Our designated teacher for looked after children is:

Name: Glenda King

We will ensure that appropriate staff have the information they need in relation to a child’s looked after legal status (or previously looked after) (whether they are looked after under voluntary arrangements with consent of parents or on an interim or full care order) and contact arrangements with birth parents or those with parental responsibility. They will also have information about the child’s care arrangements and the levels of authority delegated to the carer by the authority looking after him/her. The DSL will have details of the child’s social worker and the name of the virtual school head in the authority that looks after the child.

Virtual school heads receive pupil premium plus additional funding based on the latest published numbers of children looked after in the authority. The designated teacher for looked after children will work with the virtual school head to discuss how that funding can be best used to support the progress of looked after children in the school and meet the needs identified in the child’s personal education plan.

21. Children with special educational needs and disabilities

Children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) can face additional safeguarding challenges. The child protection policy reflects the fact that additional barriers can exist when recognising abuse and neglect in this group of children. This can include:

  • assumptions that indicators of possible abuse such as behaviour, mood and injury relate to the child’s disability without further exploration
  • being more prone to isolation than other children
  • communication barriers and difficulties in overcoming these barriers.

Awareness of these additional barriers is reflected in the training for staff.

  1. Children missing from education 

A child going missing from education is a potential indicator of abuse or neglect. We will follow our procedures for unauthorised absence, particularly on repeat occasions, to help identify the risk of abuse and neglect and to help prevent the risks of going missing in future.  Children missing in education legislation applies to children of school age only.  However, where we have concerns about a child who leaves, we will endeavour to find out which school they have moved to or inform social care so information can be shared. 

It is essential that staff are alert to signs to look out for and individual triggers to be aware of, when considering the risks of potential safeguarding concerns such as travelling to conflict zones, Child Sexual Exploitation, Female Genital Mutilation, etc.

We will transfer the child’s electronic file to the DfE secure access database.

23. Child sexual exploitation

Child sexual exploitation is a form of sexual abuse where children are sexually exploited for money, power or status. This applies to children above nursery school age.  However it is still an important issue for staff to understand as our families have older children and also young parents, particularly vulnerable adults may be exploited in this way.  It can involve violent, humiliating and degrading sexual assaults. In some cases, young people are persuaded or forced into exchanging sexual activity for money, drugs, gifts, affection or status. Consent cannot be given, even where a child may believe they are voluntarily engaging in sexual activity with the person who is exploiting them. Child sexual exploitation does not always involve physical contact and can happen online. A significant number of children who are victims of sexual exploitation go missing from home, care and education at some point.

Some of the following signs may be indicators of sexual exploitation:

  • children who appear with unexplained gifts or new possessions;
  • children who associate with other young people involved in exploitation;
  • children who have older boyfriends or girlfriends;
  • children who suffer from sexually transmitted infections or become pregnant;
  • children who suffer from changes in emotional well-being;
  • children who misuse drugs and alcohol;
  • children who go missing for periods of time or regularly come home late; and
  • children who regularly miss school or education or do not take part in education

Staff will report any concerns to the designated safeguarding lead.

 24. Child criminal exploitation: county lines

This applies to children above nursery school age, it is however still an important issue for staff to understand as our families have older children who may be exploited in this way.  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.

25. Domestic violence (DV)

The definition of Domestic Violence includes, any pattern of controlling or coercive or threatening behaviour, (psychological, physical, sexual, financial or emotional) between those aged 16 or over who are or who have been intimate partners or family members regardless of gender or sexuality.

The definition of harm as amended the Adoption & Children Act 2002:

Impairment suffered from seeing or hearing the ill treatment of another particularly in the home, even though they themselves have not been directly assaulted or abused

We recognise that DV will have an impact on aspects of a child’s life. The harm suffered will vary according to the child’s resilience or otherwise to his or her particular circumstances. We recognise that the victim’s capacity to protect their child/ren is diminished through anxiety about their own circumstances.

Abused partners will be encouraged and supported to disclose the harm. We will ensure that all information is dealt with securely and sensitively and refer the matter to Lambeth children’s social care where there is a child/ren at risk of significant harm and/or neglect.

26.   Homelessness

Being homeless or being at risk of becoming homeless presents a real risk to a child’s welfare. The designated safeguarding lead and deputy will be aware of the contact details and referral routes in to the Local Housing Authority to 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 behavior as well as the family being asked to leave the property.

27.   Honour based violence

‘Honour-based’ violence (HBV) encompasses 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. All forms of so called HBV are abuse (regardless of the motivation) and will be handled and escalated as such.

 28.   Female genital mutilation (FGM)

FGM is considered child abuse and a grave violation of the human rights of girls and women. It comprises procedures involving partial or total removal of the external female genitalia or other injury to the female genital organs. It is illegal to subject any child to FGM in the UK and to take a child abroad to undergo FGM.

Section 5B of the Female Genital Mutilation Act 2003 (as inserted by section 74 of the Serious Crime Act 2015) places a statutory duty upon teachers in England and Wales, to personally report to the police where they discover (either through disclosure by the victim or visual evidence) that FGM appears to have been carried out on a girl under 18. Those failing to report such cases will face disciplinary sanctions.

It will be rare for teachers to see visual evidence, and they should not be examining pupils. Any member of staff who has an FGM concern should discuss with the designated safeguarding lead who will involve children’s social care as appropriate.

Typical identifiers / triggers may be:

  • Family comes from a community known to practice FGM
  • Family / child may confide that she is going to a ‘special ceremony’ when on holiday
  • Female child is known to have a sister that has already undergone FGM

29. Forced marriage

It is important that staff are aware of these issues, however they are unlikely to relate to nursery aged children. Staff have close relationships with parents who may disclose / cause concern in relation to this.  Forcing a person into a marriage is a crime in England and Wales. A forced marriage is one entered into without the full and free consent of one or both parties and where violence, threats or any other form of coercion is used to cause a person to enter into a marriage. Threats can be physical or emotional and psychological. A lack of full and free consent can be where a person does not consent or where they cannot consent (if they have learning disabilities, for example). Nevertheless, some communities use religion and culture as a way to coerce a person into marriage.

If any member of staff receives a disclosure or is aware that a Forced Marriage is about to happen this must be disclosed to the designated safeguarding lead without delay for appropriate action to be taken. Where there is a risk that a child may be or has been taken out of the country, the school will contact the Forced Marriage Unit as well as local authority social care.

FMU contact: 020 7008 0151 or email: fmu@fco.gov.uk

30. Extremism and radicalisation

Refer to our policy on ‘Preventing extremism and radicalisation’

From 1 July 2015, schools are subject to a duty under section 26 of the Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015 of the need to prevent from people from being drawn into terrorism. This duty is known as the Prevent duty.

Protecting children from the risk of radicalisation is seen as part of school’s wider safeguarding duties, and is similar in nature to protecting children from other forms of harm and abuse. Radicalisation refers to the process by which a person comes to support terrorism and extremist ideologies associated with terrorist groups. The internet and the use of social media in particular has become a major factor in the radicalisation of young people.

As with other safeguarding risks, staff should be alert to changes in children’s behaviour which could indicate that they may be in need of help or protection. Staff should use their judgement in identifying children who might be at risk of radicalisation.

Extremism refers to the vocal or active opposition to our fundamental values, including rule of law, individual liberty and the mutual respect and tolerance of different faiths and beliefs.

Our staff have undertaken Prevent awareness training to equip them to identify children at risk of being drawn into terrorism and to challenge extremist ideas.

31. Children staying with host families

This does not relate to our nursery-aged children. 

32. Private fostering

Where we become aware that a child under the age of 16 (or 18 if disabled) is provided with care and accommodation by someone to whom they are not related in that person’s home, they should raise this in the first instance with the designated safeguarding lead. The school will notify the local authority of the circumstances, and the local authority will check that the arrangement is suitable and safe for the child.

The definition of a close family member is:

  • parent or step-parent (or someone who holds parental responsibility)
  • grandparent
  • aunt or uncle (whether related to the child by blood or through marriage)
  • sibling (including half-siblings and step-siblings)
  • anyone who holds a court order in relation to the child (for example, a residence order).

A person who is barred from regulated activity will themselves be committing an offence under the Children Act 1989 and under the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006 if they privately foster a child.

33. Raising concerns about safeguarding practice

Initially concerns will be raised with the designated safeguarding lead on site. The concern should be escalated to the Chair of Governors if it has not been addressed to the satisfaction of the person raising the concern.  Where staff feel unable to raise an issue or feel that their concern is not being addressed, follow the whistle blowing procedures or contact the NSPCC.

Appendix A – Designated Safeguarding Lead - Availability from Keeping Children Safe in Education Sept 2018 p92

Availability

During term time the designated safeguarding lead (or a deputy) should always be available (during school hours) for staff in the school to discuss any safeguarding concerns. Whilst generally speaking the designated safeguarding lead (or deputy) would be expected to be available in person, it is a matter for individual schools and colleges, working with the designated safeguarding lead, to define what “available” means and whether in exceptional circumstances availability via phone and or Skype or other such media is acceptable. It is a matter for individual schools and colleges and the designated safeguarding lead to arrange adequate and appropriate cover arrangements for any out of hours/out of term activities.

Appendix B – Responding to disclosures of abuse

  • Always stop & listen to someone who wants to tell you about incidents or suspicions of abuse, without displaying shock and disbelief
  • Take the child seriously. Always assume that he/she is telling the truth
  • Do not promise confidentiality; you have a duty to refer to the designated senior person for child protection concerns
  • Do reassure and alleviate guilt

For example you could say; “you are not to blame.”

“You have done the right thing to tell someone.”

  • Do not ask leading questions

For example, “What did she do next?” (this assumes that she did), or “did he touch your private parts”.

  • In cases where criminal proceedings occur, such questioning can cause evidence to become invalid
  • Do not ask the child to repeat the incident for another member of staff

     The child may well have to tell the story again, and to do so repeatedly will cause undue stress.

  • End by summarising what has been said and what action has been agreed
  • Be clear about what you intend to do next
  • Discuss your concern/disclosure with the designated child protection person at the school
  • Record carefully what has been said and what actions have been agreed.

Appendix C – Detailed guidance for recording and reporting concerns about a child’s welfare

A referral to Children’s Social Care Integrated Referral Hub will be made using a multi-agency referral form (MARF).

At the time of disclosure

A disclosure may be made by a child or parent/carer openly talking about an incident or when responding to a member of staff’s question about a mark, bruise or other concern about the child/family.  Disclosures may be received from any adult on site, including a contractor for example, or a concerned member of the public.  Where a member of the public informs us of a concern we must encourage them to report themselves, they can do this via the LSCB website.  We can also refer this but must make sure this is from a third-party, naming the informant where possible.

Your role

  • do not promise confidentiality
  • listen, and do not interrupt, if the child/parent/carer is recalling significant events
  • keep calm and be patient
  • ask questions to clarify what the child/parent/carer is saying, questions should be framed in an open manner and not lead the child/parent/carer in any way
  • do not be intimidated or afraid of talking to a child/parent/carer about child protection issues - this may mean the difference in their lives that they are looking for
  • reassure the child/parent/carer that they have done the right thing by telling you
  • tell them what you are going to do next
  • make a note of the conversation as soon as is reasonably practical (but within 1 hour)

RECORD     -  name of child/parent/carer

                     -  your name

                     - date and time

                     - place of discussion

                     - other people present

                     - what the child/parent/carer actually said as far as possible

                     - the facts you need to report

REPORT     -  to the Designated Safeguarding Lead

                     do not hesitate when reporting.  You must interrupt the member of staff immediately, no matter what the circumstances and clearly state you need to report a safeguarding issue.  Remember you may not know all the information about this child/family and your information could make a very significant difference to a child’s life.

You will receive information from the Designated Safeguarding Lead about the action they will take/have taken.  If you are not satisfied with the outcome and you still have concerns regarding the child’s welfare you are responsible for contacting Children’s Social Care or Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO). (See Key Contacts - Child Protection poster)

If the Designated Safeguarding Lead is the alleged abuser contact Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO). (See Key Contacts - Child Protection poster)

If in exceptional circumstances, the designated safeguarding lead (or deputy) is not available, this should not delay appropriate action being taken - contact Children’s Social Care. (See Key Contacts - Child Protection poster)

Role of Designated Safeguarding Lead in response to any disclosure

Listen to the concern

  • Complete/update the ‘Concerns form and HISTORY’.
  • Access all key information about the child and family.
  • Alert another DSL trained member of staff to discuss.
  • If you do not refer you must record your decisions for not doing so.

YOU MUST REFER FOR THE FOLLOWING CONCERNS:

  • THERE IS CLEAR EVIDENCE OF ABUSE OR CONCERN FOR A CHILD’S IMMEDIATE SAFETY (eg. If a child has indicated they have been hit by an adult and there is a mark or a bruise)
  • A CHILD MAY BE IN NEED, INCLUDING CONCERNS ABOUT SIGNIFICANT HARM
  • DOMESTIC VIOLENCE - where a child has witnessed domestic violence or is in need, suffered significant harm or risk of suffering significant harm due to DV, see Barnardo’s domestic violence risk identification matrix stored in Google Drive
  • DOMESTIC VIOLENCE - where there is a child under 12 months old or an unborn child (even if the child was not present) any single incident of domestic violence must trigger a referral to Social Care.
  • SUSPICIOUS INJURY REQUIRING URGENT MEDICAL TREATMENT - In circumstances where a child has a suspicious injury that requires urgent medical attention, the CP referral process should not delay, the administration of first aid or emergency assistance.  If a child is thought to be at immediate risk (because of parental violence or intoxication, for example) urgent police intervention should be requested.

CHILD SUBJECT TO A CHILD PROTECTION PLAN – Particular vigilance will be exercised in respect of children who are subject to a Child Protection Plan and any incidents or concern involving these children will be reported immediately to Social Care and confirmed in writing.  This will also be the case for other children who may be considered vulnerable such as disabled children, SEN children or Children Looked After or Previously Looked After for example. In all cases of injury to a child consideration will always be given as to whether an urgent paediatric medical assessment is required to document injuries or to protect any forensic evidence.

Where it is suspected that a child may be at further risk of significant harm if the parent is spoken to, nothing will be said to the child’s parent/carer without first discussing the matter with Lambeth Children’s Social Care Integrated Referral Hub (IRH).

All staff must understand that there are no circumstances under which a member of staff may promise a child that they will keep any disclosure a secret or confidential – they must always pass this information on in the best interest of the child.

YOU MUST ACT AND CONTACT CHILDREN’S SOCIAL CARE IMMEDIATELY, IF A CRIME HAS BEEN COMMITTED CONTACT THE POLICE

MAKING A REFERRAL

  • To make the referral or take advice by telephoning Lambeth’s Integrated Referral Hub or the Police. 
  • Following their advice a Multi-Agency Referral Form (MARF) will be completed and sent by egress switch (secure email).  The Designated Safeguarding Lead (and relevant Head of School & Children’s Centre Manager if not already involved) will be informed of the referral through a ‘document comment’.
  • Inform the member of staff initially involved and the child’s key person of your action.
  • Referrals will be shared with the family and should be made with their knowledge and agreement unless this would jeopardise the child’s safety. However, if a child makes a clear disclosure do not contact the parents until advice has been sought about whether to do so from Social Care or the Police.
  • Social Care are required to respond within 1 working day to inform us of the outcome of the referral.  Staff will follow up on a referral should this information not be forthcoming. 

If you do not feel that a referral is required advice can be sought from Lambeth Social Care about any worries/concerns have about a child’s welfare.  You may consider contacting the Lambeth Safeguarding Lead Officers, the LADO or the Social Worker Link contact for advice.  If you do not discuss the concern within 2 hours (or less if the child’s session is nearing the end)

DO NOT DELAY IN CONTACTING THE INTEGRATED REFERRAL HUB FOR ADVICE.  

Appendix D – Types of abuse and their symptoms

  1. Physical abuse

Physical abuse 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 fabricates the symptoms of, or deliberately induces, illness in a child.

            Physical abuse indicators

Physical indicators

Behavioural indicators

  • Unexplained injuries – bruises /

abrasions / lacerations

  • The account of the accident may be vague or may vary from one telling to another.
  • Unexplained burns
  • Regular occurrence of unexplained injuries
  • Most accidental injuries occur on parts of the board where the skin passes over a bony protrusion.
  • Withdrawn or aggressive behavioural extremes
  • Uncomfortable with physical contact
  • Seems afraid to go home
  • Complains of soreness or moves uncomfortably
  • Wears clothing inappropriate for the weather, in order to cover board.
  • The interaction between the child and its carer
  1. Neglect

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 involve a parent failing to:

  • provide adequate food, clothing and shelter
  • protect a child from physical and emotional harm or danger
  • ensure adequate supervision (including the use of inadequate care-givers)
  • ensure access to appropriate medical care or treatment.

It may also include neglect of, or unresponsiveness to, a child’s basic emotional needs.

            Neglect  indicators

Physical indicators

Behavioural indicators

  • Unattended medical need
  • Underweight or obesity
  • Recurrent infection
  • Unkempt dirty appearance
  • Smelly
  • Inadequate / unwashed clothes
  • Consistent lack of supervision
  • Consistent hunger
  • Inappropriately dressed
  • Poor social relationships
  • Indiscriminate friendliness
  • Poor concentration
  • Low self-esteem
  • Regularly displays fatigue or lethargic Frequently falls asleep in class
  • Frequent unexplained absences
  1. Emotional abuse

Emotional abuse is the persistent emotional maltreatment of a child such as to cause severe and persistent effects on the child’s emotional development, and may involve:

  • Conveying to children that they are worthless or unloved, inadequate, or valued only insofar as they meet the needs of another person;
  • Imposing age or developmentally inappropriate expectations on children. These may include interactions that are beyond the child’s developmental capability, as well as overprotection and limitation of exploration and learning, or preventing the child participating in normal social interaction;
  • Seeing or hearing the ill-treatment of another;
  • Serious bullying, causing children frequently to feel frightened or in danger, or the exploitation or corruption of children.

                Emotional abuse  indicators

Physical indicators

Behavioural indicators

  • Poor attachment relationship
  • Unresponsive / neglectful behaviour towards the child’s emotional needs
  • Persistent negative comments about the child
  • Inappropriate or inconsistent expectations
  • Self-harm
  • Low self-esteem
  • Unhappiness, anxiety
  • Withdrawn, insecure
  • Attention seeking
  • Passive or aggressive behavioural extremes
  1. Sexual abuse

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.

            Sexual abuse  indicators

Physical indicators

Behavioural indicators

  • Sign of blood / discharge on the child’s underclothing
  • Awkwardness in walking / sitting
  • Pain or itching – genital area
  • Bruising, scratching, bites on the inner thighs / external genitalia
  • Self-harm
  • Eating disorders
  • Enuresis / encopresis
  • Sudden weight loss or gain
  • Sexually proactive behavior or knowledge that is incompatible with the child’s age & understanding
  • Drawings & or written work that is sexually explicit
  • Self-harm / Suicide attempts
  • Running away
  • Substance abuse
  • Significant devaluing of self
  • Loss of concentration