Child Protection Policy

Our Child Protection Policy and what it means for your child

St Mary’s Catholic Primary School fully recognises its responsibilities for child protection. We aim to provide a safe, secure environment for all children and staff.

Our policy applies to all staff, governors and volunteers working in the school.

We will ensure that :

  • the welfare of the child is paramount
  • all children regardless of age, gender, culture, disability and religious beliefs have the right to protection from abuse
  • all suspicions and allegations of abuse will be taken seriously and responded to swiftly and appropriately
  • all staff have the responsibility to report concerns

Aims

  • We aim to raise the awareness of both teaching and non-teaching staff of child protection issues and of their responsibilities in identifying and reporting possible cases of abuse.

We will do this through training and workshops to update all staff in accordance with local and national guidelines. These training or learning opportunities will be provided as appropriate to all staff to ensure commitments are met. Induction will include briefing on Child Protection issues.

  • We aim to provide systematic means of monitoring children thought to be at risk.

We will ensure that all staff and volunteers understand their responsibilities in being alert to the signs of abuse. We will do this through staff recording concerns/incidents about pupils. These concerns will be shared with the child protection co-ordinator and SEN coordinator where relevant. We will keep written records of concerns about children even where there is no need to refer the matter immediately.

  • We aim to have good levels of communication between all staff members

We will take seriously any concerns raised. All staff who have concerns will share them with the relevant people – other class teachers of siblings, Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL). Any concerns held over the school year will be shared with the next teacher or High School. If a pupil transfers schools, information will be shared with the relevant personnel immediately.

  • We aim to develop a structured internal procedure to be followed by all members of school in cases of suspected abuse.

All staff and volunteers will follow guidelines given to them – note concerns, refer to Child Protection co-ordinator, speak to parents, make a referral under section 17 (Children in Need) or Section 47 (children at risk of significant harm)

  • We aim to follow the procedures set out by the Local Safeguarding Children Board and take account of the guidance issues by the Department for Education and Skills

We will have a designated senior person for child protection who has received appropriate training for this role and ensure that all staff and volunteers know who this is. (N Grant and P Glover)

There will be a nominated governor responsible for child protection. (A Crowther)

Ensure all parents understand the responsibility placed on school for child protection by setting out its obligations in the school prospectus.

Ensure all staff and volunteers understand their responsibilities in being alert.

Notify social services if there is an unexplained absence of more than 2 days of a child who is on the Child Protection register.

Develop and then follow procedures where an allegation is made against a member of staff or volunteer.

Ensure all records are kept securely and away from the main pupils files.

Ensure safe recruitment practices are always followed.

Develop effective links with other agencies.

  • We aim to work in a multi-agency framework to work together more effectively.

We will pass on our concerns to the relevant agencies. We will act appropriately and effectively in instigating/co-operating with any subsequent process of investigation. We will act in partnership with parents/carers/professionals to ensure the protection of our children, attending case conferences, core meetings and providing reports as necessary.

  • We aim to aid a child’s development in ways to build security, confidence, independence and equip them with the skills needed to keep them safe.

We will teach a child protection curriculum through main focus lessons or topic work. PSCHE will develop a positive self-concept, personal skills and how to relate to others. This curriculum will also give opportunities for children to develop the skills they need to recognise and stay safe from abuse. The Child Protection curriculum should allow for continuity through both the Key stages.

  • We aim to develop a network of support for children and adults in school.

We will establish a safe environment in which children can learn and develop, where children feel secure and are encouraged to talk and are listened to.

We will ensure children know there are adults in the school who they can approach if they are worried.

DSL will ensure all staff are aware of procedures and can voice their concerns.

We will support pupils and their families in line with their Child Protection plan.

  • We aim to practise safe recruitment in checking the suitability of staff and volunteers to work with children

We will ensure safe recruitment practices are always followed as outlined by the LA

We recognise that children who are abused or witness violence may find it difficult to develop a sense of self worth. They may feel helplessness, humiliation and some sense of blame. The school may be the only stable, secure and predictable element in the lives of children at risk. When at school their behaviour may be challenging and defiant or they may be withdrawn. The school will endeavour to support the pupil through:

  • The content of the curriculum.

  • The school ethos which promotes a positive, supportive and secure environment and gives pupils a sense of being valued.

  • The school behaviour policy which is aimed at supporting vulnerable pupils in the school. The school will ensure that the pupil knows that some behaviour is unacceptable but they are valued and not to be blamed for any abuse which has occurred.

  • Liaison with other agencies that support the pupil such as social services, Child and Adult Mental Health Service, education welfare service and educational psychology service.

The nominated DSL is Mrs Grant

The nominated Child Protection Governor is Fr. Patrick Mungovin.

 

This policy was reviewed September 2014