Safeguarding and Child Protection
The schools designated leads for safeguarding are: Michelle Griffiths, Alice Youngman and Gail Atkinson.
If you have any concerns about a child or if you want to speak to one of the staff members regarding a concern for a child, they can be contacted via:
Tel: 01865 557 004
Our core safeguarding principles are:
- It is the school’s responsibility to safeguard and promote the welfare of children.
- Children who are and feel safe make more successful learners.
- Representatives of the whole-school community of pupils, parents, staff and governors will be involved in policy development and review.
We recognise our moral and statutory responsibility to safeguard and promote the welfare of all children. We endeavour to provide a safe and welcoming environment where children are respected and valued. We are alert to the signs of abuse and neglect and follow our procedures to ensure that children receive effective support, protection and justice.
- The school will ensure that the welfare of children is given paramount consideration when developing and delivering all school activity
- All children, regardless of age, gender, ability, culture, race, language, religion or sexual identity, have equal rights to protection
- All staff have an equal responsibility to act on any suspicion or disclosure that may suggest a child is at risk of harm in accordance with this guidance
- All pupils and staff involved in child protection issues will receive appropriate support from the senior management of the school who will follow this policy guidance in doing so
- To provide all staff with the necessary information to enable them to meet their statutory responsibilities to promote and safeguard the wellbeing of children
- To ensure consistent good practice across the school
- To demonstrate the school’s commitment with regard to safeguarding children
We understand the term safeguarding to mean that we will take all reasonable measures to ensure that the risk of harm to children’s welfare is minimised. We also understand that where we have any concerns about a child’s welfare we will take all appropriate action to address those concerns by working in full partnership with other agencies.
All staff at Northern House School (Oxford) believe that a range of other school policies are central to many aspects of the school’s Child Protection Policy, and the child protection policy should therefore be read in conjunction with our Policies for:
- Behaviour Management and Physical Intervention
- Health & Safety
All children at Northern House School (Oxford) must be able to place their trust and confidence in any adult working in the school. They must feel sure that they can speak about any worries or concerns they may have and that they will be listened to, taken seriously and responded to appropriately.
All staff must therefore know what to do if a child chooses to talk to them about any matter which raises child protection concerns.
All staff must:
- Listen to what the child is saying without interruption and without asking leading questions.
- Respect the child’s right to privacy but not promise confidentiality
- Reassure the child that h/she has done the right thing in telling.
- Explain to the child that in order to keep him/her safe from harm the information that
has been shared with must be passed on.
- Report what was has been disclosed to the Designated Person in the school.
- Record, as soon as is practicable, what was said using the child’s actual words.
- Sign and date the record.
- Maintain appropriate levels of CPD and child protection training that equips staff to recognise and respond to pupil welfare concerns.
- Receive mandatory inductions, which include familirasation with child protection policy, behaviour policy, the designated leads and what procedures to be followed.
The Designated Person for Child Protection will:
- Assess any urgent medical needs of the child.
- Consider whether the child has suffered, or is likely to suffer significant harm.
- Check whether the child is currently subject to a Child Protection Plan or has been previously subject to a Plan.
- Confirm whether any previous concerns have been raised by staff.
- Consider whether the matter should be discussed with the child’s parents or carers or whether to do so may put the child at further risk of harm because of delay or the parent’s possible actions or reactions
- Seek advice if unsure that a child protection referral should be made.The school also works with the Local Authorities LADO (Local Authority Designated Officer) on Child Protection Concerns.
Prevention in the Curriculum
The school recognises the importance of developing pupils’ awareness of behaviour that is unacceptable towards them and others, and how they can help keep themselves and others safe.
As part of developing a healthy, safer lifestyle, pupils are taught to, for example:
- safely explore their own and others’ attitudes
- recognise and manage risks in different situations and how to behave responsibly
- judge what kind of physical contact is acceptable and unacceptable
- recognise when pressure from others (including people they know) threatens their personal safety and well-being and develop effective ways of resisting pressure; including knowing when and where to get help
- use assertiveness techniques to resist unhelpful pressure
- internet safety
Safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children refers to the process of protecting children from abuse or neglect, preventing the impairment of their health or development, ensuring that children grow up in circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective and nurturing care and undertaking that role so as to enable those children to have optimum life chances and to enter adulthood successfully.
- Child protection refers to the processes undertaken to meet statutory obligations laid out in the Children Act 1989 and associated guidance in respect of those children who have been identified as suffering, or being at risk of suffering harm.
- Staff refers to all those working for or on behalf of the school, full time or part time, in either a paid or voluntary capacity.
- Child refers to all young people who have not yet reached their 18th birthday.
- Parent refers to birth parents and other adults who are in a parenting role, for example step-parents, foster carers and adoptive parents.
Section 175 of the Education Act 2002 requires local education authorities and the governors of maintained schools and further education (FE) colleges to make arrangements to ensure that their functions are carried out with a view to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children.
Section 157 of the same act and the Education (Independent Schools Standards) (England) Regulations 2003 require proprietors of independent schools (including academies and city technology colleges) to have arrangements to safeguard and promote the welfare of children who are pupils at the school.
Research suggests that more than 10 per cent of children will suffer some form of abuse. Due to their day-to-day contact with children, school staff are uniquely placed to observe changes in children’s behaviour and to recognise the outward signs of abuse. Children may also turn to a trusted adult in the school when they are in distress or at risk. It is vital that school staff are alert to the signs of neglect and abuse and understand the local procedures for reporting and acting upon their concerns.