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Shepley First School

Safeguarding

Safeguarding Children Statement

The Health and Safety Policy

First Aid

Site security

Shepley First School provides a secure site, which is controlled by precise management directives, but the site is only as secure as the people who use it. Therefore all people on the site have to adhere to the rules, which govern it. Laxity can cause potential problems to safeguarding. Therefore:

  • Gates should be kept closed at all times and kept locked at the end of each day
  • Doors should be closed to prevent intrusion but to facilitate smooth exits
  • Visitors, volunteers and students must only enter through the main entrance and after signing in at the office window
  • Children will only be allowed home with adults with parental responsibility or confirmed permission
  • Children should never be allowed to leave school alone during school hours, and if collected by an adult, signed out

Should a child leave the school premises without permission then staff have been informed never to chase after a child, but rather to report immediately to the office. Then parents and police will be informed of the circumstances.

Attendance

Excellent attendance is expected of all children, but when children are unwell parents are expected to confirm absence by telephone immediately. If there is no notification school has a policy of phoning home to ascertain each child’s whereabouts.

The school works closely with the Local Education Authority’s Welfare officer whenever a child’s attendance and punctuality causes concern. Attendance rates are reported each term to the LA, annually to the government and to all parents. Positive measures are in place to encourage children to attend regularly and punctually and the school is ware of its right to take legal action against parents who do not ensure good attendance and punctuality.

Appointments of staff and induction of newly appointed staff and work placements

All staff that are appointed to work in school have a criminal records search called a DBS check. This search highlights people who have a criminal record or if previous allegations have been made against them. If staff are found to have a criminal record the appointment is reconsidered by the Head teacher and the Personnel committee of the Governing Body. The LA is informed directly by the Criminal Records Bureau.

Head teacher sits on all appointment panels where the candidates are external applicants. The Head teacher has undertaken the NCSL training on Safer Recruitment.

New staff are inducted into safeguarding practices. Newly appointed staff are assigned a mentor for the induction period. It is the responsibility of the mentors to familiarise new staff with procedures and policy, which affect the health and safety of all at school but especially the children.

Induction of volunteers

Volunteers must also have Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check. For a brief activity, such as a school visit, which does not involve the supervision or close contact of children the school may telephone for a “99” check. For extended contact with children, when children may be left alone with an adult, or when an adult visitor may be in and around the school building a full DBS search will be conducted. The office performs this. Visitors who do not yet have clearance will under no circumstance be left alone with a child or group of children.

Welcoming visitors

Visitors with a professional role ie the School Nurse or members of the police already have relevant clearance and the office will endeavour to check this before admittance is granted.

Child Protection Policy

The designated adult for Child Protection is Mrs. F Bowman. There is a Child Protection Policy, which is available from the school office with 24 hours notice. It is the Governing Body’s duty to ensure the policy is reviewed annually and any deficiencies within the policy addressed immediately. Certain governors and all staff have had appropriate child protection training, which is updated at least every three years.

The child protection policy includes a statement on physical restraint. This school follows DfES guidelines 10/98 which asserts that physical restraint may be used if there is the possibility that a child may be about to cause harm to him/ herself or to another. It also asserts that on no occasion should such physical contact be used as a punishment.

All allegations of abuse by or complaints of a teacher will be dealt with following Kirklees Safeguarding Board procedures

A copy of this is available at 24hours notice. For any complaints about the Head teacher the Chair of Governors should be contacted directly.

The Design of the Curriculum

The curriculum deals with safeguarding in two ways. Firstly, the curriculum, in subjects such as Personal, Social and Health Education discusses relevant issues with the children. Topics include such themes as Drugs, Sex and Relationships and Stranger Danger. Children are encouraged to explore and discuss these issues.

Secondly, the curriculum is designed so that safety issues within the subject are discussed and safe practices taught, such as using equipment properly in PE and Design and Technology. At all times there has to be appropriate staffing levels and when the curriculum is taking out of school appropriate and agreed pupil/adult ratios are maintained. The lead adult always assesses visits as to the level of risk and all trips are finally authorised by the Head teacher.

Visiting speakers, with correct clearance are always welcome into school so that can give specialist knowledge to the children.

Internet Safety

Children should be encouraged to use the internet as much as is possible, but at all times in a safe way. Parents are asked each year if they agree to their child using the internet. Pupils must never be left unattended whilst online and teachers should ensure that this does not happen. If teachers know of misuse, either by a teacher or child the issue should be reported to the Head teacher without delay.

As Child Protection Officer the Head teacher has overall responsibility for internet safety. The Head teacher and the ICT technician manage the internet and emails for school and has direct access to all email addresses and passwords.

Equal opportunities

Within the school prospectus there is a statement for equal opportunities which asserts:

“At Shepley First School we try to ensure that everyone is treated fairly. All children are given equal access to the school, the curriculum and all at Shepley are considered equal in the learning partnership. When children have special needs we make arrangements to inform parents and design specific programmes”.

Children with disabilities must be able to take a full and active part in every lesson and every measure must be taken to ensure this.

Behaviour policy

Good behaviour is essential in any community and at Shepley First we have high expectations for this. A policy entitled Behaviour Procedures is included in the Handbook detailing the rewards and sanctions available to staff. Although the emphasis is always on the positive there are also times when children have to be disciplined in order to maintain the safety and security of all children.

There are numerous rewards available to children:

  • Stickers
  • Showing another teacher good work
  • Crystals
  • Certificates

But the sanctions range from:

  • A telling off
  • Being removed from the class
  • Loss of playtime
  • Reporting to a senior member of staff
  • A letter home
  • Exclusion

Staff are discouraged from handling children, but when they deem it is safest to do so guidance has been given on safe methods of restraining a child so that they do not harm either themselves or others.

Anti Bullying Policy

The Shepley First School definition of bullying is:

Bullying is distinct from conflict which is a part of everyday life. It is not:

  • A one off fight or argument
  • A friend sometimes being nasty
  • An argument with a friend
  • Falling out with friends on an occasional basis

We define bullying as deliberately hurtful behaviour, repeated over a period of time Several Times On Purpose (STOP).

Children are told that silence is the bully’s best friend. Although bullying in this school is rare the school always acts swiftly with a process of investigation, communication and action. Bullies will not be tolerated.

There is a more detailed Anti-bullying Policy that is available from the school office at 24 hours notice.

Racial Tolerance

Along with the equal opportunities statement there is a statement in the prospectus that asserts:

“At Shepley pupils will be prepared for an ethnically diverse society. The school will work hard to promote racial equality and harmony by preventing and challenging racism.

“If anyone ever feels unjustly treated then the school welcomes and values a response. It is in working together that we will make Shepley First even better.”

Racism is tackled in both the RE and in the PSCHE curricula. The children take part in discussions designed to raise awareness and address prejudices. From time to time visitors work with the children such as a group of Indian dancers.

Photographing and videoing

There has been a lot of controversy recently about adults photographing and filming young people. The concerns are genuine, however at Shepley First we have taken a sensible, balanced approach, which allows parents to photograph and file providing they follow certain guidelines:

  • Parents consent to school taking photographs by signing a permission slip at Parents’ Evening or upon entry to school
  • School photographs that are for use outside of school are anonymous unless specific permission has been received from parents
  • Parents taking photographs read the LA advice leaflet
  • Parents will in the future be asked to sign to say that they have read the document prior to using their cameras

Whistleblowing

If members of staff ever have any concerns about people working, paid or unpaid, they have a professional duty to inform the management accordingly. This can be done in writing or verbally but staff should be prepared to discuss issues in the confidence that any such matter will be dealt with sensitively and with the necessary degree of confidentiality. The school follows the Local Authority’s draft policy on Whistleblowing. A copy of this can be made available at 24 hours notice.