The purpose of Tavistock College’s safeguarding policy is to provide a secure framework for the workforce in safeguarding and promoting the welfare of those students who attend our college. The policy aims to ensure that:
All children deserve the opportunity to achieve their full potential. In 2003, the Government published the Every Child Matters Green Paper alongside the formal response to the report into the death of Victoria Climbié. The Green Paper set out five outcomes that are key to children and young people’s wellbeing:
The five outcomes are universal ambitions for every child and young person, whatever their background or circumstances. Improving outcomes for all children and young people underpins all of the development and work within this college.
Safeguarding in Tavistock College is considered everyone’s responsibility and as such our College aims to create the safest environment within which every student has the opportunity to achieve their Five Outcomes. Tavistock College recognises the contribution it can make in ensuring that all students registered or who use our college feel that they will be listened to and appropriate action taken. We will do this by working in partnership with other agencies and seeking to establish effective working relationships with parents, carers and other colleagues to develop and provide activities and opportunities throughout our curriculum that will help to equip our children with the skills they need. This will include materials and learning experiences that will encourage our children to develop essential life skills and protective behaviours.
Tavistock College has a Governing body whose legal responsibility it is to make sure that the college has an effective safeguarding policy and procedures in place and monitors that the college complies with them. The Governing body should also ensure that the policy is made available to parents and carers if requested. It is the responsibility of the Governing body to ensure that all staff and volunteers are properly checked to make sure they are safe to work with the students who attend our college and that the college has procedures for handling allegations of abuse made against members of staff (including the Head Teacher) or volunteers. The Governing Body has appointed a Senior Designated Officer (SDO) who has lead responsibility for dealing with all safeguarding issues in our college.
The Senior Designated Officer is Aimee Mitchell, Assistant Principal. If they are not available then the Designated Child Protection Officer is Janet Piper, College Nurse. Deputy Designated Officers are Jane Brown, Inclusion Hub Coordinator and Jo Northmore, Behaviour Intervention Manager. (These people can also be contacted with any safeguarding concerns). The Named Members of the Governing Body for Safeguarding are, Jonathan Coupland and Alan Wroath.
It is the responsibility of the SDO to ensure that all safeguarding issues raised in college are effectively responded to, recorded and referred to the appropriate agency. They are also responsible for arranging whole college safeguarding training for all staff and volunteers who work with children and young people in our college. The SDO must ensure that the whole college safeguarding training takes place at least every three years; which they can deliver within college provided they are linked in to the support and quality assurance process offered by the Local Authority.
The SDO is required to attend or ensure that a senior member of staff who has the relevant training and access to appropriate supervision, attends where appropriate, all child protection case conferences, reviews, core groups or meetings where it concerns a child at our college and to contribute to multi-agency discussions to safeguard and promote the child’s welfare.
The SDO is required to complete an annual Safeguarding Audit which demonstrates that the Safeguarding arrangements in the college are being met. If the self-assessment highlights any areas for improvement, this will be detailed in the action plan which will be signed off and monitored by the Named Governor for Safeguarding to ensure these improvements are implemented. The self-review assessment is to be shared with the Local Authority, who will have an auditing role in ensuring the college is meeting its Safeguarding requirements under s.175/157 of the Education Act 2002 for both maintained and independent schools. All Child Protection concerns need to be acted on immediately. If you are concerned that a child may be at risk or is actually suffering abuse, you should tell the Senior Designated Officer.
All Adults, including the SDO, have a duty to refer all known or suspected cases of abuse to the relevant agency including Children and Young Peoples Service (CYPS) – Social Care or the Police. Where a disclosure is made to a visiting staff member from a different agency, e.g. Connexions or School Nurse, it is the responsibility of that agency staff to formally report the referral to the College’s Designated Person in the first instance. Where the disclosure is made by a child attending a Short Stay School (SSS) or alternative provision, the referral should be recorded and referred to the On-Site Senior Designated Officer and a formal notification made to the school’s SDO where the child is on roll for information or appropriate action to be taken. Any records made should be kept securely on the Child’s main school/child Protection file.
Safeguarding is not just about protecting children from deliberate harm. For our college it includes such things as student safety, bullying, racist abuse and harassment, educational visits, intimate care, children missing education and internet safety etc. The witnessing of abuse can have a damaging affect on those who are party to it, as well as the child subjected to the actual abuse, and in itself will have a significant impact on the health and emotional well-being of the child.
Abuse can take place in any family, institution or community setting, by telephone or on the internet. Abuse can often be difficult to recognise as children may behave differently or seem unhappy for many reasons, as they move through the stages of childhood or their family circumstances change. However, it is important to know the indicators of abuse and to be alert to the need to consult further.
This can involve hitting, shaking, throwing, poisoning, punching, kicking, scalding, burning, drowning and suffocating. It can also result when a parent or carer deliberately causes the ill health of a child in order to seek attention through fabricated or induced illness. This was previously known as Munchausen’s Syndrome by Proxy.
Emotional Abuse is where a child’s need for love, security, recognition and praise is not met. It may involve seeing or hearing the ill-treatment of someone else such as in Domestic Violence or Domestic Abuse. A parent, carer or authority figure is considered emotionally abusive when they are consistently hostile, rejecting, threatening or undermining toward a child or other family member. It can also occur when children are prevented from having social contact with others or if inappropriate expectations are placed upon them. Symptoms that indicate emotional abuse include:
Sexual abuse involves forcing or enticing a child or young person to take part in sexual activities, whether or not the child is aware of what is happening. This may include physical contact both penetrative and non-penetrative, or viewing pornographic material including through the use of the internet. Indicators of sexual abuse include: allegations or disclosures, genital soreness, injuries or disclosure, sexually transmitted diseases, inappropriate sexualised behaviour including words, play or drawing.
Neglect is the persistent failure to meet a child’s basic physical and/or psychological needs which can significantly harm their health and development. Neglect can include inadequate supervision (being left alone for long periods of time), lack of stimulation, social contact or education, lack of appropriate food, shelter, appropriate clothing for conditions and medical attention and treatment when necessary.
If a child makes an allegation or disclosure of abuse against an adult or other child or young person, it is important that you:
If you are concerned that a member of staff or adult in a position of trust poses a danger to a child or young person or that they might be abusing a child or young person you should report your concerns to the Principal. Where those concerns relate to the Principal however, this should be reported to the Chair of Governors using the colleges ‘Whistle blowing’ policy.
A copy of the Colleges Record keeping log is attached to this Policy at Appendix 2 and copies can be obtained from Janet Piper in the Inclusion Hub. If you require a body map to be completed this may be obtained from the Intranet under the tab labelled Safeguarding.
We are aware of the possibility of allegations being made against members of staff or volunteers that are working or may come into contact with children and young people whilst in our college. Allegations will usually be that some kind of abuse has taken place. They can be made by children and young people or other concerned adults. Allegations are made for a variety of reasons:
If an allegation is made against an adult in a position of trust whether they be members of staff or volunteers this should be brought to the immediate attention of the SDO who will advise the Principal. In the case of the allegation being made against the Principal this will be brought to the immediate attention of the Chair of Governors. The Principal/Chair of Governors will need to discuss with the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) the nature of the allegations in order for the appropriate action to be taken. This may constitute an initial evaluation meeting or strategy discussion depending on the allegation being made. Head teachers will need to:
Refer to the LADO immediately and follow up in writing within 48 hours. Consider safeguarding arrangements of the child or young person to ensure they are away from the alleged abuser.
All members of staff and volunteers will have access to whole college safeguarding training at least every three years. We will also, as part of our induction, issue information in relation to our Safeguarding policy and any policy related to safeguarding and promoting our children/young people’s welfare to all newly appointed staff and volunteers.
Our Senior Designated Officer and Deputies will undertake further safeguarding training in addition to the whole college training. This will be undertaken at least every two years which updates their awareness and understanding of the impact of the wide agenda of safeguarding issues. This will support both the SDO/Deputies to be able to better undertake their role and support the college in ensuring our safeguarding arrangements are robust and achieving better outcomes for the students in our college. This includes taking part in multi-agency training in addition to safeguarding training.
Our Governing body will have access to safeguarding training and our Named Governors for Safeguarding will also undertake additional training at least every two years to support their employers’ role in Handling Allegations against adults who work with children and young people, including our staff and volunteers.
Our safeguarding arrangements are reported on a termly basis to our Governing body and our Safeguarding policy is reviewed annually, in order to keep it updated in line with local and national guidance/legislation.
We will include our Safeguarding Policy in our college prospectus/website and will post copies of our policy throughout the college. We are also able to arrange for our policy to be made available to parents whose first language is not English, on request.
Devon’s Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH) provides information sharing across all partners involved in safeguarding – including statutory, non-statutory and third sector sources. All partners work together to provide the highest level of knowledge and analysis to make sure that all safeguarding activity and intervention is timely, proportionate and necessary.
All information within the MASH is collected and decision-making will take place in a timely manner within agreed timescales depending on the priority criteria when the concern is referred to a Hub.
HIGH RISK - RED
MEDIUM RISK - AMBER
LOW RISK - GREEN
The Hub contributes to improved outcomes for safeguarding children because it has the ability to swiftly collate and share information held by the various agencies and to provide a multi-agency risk assessment of each case for ‘actual or likely harm’. If you have concerns about a child but are unsure whether to make a Social Care referral, you can contact the Devon Consultation service for advice.
If you wish to make a Social Care referral you can use any of the following methods.
This document was adopted by the Full Governing Body on 17/12/2012
The document is subject to review on a annual basis. The next review will be Autumn Term 2013
Page updated Thursday, November 14, 2013