What is Safeguarding?
At Far Forest we consider the safeguarding of children to be our most important priority. Children need to feel safe, cared for and valued in order to learn and thrive. In school we follow the guidance set out in 'Keeping Children Safe in Education' 2019 which states that schools must ensure they:
- Protect children from maltreatment
- Prevent the impairment of children's health or development
- Ensure children grow up in a safe and effective care
- Take action to ensure children achieve the best outcomes
To ensure the above guidelines are followed we take action to enable all children to have the best outcomes through our safeguarding measures regardless of their age, culture, physical needs, gender, language, racial origin, religious beliefs and sexual identity. In order to do this we have clear procedures in place to ensure that disclosures or allegations are taken seriously, recorded correctly and investigated.
Who is Responsible for Safeguarding?
Everyone who comes into contact with children and their families has a role to play in safeguarding children. Staff are made aware that any safeguarding issues need to be reported through the correct routes to the designated leads. When staff are recruited we follow the procedures set out in our ‘School Recruitment and Selection Policy’. Also on-going safeguarding measures are in place for staff currently employed i.e. through training and DBS re-checks.
The following staff have received Level 2 Safeguarding and Child Protection Training for Safeguarding Leads in School:
- Mrs Shelley Reeves-Walters (Headteacher) Designated Safeguarding Lead / PREVENT lead
- Mrs Mokshuda Begum (Deputy Head) Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead
In addition to this staff received refresher Level 1 Safeguarding Training to ensure they could recognise signs and symptoms of abuse and report using our agreed procedures.
Mrs Shelley Reeves-Walters is also qualified to deliver training in PREVENT.
What are the Areas of Safeguarding?
- Child protection – ensuring that staff respond appropriately to any significant change in a child’s behaviour, report to the Designated Lead any unexplained bruising, marks or signs of possible abuse, report any deterioration in a child’s well being, are trained to know signs of neglect and respond appropriately to comments children make that cause concern
- Training – ensuring that staff have access to quality training in aspects of safeguarding so they can recognise signs and symptoms of abuse and record/respond using the correct procedures
- Buildings and grounds – ensuring we offer a safe learning environment for children to thrive
- Outside learning – completing risk assessments prior to trips and visits for the establishment along with safe transport
- Visitors – checking DBS forms and qualifications and logging them on our Single Central Register
- Behaviour– promoting positive behaviours towards each other to create a warm, caring environment
- Parents/carers/families – offering a welcoming school and develop home/school links
- Curriculum – ensuring that our curriculum offers a wide range of opportunities for children to learn about safety and they have chances to talk and ask questions
How does our Curriculum Support Safeguarding of Pupils?
To support pupils with confidence and knowledge of safeguarding issues we ensure our personal, social, health education (PSHE) programme allows lots of opportunities to develop their understanding.
- We cover whole school national and global themes across the whole year such as Anti-
Bullying week, Safer Internet Day, Money Week, Safety Week, Celebrating Diversity and Different Families
- We learn about our ‘Value of the Month’ in lessons and assemblies to help children develop their sense of worth and confidence
- Our PSHE curriculum focuses on ‘Healthy Living’, ‘Relationships’ and ‘Living in the Wider World’ across the year. Each class accesses topics within these as well as through our sex and relationships, drugs and alcohol education curriculum to help support their understanding of safety issues. For example learning about people who help us, how to stay safe on-line, healthy relationships, predicting and assessing risks.
Links with External Agencies
In order to provide the best possible safeguarding for all pupils in our school we work with outside agencies to ensure we get expert advice and support. We follow procedures set out by ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education’ 2019 in accordance with child protection procedures.
Below are some of the links we have with external agencies:
- School Nurse Service
- Education Welfare Officer
- Educational Psychology Team
- CAMHS (Child and Adult Mental Health Service)
- Behaviour Support Service
- Social Services
- Parent Support Advisor
- Health practitioners
- Special Educational Needs and Disability Team
Sharing of Information
We are required to have information from parents/carers prior to a child joining our school.
- Information about who has legal contact with the child and who has parental responsibility
- Any special health requirements for the child
- Information relating to food i.e. dietary requirements and food allergies
- Emergency contact numbers (updated as required throughout the child’s time at school)
- ‘Child Collected By’ form which specifies agreed adults who can collect a child.
In our school we follow the Data Protection principles. Information regarding children is stored safely and securely and it is only shared with professionals permitted to have it.
Which Policies/ Guidance support our Safeguarding?
- Continuity Plan (emergency school procedures)
- Child Protection Policy (dealing with issues of child safety and reporting)
- Preventing and Tackling Bullying (guidance from the Department for Education on bullying)
- Prevent Policy (school procedures on dealing with Counter Terrorism issues)
- Annual Safeguarding Audit (completed by the Headteacher to collate safeguarding measures in place)
- Special Educational Needs Policy (guidance on identification and support for pupils with additional needs)
- Keeping Children Safe in Education Department for Education Guidance
- Anti-Bullying Policy (to provide guidance and response to bullying in school)
- Attendance Policy (to support pupils and families with attendance guidance and support)
- Whistle Blowing Policy (procedures to be used in case of serious staff concerns)
- Code of Conduct for staff, Governors (to ensure our Governing Body follow procedures and protocol)
- Complaints Policy (procedures for parents to support complaints)
- Drugs Policy (guidance on how we deliver our drugs curriculum)
- Sex and Relationships Policy (outlining our age appropriate delivery of SRE across the curriculum)
- E-Safety Policy (outlining our procedures for safely connecting through technology/internet)
- Lost Child Policy (procedures in case of a missing child)
- Medicines in Schools Policy (guidelines on administration of medicines in school)
- Mobile Phone Policy (guidance on personal use of mobiles in school for adults)
- No Smoking Policy (outlines school Policy for no smoking in school grounds)
- School Recruitment and Selection Policy (guidance and protocols for safer recruitment)
The above list is not exhaustive as many policies, procedures and protocols are in place to safeguard pupils. Policies are reviewed at determined intervals to ensure that the most up to date information is included in our guidelines in school.
Reporting Concerns and Complaints
At Far Forest we endeavour to provide the very best service for our pupils and families. To help us provide this we require feedback. This can be achieved through mechanisms we offer e.g. questionnaires we send to parents, through emails and telephone conversations.
However we feel that most importantly face to face discussions are effective at resolving concerns/complaints. In line with our policy, discussion of a concern would be with the class teacher in the first instance followed by the headteacher if that does not provide a resolution. After that the matter can be referred to the Chair of Governors where hopefully the matter can be resolved.
Our Complaints Policy sets out the procedures and this can be requested via the school office or downloaded from our website. Our aim is to always listen and try to resolve issues before they reach this stage.
If you would like more information on safeguarding, please contact the school for all our policies or view our policies section on our website.
E-Safety is a crucial part of safeguarding children. Alongside the school curriculum, it is important that parents/carers talk to their children about how to keep themselves safe and know what websites and/or social media children are using.