At Spark we believe that it is the responsibility of all staff and other adults that come into contact with students to care for each and every student. This policy outlines the procedures expected to be taken by any member of staff and is based on Department for Education publications for England & Wales: Working together to Safeguard Children (2006); Safeguarding Children and Safer Recruitment in Education (2007); Working Together to Safeguard Children (2010); and Keeping children safe in education: Statutory guidance for schools and colleges (April 2014); as well as best practice from around the world, as advised by the Council of British International Schools.
- have a varied and inclusive curriculum, including personal safety – establish and maintain an environment where students feel secure, are encouraged to talk, and are listened to – ensure students know that there are staff whom they can contact if they are worried
- ensure every member of staff and other adults know the name and role of the designated senior person responsible for child protection
- ensure all staff and other adults understand their responsibilities in being alert to the signs of abuse and their responsibility for referring any concerns to the designated senior person responsible for child protection
- ensure that parents have an understanding of the responsibility placed on the school and staff for child protection by the creation of a clearly understandable policy
- keep written records of concerns about students, even where there is no need to refer the matter immediately
- ensure all records are kept securely, separate from the main pupil file, with strict access control measures in place
- develop and then follow procedures where an allegation is made against a member of staff or another adult
- consistently implement the behaviour policy
- have an HR policy that stipulates appropriate behaviour, dress and ensures students have good role models
The aim of the policy is to ensure the safety and wellbeing of students and staff.
- To educate students and staff on how to keep safe and how to recognise behaviour that is not acceptable
- To recognise and support students and staff who are at risk of abuse
- To ensure that all staff employed at the school understand their responsibility to be alert to signs of abuse and to refer any concerns to the Designated Safeguarding Lead
- To ensure that new staff and volunteers are only appointed when all the appropriate checks have been made
Staff Training Records of all those who have attended online training on Child Protection are kept centrally. Every employee and volunteer is required to read the policy and ask questions to ensure their understanding.
Designated Safeguarding Lead Spark has a Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL). The DSL maintains close links with the rest of the Senior Leadership Team and is responsible for the updating of the Safeguarding and Child Protection Policy and ensuring that training needs are met.
Safer Recruitment All staff are required to provide a police check before commencing work. All overseas staff will be required to submit a police check from their country of residence. Where applicable, Spark will obtain an International Child Protection Certificate (ICPC) by The Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (CEOP) in the UK
Student Awareness Students are taught about e-safety, ways to stay safe, and appropriate behaviour in relationships, through the Well Being Curriculum. Students are taught about how to raise concerns both in and out of school.
Support A support plan will be developed by the DSL, together with any other relevant members of staff, for students of concern. Support from outside agencies will be sought as necessary. Support for staff will be given by the DSL and SLT, to address the impact of dealing with disclosures and to support students.
Reporting All concerns will be reported to the DSL within 24 hours. The concerns may be raised in the following situations:
- a student discloses to them personally – behaviour of, or marks on, the pupil (e.g. bruises, welts, lacerations, abrasions) and/or indications through schoolwork ● a student informs them that he/she knows or suspects that another pupil is being abused ● another third party informs them that he/she knows or suspects that a student is being abused
If the DSL is not available, the concern should be raised with a member of SLT, who can decide if immediate action is required.
It is recognised that children need protection from
- Physical Harm
- Emotional abuse
- Sexual abuse
- The harmful material on the Internet.
All reports will remain confidential, with only the DSL and SLT sharing information as relevant. Spark aims to teach students to understand what is acceptable behaviour and to speak up if they believe they or others are not being treated appropriately
Concern report forms must:
Clearly identify which pupil the record refers to, leaving no room for mistaken identity.
- State the name, designation and signature of the person completing the record.
- Give the date the record was written.
- Show the date(s) and time(s) of any incidents or when a concern was observed.
- Provide details of any witnesses to an incident.
- Distinguish between fact, opinion and hearsay.
- Describe the concern in sufficient detail.
- Recount anything the pupil has said in their own words. Swear words, insults, or intimate vocabulary should be written down verbatim.
- Be written free of jargon, and in a professional manner without stereotyping or discrimination.
- Cross-reference any siblings or extended family members, if relevant. – Include a completed body map if relevant to show any visible injuries.
- Indicate who the record has been given/sent to.
Allegations about members of staff
Spark must consider carefully the possibility of abuse if a member of staff has:
- behaved in a way that had harmed, or may have harmed a child, physically, emotionally or sexually.
- possibly committed a criminal offence against or related to a child
- behaved in a way that indicates he/she is unsuitable to work with children.
When a complaint of abuse is made against a member of staff, on behalf of a child, there should be immediate consideration of whether the child is at risk and in need of protection. Any member of staff who becomes aware of an allegation or has concerns of a child protection nature must take immediate steps to ensure that the matter is reported directly to the DSL, or in their absence, any member of SLT. It is important that the member of staff reporting the concern acts quickly and in the event that DSL or the SLT are unavailable, then the matter should be reported to the most senior person available at the time. An investigation may be impeded if a concern is reported late. Further action may be taken by Spark in investigating the matter internally in line with the staff disciplinary procedures.
This policy will be reviewed annually.