PRESIDENT KENNEDY SCHOOL A HUMANITIES COLLEGE. Child Protection Policy

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1 PRESIDENT KENNEDY SCHOOL A HUMANITIES COLLEGE Child Protection Policy 1

2 Contents Cover Page 1 Contents Page 2 Policy Statement Page 3 Introduction Page 4 Child Protection Residential Guidelines Page 6 Child Protection Physical Contact Page 6 Categories of Abuse: Neglect Page 7 Physical Abuse Page 7 Sexual Abuse Page 8 Emotional Abuse Page 8 Other Child Protection Issues Page 8 Staff should be wary of Page 9 2

3 Policy Statement President Kennedy School s Child Protection Policy forms part of a wider whole school commitment to diversity, tolerance, acceptance and respect for all members of the community. This policy sets out how the school aims to promote child protection through teaching and learning across the curriculum. The policy also aims to support, develop and guide young people so that they are able to make a positive contribution to the community to which they belong. We recognise that promoting child protection is more than simply meeting a statutory obligation. Signed: Title: Dated: September 2009 Review Date Due: September

4 Introduction President Kennedy School is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people and expects all staff and volunteers to share this commitment. We aim to create a safe and supportive environment where our students can develop as individuals and receive the care they deserve. We fully recognise our responsibilities for child protection. This policy applies to all staff, governors and volunteers working in the school. Our policy seeks to ensure that: We practice safe recruitment in checking the suitability of staff and volunteers to work with our students in line with The Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006 We raise awareness of child protection issues amongst staff (see Staff planner) We work to equip our students with the skills needed to keep them safe We have appropriate procedures for identifying and reporting child protection concerns We are supportive of students who are identified through a Child Protection or Child in Need plan or who are Looked After Children We consider the complex needs of refugees and asylum seekers We establish a safe environment in which students can learn and develop socially and emotionally as well as educationally School staff particularly the tutor, co-tutor and Pastoral leaders are well placed to observe the outward signs of abuse, changes in behaviour, signs of mental health issues (including eating disorders), self harming or risky behaviours or failure to develop. The school will therefore: Establish and maintain an environment where our students feel secure, are encouraged to talk, and are listened to. Ensure our students know that there are adults in the school whom they can approach if they are worried. Include opportunities in the curriculum for students to develop the skills they need to recognise and stay safe from abuse and adopt safe practices in general. This will include work delivered by external specialist agencies. The school follows procedures established by the local Safeguarding Children Board and guidance issued by the DCSF to: Have a named Child Protection Officer: MEGAN EASTAUGH, ASSISTANT HEAD TEACHER. Ensure appropriate inter-agency training and up-dates for this role Ensure we have a nominated governor responsible for child protection. Ensure key staff are trained in the use of Share Care and CAF Ensure that every member of staff (including temporary and supply staff and volunteers) and governing body knows the name of the designated senior person responsible for child protection and their role. 4

5 Ensure all staff and volunteers understand their responsibilities in being alert to the signs of abuse and 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 setting out its obligations in school literature. Notify social care if there is an unexplained absence of more than two days of a pupil who is on the child protection register. Seek advice/ make referrals through the Referral and Assessment Service Develop effective links with relevant agencies and co-operate with their enquiries regarding child protection matters. Ensure a key member of staff attends Strategy Meetings, Core Groups and Case Conferences. Keep written records of concerns about children, even where there is no need to refer the matter immediately. Ensure all records are kept securely; separate from the main pastoral file, and in a locked office. Develop and then follow procedures where an allegation is made against a member of staff or volunteer. Ensure safe recruitment practices are always followed. We recognise the complex lives that our students lead and some of the difficulties caused by their home circumstances. Many of our students, because of their experiences may find it difficult to develop a sense of self worth. The school may be the only stable, secure and predictable element in the lives of children at risk. When at school their behaviour may be challenging and defiant or they may be withdrawn. (See staff planner: BESD Strategies to support ). The school will endeavour to support students through: The content of the curriculum. The school ethos which promotes a positive, supportive and secure environment and gives our students a sense of being valued. The school behaviour policy which is aimed at supporting vulnerable students in the school. The school will ensure that the student knows that some behaviour is unacceptable but they are valued and not to be blamed for any abuse which has occurred. Liaison with other agencies that support the student such as Social Care, Child and Adult Mental Health Service (CAMHS), Education Welfare Service (including the use of KKS text messaging), Learning and Behaviour Support Service (L&BSS) and Educational Psychology Service. Ensuring that, where a pupil on the child protection register leaves, their information is transferred to the new school immediately and that the child's social worker is informed. 5

6 Child Protection Residential Guidelines When staff take students on residential visits they are more vulnerable to allegations of abuse. It is therefore essential that staff: Avoid going into student bedrooms unaccompanied by another adult Try to avoid entering the rooms of students of the opposite gender Avoid being alone with any student in any situation Do not allow students into staff bedrooms Avoid touching students or initiating any physical contact Are mindful of misinterpretation when dealing with injuries Refer any allegations made immediately to a senior member of staff Child Protection Physical Contact In the event of an injury to a student, accidental or otherwise ensure that it is accurately recorded and if possible witnessed by another adult. Inform the Year Leader as quickly as possible. Inform the CP Officer immediately of any allegations a student makes against you or any other member of staff. Make a note of any witness to the allegation, if possible. A written account needs to be given to the CPO. If a student touches you or talks to you in a sexually inappropriate way, record what has happened and ensure another adult knows. A written account needs to be given to the CPO. If, in an emergency, it is necessary to take a student home in a staff car this should only be done by: a member of the Leadership Group, Year Leader or Pastoral Manager. This should only be done if the member of staff has appropriate insurance and if there is another adult to accompany them. The student should sit in the back of the car. Try not to place yourself in a situation where you are spending a lot of time alone with one student, away from other people, when mentoring ensure the door is left open, or that there is a glass panel in the door. Avoid entering student toilets alone Avoid physical contact with students. Never initiate contact. If it is necessary to restrain a student, make sure you fill in an incident sheet. Avoid the use of restraint wherever possible When you are outside school on visits or day trips, when dealing with students, consider how your behaviour might be interpreted by the public. It is advisable to carry photo ID with you on such occasions. Never agree to keep a secret for a student or keep suspicions of inappropriate behaviour or abuse to yourself (whether students or staff). Make sure you have the opportunity to discuss your feelings about any incidents or disclosures of abuse with another member of staff. 6

7 Categories of Abuse Neglect This is the persistent failure to meet a child s basic physical and/or psychological needs, likely to result in the serious impairment of the child s health or development. It may involve the parent/ carer failing to provide adequate food, shelter and clothing, failing to protect the child from physical harm or danger, or in the failure to ensure access to appropriate medical care or treatment. It may also include neglect of, or unresponsiveness to, a child s basic emotional needs. Signs to look out for: Poor hygiene Dirty clothes Poor skin condition Dirty teeth and halitosis Underweight/ always hungry/ looking out for food Inadequately clothed Failure to provide glasses Shoes too small Anaemia Poor hair quality or infestations Frequent illness Prominent joints Hands re, swollen, poor nails Falls in attendance Physical abuse This may involve hitting, shaking, throwing, poisoning, burning or scalding, drowning, suffocating, or otherwise causing physical harm to a child. Physical harm may also be caused when a parent/ carer feigns the symptoms of, or deliberately causes ill-health to a child whom they are looking after. Signs to look out for: Unaccounted for injuries Repeated injuries Unwillingness to change for PE Bruises Slap marks Bite marks Burns/ scalds Cuts Persistent absence 7

8 Sexual abuse This 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. It may involve physical contact, including penetrative (e.g. rape, buggery) or non-penetrative acts. It may include involving children in looking at, or in the production of pornographic material or watching sexual activities, or encouraging children to behave in sexually inappropriate ways. Signs to look out for: Detailed sexual knowledge inappropriate to their age Promiscuity Over-affectionate Fear of being alone Make sexual approaches to other children Eating disorder Urinary infections Drawing sexually explicit pictures Emotionally isolated Inappropriate interaction with peers Emotional abuse This is the persistent emotional ill-treatment of a child such as to cause severe and persistent adverse effects on the child s emotional development. It may involve conveying to the child that they are worthless or unloved, inadequate, or not valued. It may feature age or developmental inappropriate expectations being imposed on children. It may involve causing children frequently to feel frightened or in danger, or the exploitation or corruption of children. Signs to look out for: Poor behaviour Habit disorder (thumb sucking, rocking, biting) Role reversal Hyperactive Wary of everyone/ everything Isolated Can become a bully to gain a sense of power Unable to relate to adults or peers in a positive way Other Child Protection Issues Domestic violence Parental alcohol/ drug mis-use Forced marriage Missing students Parent involved in prostitution Parent has learning disability Young carer 8

9 Parent has mental health needs Self harming or suicidal behaviour Pregnancy of the young person Begging Female genital mutilation Staff Should be Wary of: Giving and receiving gifts Meeting students socially never meet them alone Using social networking sites to communicate with students Giving personal details to students address, mobile phone number etc. Using text messages/ e mail to communicate with students other than school e mail A student becoming over-reliant on you for emotional support seek advice 9

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