As a School, We Are Strongly Committed to Safeguarding
Safeguarding procedures at Orchard Community Primary School are underpinned by three key principles:
- Safeguarding is everyone’s responsibility: all staff, governors and volunteers play their full part in keeping our children safe and protecting them from abuse, neglect and other safeguarding concerns.
- Orchard operates a child-centred approach: a clear understanding of the needs, wishes, views and voices of children.
- All staff, governors and volunteers have a clear understanding regarding abuse and neglect in all forms; including how to identify, respond and report. This also includes knowledge in the process for allegations against professionals.
Safeguarding children – Information for Parents
At Orchard, therefore, we believe that it is of the utmost importance to have robust systems for protecting children and safeguarding their welfare, throughout all the activities which the school undertakes. All our pupils have a right to be safe and to be treated with respect and dignity and we work effectively with outside agencies to ensure that this is the case.
Safeguarding in school is a very wide area which covers all aspects of keeping children safe at all times. It includes the physical environment of the school buildings and land, a wide range of practices and procedures, and close liaison with a range of other agencies.
As part of our Safeguarding role, we teach all children how to keep themselves and others safe (at an age-appropriate level). Our PSHE Scheme of Work includes work on Domestic Violence, Drug and Alcohol Abuse, Bullying, Personal Safety, Inappropriate touching, Secrets, Relationships, Cyber Bullying, Internet security etc. Children are also given clear information about how to report things they feel uncomfortable about.
We are committed to monitoring and listening to all our pupils to identify possible problems. Where there are serious concerns about a child’s safety, we will share our concerns with the relevant authorities.
We work closely with other agencies such as the Police, Social Care and the Health Service to ensure that children in danger are identified and kept safe.
From time to time, families may find themselves in difficulties which could prove detrimental to their children. We will also work closely with those families so that they are supported to ensure their children’s safety and well-being and signpost them to other agencies who may be able to offer help and support.
The school’s Designated Safeguarding Lead will deal with any safeguarding concerns you may have as a matter of the highest priority.
The Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) for Orchard Primary School is: Mrs F.Shields – Head Teacher
The Deputy DSL is: Mr J.Patching
The Nominated Link Safeguarding Governor is: Mr R.Neal
If you have any concerns that a child is in danger, you should report it to the Social Care Emergency Duty team Tel: 0116 305 005 or the Police.
It is important for parents to be aware that:
Staff and volunteers in the school have a duty to report concerns about a child, whether this means the child may be in need of additional support or help of some kind or whether it is thought that a child may have been abused or be at risk of abuse.
There are four categories of abuse: physical, sexual, emotional, neglect.
In some cases, the school is obliged to refer children to children’s social care staff, for children to be assessed for their needs or if an investigation into possible child abuse is required. In many cases, there will already have been discussions between school staff and the parents of the child, and the situation and concerns will not be a surprise to the parents.
However, parents may not be told that the school has referred their child to children’s social care if it is thought that this might put the child at risk.
If school staff need to express concerns about a child or refer a child to children’s social care, it is appreciated that this can cause distress or anger for the child’s parents/carers. It is important however that all parties – parents and school staff – try to discuss these matters as reasonably as possible so that the best interests of the child can be secured.
Children’s social care also tries to carry out its enquiries sensitively. It has to gather information with parents about the steps being taken and it is therefore beneficial that discussions are as open and as constructive as possible.
Department for Education Guidance is contained below: