All adults have a responsibility to Safeguard children and young people from harm. It is our duty to protect children and young people whilst they are in our care. All staff should be aware of all Policies and Procedures and fully trained in Safeguarding and Health and Safety. The schools Safeguarding and Health and Safety policies and procedures should be readily available to parents and carers. All practitioners working to safeguard children and young people must understand fully their responsibilities and duties as set out in government legislation, regulations and guidance. There is one aspect of work with babies, toddlers and young children that must always come first: the requirement to keep them safe, and to protect them from significant harm. The guidance from the Every Child Matters framework reminds us that:
‘all those who come into contact with children and
families in their everyday work, including
practitioners who do not have a specific role in
relation to safeguarding children, have a duty to
safeguard and promote the welfare of children’.
Schools Policies should include:
Children's physical safety and security on the premises and on off-site visits ·
e-safety and security when using the internet
staff awareness and training
monitoring and record keeping
partnership and involvement with other agencies
It is the responsibility of everyone in the school to work under the Health and Safety Act. It is important to ensure that safety is maintained and in particular vulnerable groups such as children are safeguarded. As well as the Health and Safety Act, the Government also set Standards of Safety which are monitored by OFSTED. All routines should be planned ahead with safety in mind to reduce the risk of incidents by completing a risk assessment. It would be a good teaching opportunity to talk to children about Health and Safety in school and get their input and ideas for staying safe. Physical Contact and Working in an Open Way
Avoiding physical contact with children in schools is near on impossible as children, especially younger children often want a hug to show their affection for your or happiness to see you, or if a child is hurt or distressed it may be appropriate to put an arm around them to comfort them. However, to safeguard the child and yourself it is best to act sensibly and react rather than initiate contact, especially if you are alone. Sometimes you may find yourself in a situation where you are alone with a child, you should always follow school policy when doing this. Trying to have another adult or child with you would be ideal. However, sometimes these situations are unavoidable. If you are working alone with a child you should keep the room door open and be clear why you are doing this,inform your manager and keep others informed of any concerns. Sharing Concerns / Recording and Reporting
Policies and procedures are set in place to not only protect children and young people but also adults who work with them, it is vital that all professionals follow safe working practices to ensure that not only children are protected but also themselves. Any concerns about Safeguarding issues, either because of something a child has said or you have observed, should be recorded and you should share your concerns with the Safeguarding Professional and your manager. Safety issues should also be recorded and reported to the Safeguarding Professional. This also applies to any issues you may have about staff due to poor practice.If a disclosure is made by a child to a member of staff it is vital that is always taken seriously even if it is proven to be untrue or inaccurate. The child or young person should be listened to in a calm and supportive manner which will allow them to talk freely and openly, it is also imperative that they are reassured about telling someone and how hard it must have been for them. Once the disclosure has been made and the child is calmed and secure, the adult...
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