My primary responsibility and priority is for the children I care for. As a mother, I am acutely aware of how important it is to ensure your child is kept safe, especially when in someone else’s care.
To become Ofsted registered I have to have an enhanced CRB disclosure (now called a Disclosure and Barring Service - DBS) as well as other members of my family over the age of 16.
I am aware of the signs of different kinds of abuse, and if I have any reason to suspect a child's safety or wellbeing is in question while they not in my care I will be obligated legally and morally to report it, following the Local Safeguarding Children Board procedures. These procedures are available on request.
It is important to note in my policies that child abuse can include one or more aspects of physical, sexual, emotional and neglectful abuse. I am also aware that abuse may not be by the parents/guardians of the child, and if I do feel I have to report any concerns I have, this is done so without blaming anyone specific, and it it up to the relevant authorities to look into and investigate.
I must notify Ofsted of any allegations of abuse that are alleged to have taken place while the child is in my care.
I keep up to date with child protection issues and relevant legislation by taking the recommended training courses and by reading relevant publications, for example, the booklet 'What To Do If You’re Worried A Child is Being Abused', by the DCSF, also magazines 'Who Minds The Child' http://www.whomindsthechild.org/ or 'Nursery World' http://www.nurseryworld.co.uk/legislation. This helps me be aware of current issues and to be aware of the signs of abuse or neglect and what to do if I have a concern.
I am familiar with the Local Safeguarding Children Board procedures. I will check that I have the latest version of the relevant procedures if I need to report a concern.
If I am concerned about a child’s welfare, I will contact the relevant local authorities for confidential advice, and I will only be assured when it is clear that there is no risk of harm to a child.
In all instances I will record:
the child’s full name and address
the date and time of the record
factual details of the concern, for example bruising, what the child said, who was present details of any previous concerns
details of any explanations from the parents
any action taken such as speaking to parents.
It is not my responsibility to attempt to investigate the situation myself.
Parents must notify me of any concerns they have about their child and any accidents, incidents or injuries affecting the child, which will be recorded.
I work together with parents to make sure the care of their child is consistent – please refer to my Working with Parents policy.
If I notice:
significant changes in children’s behaviour
unexpected bruising or marks or signs of possible abuse
any comments made which give me cause for concern
deterioration in general wellbeing which causes concern
signs of neglect
I will implement the Local Safeguarding Children Board procedures immediately to minimise any risk to the child and I will call the local social services’ duty desk and Ofsted/CSSIW, if it is known that a child is at risk of harm. I will follow it up with a letter within 48 hours. I will keep a factual record of the concern, and providing it would not put the child at risk I will ask the parents for an explanation which will be detailed in my report.
If a child tells me that they or another child is being abused, I will: show that I have heard what they are saying, and that I take their allegations seriously encourage the child to talk, but I will not prompt them or ask them leading questions. I will not interrupt when a child is recalling significant events and will not make a child repeat their account explain what actions I must take, in a way that is appropriate...
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