Children have a right to be cared for and protected, protecting them is everyone’s responsibility. Here at St Robert Southwell Catholic Primary School we have a duty of care to ensure that all users of the school are kept safe from harm. We are committed to provide a secure and supportive environment in which children can develop and grow into mature and responsible people. Safeguarding children is an essential part of our holistic approach to ensure that children are protected from abuse and neglect and that every child reaches their full potential.
The school’s staff, volunteers and service providers have a duty to safeguard and promote the welfare of children as a shared responsibility with parents and other carers. To support this statement, the school may signpost to services that are specialised to promote opportunity, prevent problems, act early and act effectively if and when concerns arise. Therefore, whilst we do not want to worry you, we will report to Children’s Social Care if we have any reason to believe that a child may be at risk of suffering abuse or neglect.
Parents/carers are normally our first point of contact, and if a suspicion of abuse is recorded, parents/carers will be informed at the same time that the record is made; we will support parents/carers and ensure we work in collaboration with them to protect children. Working with parents/carers to prevent abuse is our primary aim and only when that has failed or in emergency situations will a referral be made to social care. When a referral is made to social care parents will be notified beforehand, except when guidance from social care or the police does not allow this.
We cannot safeguard children alone. All children’s services agencies work in partnership with each other. There are duties and rules about information sharing but if staff, parents or carers have any concerns about a child, other parent, provider, agency or any person, they have a responsibility to report those concerns and we must record and act on them. We have a St Robert Southwell Catholic Primary School safeguarding /child protection policy’ which is underpinned by the West Sussex Safeguarding Children Partnership (SCP), “Keeping Children Safe in Education document” and Safer Recruitment guidance. The policy applies to all children and young people regardless of gender, ethnicity, disability, sexuality or religion. It is a requirement that all users are informed of these policies and practice guidance and what they should do if they have concerns. The safeguarding policy is available from the school office.
Parents and carers play a role in safeguarding children in their community. If you have any concerns, no matter how small, you should report them to someone who you trust will listen. The school is required to have a Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) for this purpose. Parents and children should speak to the safeguarding officer if they have any concerns about a child or staff member.
If you are worried about the safety or well-being of any child in the school, please speak to a member of staff as a matter of urgency. Our Designated Safeguarding Leads (DSLs) are:
Their role is to take lead responsibility for child protection issues in the school, including liaison with outside agencies when necessary. Our Governing Body takes a particularly close interest in all matters relating to safeguarding. There is a nominate safeguarding governor (Mrs Eva Harrison).
You can contact the NSPCC if you are worried that any child is being abused, either via their website (click here ) or by telephone (0800 028 0285). The NSPCC also has excellent advice for parents about keeping their children safe, including online: you can find this by clicking here.
Several of our policies are particularly relevant to safeguarding. These include:
Safeguarding and Child Protection policy