Meadowdale Primary School believes that it is of the utmost importance to have good systems for protecting children and safeguarding their welfare, throughout all the activities which the school undertakes. This means that staff and volunteers must be alert to possible concerns about every pupil, and to report these in a proper fashion. The school has a safeguarding and child protection policy which is available to download on our website.
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. We also have a duty to be aware of peer to peer abuse, sexting, children missing from education, child sexual exploitation, so-called ‘honour based’ violence, private fostering arrangements and those vulnerable to extremism and radicalisation.
- In some cases the school is obliged to refer children to children’s social care team, the PREVENT team or local safeguarding team, 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.
- Meadowdale is a member of Operation Encompass, which means that we will be informed when the police have attended an incident of domestic violence or abuse at the home of one of our pupils. The information will be used to ensure that the school is able to provide appropriate support to pupils. It will remain confidential and only shared on a strictly need-to-know basis, for example with the class teacher. It will not be shared with any pupils.
- Children’s social care tries to carry out its enquiries in a sensitive fashion. It has to gather information and generally it can be open with parents about the steps being taken.
- If you think your child may have been abused you should contact the children’s social care office. If you think the abuse may have happened in school, contact the Designated Safeguarding Lead, our Headteacher Mrs Liz Martin, or one of our Deputy Designated Safeguarding Leads Mr Matt Hough, Deputy Headteacher and Mrs Jo Kerr, SENDCo
- If you think your child has been hurt, arrange to visit your doctor or take them to the nearest outpatients immediately. Comfort and reassure your child.
- If school staff need to express concerns about a child or refer a child to children’s social care, it is understood that this can cause distress or anger for the child’s parents.
For parents’ enquiries please contact: Mrs Liz Martin, Headteacher
For more information please also see: Policies