Care and Control Policy Statement – written to support TT Staff Training January / February 2022

Norbury Hall Primary School adheres to the Stockport LA Model Policy. (Last updated January 2014)

The School recognises the right of every person to be provided with a healthy and safe working environment and understands that there are circumstances when staff may be at risk whist attempting to preserve good order and discipline.

The School also recognises the right of children to be protected from physical intervention that is unnecessary, inappropriate, excessive or unlawful.

This policy is to assist staff in dealing with these difficult issues in a way that minimises the risk to staff of false accusations of improper conduct, and to ensure that staff members feel confident about appropriate action in very difficult circumstances. It should be understood by all members of staff and approved by the Governing Board. It should be referenced in the Behaviour Policy.

Statutory Framework

LA revised Care and Control Guidance (Jan 2014) give further clarification.

Who can use restraint – authorised staff

The school has a duty to the welfare of its staff and children and is “in loco parentis” while children are in its care. A trained, experienced teacher must seek to protect a child from harm to the same extent that a parent/carer would. At Norbury Hall Primary School, all members of staff who have undertaken Team Teach also have authorisation to use restraint.

Circumstances under which restraint can be used

Before restraint is used every effort should be made to de-escalate the situation. There should be a distinction between emergency intervention and anticipated intervention. Anticipated intervention is used for children with extreme difficulties and will be planned for with risk assessments and an individual positive handling plan. This should be identified in the individual behaviour plan or My Plan linked to EHCP.

Authorised physical intervention may be used:

  • where action is necessary because there is imminent danger of risk or injury
  • where there is a developing risk of injury, or significant damage to property
  • where a child is behaving in a way that is causing distress for themselves and those around them

This provision applies when a member of staff is on the school premises and when he/she has lawful control eg on a school trip

What is reasonable force?

Force can be regarded as reasonable if:

  • it is used for the minimum length of time to achieve its objective
  • it is used as a last resort
  • the degree of force is the minimum necessary and in proportion to the incident and the consequences it is intended to prevent

It may involve:

  • physically interposing between children
  • blocking a child’s path
  • holding
  • pushing
  • pulling
  • leading a child by hand or arm
  • guiding a child by using TT techniques
  • using restrictive holds (extreme circumstances) again using TT techniques

What is unreasonable force?

The following actions are likely to be deemed unreasonable:

  • Holding a child round the neck, by the collar etc
  • Slapping, punching or kicking
  • Twisting or forcing limbs against a joint
  • Tripping
  • Holding or pulling by hair, ear etc
  • Holding a child to the ground

Recording incidents

It is important that a detailed written report is made of any occasion where restraint is used. Notes should be made as soon as possible by all involved, including witnesses. These notes will be kept and used to formulate the completion of an incident report (Appendix 1). This will be done by the Head or member of senior management team.

A copy of the incident form will be sent to the LA (Inclusion Team), a copy kept in the child’s file and a copy kept in the incident file. The incident will also be logged in the Physical Restraint log, kept at the front of the Incident file. This can be used to cross-reference to the more detailed incident sheets. Report must include:

  • Details of who was involved, where and when
  • De-escalation strategies employed initially
  • Reason force was needed, length of time force was used
  • Specific details of force used
  • Details of how the incident began
  • Child’s response and outcome
  • Details of injury to members of staff and child and actions required
  • Damage caused to property

Follow-up to an incident

As soon as possible after an incident it is important to offer support to all those involved. This will include staff, the child concerned and other members of the class.

It is also important to have a meeting involving a member of the leadership team, staff involved and class teacher to instigate/revise the risk assessment and positive handling plan. Correct actions and mistakes can all be learnt from.

Involvement of parents/carers

Parents/carers must be informed when staff have used restraint with their child. This might lead to an investigation. LA guidance “Teachers facing allegations of Physical Abuse – Aug 2003” establishes the appropriate practice and procedures to be followed if allegations are made. Schools should seek advice from Human Resources and Schools Management.

Risk assessment

Risk assessment is likely to take place following an incident with a child. (Appendix 2) This will enable an anticipated rather than an emergency response should another incident occur by:

  • Using what is known, in the light of experience, to make rational judgements about risk issues
  • Weighing up options and taking reasonable steps
  • Taking reasonable steps to support and safeguard children and others
  • Trying to predict the situations in which the child may display dangerous behaviour

Other Physical contact with children

Staff are advised not to make unnecessary physical contact with children. There may be an occasion when a distressed child needs physical comfort and reassurance. Staff should use their discretion in such cases and ensure that contact does not become unnecessary and unjustified, particularly with the same child over a period of time.

Some staff are likely to come into contact with children from time to time during Games or PE lessons. Teachers should be aware of the limits within which such conduct should properly take place.

Staff who administer First Aid should wherever possible, ensure that other children or another adult is present.

Staff responsible for Parent helpers and students must make aspect of this policy very clear to them

Following an incident where a member of staff feels that his/her actions have been, or may be, misconstrued, a written report of the incident should be submitted immediately to the Head.

Role of the Head

To complete incident forms (or delegate)
To maintain a list of authorised personnel
To make it clear to staff who is authorised
Inform Governors of the frequency of physical interventions termly
To review the contents of this policy with all staff
To highlight any concerns with the application of this policy to the Governing Board

Role of the governing Body

To monitor the frequency of intervention through the Head’s Report
To review this policy