Safeguarding Policy and Guidance
Norbury Hall Primary School

October 2023

Foreword by Jaqueline Ames, Headteacher, and Chair of Governing Body. The welfare of children at Norbury Hall Primary School is our highest priority. This policy outlines our commitment to safeguarding, ensuring that signs of abuse are identified promptly, reducing the risk of harm to children.

Purpose and Principles

Aligned with Department for Education (DfE) statutory guidance, this policy applies when the school provides services or activities directly under school staff management. Publicly available on the school website and accessible in print through the school office. Complementary to other relevant policies: Anti-Bullying, Behaviour Management, Staff Code of Conduct, IT/Online Safety, Whistleblowing, Children Missing from Education.

Outline

Safeguarding is a shared responsibility, emphasising a child-centred approach. Recognising that no single professional has a full picture of a child’s needs, all adults in the school community play a role in identifying concerns and taking prompt action.

Definitions

Safeguarding: Protecting children from maltreatment, ensuring safe and effective care, preventing impairment of health or development. Child Protection: Actions to protect children suffering or likely to suffer significant harm.

Rationale

Under Section 175/157 of the Education and Inspections Act 2002, Norbury Hall Primary School demonstrates its commitment to safeguarding. Staff and volunteers are trained to recognise signs of abuse, reporting concerns in accordance with school and local authority procedures.

Safeguarding – Our Approach

Introduction

Statutory responsibility to safeguard and promote the welfare of all children. Children’s best interests come first, and all children have the right to be heard. A continuous effort to maintain a safe and open environment where children are respected and encouraged to express themselves.

Core Safeguarding Principles

  • Prevention: Establishing a positive, supportive culture and curriculum, along with safer recruitment procedures.
  • Protection: Ensuring staff are trained to recognise and respond appropriately to safeguarding concerns.
  • Partnership: Collaborating with relevant parties for timely communication and action.
  • Support: Providing support for pupils, parents, and staff, with specific interventions for those at risk.

Information Sharing and Confidentiality

Taking data handling and information sharing seriously, with trained staff and a designated Data Protection Officer. Adhering to local and national guidance on information sharing and confidentiality.

Purpose

The policy ensures the welfare of children is always promoted. It covers prevention, procedures and record-keeping, safer recruitment, and provides additional information and sources of support.

Prevention

Creating an ethos where children feel safe, supported, and aware of whom to approach when in need. Staff development prioritised, including annual safeguarding training and updates. Delivering a comprehensive PSHE Education Programme, teaching children to manage risks and recognise healthy relationships. Addressing emerging issues, themes, and substance misuse. Proactive approach to child-on-child abuse, supported by a pastoral teacher and participation in Operation Encompass.

Definitions

Staff trained to recognise various forms of abuse, with a focus on a restorative approach. Acknowledging that abuse issues can overlap and rarely exist in isolation.

Complex Safeguarding

Recognising criminal activity involving vulnerable children, including domestic abuse, CSE, serious organised crime, modern slavery, trafficking, radicalisation, and extremism. Taking a zero-tolerance approach and making appropriate referrals in cases of sexual violence and harassment.

This policy is developed in line with legislative principles, including Children Acts 1989 and 2004, Working Together to Safeguard Children 2018, and other relevant guidance. Confidentiality, information sharing, and a commitment to prevention are integral parts of our approach.

Contextual Safeguarding

The school recognises that safeguarding incidents may occur outside the school setting and can be influenced by wider environmental factors. Contextual safeguarding involves considering these external factors when assessing a child’s safety and welfare. The school emphasises the importance of providing comprehensive information during referrals to ensure assessments consider all available evidence and the broader context of any abuse.

Early Help

The school conducts termly Team Around the School (TAS) meetings to discuss families and children requiring additional support. This approach, grounded in the school’s understanding of its community, focuses on early intervention and positive support to reduce safeguarding issues. The meetings involve key professionals with parental approval.

Roles & Responsibilities – Governance and Leadership

The governing body and leadership team hold strategic responsibility for safeguarding. They ensure compliance with legislation, KCSIE guidance, and local multi-agency safeguarding arrangements. The governing body facilitates a whole-school approach to safeguarding, emphasising child welfare in all policies and processes.

Roles & Responsibilities – Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL)

The DSL, supported by deputies, oversees day-to-day safeguarding activities. Responsibilities include acting as a central contact point, maintaining confidential records, coordinating safeguarding actions, liaising with other agencies, representing the school in multi-agency meetings, and ensuring staff access relevant training. The DSL collaborates with the headteacher on safeguarding issues and ensures effective DSL cover arrangements.

Members of Staff

All staff play a crucial role in safeguarding, identifying concerns early, providing help for children, and preventing escalation. They are expected to maintain a safe learning environment, be aware of abuse indicators, and undergo regular training. Staff are encouraged to build trusted relationships with children and report concerns promptly to the DSL.

Notification to Lead Social Worker

The school commits to notifying the Lead Social Worker in specific situations, including exclusions, unexplained absences, missing children, and additional concerns.

Use of ‘Reasonable Force’

The policy outlines circumstances when ‘reasonable force’ may be used to safeguard children. It aligns with DfE guidance and the school’s behaviour policy.

Students Who Harm Others (Child-on-Child Abuse)

The school promotes a safe and respectful environment, providing pastoral care and support for all students. It emphasises values of honesty, acceptance, inclusion, and fairness.

Safer Use of the Internet and Digital Technology

The school addresses the safe use of the Internet, digital devices, and mobile phones, outlining guidelines for staff and students. It highlights the importance of parental consent, secure storage, and responsible mobile phone use.

Cameras: Photography and Images

To protect children, the school obtains parental consent for images, uses designated cameras securely, and follows guidelines for photography. It emphasises safeguarding measures for personal devices.

Sharing of Nude or Semi-Nude Pictures (Sexting)

The policy provides steps for staff if they become aware of the sharing of such imagery, emphasising reporting to the DSL, not viewing or sharing the imagery, and offering support to the involved individuals.

Online Harms, Cybercrime, Cyber-Bullying, Online & Gaming Safety

The school acknowledges technology-related safeguarding risks and commits to addressing online harms, cybercrime, cyber-bullying, and ensuring online safety. It emphasises staff awareness and support for pupils and families.

Mental Health and Wellbeing

Staff are trained to recognise mental health indicators as potential signs of abuse or neglect. Concerns about a child’s mental health are treated as safeguarding issues, requiring immediate action and reporting to the DSL.

Procedures and Record-Keeping

At Norbury Hall Primary School, we are committed to following the Greater Manchester Safeguarding Procedures and adhering to local guidance and policies from SSCP. Concerns can be raised through designated staff members using the 4 R’s approach, ensuring accurate information gathering. Reporting mechanisms include notes of concern and direct communication with the Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) or Deputy DSL.

Supervision and Support

Our induction process includes familiarisation with child protection responsibilities. Staff within the foundation stage receive appropriate supervision as per Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) 2021 requirements. We ensure all staff are competent, supported by the DSL, and engage in regular practice reviews. Any staff affected by concerns for children’s welfare can seek support from the DSL, including external agencies if needed.

Whistleblowing/Confidential Reporting

Norbury Hall Primary School promotes a culture of openness, trust, and transparency. Staff are encouraged to self-refer, and concerns about colleagues are shared with the Head or Deputy. Whistleblowing channels are open, and external support, such as unions or counselling services, is available. The Whistleblowing/Confidential Reporting policy is accessible on our website.

Recording Concerns

All safeguarding concerns, decisions, and actions are diligently recorded on a school safeguarding incident form or CPOMS. Records include a comprehensive summary, details of follow-up actions, and outcomes. Child protection records are kept confidentially and securely, transferred promptly when needed, and stored in accordance with data protection legislation.

DSL and Immediate Support

A DSL is always available to support and guide staff, equipped with the necessary skills and seniority. In case of child protection referrals, immediate contact with MASSH is made. DSLs are proactive in seeking professional support for staff when required.

Children Missing Education

Under section 175 of the Education Act 2002, Norbury Hall Primary School investigates unexplained absences following Stockport’s procedures. Rigorous attendance procedures are in place, and checks are conducted for children with unknown destinations.

Elective Home Education (EHE)

Norbury Hall Primary School responds to parents/carers expressing intention for home education in line with national and local guidance. Collaborative decision-making involves key professionals and organisations to ensure the best interests of the child.

Searching and Screening

Searching incidents align with school behaviour policies and the ‘Searching, Screening, and Confiscation’ policy. DSLs are informed of searching incidents involving prohibited items or safeguarding risks. Police involvement is considered if necessary.

Supporting Vulnerable Pupils

Norbury Hall Primary School supports vulnerable pupils through a positive ethos, consistent behaviour policy, Team Around the School/College (TAS) partnership, liaison with agencies, and regular monitoring of pupil welfare. Specific attention is given to children with special needs and disabilities.

Early Identification and Safeguarding Needs

Staff are trained to identify and respond to various safeguarding issues, including neglect, drug/substance/alcohol misuse, domestic abuse, and more. The school actively participates in multi-agency approaches, ensuring early help and intervention.

Extremism and Radicalisation

Norbury Hall Primary School protects children from all forms of violent extremism. Prevention strategies involve the curriculum, assembly policies, and building an inclusive school environment. Safeguarding concerns related to extremism are treated seriously.

Other Specific Safeguarding Issues

The school addresses issues such as domestic abuse/violence, so-called honour-based violence, female genital mutilation, breast ironing, criminal exploitation of children, human trafficking, and serious youth violence, including knife crime. Trained staff follow safeguarding and child protection processes, adhering to national and local guidance.

Exceptional Circumstances (Closures, Partial Closures, Home Learning)

In situations requiring school closures or home learning, Norbury Hall Primary School ensures communication, information sharing, and online learning adhere to privacy and data protection requirements. Staff and pupils engage in home learning responsibly, guided by existing codes of conduct and policies.

Site Safety & Security:

The school prioritises the safety of staff and pupils through controlled access, visitor checks, and acceptable conduct guidelines. The site security policy, aligned with government guidance, is overseen by James Clark.

This bespoke Safeguarding Policy reflects Norbury Hall Primary School’s commitment to creating a safe and supportive environment for all students, staff, and stakeholders.

Norbury Hall Primary School prioritises the safety and well-being of its students, aligning with the Department for Education (DfE) guidance, specifically ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education’ 2023. The school ensures a secure environment by implementing comprehensive measures for staff recruitment, clear guidelines for safer working practices, and continuous commitment to staff development in safeguarding.

Safer Recruitment Practices:

The school employs thorough recruitment practices, encompassing Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks, reference verification, identity checks, and examination of professional qualifications. The single central record is regularly reviewed to ensure compliance with safety standards. Safer working practices are outlined in the school’s behaviour policy and code of conduct.

Safeguarding Expectations:

The Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) ensures that all staff and volunteers are familiar with the Safeguarding and Child Protection Policy, staff behaviour policy, and Acceptable Use Policy (AUP). Staff are informed about behaviour management and physical intervention policies, adhering to professional boundaries, and understanding the risks associated with social media.

Post-Appointment Commitment:

The school maintains vigilance post-appointment, handling disciplinary proceedings related to safeguarding matters in accordance with government guidance. Staff are educated on maintaining professional boundaries, and thorough risk assessments are conducted, covering various school activities and personnel.

Low-Level Concerns:

In instances of low-level concerns, the school maintains an open and transparent culture. Concerns are addressed promptly, ensuring confidentiality and proper documentation. The headteacher oversees the response to low-level concerns, consulting with the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) when necessary.

Staff Learning and Development:

Safeguarding is integral to staff development at Norbury Hall Primary School. New staff undergo a comprehensive induction, covering key safeguarding documents and policies. Designated staff receive specialised training, and various learning materials are accessible, including annual updates, multi-agency programmes, and online resources. Training is documented, ensuring staff competency in safeguarding responsibilities.

Staff Awareness and Training:

All staff members receive essential safeguarding information, with new staff and volunteers undergoing safeguarding training during induction. Governors and trustees also receive relevant training to support effective oversight. Regular updates, integrated online safety training, and an annual report on safeguarding training contribute to a well-informed staff.

Related Policies:

The school acknowledges the interconnectedness of safeguarding policies and maintains a suite of related policies, including Attendance, Data Protection, and Staff Code of Conduct.

Norbury Hall Primary School is committed to maintaining a safe and nurturing environment, continuously evolving its practices to uphold the highest standards of safeguarding for its students.

Additional information & Support

Appendices

POSTER Norbury Hall Primary School

The staff and volunteers in our school/college are committed to safeguarding all our children

We work to:

  • provide a safe environment for our children
  • support children and families using early intervention strategies
  • notice and take appropriate action to help any of our children who are either at risk of, or are suffering from, significant harm

Our Designated Safeguarding Lead is: Jacqui Ames
Our Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead is:

If you have any concerns about the welfare of any of our children, you can report them to the above-named persons.

Staff and volunteers must record their concerns on a note of concern form and include a physical injury/body map where appropriate

Further Advice and guidance can also be sought from
The Safeguarding Unit 0161 474 5657
USEFUL LINKS, FURTHER ADVICE AND GUIDANCE

Local Guidance

Useful Links

Local Guidance & information

Greater Manchester Safeguarding Procedures– follow the link and search key words.

Stockport Suicide Prevention

Stockport Early Help Assessment

https://www.stockport.gov.uk/team-around-the-school

http://www.safeguardingchildreninstockport.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2023/04/Stockports-multi-agency-response-to-need-guidance-document.pdf

Relevant local links should be added; additional links can also be found in Part Two and Annex B KCSIE.

Professional standards

Teachers_standard_information.pdf

The-7-principles-of-public-life

National-standards-of-excellence-for-headteachers

NSPCC Report Abuse in EducationHelpline

National Organisations

Support for Staff

Support for pupils/students

Support for Adults

Support for Learning Disabilities

Contextual Safeguarding Network

Resilience Hub

Greater Manchester Resilience Hub

Substance Misuse

Domestic Abuse

Criminal and Sexual Exploitation

Honour Based Abuse

Child-on-Child abuse, including bullying, sexual violence and harassment.

Online Safety

Mental Health & Emotional Wellbeing

Radicalisation and hate

Children with Family Members in Prison

Children in the court system

  • Children are sometimes required to give evidence in criminal courts, either for crimes committed against them or for crimes they have witnessed. There are two age appropriate guides to support children 5-11 year olds and 12-17 year olds.
  • Making child arrangements via the family courts following separation can be stressful and entrench conflict in families. This can be stressful for children. The Ministry of Justice has launched an online child arrangements tool l with clear and concise information on the dispute resolution service. This may be useful for some parents and carers.

What to do if you are concerned that a child/young person is being abused (flowchart for Education)

INFORMATION YOU MAY BE ASKED TO PROVIDE

When you make a referral to Social Care (Children’s Services) or to the police, you should provide as much of the following information as possible:

  • Child’s name, date of birth, address, telephone number and ethnic origin;
  • Family details – who lives in the home – and any other significant adults;
  • What is causing concern and the evidence that you have gathered to support your concerns;
  • Any additional needs the child and/or family may have including language, disability and communication;
  • Clarification of discussion with any family members if a discussion has been appropriate;
  • Clarification of any ongoing assistance that you are giving to the family;
  • Your name, workplace and contact telephone number.

All Child Protection referral phone calls made to the Multi-Agency Safeguarding & Support Hub (MASSH) to secure a response from Social Care must be supported with written documentation. In Stockport this is through the online Child Protection Referral form.

Remember- Anyone in school/college can make a child protection referral

INFORMATION &TELEPHONE NUMBERS FOR CONSULTATION AND REFERRAL

Children’s Services- child protection referral

  • Online (to the MASSH)- https://www.stockport.gov.uk/contacting-the-massh
  • The Multi –agency Safeguarding and Support Hub (MASSH)
    Monday to Thursday 8.30am to 5.00pm,
  • Friday 8.30am to 4.30pm.
    (0161) 217-6028 or 6024.
    Out of hours referrals and advice Tel: (0161) 718-2118
  • Greater Manchester Police tel:101or go online for non-urgent matters, dial 999 in an emergency

Advice is available from:

  • Child’s Social Worker (if already involved
  • Named School/college Social Worker
  • School/college Age Plus worker
  • Team Around the School/college meeting
  • Safeguarding Children Unit tel. (0161) 474-5657
  • The Multi –agency Safeguarding and Support Hub (MASSH)
    (0161) 217-6028 or 6024
  • Senior Adviser for Safeguarding in Education tel. (0161) 474-5657

What to do if you are concerned that a child/young person is being abused (flowchart for Education)

Designated Safeguarding Lead Role at Norbury Hall Primary School

Designated Officer (DO) – Allegation Management at Norbury Hall Primary School

Allegation Management Process:

The process begins when information suggests that an adult working with children may have harmed a child, possibly committed a criminal offence related to a child, or posed a risk of harm to children. Allegations may be brought forward by various sources, including children, parents, colleagues, police, local authority social care teams, third parties, or the general public.

When to Contact the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO):

Ensure that all allegations, even seemingly less serious ones, are followed up objectively by someone independent of the organisation. Discussion with the LADO is necessary when concerns or allegations meet specific criteria, such as contravening safe practice guidance, exploiting a position of power, acting irresponsibly, or demonstrating a failure to follow safeguarding policies.

Examples of Concerns:

  • Contravention of safe practice guidance
  • Exploitation or abuse of a position of power
  • Irresponsible behaviour impacting child safety
  • Failure to understand or appreciate professional boundaries
  • Failure to follow safeguarding policies or procedures
  • Involvement in criminal proceedings not related to a child

Dealing with a Disclosure:

  • Listen actively without investigating.
  • Avoid asking ‘why,’ as it can imply guilt on the child’s part.
  • Reassure the child, emphasising that they have done the right thing.
  • Never promise confidentiality; explain what will happen next.
  • Record factual details of the disclosure promptly, including the child’s words and behaviour.
  • If there are visible injuries, use a body map to document details.
  • Report quickly to the Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) without asking the child to retell the story.

Confidentiality and Seeking Support:

  • Keep disclosed information confidential, sharing only with those who ‘need to know.’
  • Seek support for yourself if dealing with safeguarding issues becomes stressful.
  • The DSL is responsible for managing and overseeing child protection referrals, and their availability is crucial. In exceptional circumstances, if the DSL is unavailable, staff should take responsibility and consult with the senior leadership team or local children’s social care.

Additional Resources:

  • Contact the DO at 0161 474 5657.
  • Access online referral forms: Stockport Council – Contacting the MASSH.
  • Further guidance on child abuse concerns for practitioners: What to do if you’re worried a child is being abused.

This tailored summary outlines the procedures for managing allegations and dealing with disclosures at Norbury Hall Primary School, emphasising the importance of prompt reporting and collaboration with the designated safeguarding lead.

Managing Referrals:

Refer all safeguarding cases, including Early Help, through relevant routes specified by Stockport Council. Identify and address safeguarding issues related to individual children, particularly ongoing investigations under section 47 of the Children Act 1989. Act as a source of support, advice, and expertise for staff on child protection and safeguarding matters. Escalate inter-agency concerns and disagreements about a child’s wellbeing as needed.

Operation Encompass and Child Exploitation:

Ensure at least one key adult for ‘Operation Encompass’ and serve as the point of contact for Child Exploitation. Send an annual information letter to parents and provide necessary downloadable documents.

Attendance Monitoring:

Notify the Local Authority if children are persistently absent or missing from education.

Record Keeping:

Maintain accurate and confidential records of safeguarding and welfare concerns, separate from pupil records. Keep a chronology of significant incidents for each child with safeguarding concerns. Facilitate the transfer of safeguarding files when a child leaves the school/college.

Inter-agency Working and Information Sharing:

Co-operate with Children’s Social Care for enquiries under section 47 of the Children Act 1989. Adhere to data protection laws and share information appropriately. Attend relevant multi-agency meetings and contribute to assessments. Ensure compliance with the school/college’s information sharing policy.

Training:

Undertake appropriate training and access updates related to recognising signs of abuse, early intervention, and local authority procedures. Ensure all staff members understand and adhere to safeguarding policies through regular training and updates.

Awareness Raising:

Promote awareness of the school/college’s child protection policies among staff, parents, and students. Review and update safeguarding policies annually, ensuring public availability. Collaborate with safeguarding partners to stay informed about local policies and training opportunities.

Quality Assurance:

Monitor policy implementation through periodic audits of safeguarding and welfare concerns files. Conduct audits of safeguarding arrangements as specified by the Stockport Safeguarding Children Partnership. Provide regular reports to the governing body on policy changes, staff training, and relevant data.

Supervision and Reflection:

Establish a framework for regular supervision for staff working directly with vulnerable young people. Encourage staff reflection on their involvement with children on protection or intervention plans.

Discussing Concerns with Families:

Discuss concerns with parents whenever possible but refrain if it may place the child at greater risk or jeopardise a police investigation. Record decisions not to discuss concerns in the child’s Safeguarding file with a full explanation. Consider and record the child’s wishes and feelings, ensuring a child-centred approach.

Peer Abuse:

Educate staff about child-on-child abuse, including bullying, gender-based violence, and sexting. Record and investigate incidents according to the school/college’s policies. Provide support to victims and perpetrators, following established procedures.

NSPCC Helpline:

Share information about the NSPCC helpline for children and young people who’ve experienced abuse, as well as for concerned adults and professionals. Encourage reporting incidents to the NSPCC helpline for further support and guidance.

This summary outlines the specific responsibilities of the Designated Safeguarding Lead at Norbury Hall Primary School, emphasising the school’s commitment to child protection, effective communication, and continuous improvement in safeguarding practices.

Supporting Children and Young People:

  • Foster understanding of appropriate vs. inappropriate behaviours among students.
  • Ensure access to adapted and age-appropriate Relationships and Sex Education (RSE) within the school setting, including online safety.
  • Be mindful of vulnerabilities among peers, siblings, and others in the immediate social network.

Managing Behaviour – Masturbation:

  • Develop a plan, involving parents, carers, and the child, to guide children and young people to appropriate spaces when engaging in acts of masturbation.
  • Emphasise consistency among all stakeholders to address problematic behaviours effectively.
  • Focus on building an understanding of private and public places, ensuring that spaces chosen by students are private.

Sexual Rights:

  • Recognise and respect the sexual rights of children, in alignment with human rights principles.
  • Ensure an environment free from coercion, discrimination, and violence, allowing students to exercise their sexual rights responsibly.

Sexual Acts and the Law:

  • Highlight relevant legal considerations, such as the Sexual Offences Act, particularly regarding sexual activities in public places.
  • Emphasise that masturbation in public spaces, including school toilets, may be considered an offence, necessitating the importance of appropriate spaces.

How to Support:

  • Adopt a consistent and shared script to communicate guidelines to students.
  • Assess the need for a relationships and sex policy, including a section on masturbation, tailored for students at Norbury Hall Primary.

Professional Support:

  • Seek to support children and young people promptly, with a clear message about acceptable behaviour.
  • Consider practical solutions, such as designating a private space for students, to avoid a state of continuous learning and unlearning.
  • Balance the need for clarity with the individual needs of students, taking into account different settings and scenarios.