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Policies & Procedures


Safeguarding Children & Child Protection Policy and Procedure

At Buttercups we intend to create an environment in which children are safe from abuse and in which any suspicion of abuse is promptly and appropriately responded to.

As Early Years Practitioners we are dedicated to the welfare of the children we are responsible for, their rights as individuals and their protection at all times.  Our aim is to work with the parents, guardians, carers, volunteers, students and the community to ensure the children have a safe and happy start to their education.

Buttercups will discuss concerns with the parents/guardians.  Where it is necessary for immediate action to take place, the nursery school will take the appropriately ‘tiered’ action as laid out on the Flow Chart Referral.  A copy is available

The named person who co-ordinates child protection (CPO) issues is Helen Akerman; (Level 4 Child Protection Qualified)

Confidentiality

All disclosures of suspicion abuse will be investigated and only shared with those who need to know e.g. Nursery School Managers, SENCo and the child’s Key Person.  This is agreed under the guidance of the Area Child Protection Committee (ACPC).  The staff, volunteers and students are fully aware of the confidentiality of such sensitive matters and will always put the safety and wellbeing of the child first.  Any information is shared under the guidance of the Local Safe Guarding Children Board.

Support to Families

  • Relationships between the staff, parents/guardian, carers/volunteers and students of the setting are seen as trusting and supportive to provide the best care for the children.
  • No presumptions are made and total professionalism is shown in displays of good practice towards any family that is under investigation.
  • Child’s confidential records are shared with the parents/guardians when it is considered in the best interests of the child.
  • It is the settings declaration that the children’s safety and protection is paramount at all times and everything will be done to support and work with the child and their family.
  • The setting believes in building trusting and supportive relationships with families, staff and volunteers in the group.
  • The setting makes it clear to parents its role and responsibilities in relation to Child Protection, such as for the reporting of concerns, providing information, monitoring of the child, and liaising at all times with the local social services department.
  • The setting continues to welcome the child and the family whilst investigations are being made in relation to any abuse.
  • We follow the Child Protection Plan as set by the social care department in relation to the setting’s designated role and tasks in supporting the child and the family, subsequent to any investigation.
  • Confidential records kept on a child are shared with the child’s parents or those who have parental responsibility for the child in accordance with the procedure and only if appropriate under the guidance of the Local Safe Guarding Children’s Board.

Staffing and volunteer workers

  • All child ratios will be met at all times to ensure safety requirements are met.
  • No staff will be employed if they have been involved in the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974’
  • All staff will need to have DBS (Disclosing Barring Service) checks carried out before employment.
  • Staff have the right to challenge information that may stop them being employed.
  • Checks required by Ofsted are put into place to ensure staff and volunteers are fit to access children.
  • Volunteers will never work alone with children.
  • No unauthorised person will ever have access to the children.
  • We have procedures for recording the details of visitors to the setting
  • We take security steps to ensure that we have control over who comes into the setting so that no unauthorised person has unsupervised access to the children.
  • All staffs will hold a current first aid certificate.
  • At least half of all staff must hold a relevant level 2 qualification
  • The manager must hold at least a Level 3 relevant qualification. 

Allegations against Staff

  • We ensure that all parents know how to complain about staff or volunteer action within the setting, which may include an allegation of abuse.
  • We follow the guidance of the Local Safe Guarding Board when responding to any complaint that a member of staff or volunteer has abused a child.
  • We respond to any disclosure by children or staff that abuse by a member of staff may have taken, or is taking place, by first recording the details of any such alleged incident.
  • We co-operate entirely with any investigation carried out by Social Services in conjunction with the police.
  • Our policy is to suspend the member of staff on full pay for the duration of the investigation; this is not an indication of admission that the alleged incident has taken place, but is to protect the staff as well as children and families throughout the process.
  • The staff member will be supported throughout the process.
  • The manager(s) will in the first instance call an emergency meeting to determine a course of action.  This will include contacting Ofsted, the Local Children’s Safeguarding Board and LADO (Local Authority Designated Officer) within 24hrs.

LADO contact number – 01962 876364 (child.protection@hants.gov.uk)

Ofsted contact number – 0300 123 1231

Ofsted registration number – EY226083

Parents are normally the first point of contact if an allegation is made against a member of staff.  If a suspicion of abuse is reported the parents will be informed at the same time as report is made, except where the guidance of the Local Children’s Safeguarding Board or LADO does not allow this.  All suspicions and investigations are kept confidential and shared only with those who need to know.  Any information is shared under the guidance of the Local Safeguarding’s Board and from the document ‘What to do if you’re worried a child is being abused.

Disciplinary Action

  • We follow the Protection of Children Act requirements in respect of staff/volunteers/students who are dismissed in line with child protection violations.
  • Should a member of staff/volunteer/students be dismissed from the nursery school because of misconduct relating to a child, we will notify the Department of Health Administrator so that their name may be included on the List for the Protection of Children and Vulnerable Adults;

Training

  • Staff will be encouraged to attend ‘Initial Child Protection’ following onto ‘Advanced Child Protection’, (NVQ level 3 provides enough information to bypass Initial Child Protection and move straight onto Advanced Child Protection).
  • Information will be provided for all staff members as to the signs and symptoms of abuse and the necessary action should a child/parent disclose to them information that puts the child at risk.

Planning the Curriculum

  • Key elements of child protection are introduced into the planning, which allows the child an understanding of why and how to keep safe.  This will be carried out in a way that suits their development.
  • All children are encouraged to have respect for themselves and others.
  • The layout of the room allows constant, however, non-obtrusive supervision and observation of all the children.

Complaints

  • A copy of our complaints procedure is available to all parents in the parent pack
  • We will follow the guidance of the Local Safe Guarding Board when investigating any complaint that a member of staff, volunteer or student has abused a child.
  • We will follow the disclosure and recording procedures when investigating an allegation that a member of staff, volunteer or student has abused a child as if it were an allegation of abuse by any other person.

Responding to Disclosure of Abuse

Abuse takes on four different forms:-

  • Physical
  • Emotional
  • Sexual
  • Neglect

If displays of unusual changes of behaviour are demonstrated they will be investigated in a sensitive manner.  A ‘Failure to Thrive’ may be due to neglect and the appropriate referrals would be made.

Disclosures

Should a child make a disclosure to a staff member they will:-

  • Remain calm and reassuring
  • Keep control of their emotions
  • Maintain eye contact with the child
  • Never ask leading questions prompting answers from the child.
  • Allow the child to recall events in their own time and words.
  • Reassure the child that they are always there for them if they want to talk.
  • Report directly to the Child Protection Officer/s and ensure confidentiality.
  • Take allegations of abuse seriously.
  • Use language suitable to the child’s developmental level.

Recording Suspicions of Abuse and Disclosures

The member of staff, volunteer or student to whom the disclosure has been made will record:-

  • Child’s name
  • Child’s address
  • Age of child
  • Date and time of disclosure
  • An un-bias, accurate record of the disclosure including the exact words used by the child
  • The name of the person the disclosure was made to
  • The names of any other witnesses, should there be any

These records will be completed no later than 24hrs after the disclosure – ideally they will be completed as soon as possible to ensure they are as accurate as possible.

Any incident that affects the wellbeing of the children is always passed onto Ofsted.

The appointed Child Protection Officer is aware of the names, addresses and telephone numbers for contacting local authorities/social workers in an emergency.

Promote Good Health

Buttercups Nursery School promotes the good health of children attending the nursery school.  A medication policy and managing children who are infectious, ill or have an allergy are in place.

Maintain records, policies and procedures

Policies and procedures are updated regularly and are available at all times for staff and parent/carers.

The following records are used to support safeguarding children:

Accident forms – staff and children

Incident forms – staff and children

Previous injury form

Risk assessments

Risk assessment daily check record

COSHH

PAT

Children’s allergies records displayed

Medication forms – staff and children

Child Protection forms

Accident, medical and child protection review forms

Registration forms – including permissions, parent contact and collections

Outings forms

Daily register

Learning journals (Tapestry)

Staffs DBS numbers

Induction process

Records of courses such as first aid

Supervision

Prevent Duty

The prevent duty has been put in place for staff to identify children who may be vulnerable to radicalisation who oppose British Values.  Under the Prevent Duty staff have a duty to report any concerns to the Child Protection Officer (Helen Akerman).  At Buttercups Nursery School we promote British Values (please see British Values Policy)

  • At Buttercups Nursery School we focus on children’s personal, social and emotional development, ensuring children learn right from wrong, mix and share with other children, value other’s views, know about similarities and differences between themselves and others, and challenge negative attitudes and stereotypes.
  • Staffs are alert to harmful behaviours by influential adults in the child’s life.  This may include discriminatory and/or extremist discussions between parents, family and/or staff members
  • If we observe behaviour of concern then this will be reported to the Child Protection Officer
  • Staffs undergo training to identify children who may be vulnerable to radicalization, and know what to do when they are identified (Channel Programme)
  • We will discuss the risk of children being drawn into terrorism, and work in partnership with local partners such as the police, Prevent Co-ordinators, Channel Police Practitioners and their LSCB, to take account of local risks and respond appropriately
  • If we have concerns that an individual may be vulnerable to being drawn into terrorism or extremism then we can make referrals to local Channel Panels, Channel Police Practitioners or the LSCB
  • Our assessment of risk has been completed this will be reviewed on a regular basis.  Training needs will be reviewed at that time

The Legal framework for this policy as described in Legislation:-

Primary Legislation

  • The Children Act 1989 – s 47
  • Data Protection Act 1984
  • The Protection of Children Act 1999
  • The Children (NI) Order
  • The Children (Scotland) Order
  • The Children Act 2004 (Every Child Matters
  • Working Together to Safeguard Children (revised 2006)
  • What to Do if You are Worried a Child is Being Abused (revised 2006)
  • The Framework for the Assessment of children in Need and Their Families (2000)
  • The Common Assessment Framework (2005)

Secondary Legislation

Human Rights Act (2003)

Sexual Offenders Act (2003)

Criminal Justice and Court Services Act (200)

Race Relations Act (Amendment) Act (200)

Race Relations Act (Amendment) Act (1976 Regulations

Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974

Guidance

Working together to Safeguard Children (2013 and 2015)

What to do if you are worried a child is being abused (2006)

The Early Help Hub

Safeguarding Our Children – 4LSCB Procedures

UN Conventions of the Rights of the Child

Counter Terrorism and Security Act 2015 Prevent Duty

“Children learn best when they are healthy, safe and secure, when their individual needs are met, and when they have positive relationships with the adults caring for them”.  (EYFS 2014 page 16)

Quote:-

The United Nations Conventions on the Rights of the Child Quotes (2002) – Article 19:  Governments should ensure that all children are properly cared for, and protect them from violence, abuse and neglect by their parents and anyone else who looks after them.

Article 39:  If you have been neglected or abused you should receive special help to restore your self-respect.

Liaison with other Bodies

We work with the Hampshire Safeguarding Children Board.

We have a copy of ‘What to do if you are worried a child is being abused’ for parents and staff and all staff are familiar with what to do if they have concerns.

We have procedures for contacting the local authority on child protection issues, including maintaining a list of names, addresses and telephone numbers of social workers, to ensure that it is easy, in an emergency, for the setting and social services to work well together.

We notify the registration authority (Ofsted) of any incident or accident and any changes in our arrangements, which may affect the wellbeing of children.

Details of the local National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC) contacts are also kept.

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