Promoting and protecting the health, safety and welfare of children is of pre-eminent importance to us. The Villages’ Multi-Academy Trust recognises the contribution it can make to protect and support pupils in our schools. All schools within The Villages’ Multi-Academy Trust are required to have a robust and comprehensive Safeguarding and Child Protection Policy, based on the following legislation and guidance:
- Keeping Children Safe in Education
- Section 175 of the Education Act 2002, which places a duty on schools and local authorities to safeguard and promote the welfare of pupils
- The School Staffing (England) Regulations 2009, which set out what must be recorded on the single central record and the requirement for at least one person on a school interview/appointment panel to be trained in safer recruitment techniques
- Part 3 of the schedule to the Education (Independent School Standards) Regulations 2014, which places a duty on academies and independent schools to safeguard and promote the welfare of pupils at the school
- The Children Act 1989 (and 2004 amendment), which provides a framework for the care and protection of children
- Section 5B(11) of the Female Genital Mutilation Act 2003, as inserted by section 74 of the Serious Crime Act 2015, which places a statutory duty on teachers to report to the police where they discover that female genital mutilation (FGM) appears to have been carried out on a girl under 18
- The Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974, which outlines when people with criminal convictions can work with children
- Schedule 4 of the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006, which defines what ‘regulated activity’ is in relation to children
- Statutory guidance on the Prevent duty, which explains schools’ duties under the Counterterrorism and Security Act 2015 with respect to protecting people from the risk of radicalisation and extremism
- Where a school or college has charitable status, Charity Commission guidance on charity and trustee duties to safeguard children is available at Charity Commission Guidance
The aim of safeguarding policies is to safeguard and promote our pupils' welfare, safety, health, and well-being by creating an honest, open, caring and supportive environment. Our pupils' welfare is of paramount importance.
Our staff are aware of:
Our school policies apply to all our staff, governors, volunteers, and visitors to our schools. Promoting the welfare of children and child protection is the responsibility of all our staff. We will ensure that we will comply with our duties under all relevant legislation We will ensure this policy and our procedures are effective and comply with the law at all times, this includes training for all staff.
We will ensure that all our parents and working partners are aware of this policy by mentioning it in each school prospectus, displaying appropriate information in our reception areas and on each school's website, and by raising awareness at meetings with our parents/carers. Visitors to our schools such as work experience students, trainee teachers and others, receive a safeguarding briefing from a member of the Senior Leadership Team before they commence work in school.
In our schools, our local governing bodies ensure facilitate a whole school approach to safeguarding. Ultimately, all our systems, processes and policies operate with the best interests of the child/children at their heart. Where there is a safeguarding concern, our local governing bodies and school leaders should ensure the child’s wishes and feelings are taken into account when determining what action to take and what services to provide. Systems should be in place for children to express their views and give feedback.
We respond robustly when concerns are raised or complaints made (from children or adults including parent/carers) as we recognise that this promotes a safer environment and we seek to learn from complaints and comments. Each school will take action and seek to resolve the concerns in a timely way, keeping people informed as to progress wherever possible. The school's complaints procedures are available on the school website.
All our staff are aware of their duty to raise concerns, where they exist, about the attitude or actions of colleagues using the school's Whistleblowing (Confidential Reporting) Policy. Our Whistleblowing Policy details how concerns about the Headteacher should be raised.
The NSPCC’s whistleblowing advice line is available as an alternative route for staff who do not feel able to raise concerns regarding child protection failures internally or have concerns about the way a concern is being handled by school. Staff can call 0800 028 0285 – the line is available from 8:00 am to 8:00 pm, Monday to Friday or they can email: email@example.com
NSPCC - When to call the police Statutory guidance contains further information on : The Role and Responsibilities of the Designated Teacher