All staff have a full and active part to play in protecting pupils from harm.
School child protection policies vary but predominantly the aims are summarised below;
- To support the child’s development in ways that will foster security, confidence and independence.
- To raise the awareness of both teaching and non-teaching staff of the need to safeguard children and of their responsibilities in identifying and reporting possible cases of abuse.
- To provide a systematic means of monitoring children known or thought to be at risk of harm.
- To emphasise the need for good levels of communication between all members of staff.
- To develop and promote effective working relationships with other agencies, especially the Police and Social Services
Staff must be aware that they have a professional responsibility to share information with other agencies in order to safeguard children. Staff must be aware that they cannot promise a child that secrets can be kept.
Here are some signs of possible signs of physical abuse;
- Unexplained injuries
- Refusal to discuss injuries
- Untreated injuries
- Fear of returning home
- Fear of medical help
- Running away
- Significant changes in behaviour
- Unexplained absence
- Fear of new situations
- Eating problems
- Drug/Solvent Abuse
- Compulsive stealing
- Self harm
Here are some examples of neglect;
- Constant hunger
- Pool personal hygiene
- Constant tiredness
- Low self esteem
- Poor social relationships
Possible signs of sexual abuse
- Bruises, scratches, burns
- Teaching other students about sex
- Withdrawn from friends
- Sleep disturbances
- Changes in behaviour
- Eating disorders
- Provocative sexual behaviour
“A TEACHER WHO HAS REASON TO BE CONCERNED SHOULD ALWAYS ACT IN THE BEST INTERESTS OF THAT CHILD.”
“STAFF HAVE A DUTY TO REPORT ALL SUSPICIONS OF ABUSE TO THE DESIGNATED MEMBERS OF STAFF WHO WILL THEN INFORM THE HEADMASTER, SOCIAL SERVICES, THE CHILD PROTECTION UNIT OR, IN AN EMERGENCY, THE POLICE.”