Safeguarding

We consider the protection of children in our care as one of our major priorities and responsibilities. Teachers and other adults associated with school, because of their unique position are well placed to observe children and note any emotional, behavioural or physical signs which may be suggestive of abuse. Our school will, in most circumstances endeavour to discuss all concerns with parents about their child(ren). However, there may be exceptional circumstances when the school will discuss concerns with Social Care and/or the Police without parent knowledge (in accordance with the Safeguarding Children procedures).  We will, of course, always aim to maintain a positive relationship with all parents.

Safeguarding Children

South Otterington Church of England Primary School is committed to ensuring the welfare and safety of all children in school. We follow the North Yorkshire Safeguarding Children Board procedures, as we believe that all pupils regardless of age, special needs or disability, racial/cultural heritage, religious belief and sexual orientation have the right to protection from all types of harm and abuse.  Our school will, in most circumstances, endeavour to discuss all concerns with parents about their child/ren. However, there may be exceptional circumstances when the school will discuss concerns with Social Care and/or the Police without parental knowledge (in accordance with the Safeguarding Children procedures). We will, of course, always aim to maintain a positive relationship with all parents.

We consider the protection of children in our care as one of our major priorities and responsibilities.  Teachers and other adults associated with school, because of their unique position, are well placed to observe children and note any emotional, behavioural or physical signs which may be suggestive of abuse.  Staff, because of their special relationship with pupils, may also be the initial receptor of hints or disclosures that could lead to the discovery of abuse.  The school encourages the development of a safe and trusting environment where the children in our care feel able to raise any concerns that they might have and to know that these are taken seriously.

For the safety of the children in our care, a teacher or staff member who has any such suspicion will inform the Headteacher who will decide whether to take the matter further.  This could involve consulting other professionals such as the School Nurse, Education Social Worker, Welfare Officer or Educational Psychologist.  As a result of the advice given, the Headteacher may decide to make a formal referral to NYCC Social Services following the guidelines produced by the LA in partnership with the North Yorkshire Safeguarding Children Board Committee (NYSCB). This group seeks to ensure that all the relevant services and professional groups work together to safeguard all children and bring about positive outcomes for children.

The principles which guide all of the work in Safeguarding Children are:-

  • The protection and welfare of the child must be the paramount consideration in all action.
  • Children must be listened to, taken seriously and their comments fully evaluated.
  • Children are normally best looked after by their families, where both parents play a full role and there is no legal intervention whenever this is compatible with ensuring the child’s safety.
  • All NYSCB member agencies have a responsibility to ensure children’s needs are met. They are committed to joint working in assessment of need and delivery of service.
  • Information sharing between agencies is crucial and takes precedence over confidentiality, if a child’s safety is in question.
  • All parties in Safeguarding Children, including children, families and individuals alleged to have been responsible for harm or neglect, must be treated with respect.
  • Parents, carers and children must be kept fully informed and where possible, involved in decision making.
  • Safeguarding Children services should be accessible to all members of the community.

We do realise the necessity of good relationships with the parents of children in our care and will attempt to preserve these wherever possible.

Welfare

The welfare of the children is overseen by the Headteacher and the staff.  The School Nurse, Health Visitor, Vicar and Pupil Support Services are also available to help and advise when required. We have our own Well Being Counsellor to offer support to children and parents.