Safeguarding is of paramount importance at Ilfracombe Infant & Nursery School and underpins all that we do. We are committed to providing a safe and secure environment for children, staff and visitors and promoting a climate where children and adults feel confident about sharing any concerns which they may have about their own safety or the wellbeing of others.
All staff are trained to identify and report any concerns they have to a designated safeguarding officer. If you have any concerns about a child, please contact our Designated Safeguarding Lead or a Deputy Designated Lead:
Designated Safeguarding Lead
Mrs Claire Grant
Deputy Designated Safeguarding Leads
Mr Stuart Boon
Mrs Clare Langmead
Mrs Karen Borthwick
Anyone who has concerns about a child’s welfare can make a referral to MASH (the multi agency safeguarding hub). Referrals can come from the child themselves, professionals such as teachers, the police, GPs and health visitors as well as family members and members of the public. Local authority children’s social care has the responsibility to clarify with the referrer the nature of the concern and how and why it has arisen.
Through all areas of the curriculum we encourage children to think about how to stay safe: at home, crossing the road, out on their own, or on the internet. We use the NSPCC to deliver sessions which aim to equip a generation of children with the knowledge and understanding they need to stay safe from abuse and neglect. Children are taught to speak out if they are worried, either to a trusted adult or Childline.
We offer early help to families supporting them with a wide range of strategies.
The Role of the Governing Body
The Governing Body has a duty to ensure that the school meets its statutory responsibilities and the children attending our school are safe. Our Safeguarding Link Governor is Mrs Nadine Sampson, who can be contacted via the school office on 01271 863462 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
In addition to the statutory responsibility to record the attendance of children, it is important that Governors follow up the processes for absence. An important risk factor in abuse and neglect is poor school attendance and tackling that is a key aspect of managing children’s safety.
A key aspect of safeguarding is the vetting of applicants and prospective volunteers working with children to make sure they are suitable.
Our Obligations and Duties to Protect your Children
Under the Education Act 2002 (section 175/157), schools must “make arrangements to safeguard and promote the welfare of children”.
We will endeavour to provide a safe and welcoming environment where children are respected and valued. The school will therefore be alert to signs of abuse and neglect and will follow procedures to ensure that children receive appropriate and effective support and protection.
Parents and carers should know that the law requires all school staff to pass on information which gives rise to a concern about a child’s welfare, including risk from neglect, physical, emotional or sexual abuse.
Records of welfare concerns may be kept about children and school staff will seek, in general, to discuss any concerns with parents and carers including referrals to other agencies. However, in situations where the child is suspected to be at risk of harm, the law says that schools may take advice from other agencies without informing parents and carers.
In accordance with local information sharing protocols, we will ensure that information is shared securely and sensitively. Information will only be shared with other services where it is deemed necessary and proportionate to ensure that children and young people are safe and receive the right service.
Under Section 3 (5) of the Children Act 1989, schools or any person who has care of a child may “do what is reasonable in all the circumstances of the case for the purpose of safeguarding or promoting the child’s welfare”. This means that on rare occasions, a school may need to “hold” a child in school whilst Social Care and the police investigate any concerns further.
“I can feel the joy and happiness in the air when we are all singing together.”
Ilfracombe Infant Teacher