In Safe Hands
Information for Parents about Safeguarding at Godinton Primary School
At Godinton Primary School the safeguarding of all children is of paramount importance. Parents send their children to school each day with the expectation that school provides a secure environment in which their children can flourish. This section of the website outlines the ways in which Godinton meets these safeguarding responsibilities.
Safeguarding is the responsibility of all members of our school community and as such the information contained below applies to everyone.
Links to relevant safeguarding policies can be found at the bottom of the page.
We have also put together a series of useful external safeguarding links designed to raise parents awareness of safeguarding issues. Please slick on the click below:
Safeguarding External Links for Parents
Safeguarding Policy (New name for Child Protection Policy)
The safety and welfare of children, or child protection, is the collective responsibility of all members of our school community. Within our school the designated lead for Safeguarding (Child Protection) is Miss Jill Talbot (Deputy Headteacher) and the designated governor is Mrs Simone Williams-King. Full details of the school’s procedures for safeguarding are outlined in the Safeguarding Policy which is available online from the school’s website or as a paper copy from the school office. The school has clear procedures which are followed in the event that any cause for concern is raised about any pupil. School staff receive safeguarding /child protection training every three years and Miss Talbot receives refresher training every 2 years and safeguarding updates annually.
There are four main elements to our safeguarding policy
- Prevention (positive, supportive, safe school culture, curriculum and pastoral opportunities for children, safer recruitment procedures);
- Protection (following the agreed procedures, ensuring all staff are trained and supported to respond appropriately and sensitively to safeguarding concerns);
- Support (for all pupils, parents and staff, and where appropriate specific intervention for those who may be at risk of harm);
- Working with parents and other agencies (to ensure appropriate communications and actions are undertaken).
The procedures contained in this policy apply to all staff and governors and are consistent with those of Kent Safeguarding Children Board (KSCB).
The policy has been developed in accordance with the principles established by the Children Acts 1989 and 2004 and related guidance and the latest DfE guidance ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education 2016’.
The safeguarding policy includes a statement on physical restraint. This school follows DfE guidelines which assert that physical restraint may be used if there is the possibility that a child may be about to cause harm to him/ herself or to another. Parents will always be informed if their child has been restrained.
All allegations of abuse by or complaints against a teacher will be dealt with following the school’s procedures. For any complaint about the Headteacher, the Chair of Governors should be contacted directly.
If you are worried about any child and think they may be the victim of neglect, abuse or cruelty then please speak to Miss Talbot.
Keeping Our Children Safe on Site
Health and Safety Policy
The school has a health and safety policy, which is monitored by the Headteacher and School Governors. A copy of this policy is available on the school website.
Our Caretaker, Miss Pat Geary carries out regular inspections of the school site and any health and safety concerns are raised with her by school staff.
At regular intervals during the school year, fire drills take place which allow us to practise efficient evacuation from the buildings. The school conducts an annual Fire Risk Assessment. The school also has clear procedures for how to deal with a variety of emergency situations.
Godinton Primary provides a secure site, but the site is only as secure as the people who use it. Therefore all people on the site have to adhere to the rules, which govern it. Laxity can cause potential problems to safeguarding.
- The Springwood Drive pedestrian gate will be locked except at the start and end of each day.
- Doors will be closed to prevent intrusion but to facilitate smooth exits.
- Visitors, volunteers and students must only enter through the main entrance and after signing in at the school office.
- Children will only be allowed home with adults with parental responsibility or confirmed permission. Please let teachers know if someone different will be collecting your child.
- Children are not allowed to leave school alone during school hours.
- Gates leading onto the playground will be closed during the school day.
- CCTV is in operation 24 hours a day
- Access to the school car park is for authorised staff or visitors only and is controlled by electronic barriers.
- ‘Gate Guardians’ supervise the entrances to the school at the start of the day.
Should a child leave the school premises without permission then staff have been informed never to chase after a child, as this can often cause a child to act irrationally. Where possible they will keep a child in sight and report the incident immediately to the office. Parents and police will then be informed of the circumstances.
Looking After Our Children’s Health and Medical Needs
In school there are always trained members of staff who volunteer to oversee first aid. There are a number of first aid kits situated around school. When a child is unwell, or has suffered an accident in school or on the playground there is a protocol for staff to follow:
- A trained first aider is consulted and any first aid administered.
- The incident is logged in the accident book
- For head injuries a ‘head note’ is issued
- If there is any doubt at all a parent is contacted.
Godinton has clear protocols for the administration of medicines during the school day. If your child requires medicine please see the school office, who will supply you with the form that will require completion. Where possible we encourage medicine to be taken before or after school. The school will only administer prescription medicines. Children are not permitted to keep medicines on them with the exception of asthma inhalers which can be carried by prior arrangement with the school. A copy of the school’s policy for the administration of medicine can also be obtained from the office or website.
All parents are asked to complete a medical needs form for their child outlining any medical conditions we need to be aware of.
No Smoking Site
The school site (both internal and external environments) are no-smoking zones. This includes the use of e-cigarettes.
Looking After our Children’s Attendance
Excellent attendance is expected of all children but we understand that there will be times when children are too unwell to come to school. When children are ill, parents are expected to confirm their absence by telephone immediately. The school will contact parents if we have not been notified about a child’s absence.
The school works closely with the Local Education Authority’s Welfare Officer whenever a child’s attendance and punctuality causes concern. The School is required to report attendance to the Local Authority and will meet with parents if attendance causes concern. The school will take appropriate action with the necessary agencies if a child is missing from school, without notification for a period of time.
Holiday during term time will not be authorised.
Please ask for a copy of the school’s Attendance Policy if you require further information.
Staff and Volunteers
Appointments of staff and induction of newly appointed staff and work placements
All staff that are appointed to work in school have a disclosure and barring service (DBS) check (previously known as a CRB check) which is completed online. This search highlights people who have a criminal record or if previous allegations have been made against them. If staff are found to have a criminal record the appointment is reconsidered by the Headteacher.
A member of every interview panel has undertaken the NCSL training on Safer Recruitment.
New staff are always inducted into safeguarding practices. Newly appointed staff are assigned a mentor for the induction period. It is the responsibility of the mentors to familiarise new staff with procedures and policy, which affect the health and safety of all at school but especially the children.
Induction of volunteers
Volunteers must also have disclosure and barring service check when they have extended or unsupervised contact with children. Any adults wishing to volunteer in school will be asked to complete an application form listing the names of two referees who may be contacted. Visitors who do not yet have clearance will under no circumstance be left alone with a child or group of children. Volunteers will be inducted in key safeguarding procedures.
All visitors to the school will be asked to sign in at the school office and will receive a visitor’s badge. This badge makes visitors distinct to the children from school staff who wear a name badge. Visitors will also be asked for identification. The school has a Visitor’s Policy which can be obtained from the school office.
If members of staff or parents ever have any concerns about people working, paid or unpaid within our school, they have a duty to inform the school’s management team accordingly. This can be done in writing or verbally. All issues will be dealt with sensitively and with the necessary degree of confidentiality. The school has a Whistleblowing Policy, a copy of which can be obtained from the school office or the website.
Developing Our Children’s Safeguarding Education
The Design of the Curriculum
The curriculum deals with safeguarding in several ways. Firstly, the curriculum, in subjects such as Personal, Social and Health Education (PSHE) or Science which discuss relevant issues with the children. Topics include such themes as Drugs, Sex and Relationships and Stranger Danger. Children are encouraged to explore and discuss these issues which show age appropriate progression. A copy of the school’s sex and relationship education policy and drugs education policy are available on the school website or on request from the school office.
Secondly, the curriculum is designed so that safety issues within the subject are discussed and safe practices taught, such as using equipment properly in PE and Design and Technology.
Educational visits provide valuable enhancement of the school curriculum. Our educational visits coordinator, Mrs Hita Kelleher ensures that risk assessments are completed for all off-site activities.
Visiting speakers, with correct clearance are always welcome into school so that they can give specialist knowledge to the children.
Online Safety (previously known as e-safety) —Keeping Safe with Technology
Children should be encouraged to use the internet as much as is possible, but at all times in a safe way. Parents and pupils complete a form stating that they have read our online-safety rules. Pupils are never left unattended whilst online and teachers ensure that this does not happen. If a teacher becomes aware of any misuse, then the issue is reported to the Online Safety coordinator (Miss Jill Talbot – Deputy Headteacher) without delay. Any individual pupil concerns are shared with parents.
An online safety guide for parents and the school’s online-safety rules are available on the school website. Annually the school organises activities for National E-Safety Awareness day.
Please click here to visit the online safety section of the school website.
Looking After Our Children’s Emotional Wellbeing
Our school has a Family Liaison Officer, Mrs Tracey Jones, who is available to help parents in supporting the well-being of their children and family. Mrs Jones may offer help and advice with issues such as behaviour, separation, bereavement or anxiety. Support may be offered on a 1 to 1 basis or through some of the parenting classes available. Mrs Jones is also able to signpost parents to other agencies who may also be able to assist. Mrs Jones is supported by Mrs Corinna Stapleton who works at supporting the children with their emotional well-being. All our children are encouraged to discuss their feelings in school and to let staff know of any concerns or worries that they might have.
Our children are exceptionally good at looking after the welfare of each other. Our older children train as ‘playground buddies’ and help support other children at playtimes.
Behaviour and Discipline Policy
Good behaviour is essential in any community and at Godinton Primary School we have high expectations for this. The emphasis of our behaviour management policy is always on the positive; however, there are also times when children have to be disciplined in order to maintain the safety and security of all children.
There are numerous rewards available to children:
- Showing another teacher good work
- Visiting Mr Holditch or Miss Talbot with a ‘gold card’
- Gaining House Points
- Receiving a certificate during Celebration Assembly
- Being the class ‘Citizen of the Week’ and having a celebratory tea party with Mr Holditch
Our school operates a red and yellow card behaviour system, with sanctions ranging from:
- A verbal reprimand
- Reporting to a senior member of staff
- Loss of playtime / playtime detention
- A letter home
Our behaviour and discipline policy provides further information for parents.
Anti Bullying Policy
The school’s response to any instance of bullying is unequivocal.
Adults must be informed immediately and action will take place.
Children are told that silence is the bully’s best friend. Although bullying in this school is rare, the school always acts swiftly with a process of investigation, communication and action. Bullies will not be tolerated. The school addresses bullying within the PSHE curriculum and participates in activities each year for National Anti-Bullying Week.
The school’s Anti-bullying Policy is available from the school office or website.
The school also takes serious any allegations of peer to peer abuse and has systems in place to address this.
At Godinton Primary School we aim to ensure that everyone is treated fairly. All children are given equal access to the school and its curriculum. When children have additional educational needs we make provision to suit their requirements
Children with disabilities must be able to take a full and active part in every lesson and aspect of school life and every reasonable measure is taken to ensure this.
Our Assistant Head for Inclusion, Mrs Sarah Stein, takes responsibility for our children’s additional educational needs.
At Godinton Primary School we aim to prepare our pupils for life in an ethnically diverse society. The school will work hard to promote racial equality and harmony by preventing and challenging racism. Any racial incidents are reported and parents will be informed if their child is involved.
Racism is tackled in both the RE and in the PSHE curriculum. The children take part in discussions designed to raise awareness and address prejudices. From time to time visitors from different ethnic backgrounds work with the children.
The Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015 directs educational establishments to have ‘due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism’, and is known as the ‘Prevent Duty’. The school has a Prevent Duty policy which outlines the school’s approach to identifying potential signs of radicalisation and extremism within our school community and subsequent response. The school’s Prevent Duty policy provides further information about this.
Digital Images of Children
At Godinton we have taken a sensible, balanced approach to the photographing and videoing of children. All parents complete a consent form which outlines their wishes regarding the taking of images of children. This also outlines parents’ responsibilities when taking photos of their children participating in school activities. Our school’s ‘Digital Images’ policy outlines the school’s procedures for the taking and storing of images of children; including photographs, videos and the use of webcams.
School Safeguarding Policies:
Behaviour and Discipline Policy
Classroom Volunteers Policy
Equal Opportunities Policy
Health and Safety Policy
Medical Needs and First Aid Policy
Online Safety Policy
Personal Care Policy
Prevent Duty Policy
Race Equality Policy
Safer Recruitment Policy
Sex and Relationship Education
Smoke Free Policy
Please see the policies section of the school website for additional school policies.