If you work with children you will be aware that under current guidelines, organisations who work with children, young people and adults at risk have a duty to safeguard and promote their welfare?
In a nutshell, Safeguarding is the policies and practices that schools and Governing Bodies employ to keep children safe and promote their well-being. This covers everything from building security, safe recruitment of staff and everything in between. It is exceptionally important to get it right.
We deliver several Safeguarding courses and thought we would breakdown some practical tips to ensure you are protecting, not only children, but also yourselves.
Practice – Showing good, effective practice is essential in safeguarding. The key thing to remember is to try not to over complicate your practice. With this we mean it is easy to get bogged down in jargon and words when the most important thing to do is to ensure the following:
- The child comes first – The child’s welfare is the most IMPORTANT thing and you must recognise the importance of this as standard and recognise and acknowledge the children’s rights.
- Effective communication – Ensure you have means to communicate with ALL parents quickly and effectively and that parents understand in simple terms what your safeguarding policy is, how to access it and who to speak to if there is a concern.
- Relationships matter – Ensure staff and children have two-way relationships and that all children and any concerns (however big or small) are listened to and responded to accordingly
- Doors are always open – Children need to know who to talk to and where there is a safe space if they ever need to bring up any concerns.
- Knowledge – training must be up-to-date and thorough across the whole setting.
- Transparency – probably the most important thing with Safeguarding is that your policies and procedures are clear with no ambiguity in any way.
Policies – Your policies for Safeguarding are hugely important.They need to be visible and simple and state, in simple terms:
- What to do if there are concerns – whether you are a teacher, staff member, parent or child
- Who to talk to if there are concerns – There should be a clear list of who to talk to in this situation and there should always be more than one person.
- What the procedure is – if there are concerns you need to state, simply, what the procedure is in simple steps.
- The Outcome – The outcome of any concerns which are aired also needs to be listed
Policies should also cover:
- Online Safety
- Equality and Diversion
- Staff code of conduct
Ensure your policy is available to view at any time and can be requested or viewed online.
Recruitment – A hugely component part of your safeguarding is to ensure proper and safe recruitment. You must have a clear, concise recruitment policy that embeds safeguarding into all areas of the recruitment process.
Training – Training staff in regards to Safeguarding is hugely important. You must ensure all staff members properly understand and follow your Safeguarding policies. This is why it is key to ensure they are concise and simple to understand. Ensure they are written plainly, without jargon and are absolutely clear about what staff should do if a child discloses abuse or they suspect that a child is being, or may be, harmed.
Any contacts of your Safeguarding Lead(s) as well as local departments for social care should be clearly listed and regularly updated. You must also ensure your policy is consistent with the procedures of your own local safeguarding board.
Always remember you have a duty of care for your students but you also have a duty of care for yourselves.
If you need any support with your safeguarding practice, policies, training or more we have a number of suitable courses to support you. You can find out more here. We can also put together bespoke training courses for your own needs. Give us a call on 02476 714873 or email us email@example.com