Safeguarding Children in Education

At Sprowston Junior School we are committed to supporting all of our children to do well. We will do everything we can to ensure our children are safeguarded and protected from harm.

What does safeguarding mean?
Every child has the right to be safe from harm and danger. It is everyone’s responsibility to ensure every child is free from fear and able to learn and develop in safe, secure environments.

What is child abuse?
A child is abuse when a parent, carer, other family member or another adult known to the child deliberately causes harm, neglects or fails to protect their child from harm. Harm may be physical, sexual, emotional or may take the form of neglect.

Why would we make a referral to Children’s Services?
All schools have a duty to refer cases of suspected child abuse to Children’s Services. If someone at our school sees an unusual or unexplained injury or mark, if your child has said something worrying to us, perhaps someone has reported something your child has said or if their behaviour is particularly out of the ordinary, we are required to make a referral.

Children’s Services are also able to help children and their families if a referral has been made and abuse is not evident but there are concerns that additional support might be needed.

Every school is required to help Children’s Services with their assessments but must not conduct any investigations themselves. This can only be done by social workers and/or police officers.

We have made a referral but you don’t agree with it……..
If we think your child has possibly been abused we don’t have to seek your agreement for the referral to be made. However, it is always better for your child if we can work together. We will, wherever possible, discuss the referral with you and also let you know it has been made.

What will happen next?
When a referral is made an experienced and qualified social work manager will read the information and decide what needs to happen next. They will be assisted by other agencies that you know, for example, school nurse, GP, health visitor or school. 
After an assessment has been completed a child protection conference might be held – you will be invited to this. This meeting will only be called if the assessment shows that there is a likelihood that child abuse has or is taking place.
If the assessment does not show this you will be told. The referral may lead to school and families working together with an FSP (Family Support Plan), or perhaps another agency may be able to provide any support or advice needed.

You may feel angry, upset or worried because we have made a referral. Please try to understand that every member of staff has a responsibility to act in the best interests of all of our children all of the time and are not allowed to take any risks if a child’s safety is of concern.

What can you expect from us?
•  A safe environment for your child to learn that complies with safeguarding in education, legislation and guidance.
• We will take good care of your child whilst they are with us. We will talk to you about anything we see that we are worried about.
• We will keep accurate up to date records.
• If your child transfers to another school we will share important information with them that will help to support your child’s move.
• We will contact you if your child is absent and you haven’t let us know why.
• We will respond promptly to any problem you tell us about.
• Our staff will offer support and assistance when needed.

You can view our policy on our website and can also request a copy of this from the school office.  We have four members of staff whose job it is to be responsible for all aspects of safeguarding in our school. They are Mr Walton,  Mr Arthur, Ms Clark and Mrs Magee. We also have a named governor for safeguarding and this is Karen Michlmayr and she can be contacted via the school office.

For updated information on safeguarding children in Norfolk

As a school, we have signed up to Operation Encompass. This is a jointly run operation between Norfolk County Council, Norfolk Police and the school. Encompass helps schools provide support to children who have been present at incidents of domestic violence. Please have a look at the attached letter and poster.