Safeguarding Children Policy and Procedures

At The Playbox we are committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children. Their needs and welfare must be our FIRST concern. All staff and volunteers are expected to share this commitment, in accordance with all relevant legislation, including

  • The Children’s Act 1989
  • The Protection of Children Act 1999
  • Data Protection Act 1998
  • The Children’s Act 2004 Every Child Matters
  • The Childcare Act 2006
  • Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006
  • The Counter-Terrorism Act 2015
  • The Children Act 2016

We are committed to following clear procedures to support the safety and wellbeing of the children within our care. We aim to have regard to the ‘Working together to safeguard children 2016’ document and ‘What to do if you’re worried a child is being abused’ guidance.

This policy aims to support the safety and wellbeing of all the children within our care, setting out those clear procedures.

The designated practitioners for our Safeguarding/Child Protection Policy are Amanda Darley and Nicola Hillman (ChildProtection Officer and Deputy Child Protection Officer)

We recognise that the welfare of all the children is paramount and that all children and young people, irrespective of ethnicity, culture or religion, home language, family background, learning difficulties or disabilities, gender or ability, have equal rights of protection. We recognise our duty of care when children are in our setting and will do everything we can to provide a safe, secure and stimulating caring environment in which children can interact and explore rich and diverse learning and developmental opportunities.

We promote equality, diversity and British values which are at the heart of our settings work. We ensure it is demonstrated by following our policies and procedures, preventing and challenging any instances of discrimination and are alert to the potential risks from radicalisation, extremism and child sex exploitation.

We will:

  • Treat all children with respect and celebrate their achievements
  • Carefully recruit and select suitable people whether paid or voluntary
  • Restrict the use of personal mobile phones and cameras within the setting
  • Respond to concerns and allegations appropriately

Staff are aware of how to look for significant changes in children’s behaviour, deterioration in their general well being, unexplained bruising, marks or signs of abuse or neglect and how to deal appropriately with comments children make which give cause for concern. Termly staff supervision meetings provide mutual support and coaching and encourages confidential discussion of safeguarding issues.

The absence of a child is recorded and monitored in our register and if staff notice a pattern of absence or a prolonged period(s) of absence of a child without a parent giving a plausible explanation or any reason for this then the Child Protection Officer will be informed. She will ask the parent(s) for an explanation, if one has not been already obtained, then, depending on circumstances, may make a referral to Customer First Tel: 0808 800 4005.

When concerns arise about the welfare of any child, all adults within our setting are expected to share those concerns with the Child Protection Officer. She is responsible for: Monitoring and recording concerns Making referrals to Social Care Services without delay to Customer First Tel: 0808 800 4005, following the procedures as given in the Flowchart for Referral information sheet.

Liaison with other agencies

Arranging training for staff (This is updated every three years)

Confidentiality – In cases of disclosure of abuse, either by children or parents, we are obliged to share this information with the Child Protection Officer who may have to refer our concerns to Social Care Services.

In setting steps have been put in place on all ICT equipment to ensure safe age appropriate use and parental locks to ensure E-safety . Guidance with regards to cyber bulling etc is available to parents on their noticeboard and where to seek advice.

All new staff, volunteers and students are taken on through the safe recruitment procedure and must have an up to date DBS Enhanced Disclosure. They are under supervision at all times and have restricted access to the children until the DBS Enhanced Disclosure is seen.

This Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act (SVGA) 2006 was passed to help avoid harm, or risk of harm, by preventing people who are deemed unsuitable to work with children and vulnerable adults from gaining access to them through their work.

Staff Allegations – Good practice dictates that all members of staff are aware of appropriate behaviour with children; all have a relevant and current police check record and do not put themselves in compromising situations. However, if concerns about behaviour of adults in our setting arise these will be referred without delay to the Child Protection Officer who will contact Social Care Services or the Police as appropriate. Allegations of abuse made against a member of staff would be reported to Ofsted. The LADO (Local Authority Designated Officer) would also be contacted at the same time on Tel: 01284 – 758816.

This Policy was adopted at a meeting of The Playbox committee held on 11th September 1996.

This Policy was reviewed & updated at a meeting of The Playbox AGM held on 1st October 2008.

This Policy was reviewed & updated at a meeting of The AGM held on 12th October 2010.

This Policy was reviewed & updated at a meeting of The Playbox AGM held on 18th October 2011.

This Policy was reviewed & updated at a meeting of The Playbox AGM held on 16th October 2012.

This Policy was reviewed & updated at a meeting of The AGM held on 15th October 2013.

This Policy was reviewed at a meeting of The Playbox AGM held on 14th October 2014.

This Policy was reviewed & updated at a meeting of The Playbox committee 23rd November 2015

This policy was reviewed at a meeting of The Playbox committee on 7th November 2016

This policy was reviewed and updated at a meeting of The Playbox committee on 16th May 2018

This policy was reviewed and updated at a meeting of The Playbox committee on 9th  May 2019

This policy was reviewed & signed at a meeting of The Playbox committee held on  19th March 2020

This policy was reviewed by email & signed by the chairperson on the 22nd October  2020

Signed Chairperson:  Jane Sharp

Amendments to this policy during COVID 19 outbreak

Playbox will endeavour to make the setting as COVID safe for the children and families whilst following government guidelines.

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