St Mark's Church of England Primary School is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and expects all personnel and volunteers to share this responsibility. The school have a number of policies and procedures in place that contribute towards our safeguarding commitment, including our Safeguarding and Child Protection Policies which can all be viewed under our ‘Policies’ section of our website.
At St Mark's, we strongly recognise the need for vigilant awareness of safeguarding issues. We believe that children have a right to learn in a supportive, caring and safe environment that includes the right to protection from all types of abuse. An environment where staff are vigilant for signs of any pupil in distress and are confident about applying our safeguarding processes to avert and alleviate any such problems.
What is safeguarding?
Safeguarding is protecting children from bullying; discrimination, harassment, maltreatment; preventing impairment of their health or development; ensuring that they grow up in circumstances consistent with the provisions of safe and effective care; and taking action to enable all children and young people to have the best life chances and to enter adulthood successfully. We listen to our pupils and take seriously what they tell us. All school staff are trained in Child Protection, and children are made aware of the adults they can talk to if they have any concerns.
Our Designated Safeguarding Leads
Our Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) is:
- Miss Jenna Titmus (SENCo)
Our Deputy Designated Safeguarding Leads (DDSLs) are:
- Mr Chris Hollands (Headteacher)
- Mrs Claire Broom (Deputy Headteacher)
- Mrs Heather Chaplin (Teacher)
All adults who work in school have a responsibility to read and understand all safeguarding policies as well as the DfE guidance. A key factor identified in many serious case reviews (SCRs) has been a failure by practitioners to record information, to share it, to understand its significance and then take appropriate action.
Safeguarding and Information sharing
Sometimes we may need to share information and work in partnership with other agencies such as police or medical professionals when there are concerns about a child’s welfare. Where we can, our intention is always to consult and work with parents/guardians to achieve the best outcome for the child. Sometimes circumstances exist that do not allow for that consultation and the school has to take independent action in order to ensure a child is safeguarded.
All schools hold information on its pupils, which is held for internal use only and is not shared with third parties. However, from time to time schools are obliged to share information with partner agencies, such as the Police and Health and Social Care. Requests for information from these agencies happens rarely, but when they do occur, St mark's will provide any information that it feels is relevant, and is in the best interest of a child’s wellbeing. Information is also shared between schools when a child moves between institutions, for example when a pupil moves from primary to secondary or from one primary school to another. In all instances, pupil files are kept in a secure system accessed only by our Designated Safeguarding Leads.
Response to the Prevent Duty
Prevent is one of the four elements of ‘CONTEST’ the government’s counter-terrorism strategy. It aims to ‘prevent’ people becoming involved with extremist views.
The Prevent Strategy:
- Responds to the ideological challenge we face from terrorism and aspects of extremism, and the threat we face from those who promote these views;
- Provides practical help to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism and ensure they are given appropriate advice and support;
- Works with a wide range of sectors where there are risks of radicalisation that we need to deal with.
The school takes the Prevent duty very seriously and works to support all our families. Further information can be found across a range of our policies and in particular in the Safeguarding policy.
At St Mark’s we embrace new technology and acknowledge how the Internet has changed all of our lives. As part of our Computing curriculum we have a strong focus on E-safety which helps to keep our children safe online. We are aware that for parents and carers this opens up a whole new world of things to be aware of. For practical and useful advice please see https://www.thinkuknow.co.uk/.
St Mark’s Primary School is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people and expects all staff and volunteers to share this commitment.