Child Protection Policy
- Showstoppers ensures the safety and well being of all children in our care.
- Emergency contact details for all children are held on file and ON SITE at all times during teaching.
- ALL staff have up to date CRB Disclosure and copies are held on file by Showstoppers.
- At least one member of teaching staff present at any time holds an up to date First Aid certificate.
- All staff members are responsible for reporting any concerns that they may have about a particular child or family to the management. The issues will be discussed and using an action plan the next steps will be agreed.
In the appendix section of this booklet are find forms to help record findings.
UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES SHOULD ANY STAFF MEMBER DISCUSS WITH THE PARENTS ANY CONCERNS IN RELATION TO CHILD PROTECTION
Referrals of Child Abuse
If any child arrives at Showstoppers with an injury staff must:
- Where necessary get immediate medical attention or advice
- Ask the parent/carer how the injuries occurred
- Always accept the parent/carers explanation regardless of how puzzling
- NEVER make assumptions, accusations or allegations
- Where possible have a witness to your conversations and use the forms to record your findings. Include any conversation you may have had as well as using the body forms to pinpoint injuries.
- Recording of information and conversation is vital and extremely important when making a referral to social services
- Try to keep the information as clear and concise and give to the management team to keep safe
- If you truly believe that the injury or injuries to the child have been caused by abuse you must discuss the matter with the management who will contact the duty social worker at the social services department immediately.
- Management will also contact Barnet Council Child Services who can offer support and advice
Suspicion of abuse
If through contact or conversation with a child you suspect that either physical, sexual, emotional abuse or neglect is occurring you must follow our specific procedure
Allegations made against a member of staff
In the event of an allegation being made against a member of staff please follow the set procedure
If a child was to disclose information that concerned you the appropriate way to respond is set out in the procedure
Any child who does disclose information or if we as staff suspect a form of abuse the designated child protection officer will set up a child protection file which we hold all documentation relating to the child/family whether it is from Showstoppers or outside agencies.
Child Protection Procedure
Suspicion of Abuse
- Be sympathetic and caring when listening to a child
- Try to comfort them and make them realise they are not responsible
- You MUST NOT make any suggestions to the child about how the incident occurred
- You MUST NOT question the child other than to clarify what the child has already said. No leading questions
- Ensure that you write down exactly what the child has said, using their own words. Include your part of the conversation as well as the actions/injuries/incident that was the initial cause for concern
- Ensure all documentation is signed and dated
- NEVER make assumptions
- Inform management immediately of any concerns or suspicions
- Management will contact the duty social worker
- Management will be supportive, but enquiries will be carried out by professionals
- Upon being referred the child’s needs will be assessed by social services and the child protection committee
Allegations made against a staff member
- Ensure that all complaints are in writing addressed to management
- Management may call a meeting with the child’s parents/carers to obtain a first hand account of the situation
- Management will call a meeting with the member of staff involved to obtain their account of the situation
- Depending upon the allegation the staff member may be suspended and an investigation will be carried out
- We are obliged to report any such incidents to the local authority
- Once we have reported any incidents we will be informed and notified of any findings and decisions made as to whether the member of staff can be reinstated
All staff must report findings to management
Staff must never disclose information about a child protection issue
Information is shared on a need to know basis
Staff must use appropriate forms to record all findings and conversations
Any sensitive issues will be discussed on a need to know basis only, but if we consider it necessary information will be shared with outside agencies. Staff should be aware that monitoring of child protection issues may be taking place without their knowledge. Any staff member who has any concerns however slight must always raise them with the management team privately.
If it is considered necessary any concerns will be reported to the duty social worker.
To enable Showstoppers/Spellbinder Productions to continue working with the family in a supportive manner the police child protection officer or the duty social worker will discuss any concerns with the family.
Following any referrals social services or the police will deal with any enquiries. On occasion it may be necessary for staff to provide a statement and attend an initial child protection conference.
Dealing with Disclosure
When recording the information that the child has disclosed please ensure you use the child’s exact words. Make sure you write the date and time that the child told you and share this information with the Management immediately.
Name of Child Protection Officer: Sarah Macmull
Name and number of child protection advice line: See Sarah
Behaviour Incident Sheet
Click here to download the Behaviour Incident Sheet