Safeguarding Children Policy

Branches Out of School Limited is committed to building a ‘culture of safety’ in which the children in our care are protected from abuse, harm and radicalisation.

The Club will respond promptly and appropriately to all incidents or concerns regarding the safety of a child that may occur. The Club’s child protection procedures comply with all relevant legislation and with guidance issued by the Local Safeguarding Children Board (LSCB).

There is always a Child protection officer (CPO) available while the club is in session. The CPO coordinates child protection issues and liaises with external agencies (eg Social care and Ofsted)

The Club’s CPO is Sharon Evans. The Deputy CPO is Charley Evans.

Child abuse and neglect

Child abuse is any form of physical, emotional, or sexual mistreatment or lack of care that leads to injury or harm. An individual may abuse or neglect a child directly, or by failing to protect them from harm. Some forms of child abuse and neglect are listed below.

Signs of child abuse and neglect

Signs of possible abuse and neglect may include:

If abuse is suspected or disclosed

When a child makes a disclosure to a member of staff, that member of staff will:

If a member of staff witnesses or suspects abuse, they will record the incident straightaway. If a third party expresses concern that a child is being abused, we will encourage them to contact Social Care directly. If they do not do so, we will explain that the Club is obliged to and the incident will be logged accordingly.

Peer-on-peer abuse

Children are vulnerable to abuse by their peers. Peer-on-peer abuse is taken seriously by staff and will be subject to the same child protection procedures as other forms of abuse. Staff are aware of the potential uses of information technology for bullying and abusive behaviour between young people. Staff will not dismiss abusive behaviour as normal between young people. The presence of one or more of the following in relationships between children should always trigger concern about the possibility of peer-on-peer abuse:

If peer-on-peer abuse is suspected or disclosed, we will follow the same procedures as set out above for responding to child abuse.

Extremism and radicalisation

All childcare settings have a legal duty to protect children from the risk of radicalisation and being drawn into extremism. There are many reasons why a child might be vulnerable to radicalisation, including:

Signs of radicalisation

Signs that a child might be at risk of radicalisation include:

If a member of staff suspects that a child is at risk of becoming radicalised, they will record any relevant information or observations on Logging a concern form, and refer the matter to the CPO

Logging an incident

All information about the suspected abuse or disclosure, or concern about radicalisation, will be recorded on the Logging a concern form as soon as possible after the event. The record should include:

The record will be given to the club’s CPO who will decide on the appropriate course of action.

For concerns about child abuse, the CPO will contact Social Care. The CPO will follow up all referrals to Social Care in writing within 24 hours. If a member of staff thinks that the incident has not been dealt with properly, they may contact Social Care directly.

For minor concerns regarding radicalisation, the CPO will contact the Local Safeguarding Children Board (LSCB) For more serious concerns the CPO will contact the Police on the non-emergency number (101), or the anti-terrorist hotline on 0800 789 321. For urgent concerns, the CPO will contact the Police using 999.

Allegations against staff

If anyone makes an allegation of child abuse against a member of staff:

Promoting awareness among staff

The Club promotes awareness of child abuse and the risk of radicalisation through its staff training. The Club ensures that:

Use of mobile phones and cameras

Photographs will only be taken of children with their parents’ permission. Only the club camera will be used to take photographs of children at the Club, except with the express permission of the manager. Neither staff nor children may use their mobile phones to take photographs at the Club.

Contact numbers

Social Care: 0191 4332653

Social Care out of hours contact: 0191 4770844

LADO (Local Authority Designated Officer): Nicholas Leon 0191 4333554

LSCB (Local Safeguarding Children Board): 0191 4338010

Local Authority Prevent Co-ordinator: Adam Lindridge or Val Hall 0191 4332782

Police: 101 (non-emergency) or 999 (emergency)

Anti-terrorist hotline: 0800 789 321

NSPCC: 0808 800 500

Ofsted: 0300 123 1231

This policy was adopted by: Branches Out of School, Date: Spring 2021

To be reviewed: Spring 2022 Signed: Sharon Evans, Manager

Written in accordance with the Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage (2017): Safeguarding and Welfare requirements: Child Protection [3.4-3.8] and Suitable People [3.9-3.13].