Our Safeguarding Statement
Jerry Clay Academy is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and expects all staff, volunteers and members of our community to share this commitment.
We listen to our children 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. Staff are trained to look out for signs of physical/emotional harm or neglect and be aware of extremist views and are required to report these to the Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL). On rare occasions our concern about a child may mean that we have to consult other agencies. We will ensure that all concerns are discussed with parent/carers first, before any referrals are made, unless we believe that such a move may be contrary to a child’s welfare.
See the Safeguarding Policy-updated September 2021
Our Designated Child Protection Officers are: (DCPO)
- Mrs Caroline Elliott (Headteacher)
- Mr T Palin (Assistant Headteacher)
- Our Learning Mentor, Mrs Wood is also trained to DSL level
Our designated Governor is Mr Andrew Carter – Chair of Governors
What follows is a summary of our Safeguarding policies and procedures within and beyond school
‘Safeguarding is everyone’s responsibility, every day’.
At Jerry Clay Academy, the health and safety of all children is of paramount importance. As parents, you send your children to school each day with the expectation that school provides a secure and safe environment in which they can flourish and be happy. In order to ensure that this expectation becomes reality, we put a wide range of measures in place.
Our aim is that the children should develop self-confidence, gain a balanced view of their society and the world through a responsive curriculum and adopt our learner trait values that they will carry with them throughout life. We provide opportunities for reflection so that children learn and explore experiences and individuality.
Our Health and Safety Policy
The academy has a health and safety policy that is monitored each term by the relevant committee of the school governors. Each term there is a fire drill that practises efficient evacuation from the buildings. The academy also carries out a termly lock down. The school conducts an annual Fire Risk Assessment. There is also a critical incidents plan that details what staff and parents should do in the case of emergencies.
Our First Aid policy states that members of staff should not feel that they must give medicines to children at any time. Our preference is that in the case of a pupil needing medication during the day parents are welcome to come into school to administer correct dosages. There are, on occasion, exceptional circumstances when special arrangements can be made with the office staff. Supportive paper work from the child’s doctor and appropriate permission slips must be completed for this to happen.
In school there are always trained members of staff who volunteer to oversee first aid. There are a number of first aid kits situated around school. When a child is poorly, or has suffered an accident in school or on the playground there are 4 steps staff follow – A trained first aider is consulted – The incident is logged in the accident book- For head injuries a Head Note is issued and a phone call made to home.
We do not want parents to feel remote from school and unable to come in and talk to us; our relationship with you is very important. However, we feel that the systems for access into school need to be adhered to consistently. We are asking for your help in this area and thank you in advance for your support.
Jerry Clay is happy for our Parents/Carers to bring their children to the door of their classroom until the doors are opened at 8.50am. Staff are also happy to make themselves available at the door at the beginning and at the end of the day if you want to have a quick conversation with them. However if this is not your preference we ask that you make an appointment at a time mutually convenient to both of you. The reception desk will be happy to arrange this for you. The Headteacher, Learning Mentor and SENCo are also available outside on a morning should you need them for advice.
We are asking that you support the normal teaching day by not accompanying your children to the classrooms or entering the school building from the playground as this makes it difficult for staff to give their full attention to the children in their class. It also means that we do not know who is in the building and this has huge safety implications for the school. We want to encourage your children to develop independence by bringing their own bags, coats and lunchboxes into school and to find lost property during the school day.
‘Parents/Carers can come into the reception office via the main school entrance at any point during the school day to have their questions answered, to seek further information or to make an appointment with a member of staff. We ask that this be done rather than parents/carers searching for staff in the corridors or seeking out staff in their classrooms. If parents are in the school building during the timetabled school day we expect them to be wearing a VISITORS BADGE which they have collected from the digital sign in machine at reception, having signed in. Staff are asked to challenge anyone not wearing a visitors badge within the school building.
If you need to collect a child during school time, we ask you to collect them from the office and sign them out. Children will only be allowed home with adults with parental responsibility or confirmed permission.
If for any reason you are late…………………….
If children arrive at school after 9.00 a.m. parents should bring them to the reception office via the main school entrance so that they can be registered and taken to class. All school gates will be closed as soon as the classes have entered the building to be reopened at around 3.10 p.m.
‘Early Morning Drop off’ Club……………………and other morning clubs.
Please enter the school through the main reception and ring the early and after school care. A member of the Early and After School team will come and collect your child. You will be expected to sign your child into school at the entrance.
Excellent attendance is expected of all children, but when children are unwell parents are expected to confirm absence by telephoning the school office. If the office has not been given a reason for a child’s absence, the school has a policy of phoning home to find out why the child has not arrived in school.
If your child’s attendance falls below 90%, you will be contacted by the school who will give you notice by letter that you need to improve your child’s attendance. If attendance does not improve you will be invited in for a more formal meeting to decide next steps. We will continue to work alongside our parents to support you and your child in every aspect of their education.
Full details of our Attendance Policy can be found on the school website. (under Attendance)
All staff employed by the academy have a DBS check. Our policy is that this will be reviewed on a 5 yearly cycle. Volunteers that come into school for any reason must also have DBS clearance for
- extended contact with children.
- If they are to be left alone with a child.
The office has the forms which need to be completed. Visitors who do not yet have clearance will not be left alone with a child or group of children.
We do allow parents to take photos and short videos of their children when involved in a school production or assembly. Parents are asked to understand photos/video clips are for family memorabilia only and not to be published on social media sites. Upon entry to school, parents consent to the school taking photographs/ local press taking photographs etc. is obtained.
Safeguarding in the Curriculum.
In school we deal with safeguarding in different ways. In Personal, Social and Health Education we discuss relevant issues with the children – such as Drugs, Sex and Relationships , Stranger Danger and Racism and Bullying. Children are encouraged to explore and discuss these issues. During other lessons safety issues within the subject are discussed and safe practices taught, such as using equipment properly in PE and Design and Technology. At all times there has to be appropriate staffing levels and when the curriculum is taking out of school appropriate and agreed pupil/adult ratios are maintained. The lead adult always assesses visits as to the level of risk and all trips are finally authorised by the Executive Headteacher. This process is overseen by the Governing Body. Internet Safety (our e-safety policy…found under Policies Tab)
Children and young people spend a lot of time online – it can be a great way for them to socialise, explore and have fun. But children do also face risks such cyberbullying or seeing content that’s inappropriate. That’s why it’s important for them to know how to stay safe online.
Cyberbullying is an area along with other safeguarding issues arising within schools nationally that requires our full attention. e.g. dangers of social networking sites, how to handle on-line bullying, dangers of abuse/grooming, sexual exploitation, radicalisation and extremism. Our pupils are routinely educated about the dangers of cyberbullying and over exposure on the internet but our issues often come from outside the school and so we need to engage our families and community.
Whether you’re unsure about what happens online or are up to speed with new technology, it’s important that you talk to your child about staying safe. The NSPCC web-site which has supported us within school offers lots of advice and tools that you can use to keep your child safe whenever they go online.
At JCA we try to ensure that everyone is treated fairly. All children are given equal access to the school and its curriculum and all are considered equal in the learning partnership that exists. When children have special needs we work with the parents/carers to ensure that we make every reasonable effort to meet their child’s needs; we are an inclusive school.
Behaviour Policy (found under Policies TAB)
Good behaviour is expected at Jerry Clay Academy and we have high expectations of the children. Although the emphasis is always on the positive, there are times when children have to be disciplined in order to maintain the safety and security of all children.
Staff are discouraged from handling children, but when they deem it is safest to do so, guidance has been given on safe methods of restraining a child so that they do not harm either themselves or others.
Anti Bullying Policy. (found under Policies TAB)
At JCA the definition of bullying is: “A systematic and extended victimisation of a person or group, by another or group of others.”
Children are told that silence is the bully’s best friend. They are taught that as bystanders they have a responsibility to report ‘the bully’ because they then become part of the solution and not part of the problem.
Although bullying in this school is extremely rare the school always acts quickly with a process of investigation, communication and action. Our children know ‘Bullies will not be tolerated.’
Recording and Reporting Racist Incidents
‘Under the Race Relations (Amendment) Act 2000 and Home Office Code of Practice on reporting and recording racist incidents (2000) schools are required to record and investigate all racist incidents and to report them to the Local Authority on a regular basis.
Our definition of a racist incident: as recommended in the Stephen Lawrence Inquiry Report 1999: ‘A racist incident is any incident which is perceived to be racist by the victim or any other person.’ Whilst incidents of this type are extremely rare at JCA, all our staff know our procedures for dealing with such incidents and know that we have zero tolerance. The emphasis in moving forward is always on education; teaching children about diversity and that all children have a right to belong.
When children are suffering or may be at risk of suffering significant harm, concerns must always be shared with children’s social care or the police. JCA has a ‘duty of Care’ to share information with other agencies where they have safeguarding concerns.
However, it is good practice to share with the parents/Carers knowledge and consent. When schools feel that a referral should be made to social care, they should discuss the matter with parents/carers except when to do so might
- place a person at increased risk of harm (usually the child, but also a family member or another person);
- prejudice the prevention, detection or prosecution of a serious crime; or
- lead to an unjustifiable delay in making enquiries.
Records are kept on file in a secure place.
Sharing information with other schools
Child Protection information must be transferred as soon as possible to the pupil’s new school but it is kept separately from the main pupil file. It is important to transfer this information to prevent harm to a child. Parental consent is not required to transfer information.
Primary schools do not need to keep copies of any records except if there is an ongoing legal action when the pupil leaves the school. Custody of and responsibility for the records passes to the school the pupil transfers to.
Although it is the duty of the previous school to transfer the data as soon as possible to the new school, occasionally parents may not share the name of the new school. It is important, therefore, that when schools admit children, they should contact the previous school to check whether there are child protection records and to transfer them when they exist. JCA sends out a letter to the previous school asking for written confirmation about whether there are Child Protection records or not. Where children go missing, the Local Authority Policy for ‘Children Missing in Education’ is followed.