Safeguarding - Keeping Children safe in Education
Our School’s Designated Safeguarding Lead: Miss Tina Gobell
Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead: Miss Jennifer Baker and Ms. Emma Randle
The Discovery School has a dedicated team of Designated Safeguarding Leaders (DSLs). The DSL team is intensively trained by Kent County Council to ensure that it is aware of all the requirements necessary to ensure that the School keeps everyone safe.
Our DSLs are always available to parents, children and staff during school hours (8am - 4pm), should you have a concern about either an adult or a child. Your concerns will be handled with the upmost sensitivity by the DSL team.
If you have a concern about a child or adult which cannot wait until the start of a school day or you fear that he or she is in immediate danger, then please either call the Police on 101 or 999, depending on the severity of your concern. In addition, you can make contact with the Kent Safeguarding Children Board through their online referral system.
Click below to see the Department of Education Statutory Guidance for Schools and Colleges
Keeping Children Safe in Education - September 2023
The School has adopted the definition of the term 'Safeguarding' used in the Children Act 2004.
In summary this is:
protecting children from maltreatment;
preventing impairment of children's health or development;
ensuring that children are growing up in circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective care; and
undertaking that role so as to enable those children to have optimum life chances and to enter adulthood successfully.
The School's safeguarding arrangements cover all aspects of life at school, in particular addressing these issues:
health and safety;
bullying, including cyberbullying;
other harassment and discrimination, including racism;
meeting the needs of pupils with medical conditions;
physical security of the School site;
recruitment and vetting of staff and visitors to the school site.
Our Child Protection Policies
All of our staff are trained at induction, to be able to identify and report any safeguarding concerns they may have about any child or adult at The Discovery School. All staff are regularly kept up to date with training around specific areas. Recent examples of training for staff has been focused on Peer on Peer Abuse, Domestic Violence and Sexting. Staff are also required annually to read and understand the DFE's Keeping Children Safe in Education.
The below paragraphs has been taken from the government website around the Prevent Duty for schools. To read more about this please click on the word PREVENT.
"The Prevent strategy, published by the Government in 2011, is part of our overall counter-terrorism strategy, CONTEST. The aim of the Prevent strategy is to reduce the threat to the UK from terrorism by stopping people becoming terrorists or supporting terrorism. In the Act this has simply been expressed as the need to “prevent people from being drawn into terrorism”.
The 2011 Prevent strategy has three specific strategic objectives:
respond to the ideological challenge of terrorism and the threat we face from those who promote it
prevent people from being drawn into terrorism and ensure that they are given appropriate advice and support
work with sectors and institutions where there are risks of radicalisation that we need to address.
Schools have been directed by the DfE to ensure that British Values are taught and upheld in all schools to work alongside the Prevent strategy.
To do this, schools have been given 4 key areas to ensure are weaved throughout school life. They are:
Rule of law
Mutual Respect & Tolerance
We make decisions together. (Democracy)
Democracy and making decisions together is firmly embedded into all we do at our school. We use pupil and parent voice to continuously develop and improve, including the use of surveys and parent partnership meetings. Our School Council members, who have been elected solely by their peers, meet regularly with a member of the Senior Leadership Team to discuss school issues. Pupils work with their teachers to create class rules at the beginning of each academic year, helping them to understand the process of rule-making. We also encourage pupils to respectfully share their views during circle times and other less formal activities.
We understand that rules matter.
(Rule of Law)
Right from the start of their Discovery School life, pupils are encourage to take part in establishing their own class rules so that they understand that rules are for their own protection, that it is their responsibility to abide by them and that they understand the consequences of not following rules. Pupils are rewarded for following class and school rules within their classroom and they can also receive a Friday ‘Star of the Week’ and ‘Deputy Head Teacher Award’ in ‘Celebration Assembly’. We hold a termly ‘Excellence Award Assembly’ to celebrate children who uphold the school rules and values consistently. Assemblies and circle time session focus on recognising right from wrong. Consequences, in-line with the school’s Behaviour Policy, remind children that breaking the rules may impact on themselves and others. We encourage visits and assemblies from our local Police Officer and PCSO to reinforce this.
We believe in freedom for all.
Children are actively encouraged to make choices as independent learners, knowing that they are in a safe and supportive environment. Children are taught to understand their personal freedoms and how to use these rights to best effect. Lessons in E-safety, PSHE and RE education all enable children to make choices safely.
We treat people how we want to be treated.
(Mutual Respect & Tolerance)
The pupils in our school are respectful to each other. This is one of our core school values and is frequently discussed in school through assemblies, circle time and meetings. All members of The Discovery School community are taught to be caring and tolerant of others and this is also reflected through our behaviour policy. Pupils are taught that they live in a multicultural society and that is it important to embrace others similarities and differences. Pupils experience other cultures and religious beliefs through RE lessons, PSHE lessons, guest speakers from our wider community and themed weeks. An understanding of all major faiths is taught as the pupils move through the school. We support a number of charities, locally and globally, which are selected by the pupils themselves with the help of the School Council representatives.
Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) is illegal in England and Wales under the FGM Act 2003 ("the 2003 Act"). It is a form of child abuse and violence against women. FGM comprises all procedures involving partial or total removal of the external female genitalia for non-medical reasons.
Section 5B of the 2003 Act 1 introduces a mandatory reporting duty which requires regulated health and social care professionals and teachers in England and Wales to report 'known' cases of FGM in under 18s which they identify in the course of their professional work to the police.
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