Child Protection policy

Susan Roberts Academy of Performing Arts acknowledges the duty of care to safeguard and promote the welfare of young people aged 2.5 years to 19 years old and is committed to ensuring safeguarding practice. It recognises its duties under Section 157 of the Education Act 2002 and the Education (Independent School Standards) Regulations 2003 to have in place arrangements and systems of work in order to safeguard and promote the welfare of children.

The policy recognises that the welfare and interests of children are paramount in all circumstances. It aims to ensure that regardless of age, gender, religion or beliefs, ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation or socioeconomic background, all children enjoy:

  • Training in a safe and child centred environment

  • The promotion of a positive and pastoral experience whilst training in the performing arts at SRA

  • SRA shall endeavour to maintain a friendly atmosphere. SRA feels that children should be able to trust and feel comfortable with our staff and volunteers so that vulnerable or troubled children, in particular always feel that they have someone to talk to.

As part of our safeguarding policy SRA will:

  • Promote and prioritise the safety and wellbeing of children and young people
  • Ensure all staff understand their roles and responsibilities in respect of safeguarding and is provided with appropriate learning opportunities to recognise, identify and respond to signs of abuse, neglect and other safeguarding concerns relating to children and young people
  • Ensure appropriate action is taken in the event of incidents/concerns of abuse and support provided to the individual/s who raise or disclose the concern
  • Ensure that confidential, detailed and accurate records of all safeguarding concerns are maintained and securely stored.
  • Prevent the employment/deployment of unsuitable individuals
  • SRA acknowledges that some children can be particularly vulnerable to abuse and we accept the responsibility to take reasonable and appropriate steps to ensure their welfare. With any concerns being reported to the Principal, Susan Roberts, who will contact the appropriate agency
  • The policy and procedures will be widely promoted and are mandatory for everyone involved in SRA.

The Principal of the school, Susan Roberts, takes the lead responsibility for dealing with child safeguarding and protection issues and liaising with other agencies as necessary.

Staff and volunteer suitability

All members of staff and volunteers (where over the age of 18 years old) shall hold a valid DBS certificate (enhanced) and / or Child Chaperone License, a copy of which will be held in the SRA offices.

SRA adheres to a Safer Recruiting policy:

  • The details of successful applicants for employment at SRA will be checked by the Principal to make sure that they do not contain any discrepancies and to ensure that any gaps in employment are identified. Any identified anomalies or gaps in employment will be investigated by the Principal.

  • A successful applicant will supply 2 references. References will be supplied in writing and referees will be asked to comment on their applicant’s work, professional competence as well as personal qualities, information on the applicant’s suitability to work with children and details of any disciplinary procedures the applicant has been subject to. Any information about past disciplinary action or allegations will be considered in the circumstances of the individual case.

  • References will be obtained from the applicant’s current employer and in most circumstances this will be a role in which the applicant has worked with children. Where an applicant does not have current experience of working with children but has done so in the past, a reference will be sought from the relevant previous organisation.

  • Any offer of employment will be conditional on the receipt of satisfactory references and an enhanced DBS certificate.

Staff Practice

  • Tuition shall be carried out according to syllabus guidelines where appropriate. Teacher training and professional development shall ensure that up to date techniques are used to minimise risk of injury.

  • Staff shall work within known safe practice and guidelines.

  • All members of staff will ensure that they listen to children and respond to their needs on an individual basis

  • In the event of an allegation being made against a member of staff or volunteer the following procedure will take place:

  • The member of staff or volunteer will be suspended without prejudice whilst a full investigation is carried out to gather facts and gather evidence.

  • In the event of an allegation being made against the Principal a neutral body ie a member of the Senior Leadership Team of St Andrews School will lead the investigation.

Security

  • SRA has a common room next the SRA office, in St Andrew’s School building for use by children and their parents/guardian before, after or in between classes. Parents should be aware that whilst their child is in class, SRA accepts duty of care for their safe keeping. However, before, after and in between classes, children are the sole responsibility of their parents/guardians and as such if left unattended are left at the discretion of their parents. In this situation SRA can take no responsibility for their safety. However, the SRA office is sometimes manned when classes are running and an SRA member of staff will be in situ. In the event of any concern or any issues arising, students and parents/guardians are encouraged to report to the member of staff in the SRA office. If the office is closed students and parents / guardian should speak to a member of the SRA teaching staff on site.

  • The entrance to SRA is via the main foyer of St Andrew’s School. These double doors are not on a key pad system and therefore not secure. Parents should be aware of this. Likewise access through the door in the corner of the Dining Hall is also sometimes unlocked and is also not on a secure key pad system. Children are advised to stay in the School building at all times. Older students who wish to leave the School do so at the discretion of their parents/guardians and this arrangement is not the responsibility of SRA.

  • Children have use of specific girl and boy toilets.

Monitoring SRA’s Safeguarding policy:

  • The Safeguarding policy will be reviewed a year after development and then every three years or in the following circumstances:

Changes in legislation and / or government guidance February 2017