At Magdalen Gates Primary School, our motto is “Working together to give every child the best”. This underpins every area of our school life, and is particularly important for our work on safeguarding.
What is safeguarding?
“Safeguarding” refers to all the things that we do to ensure that our children and the people in our school community are safe and are enabled to flourish and thrive. It includes everything from keeping our school site tidy and well maintained, to maintaining a strong anti-bullying culture to working with partner organisations in the local authority on child protection cases. Keeping our children safe is the most important thing we do!
Every year we review our policies and procedures to make sure that we are following the very latest statutory advice and duties and good practice, and we gather this together into our Safeguarding Policy. This has recently been reviewed and is available to view on our school website here, or on request in the school office. The policy has been updated to reflect new guidance in the government’s key document, Keeping Children Safe in Education 2022, and a list of key changes can be found on the first page.
The Safeguarding Team
Will Turnpenny Assistant Head – Inclusion
Chris Hutchinson Headteacher
Chloe Demeuzois Assistant Head – Achievement
Tina Callaghan EYFS KS1 Lead
Emma Kingston Yr 6 and KS2 Lead
Karen Orford School Secretary and Extended School hours Manager
Carrie Brown Parent Support Advisor
What should I do if I am worried about the safety or welfare of any child in school?
if you are concerned about safety of anyone in school, speak to a member of our safeguarding team. If you can’t find someone, ask at the school office to speak to a member of the safeguarding team, or call or email in. If you mention safeguarding, we will make sure that you can discuss your concerns with the right person.
If you feel that there is a risk of immediate, serious harm to a child, you should make a referral to Children’s Social Care immediately. Anybody can make a referral by calling the Children’s Advice and Duty Service (CADS) on 0344 800 8020.
What happens when a concern is raised?
Our experienced safeguarding team work together to consider what needs to happen in each case. Concerns are logged and shared via an in school computer system to enable us to track individual concerns and understand broader patterns in school too. This helps us to put in early interventions to ensure that we help people before situations get worse.
In most cases, we can resolve problems within school, drawing on our experience to put positive, practical plans in place to address concerns. This could be through dialogue and discussion, but we can also offer families individualised support through our Parent Support Adviser, Carrie Brown. We can also signpost to a range of local services which could help. If we have more serious concerns, we may need to make a referral to children’s social care – this is usually done by making a telephone referral to the Children’s Advice and Duty Service (CADS), where we can connect with professionals from the Local Authority who can help us to coordinate a plan with families and any other agenciew who can support.
How can parents, carers and families seek help at school?
There are many staff members who you can ask for help, including classroom staff, office staff or our senior leadership team. Remember, if you are concerned about safety of anyone in school, speak to a member of our safeguarding team (see above).
Family life is not always easy, and we know that our families are affected by many different pressures, concerns and worries. Everybody needs help sometimes, and we want to be the firs
As a school, we are proud to be at the centre of our community, and we offer help and support in all sorts of ways.
How can children seek help at school?
We know that children are more likely to share their worries or concerns with familiar people. At the beginning of each school year, every class does a lesson discussing how and when they might need to seek help. As part of this lesson, each child makes a “helping hand”, an outline of a hand with the name of five trusted school adults who they could go to for help.
Children are encouraged to choose staff members who they know or are familiar with, whether it be a friendly face from the school office, a teacher or a member of our lunchtime team. School staff, in turn, have very regular training on how to spot concerns, how to be good at listening to children’s worries and how to pass it on to the right people.
Keeping safe and knowing how to make safe and healthy choices is something that is taught through our school’s Personal Development curriculum, which is available to view on our school website.
What happens if a concern is raised about my child?
Our key priority is keeping our children safe, and if a concern about safety or welfare arises, we have a duty to follow it up. Usually, this will mean discussing our concerns with you; sometimes we may need to seek advice from our safeguarding partner organisations (Norfolk Safeguarding Children Partnership) to make sure we do the right thing.
What is Operation Encompass?
Magdalen Gates Primary School is part of an initiative called Operation Encompass. This initiative has been set-up to help schools to provide support to children who have been present at incidents of domestic abuse & violence. We know that children can be significantly physically or emotionally harmed when they are involved in, present or witness to domestic violence.
The school will receive a confidential message as soon as possible after any domestic incident which Norfolk Police have recorded where a child at their school has been involved in, present or witness to domestic violence. The school has designated Chris Hutchinson, Chloe Demeuzois and Will Turnpenny as Key Adults. Our Key Adults have received training from Norfolk County Council to allow them to use the information that has been shared to make sure that the right support is available for children and their families who have been involved in or witnessed a domestic violence incident.
What happens if I have a concern about a member of staff?
All members of staff at Magdalen Gates Primary School received regular safeguarding training and practice is reviewed regularly. However, if you have any concerns about any adult working within school, please raise this with the Headteacher, Mr Hutchinson (or if he is not available, the Designated Safeguarding Lead Mr Turnpenny, or another member of the safeguarding team. The school follows specific, locally agreed protocols when a concern is raised about a member of staff, and will take advice from the Education Quality Assurance Intervention and Regulation Service about how to proceed, and will, if advised refer it to the Local Authority Designated Officer.
If you have any questions or concerns please contact our DSL Mr William Turnpenny: firstname.lastname@example.org