Happy Children Nursery provides a safe nurturing environment for children to grow and develop. The Nursery Practitioners have a duty of care towards the children attending and this duty brings with it the responsibility to ensure that all efforts are made to safeguard children from suspected and actual harm. Children attending the nursery have a right to feel safe and staff in partnership with parents/carers have a responsibility to act on any concerns they may have regarding a child’s welfare and well‐being.
Practitioners have a duty to safeguard and promote the welfare of children. Due to the many hours of care we provide and the situation of Covid 19, staff will often be the first people who sense that there is a problem. They may well be the first people in whom children confide about abuse. The nursery has a duty to be aware that abuse does occur in our society. This statement lays out the procedures that will be followed if we have any reason to believe that a child in our care is subject to welfare issues including physical, sexual, emotional abuse or neglect.
All staff will be familiar with their own responsibilities to act swiftly upon any suspicions or concerns they may have about any child or member of staff at the nursery. The nursery will follow the procedures set out in the Early Years Foundation Stage statutory framework and Liverpool Safeguarding Children’s Board (LSCB) guidance, and as such will seek advice on all steps taken subsequently. The nursery has a duty to report any suspicions around abuse to Liverpool City Council’s Careline who, under the children Act 1989, have an obligation to investigate such matters.
The Legal framework for this policy
- The Children Act (2004/1989)
- Working together to Safeguard children (2018)
- Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act (2006)
- Keeping Children Safe in Education (Sept 2020)
- The Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage (2017)
- Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015.
The designated Safeguarding Officer is:
Saeeda Aslam : Manager
In her absence the named safeguarding person is:
Haifa Nass : Deputy Manager
Safer Recruitment– Our Management is trained in safer recruitment where they have received the correct procedures that must be in place to ensure that all staff, student’s training and volunteers working on the premises are suitable to have contact with the children.
Practitioners at Happy Children Nursery will endeavour to safeguard children’s welfare by:
- Adopting child protection guidelines that are in line with ‘Working Together to Safeguard Children’ (HM Government 2018). This guidance sets out how organisations should work together to safeguard and promote the welfare of children in accordance with the Children Act 1989 and the Children Act 2004.
- Sharing these guidelines with parents, carers, nursery practitioners and volunteers.
- Sharing information about concerns with parents and families services as appropriate.
- Following procedures for safer recruitment and selection of employees
- Obtaining a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check for all employees, volunteers and students on placements.
- All employees, volunteers and students on placements will provide proof of identity, detailed references.
- Providing effective training, support and supervision of nursery practitioners, volunteers and students on placement as appropriate.
- Evoking any other procedure that will assist with safeguarding children from abuse or neglect. Such procedures may include Equal Opportunities or Medication Procedures.
Causes for concern
Physical injuries – Nursery practitioners are in regular contact with small children therefore are familiar with the normal range of minor injuries that children sustain in their day-to-day activity. There is a cause for concern if a child appears to sustain significantly more than the average of these types of injuries, or if the injury is in an unusual place, or forms a pattern suggesting the child has been hit, gripped or bitten, or is in physical pain or discomfort. Burns and scalds that have not been treated by a doctor are also a cause for concern.
Poor physical appearance – the child is always inappropriately dressed for the weather or is or in dirty clothes.
Unusual behaviour –such as showing negative behaviour or an attitude towards an adult or the child’s behaviour shows a pattern that is destructive, cruel, challenging or withdrawn. The child shows significant eating and/or toileting problems.
Verbal comment – A child may say something that gives cause for concern.
Negative parenting – The parent regularly shows anger, indifference or rejection towards the child or is more favourable to one over the other.
A child in need
There are some children who will have additional needs whereby a plan is required in order to bring together services to support the child. This is achieved through the development of an Early Help Assessment Tool (EHAT) assessment. This assessment brings the parents and services involved with the child together to devise a plan to meet the child’s needs.
A child is considered to be in need if:
- They are unlikely to achieve a reasonable standard of health or development.
- The child’s health or development is likely to be significantly impaired without access to services.
- The child is disabled.
What to do if you believe a child is in need
- Share your concerns with the Nursery’s Designated Safeguarding Officer
- Assess the child’s needs and develop a plan with the parents/carers so that the child’s needs can be met
- The setting will work with the parents/carers and the EHAT Team in the event that an EHAT assessment being required.
- In the event that the child’s needs are serious, a referral to Careline is appropriate.
Dealing with a Disclosure
It is important that you conduct any conversation with a child appropriately.
1. Receive the information- stay calm and listen to the child.
2. Reassure the child.
3. React appropriately- don’t promise confidentiality and do not ask any questions.
- Record– You must keep accurate records of any concerns on a Cause for Concern: Disclosure form. Writing down the following
- The child’s full name
- Date and time of the disclosure
- Record exact words spoken by the child (as far as possible)
- Record statements and observations and not interpretations and assumptions
- Draw a diagram with position of any injury or marks that can be seen
- Record the type of injury/marks (i.e Cigarette burn/ bruise etc.)
- Record any other persons present at the time
In the event that a Cause for Concern disclosure form is not available such as on an outing away from the nursery please write down the above (a-g) on paper until one becomes available.
- Report- Report the disclosure to your designated Safeguarding Officer who will then take appropriate action.
The cause for concern sheet should be signed by the person reporting this, the designated Safeguarding Officer and Manager, and kept in a locked confidential file.
It is important that you do not attempt to investigate for yourself as this may jeopardise any future professional investigation and potentially contaminate evidence
Happy Children Nursery expects all members of staff to co-operate with the Liverpool Safeguarding Children’s Board (LSCB) and Ofsted in any way necessary to ensure the safety of the children.
Staff must not make comment either publicly or in private about a parent’s supposed or actual behaviour.
Managing allegations or concerns about staff
Any concerns about a member of staff should be addressed to the designated Safeguarding Officer (Nursery Manager).
If an allegation is made against a member of staff the designated Safeguarding Officer will immediately inform Careline. It is important to take the name of the person spoken to at the beginning of the phone call, they will then advise on the next steps to be taken. The Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) will also be on hand to convene a strategy meeting and offer advice and support. OFSTED and Liverpool Safeguarding Children Board (LSCB) will also need to be informed, the matter will then be investigated.
If the concern is about the Nursery Manager then the matter should be addressed to the Nursery Trustees Mrs Nagebah Hayel Muckbel: firstname.lastname@example.org / or
Faiza Akram: email@example.com who are both on the trustee board of Happy Children Nursery. Once a concern has been received by them they will proceed by immediately inform Careline and taking the right cause of action.
We ensure that all parents as well as staff, know how to make a formal complaint about a staff member or volunteer in the setting which may include an allegation of abuse.
If an allegation of abuse is made about a member of staff or anyone working with children on our premises the following will take place:
- Details of the alleged incident will be recorded on a Cause for Concern form.
- We will refer any such complaint to the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) and Ofsted (Ofsted shall be contacted within a 14 day period of receiving the allegation).
- We will co-operate entirely with any investigation carried out by Liverpool social services in conjunction with the police.
- Our policy is to suspend the member of staff involved in the alleged incident for the duration of investigation of the incident; this is not an indication of admission that the alleged incident has taken place, rather it is to protect the staff member as well as children and families throughout the process.
In addition to this:
- Staff will cooperate with the investigating authority.
- All investigation/interviews will be documented and kept in a locked file. Records on the alleged perpetrator will be kept for a maximum of 10 years; this includes records of people no longer associated with the provision.
- Unfounded allegations will result in all rights being re‐instated.
- All allegations will be passed on to the relevant organisation (Careline) and will result in the termination of employment. OFSTED may be notified immediately of the allegation. The nursery will also be required to notify the Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA) to ensure their records are updated.
- If an allegation of abuse is made about the nursery manager/registered person with OFSTED, the person making the complaint should contact OFSTED and Children’s services or the police directly.
The Prevent duty
There is no single way of identifying an individual who is likely to be susceptible to terrorist ideology. As with managing other safeguarding risks, staff should be alert to changes in children’s behaviour that could indicate that they may be in need of help or protection. Children at risk of radicalisation may display different signs or seek to hide their views. Staff should use their professional judgement in identifying children who might be at risk and act proportionately.
Female Genital Mutilation
Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), is an extremely harmful and abusive practice against children. This type of physical abuse is practised as a cultural ritual by certain ethnic groups. It comprises all procedures that involve partial or total removal of the external female genitalia, or other injury to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons
symptoms and indicators for FGM may include: Difficulty in walking, standing or sitting; Spending longer time going to the toilet; child appears withdrawn, anxious or upset; having a change in behaviour and bleeding;
If staff are concerned that a child is at risk of FGM, they must inform the Safeguarding Officer. Under Section 74 of the Serious Crime Act 2015 amended the Female Genital Mutilation Act 2003, it is a legal duty for teachers and people working with children to contact the police, if: 1. They are informed by a girl under the age of 18 that she has undergone an act of FGM or 2. They observe physical signs that an act of FGM may be have been carried out on a girl under the age of 18. This mandatory reporting is in addition to the usual reporting of child abuse ( DFE 2016)
Exposure to domestic abuse and/or violence can have a serious effect on a child’s behaviour and overall wellbeing. It can negatively impact the children’s emotional and psychological development, mental health as well as their education outcomes. It undermines the child’s basic need for safety and security.
The Domestic Violence, Crime and Victims Act 2004 extended provisions to help stop domestic abuse and created the new offence of “causing or allowing the death of a child or vulnerable adult”. This Act was amended in 2012 by the Domestic Violence, Crime and Victims (Amendment) Act 2012 to include ‘causing or allowing serious physical harm (equivalent to grievous bodily harm) to a child or vulnerable adult’.
Where domestic abuse is taking place in a child’s home the child is at risk of harm, whether they witness the violence or not. If there are any signs or symptoms that domestic abuse may be occurring we must act promptly according to our safeguarding / child protection policy
Concerns should be kept confidential and particular care taken when dealing with sensitive information.
Recording an accurate account of disclosures, conversations, child’s behaviour and observations is vital to ensure that factual and clear information is passed on to Careline.
All records must be up to date and stored safely.
Training for Nursery Practitioners
All our staff and trustee will receive in house safeguarding training. This will include the procedures for recording and reporting.
All staff have a copy of the ‘Safeguarding Manual: A guide for practitioners at Happy Children Nursery’, This is an easy to use manual that has been produced by ourselves to help our staff understand their roles and responsibilities towards safeguarding children in our care.
In addition to this all staff have access to LSCB’s Pre-Referral Review flowchart which clearly outlines actions to be taken in the case of a cause for concern.
Contact with OFSTED
Ofsted must be contacted within 14 days in the situation of managing allegations and concerns about staff or a child.
The Role of the Designated Safeguarding Officer (Nursery Manager)
To liaise with safeguarding children agencies in any child protection situation and ensure staff are aware of child protection issues, including possible indications of abuse or neglect, and receive training and support to enable them to implement Safeguarding Children Policies and Procedures.
Roles and responsibilities
- To liaise with safeguarding children agencies in any child protection situation.
- To ensure that all relevant people are kept informed on issues such as case reports, referrals, and where appropriate disciplinary action.
- To provide information, advice and support to nursery practitioners.
- Ensure Safeguarding Children policies and procedures are kept up to date according to LSCB procedures.
- Maintain case records.
- Attend any Safeguarding Children training and feed back to nursery practitioners.
- To provide in house training on safeguarding to all staff in the nursery.
The designated Safeguarding Officer is:
Saeeda Aslam (Manager)
In her absence the named safeguarding person is:
Haifa Nass (Deputy Manager)
Important Contact Numbers
LIVERPOOL CHILDREN’S SERVICES (CARELINE)
TELEPHONE NUMBER: 0151 233 3700
TELEPHONE NUMBER: 0151 709 6010
TELEPHONE NUMBER 0300 1231231
LOCAL AUTHORITY DESIGNATED OFFICER (LADO)
RAY SAID 0151 2258101
NURSERY MANAGER AND LIASE WITH OFSTED:
Mrs SAEEDA ASLAM
07572545691 / 07888688994
Mrs Nagebah Hayel Muckbel :
Mrs Faiza Akram : firstname.lastname@example.org