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Schools support and safeguarding

Children and young people have a right to be protected from harm, and families have a right to expect schools to provide a safe and secure environment.

All schools have a legal duty to follow government statutory guidance and work in partnership with other agencies to safeguard children welfare.

Your schools governing body or proprietor will appoint a senior member of staff to take lead responsibility for safeguarding and child protection matters affecting pupils at the school (the 'designated safeguarding lead'). Your school will have a child protection policy, to explain how your school deals with child protection concerns, including allegations about the behaviour of members of staff. These policies should be made available on your school's website and reviewed and updated annually.

Schools must follow: 
•    The law
•    Guidance from the Department for Education
•    Local multi-agency child protection procedures

If the school is worried about a pupil's welfare, and they are concerned the pupil is at risk of significant harm they have a duty to refer this on to MASH . The school will normally let the pupil's parent(s) know when they do this. But they should not contact parents if they think this could put the pupil at risk of harm. When a school refers a child protection concern to a social worker, they must share all relevant information about the pupil.

The Data Protection Act allows schools to share personal information with other agencies when there are child protection concerns.

Within 24 hours of receiving the referral, the social worker, usually in consultation with other agencies, will decide what should happen next.

If they decide it needs looking into further, the appropriate action will depend on the circumstances. It could include:
•    An initial assessment
•    Child protection enquiries, including agencies assessing the risks to any children based upon information shared, research and talking to those concerned
•    If the referral is an allegation about a member of staff, please see information regarding  DOFA

They will contact you to let you know what is happening as soon as possible.

Support for schoolchildren