St Mary’s Catholic High School is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and expects all staff and volunteers to share this commitment. We are committed to ensuring the welfare and safety of all our children in school. We believe that students have a right to learn in a supportive, caring and safe environment which includes the right to protection from all types of abuse; where staff are vigilant for signs of any student in distress and are confident about applying the processes to avert and alleviate any such problems.
The school’s Safeguarding and other policies are available on request from the school or can be viewed on the school website. All staff (including supply staff, volunteers and governors) must ensure that they are aware of these procedures.
Sometimes we may need to share information and work in partnership with other external agencies when there are concerns about a child’s welfare. We will ensure that our concerns about our students are discussed with his/her parents/carers first unless we have reason to believe that such a move would be contrary to the child’s welfare.
Safeguarding is about ensuring that everyone is safe from harm - safe from bullying, safe from people who could abuse, safe from discrimination or harassment, safe from radicalisation - and that we all feel safe in our environment.
If your child is ever concerned about safety or well-being or about a friend, they should talk to someone such as a parent, a member of staff at school, including our dedicated Safeguarding Team:
Designated Safeguarding Lead – Mr G Taylor
Deputy Desigated Safeguarding Leads – Mrs E Englefield, Ms V Arocas, & Mr M Irvine
Safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children is defined as: protecting children from maltreatment; preventing impairment of children’s health or development; ensuring that children grow up in circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective care; and taking action to enable all children to have the best outcomes.
Safeguarding is a priority in the school atall times.
What we do to safeguard students at St Mary’s Catholic High School
- Students assigned a tutor to take an especial interest in them
- Strong pastoral system to support students’ welfare
- Close liaison with parents/carers
- An established ethos of encouraging students to speak to staff about problems either their own or their friends’
- Student Support Worker to support students with emotional needs
- Access to programmes to support identified students’ emotional well-being e.g. managing emotions, building positive relationships, managing pressure
- Referrals made to outside agencies if support is needed beyond the expertise available in school
Clear expectations and action to maintain a safe environment:
- Policies and practices covering: - safeguarding and child protection including information on self-harm and radicalisation, e-safety, health and safety, anti-bullying, racism and discrimination and whistle-blowing
- Comprehensive behaviour policy and systematic and graduating sanction and reward systems
- Supervised student dismissal at the end of the day and the local area is monitored by senior staff
- Close monitoring of student attendance with automated calls to parents/carers if student are absent or late without prior notice
- Safer recruitment practice followed and security checks made on all staff employed and volunteers working in the school
- Staff receive regular safeguarding training; four members of staff trained as Designated Safeguarding Leads
- Close working relationship with the schools’ police team
- PSHE lessons covering safeguarding issues e.g. anti-bullying, assertive behaviour, e-safety, healthy relationships, etc
- A variety of safety messages delivered to students via assemblies and in the weekly student bulletin
Safety and Security on site:
- Secure site needing security pass entry during the school day
- Security cameras in playground and corridor
- Filtered internet access
- Monitoring and checking anything accessed or written on school computer/iCT devices, following up on any concerns
- Risk assessments carried out for offsite activities and for students with specific difficulties
- First aiders in the school office and in other key areas
- Staff and visitors wear identification badges