child protection policy

 

Child Protection Policy

Jam Music Company

 

The Jam Music Company  recognises that child protection and welfare considerations permeate all aspects of school life and must be reflected in all of the school’s policies, practices and activities.

 

The Management of Jam Music Company has agreed the following child protection policy:

 

The Jam Music Company  has adopted and will implement fully and without modification the Department’s Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post Primary Schools as part of this overall child protection policy.

The Designated Liaison Person (DLP) is Nora Salmon

The Deputy Designated Liaison Person (Deputy DLP)  is Dean Lane

In its policies, practices and activities, Jam Music Company will adhere to the following principles of best practice in child protection and welfare:

 

The school will  recognise that the protection and welfare of children is of paramount importance, regardless of all other considerations;  fully cooperate with the relevant statutory authorities in relation to child protection and welfare matters adopt safe practices to minimise the possibility of harm or accidents happening to children and protect workers from the necessity to take unnecessary risks that may leave themselves open to accusations of abuse or neglect;  

 

Develop a practice of openness with parents and encourage parental involvement in the education of their children; and  fully respect confidentiality requirements in dealing with child protection matters. The school will also adhere to the above principles in relation to any adult pupil with a special vulnerability.

 

This policy has been made available to school personnel and is readily accessible to parents on request.

This policy will be reviewed by the Management once in every school year.

 

Introduction

 

A copy of the school’s child protection policy which includes the names of the Designated Liaison Person (DLP) and Deputy DLP shall be made available to all school personnel and Parents and must be readily accessible on request.

 

The name of the DLP must be displayed in a prominent position near the main entrance to the school.

 

Each school must undertake an annual review of its child protection policy and its implementation by the school.

 

A checklist to be used in undertaking the review.

 

The school must put in place an action plan to address any areas for improvement identified by the review.

 

The Management shall make arrangements to inform school personnel that the review has been undertaken.

 

Written notification, that the review has been undertaken shall be provided to the Parents’ Association (or where none exists directly to parents).

 

A record of the review and its outcome shall be made available.

 

Responsibilities of all School Personnel

 

There is an obligation on schools to provide children with the highest possible standard of care in order to promote their well being and protect them from harm.

 

School personnel are especially well placed to observe changes in children’s behaviour, their lack of development or outward signs of abuse. In situations where school personnel suspect that a child may have been abused or neglected, or is being abused or neglected, or is at risk of abuse or neglect, they shall ensure that such concerns are reported in accordance with the procedures outlined in Chapter 4 of these procedures.

 

Designated Liaison Person

 

It is the responsibility of all Boards of Management to designate a senior full time member of staff as the Designated Liaison Person (DLP) for the school. It is expected that the DLP will normally be the principal. Where the Board of Management appoints a DLP who is not the principal, the school authority should put in place arrangements to ensure that the DLP will keep the principal appropriately informed of child protection matters. It is also the responsibility of the Board of Management to designate another member of staff (to be known as the Deputy DLP) to assume the responsibilities of the DLP, where the DLP is unavailable for whatever reason. The Board of Management shall ensure that arrangements are in place to enable the Deputy DLP to effectively assume his/her responsibilities in the absence of the DLP and to ensure that the Deputy DLP can access relevant records as required. The names of the DLP and the Deputy DLP shall be recorded in the child protection policy. The name of the DLP shall be displayed in a prominent position near the main entrance to the school.

 

The DLP will act as a liaison with outside agencies and as a resource person to any staff member or volunteer who has child protection concerns. As a resource person, the DLP shall ensure that he/she is knowledgeable about child protection and undertakes any training considered necessary to keep him/her updated on new developments. This person will be the designated liaison person for the school in dealing with the HSE, An Garda Síochána and other parties, in connection with allegations of and/or concerns about child abuse and neglect. Those other parties shall be advised that they shall conduct all matters pertaining to the processing or assessment/investigation of alleged child abuse.

 

Recording procedures:

 

In the circumstances where staff members feel that there are reasonable grounds for concern, the following reporting procedures should be followed carefully. Staff should record the following information in relation to children:  

 

Suspicions, Concerns,  Worrying observations, Behavioural changes,  Actions and Outcomes

 

Written records of this nature should be submitted to the Designated Liaison Person and kept in a locked cabinet. These records are not to be viewed by anyone not directly connected with the report.

 

Dealing with a disclosure:  

 

Stay calm and listen to the child, allow the child enough time to say what they need to say;  Accept what the child says; Do not use leading questions or prompt details. If clarification is required, try to use language that is similar to that used by the child;  Reassure the child but do not promise to keep anything secret; Do not make the child repeat the details unnecessarily; Explain to the child what will happen next (explanation should be age appropriate);  Remain supportive to the child.

 

Reporting Procedures:

 

Reports of abuse or suspected abuse will be made to the relevant authorities.

In the event of a concern or disclosure of abuse, staff should follow these reporting procedures:  

In the event of a disclosure: Record all details, including date, time, and people involved in the disclosure and the facts Information recorded should be factual;  

Try to use exact quotations from the child’s testimony and do not use your own language in the record;  

If necessary, draw a discrete diagram to illustrate any injuries that may have been reported in the course of the disclosure.

Inform the Designated Person (or the Deputy Designated Person, if unavailable);  If the Designated Person and Deputy Designated Person are not available, contact the local Duty Social Worker in Tusla directly;  The Designated Person may contact the Tusla Duty Social Worker for an informal consultation prior to making a report;

Any concern should then be reported to Tusla without delay.  Any concern about a potential risk to children posed by a specific person, even if the children are unidentifiable, should also be reported to Tusla  Failure to report and failure to take steps with regard to child protection and abuse is in breach of the “Reckless Endangerment of Children” Section 176, Criminal Justice Act, 2006  

 

In the case where the Designated Person decides not to report concerns to Tusla, the individual employee or volunteer who raised the concern will be given a clear written statement of the reasons why the organisation is not taking such action.

 

The Protection for Persons Reporting Child Abuse Act 1998 makes provisions for the protection from civil liability of persons who have communicate child abuse ‘reasonably and in good faith’ to designated officers of Tusla or to any member of An Garda Síochána.

If there are reasonable grounds for concern, the Designated Person will contact the Duty Social Worker using the standard reporting form available from Tusla .

Parents, carers or responsible adults should be made aware of a report to Tusla unless it is likely to put the child at further risk;  

In case of emergencies outside of Tusla’s service hours, contact the Gardaí. In situations that threaten the immediate safety of a child, it may be necessary to contact the Gardaí;  

In the case of a staff member reporting a concern, they are invited to contact the Duty Social Worker with Tusla to discuss their concern.

 

If concerns about a child are reported anonymously, they will be followed up fully in accordance with Tusla standard procedures. If the report has been made through a third party, the person mediating should be requested to facilitate contact between the original person who reported the concern and Tusla  

Throughout the process, the person who expresses the concern should be involved and kept informed, where appropriate. When a report has been made to the Designated Person, all actions and outcomes should be noted.

 

Staff members reporting abuse are entitled to request written acknowledgement from the body with whom the complaint has been lodged (e.g. Designated Person or Duty Social Worker). Likewise, the Designated Person is entitled to request written acknowledgement from the Duty Social Worker or the Gardaí acknowledging the receipt of the report.  

If there is concern that a child is missing, contact the Designated Person without delay. Section 4 – Statement of Confidentiality:

 

Information will be shared on a ‘need to know’ basis only in order to safeguard the welfare of the child;  Supplying appropriate information to other necessary parties for the protection of a child is not a breach of confidentiality;  Primary carers and children have a right to know if personal information is being shared and/or a report is being made to Tusla unless doing so would put the child at further risk;

Images of a child will not be published without the consent of the parent/carer (however, we cannot guarantee that cameras/videos will not be used by other parties during public performances);  Primary carers will be informed of any recording that takes place during workshops or events;

 

Procedures have been put in place for the recording and storing of information in line with our confidentiality policy.  A policy of cooperating with Tusla in the sharing of our records where a child welfare or protection issue arises

 

We are committed to attend and share information, as required, at formal child protection and welfare meetings as organised by Tusla ie. Child protection Conferences and Strategy Meetings.

 

Code of Behaviour for Staff

 

Children are to be treated with dignity, sensitivity and respect.

 

School staff must be sensitive to the risks involved in interacting with children in a one-to-one setting.

 

While physical contact may be necessary to instruct a child how to hold/play an instrument, it should be appropriate to the lesson or class, and only take place when it is acceptable to all concerned.

 

While physical contact is a valid way of comforting, reassuring and showing concern for children, it should only take place when it is acceptable to all concerned.

 

School staff should never physically punish or be in any way verbally abusive to a child, nor should they ever tell jokes of a sexual nature in the presence of children.

 

School staff should be sensitive to the possibility of developing favouritism, or becoming over involved or spending a great deal of time with any one child.

 

Children and/or parents should be encouraged to report any problems to either the School’s child protection officer (Nora Salmon) or a staff member of their choice.

 

Complaints will be brought to the attention of the School director.

 

All complaints and allegations will be met with a response.

 

Everyone involved with the School should respect the personal space, safety and privacy of individuals.