Countess Anne School - a Church of England Academy

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CHILD  PROTECTION  POLICY

 

Countess Anne School

 

Our school is a place that will be known for….

Ø     Academic provision that recognises the need for excellence in teaching and learning.

Ø     Holistic provision that encourages Christian hope; building spirit and soul through faith orientated pastoral care.

Ø     Inspirational provision through a modern curriculum that celebrates diversity and provides new opportunities.

 

 

 

Policy Review

 

This policy will be reviewed in full by the Governing Body annually.

 

The policy was last reviewed and agreed by the Governing Body on 21/01/19.

 

It is due for review in Jan 2020.

 

 

 

Signature …DRLodge                       Date 21/01/19

 

Head Teacher                                                          

           

Signature …MGifkins            Date 21/01/19

 

Chair of Governors 

 

 C O N T E N T S

 

1

 

Introduction

 

 

2

 

Statutory Framework

 

 

3

 

The Designated Senior Person

 

 

4

 

The Governing Body

 

 

5

 

When to be concerned

 

 

6

 

Dealing with a Disclosure

 

 

7

 

Record Keeping

 

 

8

 

Confidentiality

 

9

 

School Procedures

 

10

 

Communication  with parents

 

 

11

 

Allegations Involving School Staff/Volunteers

 

 

Appendix 1

 

Link to Keeping Children Safe in Education (DfE, 2018)

 

Part One:  Information for all school and college staff

Annex A: Further information

 

Appendix 2

Declaration for staff:

Child Protection Policy and Keeping Children Safe in Education (DfE, 2016)

 

 

Appendix 3

 

What to do if you’re worried a child is being abused: advice for practitioners flowchart (DfE 2015)

 

 

Appendix 4

 

Indicators of abuse and neglect

 


 

1.      INTRODUCTION

 

 

Safeguarding is defined as protecting children from maltreatment, preventing impairment of children’s health and/or development, ensuring that children are growing up in circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective care and taking action to enable all children to have the best life chances (Working Together to Safeguard Children, DfE, 2015, pg.92)

 

This Child Protection Policy forms part of a suite of documents and policies which relate to the safeguarding responsibilities of the school. 

 

In particular this policy should be read in conjunction with the Safeguarding Policy (if your school/college chooses to adopt one), Safer Recruitment Policy, Behaviour Policy, Physical Intervention Policy, Anti-Bullying Policy, Code of Conduct/Staff Behaviour Policy, E-safety Policy and ICT Acceptable Usage Policy.

 

Purpose of a Child Protection Policy

To inform staff, parents, volunteers and governors about the school's responsibilities for safeguarding children.

To enable everyone to have a clear understanding of how these responsibilities should be carried out.

 

Hertfordshire Safeguarding Children Board Inter-agency Child Protection and Safeguarding Children Procedures

 

The school follows the procedures established by the Hertfordshire Safeguarding Children Board; a guide to procedure and practice for all agencies in Hertfordshire working with children and their families.

www.hertssafeguarding.org.uk

 

School Staff & Volunteers

 

 

All school and college staff have a responsibility to provide a safe environment in which children can learn.

 

School staff and volunteers are particularly well placed to observe outward signs of abuse, changes in behaviour and failure to develop because they have daily contact with children.

 

All school staff will receive appropriate safeguarding children training (which is updated regularly – Hertfordshire Safeguarding Children Board advises every three years), so that they are knowledgeable and aware of their role in the early recognition of the indicators of abuse or neglect and of the appropriate procedures to follow. In addition all staff members should receive safeguarding and child protection updates (for example, via email, e-bulletins and staff meetings), as required, but at least annually, to provide them with relevant skills and knowledge to safeguard children effectively.

 

Temporary staff and volunteers will be made aware of the safeguarding policies and procedures by the Designated Senior Person-including Child Protection Policy and staff behaviour policy (code of conduct)

 

Safeguarding Statement

 

We recognise that we have a responsibility to:

ü      establish and maintain an ethos and culture where children feel secure, are encouraged to talk, and are listened and responded to when they have a worry or concern.

 

ü      establish and maintain an ethos and culture where school staff and volunteers feel safe, are encouraged to talk and are listened and responded to when they have concerns about the safety and well-being of a child.

 

ü      ensure children know that there are adults in the school whom they can approach if they are worried.

 

ü      ensure that children, who have additional/unmet needs are supported appropriately. This could include referral to early help services or specialist services if they are a child in need or have been / are at risk of being abused and neglected.

 

ü      consider how children may be taught about safeguarding, including online, through teaching and learning opportunities, as part of providing a broad and balanced curriculum.

 

ü      advised staff to maintain an attitude of ‘it could happen here’ and ‘it could be happening to this child’, where safeguarding is concerned. When concerned about the welfare of a child, staff members should always act in the interests of the child.

 

 

Implementation, Monitoring and Review of the Child Protection Policy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The policy will be reviewed at least annually by the governing body. It will be implemented through the school’s induction and training programme, and as part of day to day practice.  Compliance with the policy will be monitored by the Designated Senior Person and through staff performance measures.

 

 

 

 

2.      STATUTORY FRAMEWORK

 

 

In order to safeguard and promote the welfare of children, the school will act in accordance with the following legislation and guidance:

 

          Outlines that Local Authorities and School Governing Bodies have a 

          responsibility to  “ ensure that their functions relating to the conduct of school         

          are exercised with a view to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children 

          who are its pupils”.

 

Working Together to Safeguard Children (DfE 2015) requires each school to follow the procedures for protecting children from abuse and neglect which are established by the Hertfordshire Safeguarding Children Board. 

 

Schools are also expected to ensure that they have appropriate procedures in place for responding to situations in which:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

3.   THE DESIGNATED SENIOR PERSON

N.B. Keeping Children Safe in Education, DfE 2018

refers to this role as Designated Safeguarding Lead - DSL

 

 

Governing bodies and proprietors should ensure that the school or college designates an appropriate senior member of staff to take lead responsibility for child protection. This person should have the status and authority within the school to carry out the duties of the post including committing resources and, where appropriate, supporting and directing other staff.

 

During term time the designated safeguarding lead and or a deputy will always be available during school hours for staff in the school or college to discuss any safeguarding concerns and individual arrangement for out of hours/out of term activities will be:

___________________________________________________________________________

The Designated Senior Person for Child Protection in this school is:

 

NAME:    David Lodge

 

There should be a Deputy Designated Senior Person (DDSP) in the absence of the lead DSP.

 

The Deputy Designated Senior Person for Child Protection in this school is:

 

NAME:    Emma Byrne, James Emanuel, Caroline Juhasz

 

 

The broad areas of responsibility for the Designated Senior Person are:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Designated Senior Person should undergo formal training every two years . The DSP should also undertake Prevent awareness training  In addition to this training, their knowledge and skills should be refreshed(for example via e-bulletins, meeting other DSPs, or taking time to read and digest safeguarding developments) at least annually to:

 

  1. Understand the assessment process for providing early help and intervention, for example through locally agreed common and shared assessment processes such as early help assessments
  2. Have a working knowledge of how local authorities conduct a child protection case conference and a child protection review conference and be able to attend and contribute to these effectively when required to do so
  3. Ensure each member of staff has access to and understands the school’s or college’s safeguarding and child protection policy and procedures, especially new and part time staff

 

  1. Be alert to the specific needs of children in need, those with special educational needs and young carers
  2. Understand and support the school or college with regards to the requirements of the Prevent duty and are able to provide advice and support to staff on protecting children from the risk of radicalisation
  3. Be able to keep detailed, accurate, secure written records of concerns and referrals
  4. Obtain access to resources and attend any relevant or refresher training courses
  5. Encourage a culture of listening and responding to children and taking account of their wishes and feelings, among all staff, in any measures the school or college may put in place to protect them

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

4.   THE GOVERNING BODY

 

 

Governing bodies and proprietors must ensure that they comply with their duties under legislation. They must also have regard to this guidance to ensure that the policies, procedures and training in their schools or colleges are effective and comply with the law at all times.

 

The nominated governor for child protection is:

 

NAME:  Murray Gifkins

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The responsibilities placed on governing bodies and proprietors include:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5.      WHEN TO BE CONCERNED

 

 

 

If staff members have any concerns about a child they will need to decide what action to take. Where possible, there should be a conversation with the designated safeguarding lead/Designated Senior Person to agree a course of action, although any staff member can make a referral to Children’s Services by ringing 0300 123 4043. 

 

If a child is in immediate danger or is at risk of harm, a referral should be made to Children’s Services and/or the police immediately.  Anyone can make a referral. Where referrals are not made by the designated safeguarding lead, the designated safeguarding lead should be informed as soon as possible that a referral has been made.

 

 

 

 

A child centred and coordinated approach to safeguarding:

 

Safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children is everyone’s responsibility. In order to fulfil this responsibility effectively, each professional should make sure their approach is child centred. This means that they should consider, at all times, what is in the best interests of the child.

Schools and colleges and their staff form part of the wider safeguarding system for children. This system is based on the principle of providing help for families to stay together where it is safe for the children to do so, and looking at alternatives where it is not, whilst acting in the best interests of the child at all times.

 

Children who may require early help (known as Families First in Hertfordshire)

 

Families First is Hertfordshire's programme of early help services for families.

A directory of early help services is available at www.hertfordshire.gov.uk/familiesfirst and will help practitioners and families find information and support to prevent escalation of needs and crisis. 

 

All staff should be aware of the early help process, and understand their role in identifying emerging problems, sharing information with other professionals to support early identification and assessment of a child’s needs. It is important for children to receive the right help at the right time to address risks and prevent issues escalating.  This also includes staff monitoring the situation and feeding back to the Designated Senior Person any ongoing/escalating concerns so that  consideration can be given to a referral to Children’s Services (Safeguarding and Specialist Services) if the child’s situation doesn’t appear to be improving.

 

Staff and volunteers working within the School should be alert to the potential need for early help for children also who are more vulnerable. For example:

 

School and college staff members should be aware of the main categories of maltreatment:  physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse and neglect. They should also be aware of the indicators of maltreatment and specific safeguarding issues so that they are able to identify cases of children who may be in need of help or protection.

 

See Appendix 4 for information on indicators of abuse and Appendix 1 for specific safeguarding issues.

 

Children with special educational needs and disabilities:

 

Additional barriers can exist when recognising abuse and neglect in this group of children.  

This can include:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Peer on peer abuse

 

Education settings are an important part of the inter-agency framework not only in terms of identifying, evaluating and referring concerns to Children’s Services and the Police, but also in the assessment and management  of risk that the child or young person may pose to themselves and others in the education setting.

 

If one child or young person causes harm to another, this should not necessarily be dealt with as abuse. When considering whether behaviour is abusive, it is important to consider:

 

 

Peer on peer abuse can manifest itself in many ways and different gender issues can be prevalent. Severe harm may be caused to children by abusive and bullying behaviour of other children, which may be physical, sexual or emotional and can include gender based violence/ sexual assaults, sexting, teenage relationship abuse, peer-on-peer exploitation, serious youth violence, sexual bullying or harmful sexual behaviour.

 

Hertfordshire County Council recommends that education settings use The Sexual Behaviours Traffic Light Tool by the Brook Advisory Service to help professionals; assess and respond appropriately to sexualised behaviour. The traffic light tool can be found at

https://www.brook.org.uk/our-work/the-sexual-behaviours-traffic-light-tool

 

Guidance on responding to and managing sexting incidents can be found at:

http://www.thegrid.org.uk/info/welfare/child_protection/reference/index.shtml#sex

 

Staff should recognise that children are capable of abusing their peers and should not be tolerated or passed off as “banter” or “part of growing up”.

 

In order to minimise the risk of peer on peer abuse the school:

 

 

 

Where there is an allegation or concern that a child has abused others Section 4.4 of the Hertfordshire Safeguarding Children Board Inter Agency Child Protection Procedures manual, ‘Children Who Abuse Others’:

 

http://hertsscb.proceduresonline.com/chapters/p_chil_abuse.html

 

 

 

6. DEALING WITH A DISCLOSURE

 

If a child discloses that he or she has been abused in some way, the member of staff / volunteer should:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Support

 

Dealing with a disclosure from a child, and safeguarding issues can be stressful.  The member of staff/volunteer should, therefore, consider seeking support for him/herself and discuss this with the Designated Senior Person.

 

If a school /college staff member receives a disclosure about potential harm caused by another staff member, they should see section 11 of this policy– Allegations involving school staff/volunteers.

 

 


 

7.   RECORD KEEPING

 

 

 

All concerns, discussions and decisions made and the reasons for those decisions should be recorded in writing. If in doubt about recording requirements staff should discuss with the designated safeguarding lead.

 

When a child has made a disclosure, the member of staff/volunteer should:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All records need to be given to the Designated Senior Person promptly. No copies should be retained by the member of staff or volunteer.

 

The Designated Senior Person will ensure that all safeguarding records are managed in accordance with the Education (Pupil Information) (England) Regulations 2005.

 

If a pupil who is/or has been the subject of a child protection plan changes school, the Designated Senior Person will inform the social worker responsible for the case and transfer the appropriate records to the Designated Senior Person at the receiving school, in a secure manner, and separate from the child’s academic file.

 

 


 

8.   CONFIDENTIALITY

 

 

Safeguarding children raises issues of confidentiality that must be clearly understood by all staff/volunteers in schools.

 

 

 

 

 


 

9.   SCHOOL PROCEDURES

 

 

Please see Appendix 3: What to do if you are worried a child is being abused : flowchart.

 

If any member of staff is concerned about a child he or she must inform the Designated Senior Person. The Designated Senior Person will decide whether the concerns should be referred to Children’s Services: Safeguarding and Specialist Services. If it is decided to make a referral to Children’s Services: Safeguarding and Specialist Services this will be discussed with the parents, unless to do so would place the child at further risk of harm.

 

While it is the DSPs role to make referrals, any staff member can make a referral to Children’s Services . If a child is in immediate danger or is at risk of harm (e.g. concern that a family might have plans to carry out FGM), a referral should be made to Children’s Services and/or the Police immediately. Where referrals are not made by the DSP, the DSP should be informed as soon as possible.

 

If a teacher ( persons employed or engaged to carry out teaching work at schools and other institutions in England) , in the course of their work in the profession, discovers that an act of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) appears to have been carried out on a girl under the age of 18 the teacher must report this to the police. This is a mandatory reporting duty. See Appendix 1- Keeping Children Safe in Education (DfE 2018): Annex A for further details. 

 

Hertfordshire Children’s Services (including out of hours)  0300 123 4043.

If the allegations raised are against other children, the school should follow section 4.4 of the Hertfordshire Safeguarding Children Board Procedures Manual – Children Who Abuse Others . Please see the school’s anti-bullying policy for more details on procedures to minimise the risk of peer on peer abuse.

 

The member of staff must record information regarding the concerns on the same day.  The recording must be a clear, precise, factual account of the observations. (record of concern pro-forma is available on the Hertfordshire Grid for Learning).

 

Particular attention will be paid to the attendance and development of any child about whom the school has concerns, or who has been identified as being the subject of a child protection plan and a written record will be kept.

 

If a pupil who is/or has been the subject of a child protection plan changes school, the Designated Senior Person will inform the social worker responsible for the case and transfer the appropriate records to the Designated Senior Person at the receiving school, in a secure manner, and separate from the child’s academic file.

 

The Designated Senior Person is responsible for making the senior leadership team aware of trends in behaviour that may affect pupil welfare.  If necessary, training will be arranged.

 

 


 

10. COMMUNICATION WITH PARENTS

 

 

Countess Anne School will ensure the Child Protection Policy is available publicly either via the school or college website or by other means.

Parents should be informed prior to referral, unless it is considered to do so might place the child at increased risk of significant harm by:

(The school may also consider not informing parent(s) where this would place a member of staff at risk). 

Ensure that parents have an understanding of the responsibilities placed on the school and staff for safeguarding children.

 

 

 


 

11.   ALLEGATIONS INVOLVING SCHOOL STAFF/VOLUNTEERS

 

 

An allegation is any information which indicates that a member of staff/volunteer may have:

 

 

This applies to any child the member of staff/volunteer has contact within their personal, professional or community life.

 

What school or college staff should do if they have concerns about safeguarding practices within the school or college

 

All staff and volunteers should feel able to raise concerns about poor or unsafe practice and potential failures in the school or education setting’s safeguarding arrangements.

Appropriate whistleblowing procedures, which are suitably reflected in staff training and staff behaviour policies, should be in place for such concerns to be raised with the school or college’s senior leadership team.

 

If staff members have concerns about another staff member then this should be referred to the Head Teacher or Principal. Where there are concerns about the Head Teacher or Principal,  this should be referred to the Chair of Governors/ Chair of the Management Committee/Proprietor as appropriate.  Where the head teacher is also the sole proprietor of an independent school, allegations should be reported directly to the designated officer(s) at the local authority. Staff may consider discussing any concerns with the school’s designated safeguarding lead and make any referral via them.

 

 

 

The Chair of Governors in this school is:

 

NAME:    Murray Gifkins                             CONTACT NUMBER: 01707 262840     

 

Email: m.gifkins@countessanne.herts.sch.uk

 

_______________________                    _________________________

 

In the absence of the Chair of Governors, the Vice Chair should be contacted.  The Vice Chair in this school is:

 

NAME:    Jill Knight                                                 CONTACT NUMBER: 01707 262840                 

Email: j.knight@countessanne.herts.sch.uk

_______________________                    _________________________

 

 

In the event of allegations of abuse being made against the Head Teacher, where the Head Teacher is also the sole Proprietor of an independent school or where a staff member feels unable to raise an issue with their employer or feels that their genuine concerns are not being addressed, allegations should be reported directly to the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO). Staff may consider discussing any concerns with the Designated Senior Person if appropriate make any referral via them. (See Keeping Children Safe in Education: Part Four, DfE 2018, for further information).

 

The person to whom an allegation is first reported should take the matter seriously and keep an open mind. S/he should not investigate or ask leading questions if seeking clarification; it is important not to make assumptions. Confidentiality should not be promised and the person should be advised that the concern will be shared on a ‘need to know’ basis only.

 

Actions to be taken include making an immediate written record of the allegation using the informant’s words – including time, date and place where the alleged incident took place, brief details of what happened, what was said and who was present. This record should be signed, dated and immediately passed on to the Head Teacher.

 

 

The recipient of an allegation must not unilaterally determine its validity, and failure to report it in accordance with procedures is a potential disciplinary matter.

 

The Head Teacher/Chair of Governors will not investigate the allegation itself, or take written or detailed statements, but will assess whether it is necessary to refer the concern to the Local Authority Designated Officer:

 

Children’s Services – 03001234043

SOOHS (Out of Hours Service-Children’s Services) – 03001234043

 

If the allegation meets any of the three criteria set out at the start of this section, contact should always be made with the Local Authority Designated Officer without delay.

 

If it is decided that the allegation meets the threshold for safeguarding, this will take place in accordance with section 4.1 of the Hertfordshire Safeguarding Children Board Inter-agency Child Protection and Safeguarding Children Procedures.

 

If it is decided that the allegation does not meet the threshold for safeguarding, it will be handed back to the employer for consideration via the school’s internal procedures.

 

The Head Teacher should, as soon as possible, following briefing from the Local Authority Designated Officer inform the subject of the allegation.

 

For further information see:

HSCB Inter-agency Child Protection and Safeguarding Children Procedures (Electronic)

Section 4.1 Managing Allegations Against Adults who work with Children and Young People

 

Where a staff member feels unable to raise an issue with their employer/through the whistleblowing procedure or feels that their genuine concerns are not being addressed, other whistleblowing channels may be open to them:

 

 

Safer working practice

 

To reduce the risk of allegations, all staff should be aware of safer working practice and should be familiar with the guidance contained in the staff handbook/ school code of conduct / staff behaviour policy and Safer Recruitment Consortium  document Guidance for safer working practice for those working with children and young people in education settings (September 2015) available at http://www.thegrid.org.uk/info/welfare/child_protection/allegations/safe.shtml

 

The document seeks to ensure that the responsibilities of school leaders towards children

and staff are discharged by raising awareness of illegal, unsafe, unprofessional and unwise

behaviour.  This includes guidelines for staff on positive behaviour management in line with the ban on corporal punishment (School Standards and Framework Act 1998). Please see the school/college’s behaviour management policy for more information.

 

APPENDIX 1: KEEPING CHILDREN SAFE IN EDUCATION (DfE 2018)

Part One: Information for all school and college staff

Annex A: Further information

 

 

On publication of this Child Protection Policy (July 2016), the May 2016 version of the statutory guidance ‘Keeping Children Safe In Education’ available online, has been denoted by DfE as ‘for information only’. The guidance commenced on 5th September 2016. The DfE have confirmed that this guidance will be updated annually thereafter, most recently in September 2018.

 

The existing version of the statutory guidance mentions that there will be also be updates likely before September 2016 in respect to the definition of Child Sexual Exploitation and also regulations relating to Children Missing from Education. 

 

The CPSLO Service have therefore decided to provide the hyperlink only to Keeping Children Safe in Education in this policy rather than the document in its entirety, due to likely frequent change in content.

 

 It is essential that all staff have access to this online document and read Part 1 and Annex , which provides further information on:

 

-children missing from education

- child sexual exploitation

-‘honour based’ violence

-FGM mandatory reporting duty

-forced marriage

- preventing radicalisation

 

This is to assist staff to understand and discharge their role and responsibilities as set out in this guidance.

 

We highly recommend that staff are asked to sign to say they have read these sections (please see Appendix 2) and should subsequently be re-directed to these online documents again should any changes  occur.

 

 

Link to Keeping Children Safe in Education:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/keeping-children-safe-in-education--2

 

 

 

 

APPENDIX 2: DECLARATION FOR STAFF

 

 

Child Protection Policy and Keeping Children Safe in Education (DfE 2019)

 

 

 

School/College name …………………………………………….  Academic Year ……………………..

Please sign and return to ……. ……………………………….(DSP) by ……………….

 

 

 

I, ___________________________________________ have read and am familiar with the contents of the following documents and understand my role and responsibilities as set out in these document(s).:

 

(1) The School/College's Child Protection Policy      

(2) Part 1 and Annex A of 'Keeping Children Safe in Education' DfE Guidance , 2018

 

 

 

 

I am aware that the DSPs are:

 

……………………………………………………………………… ……………………… …………………..

……………… ……………………… ……………………………… ……………… …………………………

 

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

……………… ……………………… ……………………………… ……………… ………………………..

 

and I able to discuss any concerns that I may have with them.

 

 

I know that further guidance, together with copies of the policies mentioned above, are available ………………

 

 

Signed_____________________________________________ Date____________________

 

 

 

APPENDIX 3: WHAT TO DO IF YOU ARE WORRIED A CHILD IS BEING ABUSED: ADVICE FOR PRACTITIONERS (DfE 2015)

Flowchart

 

 

APPENDIX 4: INDICATORS OF ABUSE AND NEGLECT

 

 

 

The framework for understanding children’s needs:

 

Working Together to Safeguard Children (DFE, 2015)

 

Physical abuse

A form of abuse which may involve hitting, shaking, throwing, poisoning, burning or scalding, drowning, suffocating or otherwise causing physical harm to a child. Physical harm may also be caused when a parent or carer fabricates the symptoms of, or deliberately induces, illness in a child.

 

Child

Bruises – shape, grouping, site, repeat or multiple

Withdrawal from physical contact

Bite-marks – site and size

Burns and Scalds – shape, definition, size, depth, scars

Aggression towards others, emotional and behaviour problems

Improbable, conflicting explanations for injuries or unexplained injuries

Frequently absent from school

Untreated injuries

Admission of punishment which appears excessive

Injuries on parts of body where accidental injury is unlikely

Fractures

Repeated or multiple injurie

Fabricated or induced illness -

Parent

Family/environment

Parent with injuries

History of mental health, alcohol or drug misuse or domestic violence.

Evasive or aggressive towards child or others

Past history in the family of childhood abuse, self-harm, somatising disorder or false allegations of physical or sexual assault

Explanation inconsistent with injury

Marginalised or isolated by the community.

Fear of medical help / parents not seeking medical help

Physical or sexual assault or a culture of physical chastisement.

Over chastisement of child

 

 

Emotional abuse

The persistent emotional maltreatment of a child such as to cause severe and persistent adverse effects on the child’s emotional development. It may involve conveying to a child that they are worthless or unloved, inadequate, or valued only insofar as they meet the needs of another person. It may include not giving the child opportunities to express their views, deliberately silencing them or ‘making fun’ of what they say or how they communicate. It may feature age or developmentally inappropriate expectations being imposed on children. These may include interactions that are beyond a child’s developmental capability, as well as

over protection and limitation of exploration and learning, or preventing the child participating in normal social interaction. It may involve seeing or hearing the ill-treatment of another. It may involve serious bullying (including cyber bullying), causing children frequently to feel frightened or in danger, or the exploitation or corruption of children. Some level of emotional abuse is involved in all types of maltreatment of a child, though it may occur alone.

 

Child

Self-harm

Over-reaction to mistakes / Inappropriate emotional responses

Chronic running away

Abnormal or indiscriminate attachment

Drug/solvent abuse

Low self-esteem

Compulsive stealing

Extremes of passivity or aggression

Makes a disclosure

Social isolation – withdrawn, a ‘loner’ Frozen watchfulness particularly pre school 

Developmental delay

Depression

Neurotic behaviour (e.g. rocking, hair twisting, thumb sucking)

Desperate attention-seeking behaviour

Parent

Family/environment

Observed to be aggressive towards child or others

Marginalised or isolated by the community.

Intensely involved with their children, never allowing anyone else to undertake their child's care.

History of mental health, alcohol or drug misuse or domestic violence.

Previous domestic violence

History of unexplained death, illness or multiple surgery in parents and/or siblings of the family

History of abuse or mental health problems

Past history in the care of childhood abuse, self harm, somatising disorder or false allegations of physical or sexual assault

Mental health, drug or alcohol difficulties

Wider parenting difficulties

Cold and unresponsive to the child’s emotional needs

Physical or sexual assault or a culture of physical chastisement.

Overly critical of the child

Lack of support from family or social network.

 

Neglect

The persistent failure to meet a child’s basic physical and/or psychological needs, likely to result in the serious impairment of the child’s health or development. Neglect may occur during pregnancy as a result of maternal substance abuse. Once a child is born, neglect may involve a parent or carer failing to:

• provide adequate food, clothing and shelter (including exclusion from home or abandonment);

• protect a child from physical and emotional harm or danger;

• ensure adequate supervision (including the use of inadequate care-givers); or

• ensure access to appropriate medical care or treatment.

 

It may also include neglect of, or unresponsiveness to, a child’s basic emotional needs.

Child

Failure to thrive - underweight, small stature

Low self-esteem

Dirty and unkempt condition

Inadequate social skills and poor socialisation

Inadequately clothed

Frequent lateness or non-attendance at school

Dry sparse hair

Abnormal voracious appetite at school or nursery

Untreated medical problems

Self-harming behaviour

Red/purple mottled skin, particularly on the hands and feet, seen in the winter due to cold

Constant tiredness

Swollen limbs with sores that are slow to heal, usually associated with cold injury

Disturbed peer relationships

Parent

Family/environment

Failure to meet the child’s basic essential needs including health needs

Marginalised or isolated by the community.

Leaving a child alone

History of mental health, alcohol or drug misuse or domestic violence.

Failure to provide adequate caretakers

History of unexplained death, illness or multiple surgery in parents and/or siblings of the family

Keeping an unhygienic dangerous or hazardous home environment

 

Past history in the family of childhood abuse, self harm, somatising disorder or false allegations of physical or sexual assault

Unkempt presentation

Lack of opportunities for child to play and learn

Unable to meet child’s emotional needs

Dangerous or hazardous home environment including failure to use home safety equipment; risk from animals

Mental health, alcohol or drug difficulties

 

 

 

 

Sexual abuse

Involves forcing or enticing a child or young person to take part in sexual activities, not necessarily involving a high level of violence, whether or not the child is aware of what is happening. The activities may involve physical contact, including assault by penetration (for example, rape or oral sex) or non-penetrative acts such as masturbation, kissing, rubbing and touching outside of clothing. They may also include non-contact activities, such as involving children in looking at, or in the production of, sexual images, watching sexual activities, encouraging children to behave in sexually inappropriate ways, or grooming a child in preparation for abuse (including via the internet). Sexual abuse is not solely perpetrated by adult males. Women can also commit acts of sexual abuse, as can other children.

 

Child

Self-harm -  eating disorders, self-mutilation and suicide attempts

Poor self-image, self-harm, self-hatred

Running away from home

Inappropriate sexualised conduct

Reluctant to undress for PE

Withdrawal, isolation or excessive worrying

Pregnancy

Sexual knowledge or behaviour inappropriate to age/stage of development, or that is unusually explicit

Inexplicable changes in behaviour, such as becoming aggressive or withdrawn

Poor attention / concentration (world of their own)

Pain, bleeding, bruising  or itching in genital and /or anal area

Sudden changes in school work habits, become truant

Sexually exploited or indiscriminate choice of sexual partners

 

Parent

Family/environment

History of sexual abuse

Marginalised or isolated by the community.

Excessively interested in the child.

History of mental health, alcohol or drug misuse or domestic violence.

Parent displays inappropriate behaviour towards the child or other children

History of unexplained death, illness or multiple surgery in parents and/or siblings of the family

Conviction for sexual offences

Past history in the care of childhood abuse, self harm, somatising disorder or false allegations of physical or sexual assault

Comments made by the parent/carer about the child.

Grooming behaviour

Lack of sexual boundaries

Physical or sexual assault or a culture of physical chastisement.