At Brindishe Schools we believe that the needs of the child are paramount. All children deserve the opportunity to achieve their full potential; they have the right to be protected from harm and exploitation whatever their race, religion, first language or ethnicity, gender or sexuality, age, health or disability, political or immigration status. All staff accept their fundamental responsibility to keep pupils safe, promoting children’s social, physical, emotional and moral development. Brindishe Schools' staff are advised to maintain an attitude of ‘it could happen here’ as far as safeguarding is concerned. When concerned about the welfare of a child, staff members should always act in the interest of the child.
All staff are trained to identify signs of abuse, and work to identify, assess, and support those children who are suffering harm. Staff will help to equip children with the skills needed to keep them safe.
There are three main elements to our child protection and safeguarding policy:
PREVENTION through the teaching and pastoral support offered to pupils and the creation and maintenance of a whole school protective ethos.
PROTECTION by following agreed procedures for identifying, monitoring and reporting cases, or suspected cases, of abuse; protecting children from unsuitable people.
SUPPORT to victims of abuse and to staff in identifying signs and symptoms of abuse.
We encourage a culture in which all staff believe safeguarding to be of the highest importance and understand that their vigilance is critical. We want all staff to feel confident to discuss their concerns with designated staff/governors and have clear lines of protocol in place for how to do this.
At Brindishe Schools we explicitly teach pupils about safeguarding themselves in and outside of school, including online, through a broad and balanced curriculum. We establish and maintain a culture in which children feel secure, are encouraged to talk and are listened to.
The Child Protection and Safeguarding Policy for each school can be found on their website.
Brindishe Green’s Designated Safeguarding Leader (DSL) is Debbie Hughes
Brindishe Lee’s Designated Safeguarding Leader (DSL) is Verity Ferrant
Brindishe Manor’s Designated Safeguarding Leader (DSL) is Charlotte Dougan
Our Link Governor for Safeguarding is John Myers, Parent Governor, who visits each school on a termly basis to review our policy and procedures with the DSL.
If, at any time, you should have any concerns around safeguarding matters, please contact the school office.
Urgent Safeguarding Concerns
If a child is in immediate danger, please call 999
For less urgent but other safeguarding concerns that may be outside of school hours, please contact one of the agencies below.
NSPCC - 0808 800 5000 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Lewisham Multi-agency Safe guarding Hub (MASH) - 0208 314 6660
Internet Safety Website CEOP - How to contact Child Protection Advisors
Educating our children
Online Safety education at Brindishe Schools will be provided in the following ways:
- Specific teaching will be provided as part of Computing, PHSME, RSE and other curriculum areas (as relevant) and will be regularly revisited – this will cover both safe use of IT and new technologies in school and outside school.
- Children will be helped to understand the need for the children’s Acceptable Use Agreement and be encouraged to adopt safe and responsible use of both within and outside of school.
- Children will be given clear objectives for internet use and encouraged to learn what use is acceptable and what is not. Where children are allowed to freely search the internet, staff will be vigilant in monitoring the content of the websites the young people visit.
- Websites recommended as part of home learning will have been checked for appropriate content and in lessons where internet use is pre-planned, it is best practice that children will be guided to sites checked as suitable for their use and that processes are in place for dealing with any unsuitable material that is found in internet searches.
- Students/pupils will be supported in building resilience to radicalisation by providing a safe environment for debating controversial issues and helping them to understand how they can influence and participate in decision-making.
- Children will be taught in all lessons to be critically aware of the materials/content they access online and be guided to validate the accuracy of information.
- Staff will model safe and responsible behaviour in their own use of technology, e.g. use of passwords, logging-off, use of content, research skills, copyright.
- The school will ensure that the use of materials from the Internet complies with copyright law.
- Children will be shown how to publish and present information appropriately to a wider audience.
- Key online safety messages should be reinforced as part of a planned programme of assemblies (e.g. Safer Internet Day) and during day-to-day discussions and opportunities.
Useful Web Links:-
NSPCC Net Aware - Parents review kids’ social network, apps and games
Know IT All - Know IT All is a set of award-winning resources developed by Internet charity Childnet International to help educate both young people and adults about safe and positive use of the Internet.
Childnet - An Internet safety site from Childnet, with low-cost leaflets for parents
Think U Know - Site for pupils explaining Internet dangers and how to stay in control.
Parent Info - Expert information to help children and young people stay safe online.
Mental Health and Well-being
At Brindishe Schools, we are committed to supporting the emotional health and wellbeing of our pupils and staff. We have a supportive and caring ethos, where each individual and contribution is valued. In our schools we know that everyone experiences life challenges that can make us vulnerable and at times, anyone may need additional emotional support. We take the view that positive mental health is everybody’s business and that we all have a role to play.
At Brindishe Schools we:
- help children to understand their emotions and feelings better
- help children feel comfortable sharing any concerns or worries with their trusted adults in school
- help children socially to form and maintain relationships
- promote self-esteem
- encourage children to be confident
- help children to develop emotional resilience
We promote a mentally healthy environment through promoting our school values and encouraging a sense of belonging. Pupil voice is key and opportunities to participate in decision-making through our Rights Respecting Teams. We celebrate academic and non-academic achievements and provide opportunities to reflect.
Brindishe Schools recognise Mental Health Awareness Week every year hosted by the Mental Health Foundation. This is an annual event when there is an opportunity for the whole of the UK to focus on achieving good mental health.
How do we promote good behaviour?
Our approach to good behaviour at Brindishe Schools is based upon the understanding that positive actions are more effective than negative ones. Therefore, we use the following methods of helping children to learn, recognise and adopt behaviour that is positive and rewarding.
- Frequent use of praise
- Entry into the praise book
- Teaching children about good behaviour
- Talking it through
- Raising self-esteem
- Building a partnership with families
Anti-bullying statement, procedures and reporting
We are committed to providing a caring, friendly and safe environment for all of our children and adults so that they can learn, play and communicate in a relaxed and secure atmosphere. Bullying of any kind is unacceptable in our schools. If bullying behaviour does occur all children and adults should be able to tell someone and know that all incidents will be dealt with promptly and effectively. We believe that ignoring bullying is wrong. As part of our rights and responsibilities in Brindishe Schools, everyone who witnesses or knows about a bullying incident has a duty to intervene, to get help and to report it.
Anti Bullying Alliance: https://anti-bullyingalliance.org.uk/
Other useful websites
General safeguarding support for families: https://www.safeguardingresourcehub.co.uk/Resource-Hub?user_group=3
Domestic abuse support: https://www.refuge.org.uk/our-work/our-services/one-stop-shop-services/athena/
Mental health and wellbeing/ information for parents: https://www.annafreud.org/parents-and-carers/
Children's Society: https://www.childrenssociety.org.uk
Safeguarding in Schools: https://www.safeguardinginschools.co.uk/