Ensuring the safety and well-being of students at Five Acres High School is our top priority and therefore we have policies and procedures which surround the issue of safeguarding young people.
Safeguarding means that we aim to ensure the well-being of students both emotionally and physically, and will take steps in order to ensure that young people are not at risk, either from themselves or from others.
The steps that the school might take are:
- meeting with the young person to explore the issue
- meeting with the parent/s or guardian to explore the issue
- liaising and meeting with other agencies or professionals who are involved with the young person or family (for example, CAMHS)
- making a referral to Social Services and liaising with them.
Social Services are first and foremost a preventative agency – they seek to support families to get back on track and make change happen in their lives to ensure that young people are kept safe. It is with this in mind that the school might refer to Social Services: to seek support for the family and young person. Unless the risk is presented by the parents or guardians, the school will either consult with them about the referral or inform them that a referral is taking place.
Please click here for a copy of our safeguarding policy.
The Prevent Strategy
Prevent aims to stop people becoming terrorists or supporting terrorism. Prevent is part of the safeguarding work that Five Acres High School undertakes. All staff have had training in regards to the Prevent duty.
What to do if you feel that a young person is at risk:
If you are a student at the school:
- Tell a member of staff about it if you’re in school;
- Tell your parents or guardian about it if you’re at home;
- Call Childline (0800 1111), The Samaritans (08457 909090) etc.
If you are a parent:
- You can contact the Safeguarding designated officers at the school on 01594 832263
– Paul Ogden (Designated Safeguarding Lead) email@example.com
– Liz Jones (Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead) firstname.lastname@example.org
- An alternative point of contact is the Heads of Years
E-safety is an important part of keeping children safe at Five Acres High School. We have extensive security measures in place in school, which are monitored both internally and externally, to help safeguard pupils from potential dangers or unsuitable material. Any e-safety incidents are recorded and managed in accordance with our e-safety policy. E-safety is taught to all pupils explaining and demonstrating how to stay safe and behave appropriately online.
We can only be successful in keeping children safe online if we work with you to ensure the e-safety message is consistent. Your help is needed to talk to your children about how they can keep safe and behave appropriately online. Recently we have had a number of parents express concerns about children’s behaviour online. Children can accidentally or deliberately be exposed to unwanted or unpleasant content or comments online and there are steps you can take at home to minimise this risk.
All popular social media platforms (Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook etc.) have an age restriction of 13, and WhatsApp has just announced that it has raised its age limit to 16.
There are good reasons for this age restriction to be in place. For example, inappropriate content, lack of maturity to use the site safely, exposing them to harmful content, risk of being contacted by sexual predators, creating an online profile which will be hard to remove in the future, placing added pressure on the child to deal with situations beyond their years. The list goes on, but as parents you need to be aware of the safety implications of allowing your child access to social media at such a young age.
The Communication Act 2003 makes it an offence to send anything on the internet that is offensive, indecent, threatening or false and the reason for sending it is to cause the other person annoyance, inconvenience or needless anxiety. Remember, the age of criminal responsibility in England is 10 years old. We would not want any of our children to get on the wrong side of the law, so we have to ensure they are using the internet in a responsible and appropriate way.
What can parents/carers do? See the suggestions below.
Discuss as a family how the internet will be used in your house. Consider what should be kept private online (personal information, photos etc.) and decide rules for making and meeting online friends. Make sure you know what your child is doing online much like you would offline. Only allow them to play online games that are age appropriate. Check the PEGI rating of the game.
Install antivirus software, secure your internet connection and use parental control functions on your home broadband for computers, mobile phones and games consoles to block unsuitable content.
Remember that parental control tools are not always 100% effective and sometimes unsuitable content can get past them, so don’t rely on them alone to protect your child.
Locate your computer in a supervised family area. Always supervise the use of webcams and applications which allow voice or video chat. Consider your child’s use of other devices that allow internet access such as Mobile Phones, Games Consoles, Tablets etc.
Hand held devices
Remember that Children are accessing the internet via their Mobile Phones, Games Consoles, Tablets etc. Without parental controls on these devices, children can access whatever they want on the internet. Visit www.childnet.com to show how to set parental controls on a variety of hand held devices and gaming machines.
Talk to your child and ask them to show or even teach you how they use the internet, learn which websites or tools they like to use and why. Learning together can often open opportunities to discuss safe behaviour with your child.
Always ensure your child knows how to block or report people online who send nasty or inappropriate messages or content. Encourage your child not to retaliate or reply.
Make sure your child knows to tell an adult they trust if they see something online that makes them feel scared, worried or uncomfortable.
It’s essential to be realistic – banning the internet or technology will not work and it often makes a child less likely to report a problem. Education around safe use is essential.
DO NOT ALLOW YOUR CHILD TO HAVE INTERNET ENABLED DEVICES IN THEIR BEDROOMS UNTIL THEY REACH AN AGE AND MATURITY TO KEEP THEMSELVES SAFE.
Websites for more information:
- https://www.thinkuknow.co.uk/– Visit the 'Parent/Carer' section and use the 'Click CEOP' button to seek advice and report online abuse
- www.childnet.com – Visit the ‘Know It All’ section for an interactive guide about online safety
- ww.getsafeonline.org – Free up-to-date security advice
- www.parentinfo.org - Supported by CEOP
- www.cybermentorplus.org/ – Online support for children
- www.childline.org.uk – Online support for children
- www.internetmatters.org/ – Sponsored by the broadband providers.
- www.commonsensemedia.org/ – Find out about apps and games and age restrictions.
FamilyLine helpline launched
Launch of the free FamilyLine service in England and Wales to support parents and carers through telephone calls, email and text messages. For further information: FamilyLine