Safeguarding and Child Protection
At Grace Academy Darlaston, we are wholly committed to the provision of a safe and nurturing learning environment, where our students, staff and visitors feel welcome, protected and supported at all times. Our dedicated safeguarding team has a clear vision to protect young people from harm and promote their wellbeing, and safeguarding is threaded throughout all areas of Academy life.
According to Keeping Children Safe In Education 2023, safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children is defined as:
- protecting children from maltreatment;
- preventing impairment of children’s mental and physical 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.
Our policy applies to all staff, governors and volunteers working in the Academy. The Academy believes 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. In particular, teaching and pastoral 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 Academy recognises that, because Academy staff are in regular and frequent contact with children, they are particularly well placed to safeguard and promote the welfare of students and are therefore trained accordingly in safeguarding at least annually with regular topical training throughout the year.
Grace Academy Darlaston staff are fully committed to their responsibilities to safeguarding children and young people through robust recording and reporting procedures and the availability of supportive provisions and interventions. We use CPOMS to keep our record secure and in line with our procedures to maintain excellent record-keeping in a timely and confidential manner.
Safeguarding is everyone’s responsibility, and all staff are well trained on that note, but we do also have a dedicated safeguarding team trained at an advanced level to respond to any level of concern. The safeguarding team is made up of staff with responsibilities for school leadership, safeguarding, SEND, attendance, behaviour, interventions and mentoring so that there is a clear joined-up approach to promoting the wellbeing and positive outcomes for everyone at Grace Academy Darlaston. The team meet weekly to discuss and review current practice with regularly planned training from internal and external providers, which is regularly shared with the wider Academy, our governors and other key stakeholders.
Our RSHE / PSHE curriculum is carefully planned and reviewed to ensure all students have the opportunity to learn about keeping themselves safe and reporting their concerns, as well as the laws around consent, behaviour in the community and other key topics. We have a well-sequenced curriculum intent across subjects, which envelops the promotion of our learners’ wellbeing and safety. In addition to our internal lesson-based curricula, we invite in a variety of agencies and organisations to provide expert advice and information in fun and engaging assemblies, performances and workshops. These include performances on knife-crime, mental health, smoking cessation and many more. These opportunities allow our students to learn about keeping themselves and those around them safe in a fun and engaging environment. We ensure that anyone who may feel negatively affected by these shows are given support throughout or prior warning and provide additional sessions to consolidate the understanding for anyone who might need it.
Grace Academy’s policies and procedures are underpinned by key statutory guidance and reviewed regularly. Some of those key guidance include:
Keeping Children Safe in Education
Working Together to Safeguard Children
Sexual Violence and Sexual Harassment between Children in Schools and Colleges
Should you have any queries or concerns around safeguarding of students and staff at Grace Academy Darlaston please contact Mr Phil Miles, Designated Safeguarding Lead on 0121 568 3300.
Key Contacts – Academy:
Phil Miles (DSL): firstname.lastname@example.org
Saffron Hicken (Safeguarding Manager/Deputy DSL) email@example.com
Dheep Bhachu (Deputy DSL) firstname.lastname@example.org
Claire Jones (Deputy DSL) email@example.com
Lindsay East (Attendance and Early Interventions Manager) firstname.lastname@example.org
Tracey Millinchip (Medical and Welfare Officer) email@example.com
Hannah Cole (Senior Mental Health Lead) firstname.lastname@example.org
Key Contacts – Outside Agencies:
Walsall Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub: 0300 555 2866
Childline: 0800 1111
NSPCC: 0808 800 5000
Police and Medical Emergencies Only: 999
Police non-emergency: 101 / NHS: 111
Free, safe and anonymous online support for young people – www.kooth.com
Prevention of young suicide – www.papyrus.org.uk
LGBT+ Support and Advice – https://www.stonewall.org.uk/
NSPCC – https://www.nspcc.org.uk/
Resources-bank for Mental Health and Wellbeing – https://www.camhs-resources.co.uk/