- Posted August 12, 2014 by
Bournemouth, United Kingdom
Safeguarding Children Entails Creating A Safe School Culture
The accreditation for the learning scheme was modified earlier in February 2014. The changes include a new section detailing guidelines and criteria for safeguarding children under 18 years of age. According to trainer Nigel Heritage, member of the English UK organization, safeguarding minors in learning institutions constitutes the legal and moral obligation of all members of the staff.
In the light of the scandal revolving around Jimmy Savile and other high-profile cases that received a lot of attention from the media, there is a tendency of confusing the terms safeguarding and child protection. Child protection refers to the process of guarding individual children who are identified as suffering or likely to suffer significant harm as a result of neglect and/or abuse.
Safeguarding is a concept that goes beyond the child protection term, as it also focuses on preventing the impairment of children’s health and development. Safeguarding entails ensuring children are growing up in a safe environment, where they receive care and attention and are protected from maltreatment.
The introduction of the clause was dictated by the faulty approach some managers and administrators imposed on the issue. Some learning centres addressed the issue by implementing stricter rules regarding the Disclosure and Baring Service (DBS) on the teacher. However, the thorough verification of the teachers’ background constitutes just one part of the safe recruitment practices. A teacher with a DBS certificate only reveals the fact that the educator has not abused a child until that date. The certificate does not indicate whether the teacher is on the pathway on abusing students.
The new legislation aims to help educational institutions make safer recruitment decisions and prevent unsuitable people from working with vulnerable groups. A manager who suspects that a person may pose a risk of harm to students should contact the DBS as soon as possible. Individuals who are not the person’s employer, but who suspect abuse are advised to contact the police or social services. The DBS will evaluate the claim and will make a decision on whether to include the person on a barred list. A teacher ending up on the barred list will be forbidden to seek employment or volunteer to work with children by law. The organization or company who hires a barred teacher would also be breaking the law.
The solution proposed by Nigel Heritage entails that learning centres should define the educational system the teachers and students are placed in. Heritage pointed out that safeguarding children can only be achieved by promoting a healthy and safe school culture. At the conference held in Bristol on 7th of March, Nigel Heritage provided managers with plenty of examples on how to start creating the basis of a safe school culture. The examples were discussed in several practical sessions and had the role of showing managers how to think of these issues.