If you are a student and you are concerned about your own safety or the safety of another student: You can talk to any member of staff. All staff at School are trained in safeguarding matters. You can be confident that we will listen to you and take any action necessary to keep you (or another student) safe, whilst doing everything we can to respect your wishes. You may wish to contact a member of the safeguarding team directly. Go to the main school office and ask to speak to the Safeguarding Lead.
If you are a parent or member of the public and you are concerned about a student
Call the main School switchboard on 01787 474040 and ask to speak to the Safeguarding Lead (Amanda Gwynne). For pastoral or welfare issues which are not safeguarding concerns, please contact the relevant Form Tutor or Head of House.
Out of hours safeguarding information
The Safeguarding Lead and deputies, together with Form Tutors, will endeavour to ensure that particularly vulnerable students remain safe during longer holiday periods by passing on information and concerns to parents/carers, other family members or outside agencies as appropriate before the holiday period begins. During term-time, within normal School opening hours, there will always be a member of the safeguarding team who can be contacted, but this will not be the case at other times. Students and parents should be aware that School staff will not usually check or respond to email during evenings and weekends and when on holiday. Students and parents should not expect an immediate response to any concerns communicated via email and therefore should not use this channel of communication if the issue is urgent.
What to do if you have a safeguarding concern when School is closed
If you believe somebody is in immediate danger, phone 999. To speak to somebody about a child protection issue: • Social Care (daytime) 0345 603 7627
• Social Care (eve/weekend) 0345 606 1212 For serious mental health concerns: • EWMHS referrals 0300 300 1600
• EWMHS (out of hours) 0300 555 1201 Please be aware that you can visit the Accident and Emergency Department of hospitals in the event of a mental health crisis.
The following contacts may also be useful for advice and help
Safeguarding is defined as: • protecting children from maltreatment
• preventing impairment of children’s 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 A “child” is anybody under the age of 18. However, we do not treat our students differently after their 18th birthday. Although referrals to outside agencies will be different for students aged 18 and over, the support available in School remains the same.
This term refers to protection from physical, sexual, emotional abuse and neglect. Young people can be affected by violence in the home, even if it is not directed at them, and by issues such as addiction in the family. Please tell us if a student is suffering difficult conditions at home, so that we can support them.
Other sources of help and information • https://www.essex.gov.uk/report-a-concern-about-a-child outlines help available from Essex Children’s Services, including early intervention and making a request for help
• https://www.nspcc.org.uk/ national charity to prevent child abuse and support survivors
Emerging risks to older teenagers
Alcohol and drug use
We have a zero tolerance of alcohol and illegal drugs on our Schools premises. Any student found in possession or under the influence will be permanently excluded. However, we will work with students who wish to stop abusing drugs or alcohol. Parents should be aware of so-called “legal highs”, substances which may have another, legitimate purpose but which can be abused. Even occasional use of “recreational” drugs can be very dangerous: drugs can be stronger than anticipated and the buying of illegal drugs exposes young people to criminals and criminality. We educate our students in these matters via our PSHEE curriculum and through our assemblies and tutor programme.
There has been a lot of publicity both locally and nationally, about “County Lines” drugs gangs, which recruit and exploit young people to transport and sell drugs. Young people are now being targeted as “money mules”, to launder money for organised crime gangs. This is often done on-line, via social media, with the gang member offering a reward to the young person for receiving money into their account.
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