Date: 11 April 2018 - This policy will be reviewed every 12 months - Review Date: 11 April 2019
Core safeguarding principles
VES acknowledges the duty of care to safeguard and promote the welfare of children and vulnerable adults and is committed to ensuring safeguarding practice that reflects statutory responsibilities, government guidance and complies with best practice requirements. All children and vulnerable adults, regardless of age, disability, gender, racial heritage, religious belief, sexual orientation or identity, have the right to equal protection from all types of harm or abuse.
This policy applies to all internal staff at VES as well temporary workers, candidates and contractors. VES is fully compliant with Keeping Children Safe in Education – September 2016. VES is committed to ensuring their work is consistent with safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and vulnerable adults. All candidates placed by VES are expected to take all reasonable steps to ensure they are alert to possible child abuse and neglect, and to familiarise themselves with arrangements for safeguarding children in the schools where they are placed.
Safeguarding Aims and Objectives
This policy is designed to meet the above principles by ensuring that:
At an individual and collective level, employees are involved in ensuring Safeguarding is embedded across our services to ensure a whole organisation approach so that individuals are adequately covered by this policy
Recruitment and Selection Process
VES are also committed to protecting children and vulnerable adults through a careful recruitment and selection process, a whistle blowing policy and guidance on appropriate behaviour.VES’s rigorous procedures ensure that any candidate found to have a history of unacceptable conduct or practice, will not be placed.
As part of our safeguarding policy VES will:
This policy will be widely promoted and is mandatory for everyone involved inVES. Failure to comply with this policy and the company’s safeguarding procedures will be addressed without delay and may result in disciplinary action.
The principal pieces of legislation governing this policy are:
‘Safeguarding’- is about embedding practices throughout the organisation to ensure the protection of children and/or vulnerable adults wherever possible. In contrast, child and adult protection is about responding to circumstances that arise.
‘Abuse’- Keeping children safe in education September 2016 defines abuse and neglect and gives four clear categories of abuse as:
‘Child’– is used to define anyone under the age of 18 (Children Act, 1989).
‘Young people’are children who are 16 to 17 years old.
‘Age of consent’(the legal age to have sex) in the UK is 16 years old*.
‘Vulnerable adult’is a person who has attained the age of 18 and for a range of reasons may be, either temporarily or permanently and in different situations, potentially vulnerable.
This may include a person who:
VES conducts the following safeguarding checks and has sight of all original documents before supplying a candidate into an education establishment.
All candidates are required to apply for an Enhanced DBS certificate through VES or provide confirmation that they have subscribed to the update service. An online check will be carried out by the VES compliance team on a quarterly basis.
All staff, temporary workers, candidates and contractors placed on assignment are responsible for supporting safe behaviour and have responsibility to follow the guidance laid out in this policy and related policies, and to pass on any welfare concerns using the required procedures. We expect allstaff, temporary workers, candidates and contractors to promote good practice by being an excellent role model; contributing to discussions about safeguarding; and to positively involving people in developing safe practices. All staff, temporary workers, candidates and contractors should:
All staff, temporary workers, candidates and contractors working through VES are expected to keep children safe by contributing to:
Reporting and barring referrals
The process outlined below details the stages involved in raising and reporting safeguarding concerns at VES
Every VES staff member has access to the Safeguarding Incident form and if a call is taken, must record the details of any allegation or complaint against a candidate. This is then escalated to the Designated Safeguarding Office (DSO) who will retain a detailed account of all actions taken during any investigation. Copies of statements and all correspondence are kept in a confidential file.
If VES is informed that the school has decided to undertake further investigation, the following procedure should be followed;
Queries from the LEA, checking on a candidate to see if they are registered can be handled by any VES staff member. Should a safeguarding department (LEA) call, they should be asked to confirm the information they need in an e-mail to the VES DSO, who will then provide all required information.
Candidate Suitability (Post-Registration)
If VES receives information following registration of a candidate which may be relevant to his/her suitability for a post within a school, the following procedures will apply.
For clarification, unsuitability will depend on the circumstances but may be a safeguarding issue, a relevant criminal conviction that should have been disclosed, qualifications found to be false or a medical condition that means that the candidate may be ask risk or placing others at risk.
LADO (Local Authority Designated Officer)
In accordance with Working Together (2015), where an organisation has received an allegation that a volunteer or member of staff who works with children has:
A referral should be sent to the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) within one working day, giving as much detail as possible, if not already contacted by a representative from the LEA.
Education Workforce Council (EWC)
Allegations of serious misconduct against a teacher may be referred to the Education Workforce Council (EWC) by any of the authorities listed below;
A referral is appropriate if the alleged misconduct is so serious that it warrants a decision on whether the candidate should be prevented from teaching again. Cases of less serious misconduct, and all cases of incompetence, should be dealt with locally by employers. If an allegation is deemed to be such that the candidate should be prevented from working until their case has been fully investigated, the EWC can impose an interim prohibition order until the case is concluded.
Duty to make a referral to the DBS
Where there is evidence that anyone has harmed, or poses a risk of harm, to a child or vulnerable adult, there is a legal duty on VES to report that person to the Disclosure and Barring Service using their guidance. Available here https://www.gov.uk/guidance/making-barring-referrals-to-the-dbs. The DBS has statutory authority to bar a person from working in regulated activity with children and/or vulnerable adults in the UK.
Referral to the DBS will also be made if the person resigns prior to an investigation being carried out or reaching its conclusion. If the accused person resigns, or ceases to provide their services, this should not prevent an allegation being followed up in accordance with this guidance.
The VES will not make any compromise/settlement agreement in the case of a person deemed unsuitable to work with children. Any such agreement which contained a condition of not referring the case to the DBS would constitute a criminal offence.
Anyone who is concerned about a child’s or vulnerable adult’s welfare or who believe that a child or vulnerable adult may be at risk of abuse should pass any information to the DBS or other appropriate authority as soon as possible and no longer than 24 hours after the initial concern.
All staff, temporary workers, candidates and contractors should bring matters of concern to the attention of VES and concerns can be reported directly to the LADO. Once you have shared your concerns you should submit them in writing giving names, date and places where appropriate. No action will be taken against you if the concern proves to be unfounded but was raised in good faith. All staff, workers, candidates and contractors should be aware of their duty to raise concerns, where they exist, about the attitude or actions of colleagues. Include concern raised and not acted upon by the safeguarding leads. Allegations that are made frivolously, maliciously or for personal gain will lead to termination.
Once a disclosure against anyone has been made, VES will consider whether the allegation should be reported to the LADO. Only after notifying and consulting with the LADO (or, in the most serious cases, the police) will the VES undertake an investigation.
VES will make clients and candidates aware of the Safeguarding Policy through the following means;
VES website (www.valleyeducation.co.uk)
Individual Candidate login to Allocate (VES bespoke CRM system)
All staff, temporary workers, candidates and contractors must be aware that they have a professional duty to share information with other recruitment firms to safeguard children and vulnerable adults. The public interest in safeguarding children and vulnerable adults may override confidentiality interests. However, information will be shared on a need to know basis only, as judged by VES.
If at any time, a candidate or client is not satisfied with the management of their complaint, the VES complaints policy should be followed. A copy is available to all candidates and clients on the VES website www.valleyeducation.co.uk
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