Child Safeguarding StatemChild Safeguarding Statement St. Fintan’s BNS

 
St. Fintan’s BNS is a Catholic boys’ primary school with DEIS status providing primary education to pupils from Junior Infants to Sixth Class. 
In accordance with the requirements of the Children First Act 2015, Children First: National Guidance for the Protection and Welfare of Children 2017, the Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post Primary Schools 2017 and Túsla Guidance on the preparation of Child Safeguarding Statements, the Board of Management of St. Fintan’s BNS has agreed the Child Safeguarding Statement set out in this document.
 
1 The Board of Management has adopted and will implement fully and without modification the Department’s Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post Primary Schools 2017 as part of this overall Child Safeguarding Statement
 
2 The Designated Liaison Person (DLP) is Edel Parkinson.
 
3 The Deputy Designated Liaison Person is Sheila Coleman.
 
4 The Board of Management recognises that child protection and welfare considerations permeate all aspects of school life and must be reflected in all of the school’s policies, procedures, practices and activities In its policies, procedures, practices and activities, the school will adhere to the following principles of best practice in child protection and welfare: 
 
The school will:
recognise that the protection and welfare of children is of paramount importance, regardless of all other considerations;
fully comply with its statutory obligations under the Children First Act 2015 and other relevant legislation relating to the protection and welfare of children;
fully co-operate with the relevant statutory authorities in relation to child protection and welfare matters
adopt safe practices to minimise the possibility of harm or accidents happening to children and protect workers from the necessity to take unnecessary risks that may leave themselves open to accusations of abuse or neglect;
develop a practice of openness with parents and encourage parental involvement in the education of their children; and 
fully respect confidentiality requirements in dealing with child protection matters.
 
The school will also adhere to the above principles in relation to any adult pupil/employee with a special vulnerability. 
5 The following procedures/measures are in place:
 
In relation to any member of staff who is the subject of any investigation (howsoever described) in respect of any act, omission or circumstance in respect of a child attending the school, the school adheres to the relevant procedures set out in Chapter 7 of the Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools 2017 and to the relevant agreed disciplinary procedures for school staff which are published on the DES website.  
 
In relation to the selection or recruitment of staff and their suitability to work with children, the school adheres to the statutory vetting requirements of the National Vetting Bureau (Children and Vulnerable Persons) Acts 2012 to 2016 and to the wider duty of care guidance set out in relevant Garda vetting and recruitment circulars published by the DES and available on the DES website.
 
In relation to the provision of information and, where necessary, instruction and training, to staff in respect of the identification of the occurrence of harm (as defined in the 2015 Act) the school-
 
Has provided each member of staff with a copy of the school’s Child Safeguarding Statement. 
Ensures all new staff are provided with a copy of the school’s Child Safeguarding Statement. 
Encourages staff to avail of relevant training. 
Encourages Board of Management members to avail of relevant training. 
The Board of Management maintains records of all staff and Board member training. 
 
In relation to reporting of child protection concerns to Túsla, all school personnel are required to adhere to the procedures set out in the Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools 2017, including in the case of registered teachers, those in relation to mandated reporting under the Children First Act 2015.
 
In this school the Board has appointed the above named DLP as the “relevant person” (as defined in the Children First Act 2015) to be the first point of contact in respect of the Child Safeguarding statement.
 
All registered teachers employed by the school are mandated persons under the Children First Act 2015.
 
In accordance with the Children First Act 2015, the Board has carried out an assessment of any potential for harm to a child while attending the school or participating in school activities. A written assessment setting out the areas of risk identified and the school’s procedures for managing those risks is attached as an appendix to these procedures. 
 
The various procedures referred to in this Statement can be accessed via the school’s website, the DES website or will be made available on request by the school.
 
 
6 This statement has been published on the school’s website and has been provided to all members of school personnel, the Parents’ Association and the patron.  It is readily accessible to parents and guardians on request. A copy of this Statement will be made available to Túsla and the Department if requested.  
 
 
7 This Child Safeguarding Statement will be reviewed annually or as soon as practicable after there has been a material change in any matter to which this statement refers.
 
This Child Safeguarding Statement was adopted by the Board of Management on 9th March, 2018.
 
Signed: _________________________ Signed: _____________________
Chairperson of Board of Management            Principal
 
 
Date:     __________________________ Date:    __________________¬¬¬¬¬¬¬_
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Appendix 1: Child Safeguarding Risk Assessment
 
Written Assessment of Risk of St. Fintan’s BNS, New Line Rd, Mountrath, Co. Laois
In accordance with section 11 of the Children First Act 2015 and with the requirement of Chapter 8 of the Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools 2017, the following is the Written Risk Assessment of St. Fintan’s BNS, Mountrath   
 
1. List of school activities
 
Risk identified Potential risk of harm Procedure in place to manage risk identified
Opening/Closing Times and Break Times
Access to pupils by strangers or other adults.
Risk of harm from other pupils Supervision by all staff on rota basis from 9.10 a.m. This has been clearly communicated to families
Adequate Supervision at break times
Visitors/Visiting Tutors
Tutors behaving inappropriately.
Tutors lacking awareness of child safety issues. Visiting tutors from reputable organisations with appropriate vetting.
Sign in/Sign out
Glass panels in doors.
Solid doors to be left open
School Tours/Outings
 
Access to pupils by strangers.
Inappropriate activity by pupils.
Dangers posed by unfamiliar environment Adequate supervision
Adequate planning and preparation by staff.
School Tour policy followed
Access/Egress Access to pupils by strangers or other adults.
Flight risk for some pupils Gates locked at all times. Turnstile secured at break times
Each teacher waits in the yard until their pupils have been collected.
 
Risk Identified
 
Swimming Lessons/Sports Events
Potential risk of harm
Potential for unsupervised times in changing areas.
Access to pupils by strangers or other adults.
Procedure in place to manage risk identified
Adequate supervision provided.
Trained lifeguards in pool. Request steam room/ sauna be closed to public
Social Media Potential for bullying.
Potential for grooming of pupils Pupils with parental permission to have mobile phones, will hand these to class teacher in the morning and returned at end of school day.
Anti-Bullying Policy.
Anti bullying talk to be given biannually for pupils, parents and staff
 
Administration of Medicine / First Aid Dose/ procedure not followed correctly
Unknown allergies Follow the Administration of medicine policy
Fill out incident book
Administer first aid in a public area
Boys serving funeral masses Access to pupils by a stranger SNA accompanies boys to and from Mass
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Important Note:  It should be noted that risk in the context of this risk assessment is the risk of “harm” as defined in the Children First Act 2015 and not general health and safety risk.  The definition of harm is set out in Chapter 4 of the Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post- Primary Schools 2017.
 
In undertaking this risk assessment, the board of management has endeavoured to identify as far as possible the risks of harm that are relevant to this school and to ensure that adequate procedures are in place to manage all risks identified.  While it is not possible to foresee and remove all risk of harm, the school has in place the procedures listed in this risk assessment to manage and reduce risk to the greatest possible extent.
This risk assessment has been completed by the Board of Management on 9th March, 2018.  It shall be reviewed as part of the school’s annual review of its Child Safeguarding Statement.
 
Signed _____________________________________ Date ________________ 
 
Chairperson, Board of Management 
 
Signed _____________________________________ Date ________________ 
 
Principal
 
Appendix 2: Checklist for Review of the Child Safeguarding Statement 
 
The Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools 2017 require the Board of Management must undertake a review of its Child Safeguarding Statement and that the following checklist shall be used for this purpose. The review must be completed every year or as soon as practicable after there has been a material change in any matter to which the Child Safeguarding Statement refers.  Undertaking an annual review will also ensure that a school also meets its statutory obligation under section 11(8) of the Children First Act 2015, to review its Child Safeguarding Statement every two years.   
 
The checklist is designed as an aid to conducting this review and is not intended as an exhaustive list of the issues to be considered. Individual Boards of Management shall include other items in the checklist that are of relevance to the school in question. 
 
As part of the overall review process, Boards of Management should also assess relevant school policies, procedures, practices and activities vis a vis their adherence to the principles of best practice in child protection and welfare as set out in the school’s Child Safeguarding Statement, the Children First Act 2015 and the Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools 2017.
 
Yes/No
1. Has the Board formally adopted a Child Safeguarding Statement in accordance with the ‘Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post Primary Schools 2017’?
2. As part of the school’s Child Safeguarding Statement, has the Board formally adopted, without modification, the ‘Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post Primary Schools 2017’’?
3. Does the school’s Child Safeguarding Statement include a written assessment of risk as required under the Children First Act 2015?
4. Has the Board reviewed and updated where necessary the written assessment of risk as part of this overall review?
5. Has the DLP attended available child protection training?
6. Has the Deputy DLP attended available child protection training?
7. Have any members of the Board attended child protection training?
8. Are there both a DLP and a Deputy DLP currently appointed?
9. Are the relevant contact details (Túsla and An Garda Síochána) to hand?
10. Has the Board arrangements in place to communicate the school’s Child Safeguarding Statement to new school personnel?
11. Is the Board satisfied that all school personnel have been made aware of their responsibilities under the ‘Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post Primary Schools 2017’ and the Children First Act 2015?
12. Has the Board received a Principal’s Child Protection Oversight Report at each Board meeting held since the last review was undertaken?
13. Since the Board’s last review, was the Board informed of any child protection reports made to Túsla/An Garda Síochána by the DLP?
14. Since the Board’s last review, was the Board informed of any cases where the DLP sought advice from Túsla/and as a result of this advice, no report to the HSE was made?
15. Since the Board’s last review, was the Board informed of any cases where an allegation of abuse or neglect was made against any member of school personnel?
16. Has the Board been provided with and reviewed all documents relevant to the Principal’s Child Protection Oversight Report?
17. Is the Board satisfied that the child protection procedures in relation to the making of reports to Túsla/An Garda Síochána were appropriately followed in each case reviewed?
18. Is the Board satisfied that, since the last review, all appropriate actions are being or have been taken in respect of any member of school personnel against whom an allegation of abuse or neglect has been made?*
19. Were child protection matters reported to the Board appropriately recorded in the Board minutes?
20. Is the Board satisfied that all records relating to child protection are appropriately filed and stored securely?
21. Has the Board been notified by any parent in relation to that parent not receiving the standard notification required under section 5.6  of the ‘Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post Primary Schools 2017’
22. In relation to any cases identified at question 21 above, has the Board ensured that any notifications required under section 5.6 of the ‘Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post Primary Schools 2017’ were subsequently issued by the DLP?
23. Has the Board ensured that the Parents’ Association has been provided with the school’s Child Safeguarding Statement?
24. Has the Board ensured that the patron has been provided with the school’s Child Safeguarding Statement?
25. Has the Board ensured that the school’s Child Safeguarding Statement is available to parents on request?
26. Has the Board ensured that the Stay Safe programme is implemented in full in the school? (applies to primary schools)
27. Has the Board ensured that the Wellbeing Programme for Junior Cycle students is implemented in full in the school? (applies to post- primary schools)
28. Has the Board ensured that the SPHE curriculum is implemented in full in the school?
29. Is the Board satisfied that the statutory requirements for Garda Vetting have been met in respect of all school personnel (employees and volunteers)? *
30. Is the Board satisfied that the Department’s requirements in relation to the provision of a child protection related statutory declaration and associated form of undertaking have been met in respect of persons appointed to teaching and non-teaching positions?*
31. Is the Board satisfied that, from a child protection perspective, thorough recruitment and selection procedures are applied by the school in relation to all school personnel (employees and volunteers)?*
32. Has the Board considered and addressed any complaints or suggestions for improvements regarding the school’s Child Safeguarding Statement?
33. Has the Board sought the feedback of parents in relation to the school’s compliance with the requirements of the child safeguarding requirements of the ‘Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post Primary Schools 2017’
34. Has the Board sought the feedback of pupils in relation to the school’s child safeguarding arrangements?
35. Is the Board satisfied that the ‘Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post Primary Schools 2017’ are being fully and adequately implemented by the school?
36. Has the Board identified any aspects of the school’s Child Safeguarding Statement and/or its implementation that require further improvement?
37. Has the Board put in place an action plan containing appropriate timelines to address those aspects of the school’s Child Safeguarding Statement and/or its implementation that have been identified as requiring further improvement ?
38. Has the Board ensured that any areas for improvement that that were identified in any previous review of the school’s Child Safeguarding Statement have been adequately addressed?
 
*In schools where the ETB is the employer the responsibility for meeting the employer’s requirements rests with the ETB concerned. In such cases, this question should be completed following consultation with the ETB. 
Signed _____________________________________ Date ________________ 
 
Chairperson, Board of Management 
 
 
Signed _____________________________________ Date ________________ 
 
Principal/Secretary to the Board of Management
 

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