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Guidance for Allegations of Abuse against Teachers and other Staff Schools, Academies, Educational Establishments & Support Services Managers Children’s.

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Presentation on theme: "Guidance for Allegations of Abuse against Teachers and other Staff Schools, Academies, Educational Establishments & Support Services Managers Children’s."— Presentation transcript:

1 Guidance for Allegations of Abuse against Teachers and other Staff Schools, Academies, Educational Establishments & Support Services Managers Children’s Services Human Resources Date: January 2013

2 Key Legislation Children Act 1989 Education Act 2002 Children Act 2004 – Every Child Matters Change for Children Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006 Education Act 2011 Children’s Services Human Resources

3 Key Guidance Dealing with Allegations of Abuse against Teachers and other Staff – Guidance for Local Authorities, Head Teachers, School Staff, Governing Bodies and Proprietors of Independent Schools (DfE 2012) Guidance for Safer Working Practice for Adults who work with Children and Young People in Education Settings (DCSF 2009) Joint NEOST/Teacher Union guidance: Staff Facing an Allegation of Abuse – Guidelines on Practice and Procedures (2002) Children’s Services Human Resources

4 Key Points All schools should have procedures for dealing with allegations. The procedures should make it clear that all allegations should be reported immediately, normally to the Headteacher, Principal or Proprietor if it is an Independent School. The procedures should also identify the person, often the Chair of Governors, to whom reports should be made in the absence of the Headteacher; or in cases where the Headteacher themselves is the subject of the allegation. Procedures should also include contact details for the Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) responsible for providing advice and monitoring cases. Children’s Services Human Resources Dealing with allegations of abuse against teachers and other staff – DfE 2012

5 What is an Allegation Information which comes to light, which alleges that a teacher or member of staff (including volunteers) in a school has :  behaved in a way that has harmed or may have harmed a child  possibly committed a criminal offence against or related to a child or  behaved towards a child or children in a way that indicates he or she would pose a risk of harm if they work regularly of closely with children “ It is important to ensure that even apparently less serious allegations are seen to be followed up, and they are examined objectively by someone independent of the organisation concerned” Children’s Services Human Resources

6 ALLEGATION COMPAINTCOMPAINT CONCER Complaints Procedures Disciplinary Procedures Child Protection Procedures

7 Procedure 1 When an allegation is reported to a member of staff, that member of staff should: Take it seriously Clarify details – when, where, how, who Record, sign & date Seek medical attention if necessary Report immediately to HT (or Chair of Govs) Children’s Services Human Resources

8 Procedure 2 When the HT receives the allegation: Establish whether the allegation could have possibly occurred Collect any written statements Establish whether there were any witnesses Consult with Senior Adviser for Safeguarding Children or Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) DO NOT INVESTIGATE FURTHER OR INTERVIEW ANYONE Children’s Services Human Resources

9 Procedure 3 The HT and Senior Adviser will consider: Whether or not the threshold for a Child Protection investigation has been met. When and how to inform the child’s parents Whether or not to tell the member of staff Whether or not to suspend the member of staff Any necessary safeguards to implement Children’s Services Human Resources

10 Suspension Suspension should not be automatic – alternatives should be considered. Suspension should only be considered if: A child or children are deemed to be at risk Necessary to ensure investigation is not impeded or prejudiced Allegation is so serious that dismissal for gross misconduct is a possible outcome Children’s Services Human Resources

11 Strategy Meeting 1 If the threshold for a Child Protection investigation has been met: Referral to Access Centre Independently chaired, multi-agency meeting convened as soon as possible Subject of the investigation not invited Children’s Services Human Resources

12 Strategy Meeting 2 Purpose of Strategy Meeting: Consider the allegation and any previous allegations Consider the risk to the child and other children Share information about the adult and the child Determine the need for a CP enquiry and/or a criminal investigation Establish a clear plan with time scales Children’s Services Human Resources

13 Strategy Meeting 3 Possible outcomes of a Strategy Meeting: No further action Police investigation of a possible criminal offence Enquiries and assessment by Social Care about whether a child is in need of protection or services School investigation, supported by the LA Children’s Services Human Resources

14 Unfounded or Malicious? Consider the need to refer the child to Social Care or Police Offer support to member of staff Consider the need to take action against the child using school’s disciplinary procedure Consider arrangements within school to protect staff Consider requesting enhanced CRB check Children’s Services Human Resources

15 Support for the Member of Staff Allegations that are found to be malicious should be removed from personnel records Any that are unsubstantiated, unfounded or malicious should not be referred to in employer references. Reporting restrictions introduced by the Education Act 2011 prevent the publication of any material that may lead to the identification of a teacher who has been accused by a pupil from the same school. Children’s Services Human Resources

16 DfE survey of LA allegations (October 2011) About 40% of total allegations involved staff in schools Only 2% were judged to be ‘malicious’ Another 19% (teachers) and 15% (non-teachers) were ‘unfounded’ – i.e. no basis That leaves about 28%/32% as ‘unsubstantiated’ Over half of the allegations had enough substance to warrant a formal investigation 18% (teachers) and 29% (non-teachers) were suspended Children’s Services Human Resources

17 Nigel Leat – Y2 teacher Convicted in January 2012 of numerous sexual offences against young girls and possession of thousands of indecent images. 15 years in post and abusing children at the school for at least 10 of these 30 concerns identified by children, other staff and parents Only 11 recorded NONE reported to the Local Authority or acted upon ‘A lamentable failure of leadership and management’ The school was twice rated ‘Outstanding’ for safeguarding The Serious Case review is on Edulink Children’s Services Human Resources

18 SAFE WORKING PRACTICE FOR STAFF IN EDUCATION SETTINGS An introduction leaflet for all staff and volunteers working with children to help establish safe working practice in schools, academies and all settings where children receive formal education Children’s Services Human Resources

19 Dealing with Allegations of Abuse against School Staff - pilot training day When: Monday 22 nd April 2013 Where: YFC Centre, Shires Farm, Hawford Cost: £60 Audience: Headteachers, Senior Leaders, Chairs of Governors Trainers: Ben Whitney (Independent Trainer), Sally Mills, Sue Dernie, John Dickinson Children’s Services Human Resources

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