SAFEGUARDING AND CHILD PROTECTION POLICY
Ratified by the Proprietor : January 25th 2017
To be reviewed (annually) October 2018
Version number: 2016/17 v2
1.1 Safeguarding is defined as –
Protecting children from maltreatment;
Preventing impairment of children’s health or development;
Ensuring that children are growing up in circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective care; and
Taking action to enable all children to have the best life chances by accessing services as early as possible.
1.2 The Wisdom Academy is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of all its pupils/students.
We believe that:
- All children/young people have the right to be protected from harm;
- Children/young people need to be safe and to feel safe in school;
- Children/young people need support that matches their individual needs, including those who may have experienced abuse;
- All children/young people have the right to speak freely and voice their values and beliefs;
- All children/young people must be encouraged to respect each other’s values and support each other;
- All children/young people have the right to be supported to meet their emotional, and social needs as well as their educational needs – a happy, healthy, sociable child/young person will achieve better educationally;
- Schools can and do contribute to the prevention of abuse, victimisation, bullying (including homophobic, bi-phobic, trans-phobic and cyber-bullying), exploitation, extreme behaviours, discriminatory views and risk taking behaviours; and
- All staff and visitors have an important role to play in safeguarding children and protecting them from abuse.
1.3 The Wisdom Academy will fulfil their local and national responsibilities as laid out in the following documents:-
- The most recent version of Working Together to Safeguard Children (DfE)
- The most recent version of Keeping Children Safe in Education: Statutory guidance for schools and colleges (DfE Sept 2016)
- The Procedures of Birmingham Safeguarding Children Board
- The Education Act 2002 s175
- Mental Health and Behaviour in Schools: Departmental Advice (DfE 2014)
- Sexting in Schools & Colleges – responding to incidents and safeguarding young people (UKCCIS) 2016
2. OVERALL AIMS
2.1 This policy will contribute to safeguarding our pupils/students and promoting their welfare by:
Clarifying standards of behaviour for staff and pupils/students;
Contributing to the establishment of a safe, resilient and robust ethos in the school, built on mutual respect and shared values;
Introducing appropriate work within the curriculum;
Encouraging pupils/students and parents to participate;
Alerting staff to the signs and indicators that all might not be well;
Developing staff awareness of the causes of abuse;
Developing staff awareness of the risks and vulnerabilities their pupils/students face;
Addressing concerns at the earliest possible stage; and
Reducing the potential risks pupils/students face of being exposed to violence, extremism, exploitation, discrimination or victimisation.
2.2 This policy will contribute to supporting our pupils/students by:
Identifying and protecting the vulnerable;
Identifying individual needs where possible; and
Designing plans to meet those needs.
2.3 This policy will contribute to the protection of our pupils/students by:
Including appropriate work within the curriculum;
Implementing child protection policies and procedures; and
Working in partnership with pupils/students, parents and other agencies.
3. KEY PRINCIPLES
3.1 These are the key principles of safeguarding, as stated by Birmingham Safeguarding Children Board –
Always see the child first.
Never do nothing.
Do with, not to, others.
Do the simple things better.
Have conversations, build relationships.
Outcomes not outputs.
3.2 In addition the Board has identified the following key safeguardingmessages for schools –
Every child is entitled to a rich and rounded curriculum.
Schools operate with public money: this should be spent wisely, targeting resources on the evidenced needs of children at school now. Assurance and audit are important aspects of this.
Governance is corporate and decisions are collective, but individual governors can and should take the lead on specific aspects of school life such as safeguarding.
When issues arise, head teachers should speak out, addressing them internally where possible and escalating them when this is unsuccessful.
4. KEY PROCESSES
5.1 All staff and visitors will:
Be familiar with this safeguarding policy;
Understand their role in relation to safeguarding;
Be subject to Safer Recruitment processes and checks, whether they are new staff, supply staff, contractors, volunteers etc.;
Be involved, where appropriate, in the implementation of individual education programmes, Early Help Assessments and support plans, child in need plans and interagency child protection plans;
Be alert to signs and indicators of possible abuse (See Appendix 1 for current definitions and indicators);
Record concerns and give the record to the Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) Sakhawat Ali , or deputy DSL Fuad Dol; and
Deal with a disclosure of abuse from a child in line with the guidance in Appendix 2 – you must inform the Designated Safeguarding Lead immediately, and provide a written account as soon as possible.
5.2 All staff will receive annual safeguarding and child protection training and update briefings as appropriate. Key staff will undertake more specialist child protection training as agreed by the Governing Body.
6. THE DESIGNATED SAFEGUARDING LEAD
6.1 Our Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) on the senior leadership team is Mr. Sakhawat Ali. S/he has lead responsibility and management oversight and accountability for child protection and, with the Head Teacher/Principal, will be responsible for coordinating all child protection activity.
6.1.1 The deputy DSL is Fuad Dol and will support the DSL within the role and deputise when the DSL is not on-site.
6.2 The Designated Safeguarding Lead will lead regular case monitoring reviews of vulnerable children. These reviews must be evidenced by minutes and recorded in case files.
6.3 When the school has concerns about a child, the Designated Safeguarding Lead will decide what steps should be taken and should advise the Head Teacher/Principal.
6.4 Child protection information will be dealt with in a confidential manner. Staff will be informed of relevant details only when the Designated Safeguarding Lead feels their having knowledge of a situation will improve their ability to deal with an individual child and/or family. A written record will be made of what information has been shared with whom, and when.
6.5 Safeguarding records will be stored securely in a central place separate from academic records. Individual files will be kept for each child: the school will not keep family files. Files will be kept for at least the period during which the child is attending the school, and beyond that in line with current data legislation and guidance.
6.6 Access to these records by staff other than by the Designated Safeguarding Lead will be restricted, and a written record will be kept of who has had access to them and when.
6.7 Parents will be aware of information held on their children and kept up to date regarding any concerns or developments by the appropriate members of staff. General communications with parents will be in line with any home school policies and give due regard to which adults have parental responsibility.
6.8 Do not disclose to a parent any information held on a child if this would put the child at risk of significant harm.
6.9 If a pupil/student moves from our school, child protection records will be forwarded on to the Designated Safeguarding Lead at the new school, with due regard to their confidential nature and in line with current government guidance on the transfer of such records. Direct contact between the two schools may be necessary, especially on transfer from primary to secondary schools. We will record where and to whom the records have been passed and the date.
6.10 If sending by post, pupil records will be sent by “Special/Recorded Delivery”. For audit purposes a note of all pupil records transferred or received should be kept in either paper or electronic format. This will include the child’s name, date of birth, where and to whom the records have been sent and the date sent and/or received.
6.11 If a pupil/student is permanently excluded and moves to a Pupil Referral Unit, child protection records will be forwarded on to the relevant organisation.
6.12 Where a vulnerable young person is moving to a Further Education establishment, consideration should be given to the student’s wishes and feelings on their child protection information being passed on in order that the FE establishment can provide appropriate support.
6.13 When a Designated Safeguarding Lead resigns their post or no longer has child protection responsibility, there should be a full face to face handover/exchange of information with the new post holder.
6.13.1 In exceptional circumstances when a face to face handover is unfeasible, the Head Teacher/Principal will ensure that the new post holder is fully conversant with all procedures and case files.
7. THE GOVERNING BODY (referring to the Proprietor )
7.1 The Governing Body is the accountable body for ensuring the safety of the school.
7.2 The Governing Body will ensure that:
The school has a combined safeguarding and child protection policy in accordance with the procedures of Birmingham Safeguarding Children Board;
- The school operates “safer recruitment” procedures and ensures that appropriate checks are carried out on all new staff and relevant volunteers;
- At least one senior member of the school’s leadership team acts as a Designated Safeguarding Lead;
- The Designated Safeguarding Leads attends appropriate refresher training every two years;
- The Head Teacher/Principal and all other staff who work with children undertake training on an annual basis with additional updates as necessary;
- Temporary staff and volunteers are made aware of the school’s arrangements for child protection and their responsibilities;
- The school remedies any deficiencies or weaknesses brought to its attention without delay; and
- The school has procedures for dealing with allegations of abuse against staff/volunteers.
7.3 The Governing Body reviews its policies/procedures annually.
7.4 The Nominated Governor for safeguarding at the school is Saeed Al-Ghadie The Nominated Governor is responsible for liaising with the Head Teacher/Principal and Designated Safeguarding Lead over all matters regarding safeguarding and child protection issues. The role is strategic rather than operational – they will not be involved in concerns about individual pupils/students.
7.5 The Nominated Governor will liaise with the Head Teacher/Principal and the Designated Safeguarding Lead to produce a report at least annually for governors.
7.6 The Nominated Governor will liaise with the Head Teacher/Principal and the Designated Safeguarding Lead to produce the annual Section 175 self-assessment, and ensure this is submitted on time to the Local Authority.
7.7 A member of the Governing Body (usually the Chair) is nominated to be responsible for liaising with the local authority in the event of allegations of abuse being made against the Head Teacher/Principal.
8. A SAFER SCHOOL CULTURE
Safer Recruitment and Selection
8.1 The school pays full regard to ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education’. Safer Recruitment practice includes scrutinising applicants, verifying identity and academic or vocational qualifications, obtaining professional and character references, checking previous employment history and ensuring that a candidate has the health and physical capacity for the job. It also includes undertaking interviews and undertaking appropriate checks through the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS).
8.2 All recruitment materials will include reference to the school’s commitment to safeguarding and promoting the wellbeing of pupils.
8.3 1: 2: 3: 4: Saeed Al-ghadie and Mr. Sakhawat Ali have undertaken appropriate training in Safer Recruitment. One of the above will be involved in all staff / volunteer recruitment processes and sit on the recruitment panel.
8.4 We recognise the stressful and traumatic nature of safeguarding and child protection work. We will support staff by providing an opportunity to talk through their anxieties with the Designated Safeguarding Lead and to seek further support as appropriate.
8.5 Regular supervision will be offered to the DSL’s within school, usually half termly and may be extended to other members of staff as deemed appropriate by the school.
9. OUR ROLE IN THE PREVENTION OF ABUSE
9.1 We will provide opportunities for pupils/students to develop skills, concepts, attitudes and knowledge that promote their safety and well-being.
9.2 Relevant issues will be addressed through the PSHE curriculum, for example self-esteem, emotional literacy, assertiveness, power, healthy relationship education (previously known as sex and relationship education SRE), online safety (formally known as e-safety), sexting and bullying (including cyber bullying).
9.3 Relevant issues will be addressed through other areas of the curriculum, for example, circle time, English, History, Drama, Art.
Other Areas of Work
9.4 All our policies which address issues of power and potential harm, for example bullying, discrimination, equal opportunities, handling, positive behaviour, will be linked to ensure a whole school approach.
9.5 Our safeguarding policy cannot be separated from the general ethos of the school, which should ensure that pupils/students are treated with respect and dignity, taught to treat each other with respect, feel safe, have a voice, and are listened to.
10. SAFEGUARDING PUPILS/STUDENTS WHO ARE VULNERABLE TO RADICALISATION
10.1 Since 2010, when the Government published the Prevent Strategy, there has been an awareness of the specific need to safeguard children, young people and families from violent extremism. There have been several occasions both locally and nationally in which extremist groups have attempted to radicalise vulnerable children and young people to hold extreme views including views justifying political, religious, sexist or racist violence, or to steer them into a rigid and narrow ideology that is intolerant of diversity and leaves them vulnerable to future radicalisation.
10.2 The Wisdom Academy values freedom of speech and the expression of beliefs and ideology as fundamental rights underpinning our society’s values. Both pupils/students and teachers have the right to speak freely and voice their opinions. However, freedom comes with responsibility and free speech that is designed to manipulate the vulnerable or that leads to violence and harm of others goes against the moral principles in which freedom of speech is valued. Free speech is not an unqualified privilege; it is subject to laws and policies governing equality, human rights, community safety and community cohesion.
10.3 The current threat from terrorism in the United Kingdom may include the exploitation of vulnerable people, to involve them in terrorism or in activity in support of terrorism. The normalisation of extreme views may also make children and young people vulnerable to future manipulation and exploitation. The Wisdom Academy is clear that this exploitation and radicalisation should be viewed as a safeguarding concern and that protecting children from the risk of radicalisation is part of the school’s safeguarding duty.
10.4 Definitions of radicalisation and extremism, and indicators of vulnerability to radicalisation are in Appendix 4.
10.5 The Wisdom Academy seeks to protect children and young people against the messages of all violent extremism including, but not restricted to, those linked to Islamist ideology, or to Far Right/Neo- Nazi/White Supremacist ideology, Domestic Terrorism, Irish Nationalist and Loyalist paramilitary groups, and extremist Animal Rights movements.
10.6 The school governors, the Head Teacher/Principal and the Designated Safeguarding Lead will assess the level of risk within the school and put actions in place to reduce that risk. Risk assessment may include consideration of the school’s RE curriculum, SEND policy, assembly policy, the use of school premises by external agencies, integration of pupils by gender and SEN, anti-bullying policy and other issues specific to the school’s profile, community and philosophy.
10.7 This risk assessment will be reviewed as part of the annual s175 return that is monitored by the local authority and the local safeguarding children board.
10.8 With effect from 1st July 2015 all schools are subject to a duty to have “due regard to the need to prevent people being drawn into terrorism” (section 26, Counter Terrorism and Security Act 2015). This is known as The Prevent Duty.
10.9 There is no single way to identify an individual who is likely to be susceptible to an extremist ideology. Specific background factors may contribute to vulnerability and these are often combined with specific needs for which an extremist group may appear to provide answers, and specific influences such as family, friends and online contacts. The use of social media has become a significant feature in the radicalisation of young people.
More information on these factors is in Appendix 4.
10.10 Our school, like all others, is required to identify a Prevent Single Point of Contact (SPOC) who will be the lead within the organisation for safeguarding in relation to protecting individuals from radicalisation and involvement in terrorism: this will normally be the Designated Safeguarding Lead. The SPOC for The Wisdom Academy is Mr. Sakhawat Ali. The responsibilities of the SPOC are described in Appendix 5.
10.11 Staff of The Wisdom Academy will be alert to changes in a child’s behaviour or attitude which could indicate that they are in need of help or protection.
10.12 The Wisdom Academy will monitor online activity with the school to ensure that inappropriate sites are not accessed by pupils of staff. This is best done by the use of specialist online monitoring software, which in this school is called Untangle
10.12 When any member of staff has concerns that a pupil/student may be at risk of radicalisation or involvement in terrorism, they should speak with the SPOC and to the Designated Safeguarding Lead if this is not the same person.
10.13 Numerous factors can contribute to and influence the range of behaviours that are defined as violent extremism, but most young people do not become involved in extremist action. For this reason the appropriate interventions in any particular case may not have any specific connection to the threat of radicalisation, for example they may address mental health, relationship or drug/alcohol issues.
10.14 Channel is a multi-agency approach to provide support to individuals who are at risk of being drawn into terrorist related activity. It is led by the West Midlands Police Counter-Terrorism Unit, and it aims to:
Establish an effective multi-agency referral and intervention process to identify vulnerable individuals;
Safeguard individuals who might be vulnerable to being radicalised, so that they are not at risk of being drawn into terrorist-related activity; and
Provide early intervention to protect and divert people away from the risks they face and reduce vulnerability.
10.15 The Channel programme focuses on providing support at an early stage to people who are identified as being vulnerable to being drawn into terrorism. It provides a mechanism for schools to make referrals if they are concerned that an individual might be vulnerable to radicalisation. An individual’s participation in the programme is entirely voluntary at all stages.
10.16 Schools have a duty to cooperate with the Channel programme in the carrying out of its functions, and with the Police in providing information about an individual who is referred to Channel (Section 38, Counter Terrorism and Security Act 2015).
Further guidance about duties relating to the risk of radicalisation is available in the Advice for Schools on The Prevent Duty.
SAFEGUARDING PUPILS/STUDENTS WHO ARE VULNERABLE TO EXPLOITATION, FORCED MARRIAGE, FEMALE GENITAL MUTILATION OR TRAFFICKING
11.1 Our safeguarding policy above, and the school’s values, ethos and behaviour policies, provide the basic platform to ensure children and young people are given the support to respect themselves and others, stand up for themselves and protect each other.
11.2 Our school keeps itself up to date on the latest advice and guidance provided to assist in addressing specific vulnerabilities and forms of exploitation.
11.3 Our staff are supported to recognise warning signs and symptoms in relation to specific issues, and include such issues in an age appropriate way in their curriculum.
11.4 Our school works with and engages our families and communities to talk about such issues.
11.5 Our staff are supported to talk to families about sensitive concerns in relation to their children and to find ways to address them together wherever possible.
11.6 Our Designated Safeguarding Lead(s) know where to seek and get advice as necessary.
11.7 Our school brings in experts and uses specialist material to support the work we do.
Reporting of Female Genital Mutilation
11.8 With effect from October 2015 all schools are subject to a mandatory reporting requirement in respect of female genital mutilation. When a teacher discovers that an act of FGM appears to have been carried out on a girl aged under 18, that teacher has a statutory duty to report it to the police. Failure to report such cases will result in disciplinary sanctions.
11.9 When a teacher at The Wisdom Academy has reasons to suspect that an act of FGM has been carried out on a pupil/student, or is at risk of such s/he will discuss the situation with the Designated Safeguarding Lead, who will consult children’s social care before a decision is made as to whether the mandatory reporting duty applies.
CHILDREN WHO GO MISSING FROM EDUCATION
12.1 A child going missing from education is a potential indicator of abuse or neglect, including sexual exploitation, FGM, forced marriage or travelling to conflict zones. School staff will be alert to these safeguarding concerns when a pupil/student goes missing for an extended period, or on repeat occasions.
12.2 The school must notify the local authority of any pupil/student who fails to attend school regularly after making reasonable enquiries, or has been absent without the school’s permission for a continuous period of 5 days or more. The school (regardless of designation) must also notify the local authority of any pupil/student who is to be deleted from the admission register because s/he –
Has been taken out of school by their parents and is being educated outside the school system (e.g. home education);
Has ceased to attend school and no longer lives within a reasonable distance of the school at which s/he is registered (moved within the city, within the country or moved abroad but failed to notify the school of the change);
Displaced as a result of a crisis e.g. domestic violence or homelessness;
Has been certified by the school medical officer as unlikely to be in a fit state of health to attend school before ceasing to be of compulsory school age, and neither s/he nor his/her parent has indicated the intention to continue to attend the school after ceasing to be of compulsory school age;
Is in custody for a period of more than four months due to a final court order and the proprietor does not reasonably believe that s/he will return to the school at the end of that period; or
Has been permanently excluded.
12.3 Our school will demonstrate that we have taken reasonable enquiries to ascertain the whereabouts of children that would be considered ‘missing’.
13. WHAT WE DO WHEN WE ARE CONCERNED
13.1 Where risk factors are present but there is no evidence of a significant risk then our DSL advises us on early help and preventative work that can be done within school to engage the pupil into mainstream activities and social groups. The DSL may well be the person who talks to and has conversations with the pupil/student’s family, sharing the school’s concern about the young person’s vulnerability and how the family and school can work together to reduce the risk.
13.2 In this situation, we will utilise the Right Services Right Time (RSRT) model to consider the needs of the family and in discussion with the parent and the young person (as far as possible) –
The DSL may decide to:
Monitor the situation after taking appropriate action to address the concerns.
Undertake an Early Help assessment to try to meet the needs of the child and family through a multi-agency approach.
Seek advice from the Children’s Advice and Support Service (CASS) formerly known as MASH Front door so that a strategic overview can be maintained and any themes or common factors can be recognised.
Notify Children’s Social Care via a request for support form to the CASS.
13.3 If it is felt the child’s needs fall into the RSRT categories of Universal + of Additional Need the DSL will also offer and seek advice about undertaking an Early Help Assessment and consider, if this does not have an impact on the situation making a referral to children’s social care. The local Early Help Panel can assist us.
Our local Early Help Panel is: Perry Barr and Ladywood
13.4 If the concerns about the pupil/student are deemed ‘Complex and Significant’ meeting the criteria within RSRT, they will be referred to the CASS. This includes concerns about a child/young person who is affected by the behaviour of a parent or other adult in their household.
PART TWO – THE KEY PROCEDURES
RESPONDING TO CONCERNS ABOUT A CHILD
14. INVOLVING PARENTS/CARERS
14.1 In general, we will discuss any child protection concerns with parents/carers before approaching other agencies, and will seek their consent to making a referral to another agency. Appropriate staff will approach parents/carers after consultation with the Designated Safeguarding Lead. However there may be occasions when the school will contact another agency before informing parents/carers because it considers that contacting them may increase the risk of significant harm to the child.
14.2 Parents/carers will be informed about our safeguarding policy through:
Copies available in the School Office and via the school website
15. MULTI-AGENCY WORK
15.1 We work in partnership with other agencies in the best interests of the children. The school will, where necessary, liaise with the school nurse and doctor, and make referrals to children’s social care. Referrals should be made by the Designated Safeguarding Lead to the Children’s Advice Support Service (CASS) – 0121 303 1888. Where the child already has a safeguarding social worker, the request for service should go immediately to the social worker involved, or in their absence to their team manager.
15.2 When invited the DSL will participate in a MASH strategy meeting, usually by conference phone, adding school held data and intelligence to the discussion so that the best interests of the child are met.
15.3 We will co-operate with any child protection enquiries conducted by children’s social care: the school will ensure representation at appropriate inter-agency meetings such as integrated support plan meetings initial and review child protection conferences, and core group meetings.
15.4 We will provide reports as required for these meetings. If the school is unable to attend, a written report will be sent. The report will, wherever possible, be shared with parents/carers at least 24 hours prior to the meeting.
15.5 Where a pupil/student is subject to an inter-agency child protection plan or a multi-agency risk assessment conference (MARAC) meeting, the school will contribute to the preparation, implementation and review of the plan as appropriate.
16. OUR ROLE IN SUPPORTING CHILDREN
16.1 We will offer appropriate support to individual children who have experienced abuse, who have abused others (child on child abuse) or who act as Young Carers in their home situation.
16.2 An individual support plan will be devised, implemented and reviewed regularly for these children. This plan will detail areas of support, who will be involved, and the child’s wishes and feelings. A written outline of the individual support plan will be kept in the child’s safeguarding record.
16.3 Children and young people who abuse others will be responded to in a way that meets their needs as well as protecting others within the school community through a multi-agency risk assessment. We will ensure that the needs of children and young people who abuse others will be considered separately from the needs of their victims.
16.4 We will ensure the school works in partnership with parents / carers and other agencies as appropriate.
17. RESPONDING TO AN ALLEGATION ABOUT A MEMBER OF STAFF
See also Birmingham Safeguarding Children Board Procedures on Allegations against Staff and Volunteers.
17.1 This procedure should be used in any case in which it is alleged that a member of staff, governor, visiting professional or volunteer has:
- Behaved in a way that has harmed a child or may have harmed a child;
- Possibly committed a criminal offence against or related to a child; or
- Behaved in a way that indicates s/he is unsuitable to work with children.
17.2 Although it is an uncomfortable thought, it needs to be acknowledged that there is the potential for staff in school to abuse children.
17.3 All staff working within our organisation must report any potential safeguarding concerns about an individual’s behaviour towards children and young people immediately.
17.3.1 Allegations or concerns about staff, colleagues and visitors must be reported direct to the Head Teacher/Principal who will liaise with the Local Authority Designated Officer Team in children’s social care who will decide on any action required.
17.3.2 If the concern relates to the Head Teacher/Principal, it must be reported immediately to the Chair of the Governing Body, who will liaise with the Local Authority Designated Officer Team in children’s social care and they will decide on any action required.
17.3.3 If the safeguarding concern relates to the proprietor of the settingthen the concern must be made directly to the Local Authority LADO team who will decide on any action required.
18. CHILDREN WITH ADDITIONAL NEEDS
18.1 The Wisdom Academy recognises that while all children have a right to be safe, some children may be more vulnerable to abuse, for example those with a disability or special educational need, those living with domestic violence or drug/alcohol abusing parents, etc.
18.2 When the school is considering excluding, either fixed term or permanently, a vulnerable pupil and/or a pupil/student who is the subject of a child protection plan or where there is an existing child protection file, we will call a multi-agency risk-assessment meeting prior to making the decision to exclude. In the event of a one-off serious incident resulting in an immediate decision to exclude, the risk assessment must be completed prior to convening a meeting of the Governing Body.
19. CHILDREN IN SPECIFIC CIRCUMSTANCES
19.1 Many people find themselves looking after someone else’s child without realising that they may be involved in private fostering. A private fostering arrangement is one that is made privately (that is to say without the involvement of a local authority) for the care of a child under the age of 16 (under 18, if disabled) by someone other than a parent or immediate relative. If the arrangement is to last, or has lasted, for 28 days or more it is private fostering.
19.2 The Children Act 1989 defines a relative as a grandparent, brother, sister, uncle or aunt (whether of full blood or half blood or by marriage or civil partnership), or a step parent.
19.3 People become involved in private fostering for all kinds of reasons. Examples of private fostering include –
- Children who need alternative care because of parental illness;
- Children whose parents cannot care for them because their work or study involves long or antisocial hours;
- Children sent from abroad to stay with another family, usually to improve their educational opportunities;
- Unaccompanied asylum seeking and refugee children;
- Teenagers who stay with friends (or other non-relatives) because they have fallen out with their parents;
- Children staying with families while attending a school away from their home area.
19.5 There is a mandatory duty on the school to inform the local authority of a private fostering. The local authority has a duty to check that the young person is being properly cared for and that the arrangement is satisfactory.
Other Specific Circumstances
19.6 Guidance on children in specific circumstances is in Birmingham Safeguarding Children Board’s procedures as listed below:
Faith Abuse and Honour Based Violence
Violence Against Women and Girls
Information from the Appendices is available from the School Office or by e-mail upon request.