Safeguarding Children in Education
In Halton there is a dedicated position of Safeguarding Children in Education (SCIE) Officer, to support schools in meeting and exceeding their statutory duties detailed within current legislation and guidance.
If children and young people are to achieve academically, socially and emotionally to the best of their ability, it is essential that their basic needs for safety and protection are met. All children have a fundamental right to be protected from harm and the SCIE Officer strives to raise awareness of child protection, early help, partnership working and high safeguarding standards across school settings to ensure that all children in Halton schools are kept safe and that adults working in schools are confident and supported.
The primary functions of the post are to:
- Ensure that schools and education providers are aware of and effectively discharge their safeguarding responsibilities in line with their statutory duties contained in the Education Act 2002 and the most up to date DfE Keeping Children Safe in Education and Working Together to Safeguard Children guidance.
- Provide support, challenge and guidance to schools and education providers in discharging those responsibilities.
- Quality assure training on safeguarding children and safer recruitment so that all schools and education providers can access this in order to fulfil their statutory duties so ensuring all the workforce are up to date with their safeguarding knowledge and practices.
The statutory documents Working Together to Safeguard Children and Keeping Children Safe in Education help to inform the work of the post and the principles that underpin the Children Acts 1989 and 2004 provides a framework for the standard of practice.
The needs of the child are considered paramount at all times.
High standards of safeguarding policy, procedures and practice in all schools are supported and good practice acknowledged. Individual consultations are available to schools requiring advice regarding specific cases or areas of concern. The Safeguarding Children in Education Officer also works alongside the LADO to ensure effective practice in managing Allegations against Adults within the education sector.
To ensure that all colleagues working within education update their safeguarding training as per statutory guidance, a range of single agency Basic Awareness in Safeguarding training will be quality assured for providers to access. Training on safer working practice in relation to managing Allegations against Adults along with Safer Recruitment will also be quality assured and made available to providers. Information sharing and effective practice sessions more specific to the role of Senior Designated Person, including termly Network Meetings and Roles and Responsibilities training, will be delivered on a regular basis by the Safeguarding in Education Officer. Delivery of more bespoke training for other education colleagues such as new Headteachers, Governors and Early Years providers will be carried out in collaboration with other specialist teams to ensure that there is consistency of content and practice. The Safeguarding in Education Officer will also provide opportunities for consultation as part of the preventative arm of the post.
The SCIE Officer works collaboratively with internal and external partners to ensure that objectives are achieved and maintained. This includes close working with both the Widnes and Runcorn East and West Early Intervention Locality Teams. The role endeavours to function in a reasonable, transparent and proportionate manner when working with individuals, schools and multi-agency partners.
The work of the Safeguarding Children in Education Officer primarily focuses on supporting and challenging schools in all matters relating to safeguarding children. This includes:
- Provision of consultations and advice to school staff
- Support for colleagues escalating cases using the Halton Children and Young People Safeguarding Partnership (HCYPSP) Escalation Policy
- Challenge to schools who are causing concern and not meeting Halton expected standards
- Provision of exemplar documentation and some model policy frameworks
- Termly Network Meetings for Senior Designated Persons/Deputy Designated Persons (SDP/DDP)
- Promotion of relevant HCYPSP multi-agency training
- Ensuring the provision of a quality assured single agency training offer (including Level 2 Basic Awareness in Safeguarding, Safer Practice including managing Allegations Against Adults, SDP/DDP Roles and Responsibilities training, Designated Governor for Safeguarding training, Safer Recruitment training, new to Headteacher Safeguarding training etc)
- Consultation support for SDP/DDPs who wish to deliver Level 2 Basic Awareness in Safeguarding within their setting
- Provision and development of group supervision sessions for SDP/DDPs
- Close links with the Early Intervention Locality teams
- Representation at HCYPSP subgroup level (Safeguarding Education, Contextual Safeguarding subgroup, and Safeguarding Practice subgroup)
- Supporting schools to engage with HCYPSP Multi Agency Audits of Practice
Within Halton the following schools fall under the remit of the SCIE Officer:
- 3 Nursery Schools
- 1 Infant School
- 1 Junior School
- 1 All through Academy
- 37 maintained/Faith Primary Schools
- 7 Primary Academy Schools
- 1 Secondary Free School
- 2 Secondary Schools (both Faith Schools)
- 4 Secondary Academies
- 2 maintained Special Schools (1 Primary, 1 Secondary)
- 2 Special School Academies (1 Primary, 1 Secondary)
There are also Independent Schools who have the opportunity to actively engage with the post.