Dartmoor Multi-Academy Trust is committed to Safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and expects all staff, volunteers and visitors to share this commitment.
The Trust aims to provide a caring, positive, safe and stimulating environment which promotes the social, physical and moral development of the individual child, and strive to make sure that every student in the Trust feels secure, well cared for, and able to reach their full potential.
The Trust understands and is committed to the vital contribution that all Trustees, staff, parents and students can make to safeguarding children. Every member of staff has a collective recognition of the importance of providing an environment that helps children feel safe and respected, and a culture that encourages children to talk openly, and have the confidence they will be listened to.
Safeguarding is the proactive stance, which aims to protect children from abuse or harm, and Child Protection is the reactive stance taken to support students whom the school suspects may be in need of protection.
We have a number of policies and procedures in place that contribute to our safeguarding commitment, including our Safeguarding Policy (please click the link below) or we can provide you with a hard copy if you prefer.
Sometimes we may need to share information and work in partnership with other agencies when there are concerns about a child’s welfare. We will ensure that our concerns about our students are discussed with parents/carers first, unless we have reason to believe that such a move would be contrary to the child’s welfare.
The Trust follows the Safer Recruitment procedures to ensure all staff are suitable to work with students, including carrying out checks with the Disclosure Barring Service. All visitors to the school sign in at Reception and receive a Visitors badge for the duration of their stay. All staff are expected to challenge individuals who are not wearing a badge and are not known to them.
All staff undergo annual Safeguarding training and regular updates. All staff and students receive e-safety training to raise awareness of the new challenges relating to the internet with the aim to reduce its misuse, including social media sites and to minimise the incidents of cyber bullying and its effects. Staff receive training to raise awareness of the Prevent strategy with the aim of reducing the risk of radicalisation and the ideological challenge of terrorism. Staff are aware of their duty to be alert to female students who may at risk of Female Genital Mutilation and the key indicators to recognise children at risk of Child Sex Exploitation.
Our curriculum is designed to create awareness in students of Safeguarding issues and how to deal with them. Issues are covered in the PSHE (Personal Social and Health Education) programme, our assembly programme and during tutor times and more generally throughout the curriculum. Training of all staff in identifying, reporting procedures and dealing with such issues is regular and thorough. We will continue to ensure that all our staff, other professionals, parents/carers and students work together to know the rules about keeping children safe. They will understand the importance of following procedures and listening to each other, especially when there are concerns about safety.
The Trust and its member schools are committed to equality in both employment and education provision. We aim to ensure that students, parents, governors, employees, contractors, partners, clients and those who may potentially join the Trust community, are treated fairly, and with dignity and respect. Protected characteristics include age, disability, race, colour, nationality, ethnic or national origin, sex (including transgender), gender reassignment, pregnancy and maternity, religion or belief, sexual orientation and marriage and civil partnership (for employees).
The Trust has a zero- tolerance approach to prejudice and discrimination in any form. We are committed to ensuring that all Dartmoor Multi Academy Trust community members are respected and safeguarded irrespective of any protected characteristic(s).
Prevent relates to the Counter Terrorism and Security Act 2015 which came into force on 1 July 2015. Since 1 July 2015 there has been a duty on schools to have ‘due regard to the need to Prevent people from being drawn into terrorism’. This is called the Prevent duty.
In the Dartmoor MAT all our staff have completed whole school Prevent training and understand the importance of the Prevent strategy.
All our staff understand the duty they have to ensure British values are embedded into our curriculum and pastoral care to support healthy discussion and debate and to promote tolerance.
All our staff understand that any concerns around potential radicalisation and/or extremism should be treated as a safeguarding issue and reported to our Safeguarding Team.
Our Safeguarding Team understand the South West Prevent Strategy and how to make a referral.
Further information and support is available:
Child sexual exploitation (CSE) is a type of sexual abuse. Children in exploitative situations and relationships receive something such as gifts, money or affection as a result of performing sexual activities or others performing sexual activities on them.
Children or young people may be tricked into believing they’re in a loving, consensual relationship. They might be invited to parties and given drugs and alcohol. They may also be groomed and exploited online.
Some children and young people are trafficked into or within the UK for the purpose of sexual exploitation. Sexual exploitation can also happen to young people in gangs.
Find out more here:
Department for education – child sexual exploitation
Watch the Exploited video from CEOP which identifies the features of an exploitative friendship or relationship in contrast with the development of a healthy relationship:
Click here for ceop ‘exploited’ video
Further information and support is available below:
NSPCC Child sexual exploitation at a glance
Does your child need support with mental health and well being? There are plenty of people in our schools who can support with this. Feel free to speak to your child’s class teacher, tutor or Head of Year in the first instance, or a member of the Safeguarding Team, who it may be more appropriate to discuss concerns with.
There are some fantastic online resources to help with mental health and well-being.
Free online support for young people
Mental Health Foundation
The voice for young people’s mental health and well being
Calm Harm is an award-winning app developed for teenage mental health charity stem4
Bite-sized chunks designed to support mental health
Anna Freud – Provide a range of specialist types of support for children, young people and families.
Parents’ drug and alcohol problems may affect students differently depending on their age, development and personality. There may be some family factors which increase the risks to children. There may also be other factors which protect children or reduce the impact of their parents’ problems.
The latest official data shows that drinking and drug use among young people has more than halved over the past 10 years. Yet there are still significant numbers of young people across the country using and misusing substances, and some of these are at risk of developing severe and enduring substance misuse problems that continue into adulthood.
To access help and support on any of the issues above contact:
The Trust works hard to remove any barriers to education while retaining high expectations of every student. We ensure that we work with due regard to the 2014 Special Educational Needs Code of Practice.
Our SEN departments work with parents to take an individual approach to meeting each pupil’s needs. Our approach may include internal interventions, or engaging outside agencies but, will always be personalised to an individual pupil. All our children are unique. The Trust prides itself on its inclusive approach to education and are always working to develop what we do.
Pupils have a Special Educational Need if they:
a) Have a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of pupils of the same age
b) Have a disability which prevents or hinders him/her from making use of facilities of a kind generally provided for others of the same age in mainstream schools or mainstream post-16 institutions
c) A student under compulsory age has Special Educational Needs if they fall within the definition at (a) or (b) above or would do so if special educational provision was not made for them (Section 20 Children and Families Act 2014)
Click below for further information on:
When we are trying to decide whether a student is mature enough to make decisions, people often talk about whether a child is ‘Gillick Competent’ or whether they meet the ‘Fraser Guidelines’. These are generally applied from the age of 12 but The Gillick Competency and Fraser Guidelines help us all to balance children’s rights and wishes with our responsibility to keep children safe from harm.
The Trust will always endeavor to inform parents when their son/daughter is receiving or accessing medical and/or external agency support. This decision will always be discussed with the young person.