On discovery or suspicion of abuse, or if a child discloses a concern, act as follows:
- Actively listen to the child (stop what you are doing, look at her/him, respond by nodding and making supportive sounds).
- Ask questions only to clarify, not to investigate, using the child’s language and vocabulary to repeat back what they have said.
- Reassure the child that to share was the right thing to do, emphasising that, whatever happened, it was not his/her fault and they are not bad.
- Tell the child that you will do your best to support and help him/her but don’t promise confidentiality. Say that you will have to tell the Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) Deputy DSL.
- Record the details in writing, on an Incident Record form, date and sign it. These forms will be available to download on a PDF version on the school website on in a hardcopy version, both at school’s main office and in the DSL’s Office. Pass those records on to the Designated Safeguarding Lead or deputy DSL so they can be kept confidential and secure.
- Inform the Designated Safeguarding Lead, Miss Tracey Peters or, if she isn’t available inform either Miss C McGuinness (Deputy DSL), or Ms F McGuinness (Deputy DSL).
- If the DSL and the Headteacher decide it is appropriate, they will refer the case to Children’s Social Care. Incidents can be shared directly with CSCT to ensure there is no delay or when there is a disagreement.
- Parents/Carers will be told about the referral, unless there is good reason to believe that doing so would place a child at greater risk.