The Designated Safeguarding Leads at DNPA are Derya Donaldson ( Derya@dnpa.co.uk ) and Natasha Khamjani ( Natasha@dnpa.co.uk )
DNPA is fully committed to safeguarding the welfare of all children and young people up to the age of 18. We recognise our responsibility to take all reasonable steps to promote safe practice and to protect children from harm, abuse and exploitation.
DNPA acknowledges our duty to act appropriately to any allegations, reports or suspicions of abuse. All staff and volunteers will work together to encourage the development of an ethos which embraces difference and diversity and respects the rights of children, young people and adults.
DNPA recognises its duty of care under the Children and Young Persons Act 1963, the Children (Performances and Activities) (England) Regulations 2014, the Children Act 1989 and Working Together to Safeguard Children 2018.
This policy applies to our paid staff, volunteers, performers or anyone working on behalf of DNPA .
The purpose of this policy:
- To protect children and young people who attend DNPA including in regular classes, performances, workshops or any other activities linked to the performing arts school.
- To provide parents, staff and volunteers guidance for our approach to child protection and what they should do if they suspect a child or young person may be experiencing, or is at risk of, harm.
DNPA will ensure that:
- The safety and welfare of our performers is paramount.
- All children, whatever their age, gender, sexuality, race, disability, educational attainment or economic circumstance have the right to protection from abuse.
- We recognise some children are additionally vulnerable because of the impact of previous experiences, their level of dependency, communication needs or other issues.
- All suspicions and allegations of abuse will be taken seriously and responded to swiftly and appropriately.
DNPA will seek to safeguard children and young people by:
- Ensuring everybody has the right to perform
- Treating all performers and parents with respect and dignity
- Putting the welfare of each child first
- Providing enthusiastic and constructive criticism to performers rather than negative criticism
- Valuing the views of our performers
- Focussing on the benefits of performance, helping individuals personally and socially as well as physically
- Ensuring all paid staff and volunteers (aged 16+) who will be working with children will have an Enhanced DBS Check
- Ensuring all paid staff are fully insured
- Never accepting bullying of any form
- Ensuring all adult members will provide a positive role model (including those helping in classes)
- Taking action to stop any inappropriate behaviour and reporting any issues that may cause concern to our Designated Safeguarding Lead
- Keeping informed of changes in legislation and policies for the protection of children
- Ensuring all contact and medical details for every child is up to date and available at the place of teaching or performance
- Ensuring all staff receive safeguarding training following the NSPCC Safeguarding Children Protecting Children in Entertainment
This policy will be reviewed annually or sooner in light of any changes in legislation or guidance. All changes will be communicated to our members.
In implementing this policy, DNPA will:
- Ensure that all paid staff/volunteers understand their legal and moral responsibility to protect children and young people from harm, abuse and exploitation.
- Designated Safeguarding Lead will refer any child protection concerns to the statutory child protection agencies (i.e. Police and/or Children’s Social Care).
- Children, young people and parents will be informed of who the Designated Safeguarding Lead is and be able to raise any safeguarding concerns and know that these will be taken seriously and acted upon.
- Ensure that staff will work implemented in a consistent and equitable manner in line with the Lewisham CCG Safeguarding Children Professionals ( https://www.lewishamccg.nhs.uk/about-us/Governance/Pages/Safeguarding-children.aspx )
Child Protection Procedures
Managing Sensitive Information:
- Permission will be sought from parents for photographs and/or videos to be taken of their children and further permission will be sought from parents for these photographs and/or videos to be used as marketing material or other purposes.
- Names will never be used alongside photographs on social media or websites.
- Photographs will not be permitted to be taken in dressing rooms at the annual show.
- Photographs taken by parents at open afternoons are for personal use only and photographs must not be placed on social media. Parents will be reminded of this and in some cases, photographs will be forbidden due to a child in a class not being allowed to be photographed.
- Undertake a risk assessment and monitor risk throughout the performance process,
- Identify at the outset the person who will have designated responsibility for child protection,
- Engage in effective recruitment of chaperones and other individuals with responsibility for children, including appropriate vetting (if necessary in consultation with the Local Authority),
- Ensure that the children are supervised by a responsible adult at all times
- Ensure that the Designated Safeguarding Lead knows how to contact Children’s Social Care if they need to report any concerns
- The organisation will ensure that no unauthorised adult has contact with the children.
- If possible there should be two adults in the room when working with children
- If unsupervised contact is unavoidable (i.e. only one member of staff present), steps will be taken to minimise risk. For example, work will be carried out in a public area or in a designated room with the door open or in view of a chaperone.
- All adults will maintain a safe and appropriate distance from children.
- Adults will only touch children when it is absolutely necessary in relation to the particular activity.
- Adults will seek the consent of the child prior to any physical contact and the purpose of the contact shall be made clear.
Disclosure of abuse – If a child confides in you that abuse has taken place:
- Remain calm and in control, but do not delay in taking action
- Listen carefully to what has been said. Allow the child to tell you at their own pace and ask questions only for clarification. Don’t ask questions that suggest a particular answer.
- Don’t promise to keep it a secret. Use the first opportunity you have to share the information with the Designated Safeguarding Lead. Make it clear to the child that you will need to share the information with others and that you will only tell the people who need to know and who should be able to help
- Reassure the child that they ‘did the right thing’ in telling someone.
- Tell the child what you will do next
- Speak immediately to the Designated Safeguarding Lead (the person with responsibility for child protection). It is that person’s responsibility to liaise with the relevant authorities, usually Children’s Social Care or the Police
- Never investigate or take sole responsibility for a situation where a child makes a disclosure
- As soon as possible after the disclosing conversation, make a note of what was said, using the child’s own words. Note the date, time, any names that were involved or mentioned, and who you gave information to. Make sure you sign and date your record.
The Designated Safeguarding Lead would discuss concerns with a parent/carer if this was thought not to place the child at further risk. When the disclosure is about something a parent/carer has done, the Designated Safeguarding Lead should always seek advice from Children’s Social Care First.
- DNPA believes it to be important that there is a partnership between parents and the organisation. Parents are encouraged to be involved in the activities of the organisation and to share responsibility for the care and safeguarding of the children. All parents will be advised to read the organisation’s Child Protection/safeguarding policy and procedures on the website.
- All parents have the responsibility to collect (or arrange collection of) their children after classes, rehearsals or performances. It is the parents responsibility to inform the organisation in writing of the pick
up arrangements for their child/children if they will not be collecting them themselves.
- All staff/volunteers must not communicate with children via their phone or on social media. Communication must be with the parent/carer only.
- Staff should not be ‘friends’ on social media with any pupil or parent (unless known prior to the performing arts school)
- Cyber bullying by children via texts will be treated as seriously as any other type of bullying.
Online Classes (Update 1st August 2020)
Due to COVID-19, some of our classes are moving online, pre-recorded or live. Only performers who have been given consent to participate in online classes will be provided with a link and password to access such classes. Parents/Performers also agree to the following waiver:
- Performers will be suitably dressed
- Performers will have a safe space to dance in
- Performers (under 18) will be supervised by an adult and other performers will be asked to ensure someone knows they are performing and they have a phone in easy reach in case of an accident. – This means webcams/phones must be in a communal space like a living room.
All of our safeguarding policies in terms of bullying, appropriate language and behaviour remain the same. The same protocol applies in terms of reporting an incident if a teacher witnesses something on camera including inappropriate dress, inappropriate comments, abuse/safeguarding concerns. Teachers will be asked to email any concerns via encrypted email.
Allegations against staff
Any report of concern about the behaviour of a member of staff or allegation of abuse against a member of staff must immediately be reported to the DSL or who will refer to the appropriate Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO), If this is an allegation that a member of staff may have caused harm to a child.
Finola Owens: 020 8314 3114 or LewishamLADO@Lewisham.gov.uk .
DNPA, St. Andrew’s URC Church, Wickham & Brockley Road, Brockley, London, SE4 2SA