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Child Safeguarding Statement

Scoil Íde is a primary school providing primary education to pupils from Junior Infants to Sixth Class. In accordance with the requirements of the Children First Act 2015, Children First: National Guidance for the Protection and Welfare of Children 2017, the Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post Primary Schools 2017 and Tusla Guidance on the preparation of Child Safeguarding Statements, the Board of Management of Scoil Íde has agreed the Child Safeguarding Statement set out in this document.

  1. The Board of Management has adopted and will implement fully and without modification the Department’s Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post Primary Schools 2017 as part of this overall Child Safeguarding Statement
  1. The Designated Liaison Person (DLP) is Grace Burke
  1. The Deputy Designated Liaison Person (Deputy DLP) is Ray D'Arcy
  1. The Board of Management recognises that child protection and welfare considerations permeate all aspects of school life and must be reflected in all the school’s policies, procedures, practices and activities. The school will adhere to the following principles of best practice in child protection and welfare:

The school will:

  • recognise that the protection and welfare of children is of paramount importance, regardless of all other considerations;
  • fully comply with its statutory obligations under the Children First Act 2015 and other relevant legislation relating to the protection and welfare of children;
  • fully co-operate with the relevant statutory authorities in relation to child protection and welfare matters
  • adopt safe practices to minimise the possibility of harm or accidents happening to children and protect workers from the necessity to take unnecessary risks that may leave themselves open to accusations of abuse or neglect;
  • develop a practice of openness with parents and encourage parental involvement in the education of their children; and
  • fully respect confidentiality requirements in dealing with child protection matters.

The school will also adhere to the above principles in relation to any adult pupil with a special vulnerability.

  1. The following procedures/measures are in place:
  • In relation to any member of staff who is the subject of any investigation (howsoever described) in respect of any act, omission or circumstance in respect of a child attending the school, the school adheres to the relevant procedures set out in Chapter 7 of the Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools 2017 and to the relevant agreed disciplinary procedures for school staff which are published on the DES website.
  • In relation to the selection or recruitment of staff and their suitability to work with children, the school adheres to the statutory vetting requirements of the National Vetting Bureau (Children and Vulnerable Persons) Acts 2012 to 2016 and to the wider duty of care guidance set out in relevant Garda vetting and recruitment circulars published by the DES and available on the DES website.
  • In relation to the provision of information and, where necessary, instruction and training, to staff in respect of the identification of the occurrence of harm (as defined in the 2015 Act) the school-
  • Has provided each member of staff with a copy of the school’s Child Safeguarding Statement
  • Ensures all new staff are provided with a copy of the school’s Child Safeguarding Statement
  • Encourages staff to avail of relevant training
  • Encourages Board of Management members to avail of relevant training
  • The Board of Management maintains records of all staff and Board member training
  • In relation to reporting of child protection concerns to Tusla, all school personnel are required to adhere to the procedures set out in the Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools 2017, including in the case of registered teachers, those in relation to mandated reporting under the Children First Act 2015.
  • In this school the Board has appointed the abovenamed DLP as the “relevant person” (as defined in the Children First Act 2015) to be the first point of contact in respect of the child safeguarding statement.
  • All registered teachers employed by the school are mandated persons under the Children First Act 2015.
  • In accordance with the Children First Act 2015, the Board has carried out an assessment of any potential for harm to a child while attending the school or participating in school activities. A written assessment setting out the areas of risk identified and the school’s procedures for managing those risks is attached as an appendix to these procedures.
  • The various procedures referred to in this Statement can be accessed via the school’s website, the DES website or will be made available on request by the school.

Note:  The above is not intended as an exhaustive list. Individual Boards of Management shall also include in this section such other procedures/measures that are of relevance to the school in question. 

     

  1. This statement has been published on the school’s website and has been provided to all members of school personnel, the Parents’ Association and the patron. It is readily accessible to parents and guardians on request. A copy of this Statement will be made available to Tusla and the Department if requested. 
  1. This Child Safeguarding Statement will be reviewed annually or as soon as practicable after there has been a material change in any matter to which this statement refers.

 

This Child Safeguarding Statement was adopted by the Board of Management on 05/03/2018 and reviewed on 01/04/2019

Signed:       Patrick Meghen                                     Signed:  Grace Burke

Chairperson of Board of Management                      Principal/Secretary to the Board of Management

     

Date:           01/04/2019                                           Date:    01/04/2019

 

 

Written Assessment of Risk of Scoil Ide

In accordance with section 11 of the Children First Act 2015 and with the requirement of Chapter 8 of the Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools 2017, the following is the Written Risk Assessment of Scoil Ide.

  1. List of school activities
  • Daily arrival and dismissal of pupils
  • Recreation breaks for pupils
  • Classroom teaching
  • One-to-one teaching
  • Small group teaching
  • One-to-one counselling
  • Outdoor teaching activities
  • After school and lunch time activities
  • Sporting activities
  • School outings/tours
  • Use of toilet/changing/shower areas in schools
  • Toileting accidents
  • Use of off-site facilities for school activities
  • Care of children with special educational needs, including intimate care where needed,
  • Management of challenging behaviour amongst pupils, including appropriate use of restraint where required
  • Administration of Medicine
  • Administration of First Aid
  • Curricular provision in respect of SPHE, RSE, Stay Safe, Well Being
  • Prevention and dealing with bullying amongst pupils
  • Training of school personnel in child protection matters
  • Use of external personnel to supplement curriculum
  • Use of external personnel to support sports and other extra-curricular activities
  • Care of pupils with specific vulnerabilities/ needs such as
  • Pupils from ethnic minorities/migrants
  • Members of the Traveller community
  • Lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT) children
  • Pupils perceived to be LGBT
  • Pupils of minority religious faiths
  • Children in care
  • Children on CPNS
  • Recruitment of school personnel including -
  • Teachers/SNA’s
  • Caretaker/Secretary/Cleaners
  • Sports coaches
  • External Tutors/Guest Speakers
  • Volunteers/Parents in school activities
  • Visitors/contractors present in school during school hours
  • Visitors/contractors present during after school activities
  • Participation by pupils in religious ceremonies
  • Use of Information and Communication Technology by pupils in school
  • Application of sanctions under the school’s Code of Behaviour including detention of pupils, confiscation of phones etc.
  • Students participating in work experience in the school
  • Student teachers/snas undertaking training placement in school
  • Use of video/photography/other media to record school events
  • Display of photographs in school/church/media/social media

 

 

  1. The school has identified the following risk of harm in respect of its activities –
  • Risk of harm not being recognised by school personnel
  • Risk of harm not being reported properly and promptly by school personnel
  • Risk of child being harmed in the school by a member of school personnel
  • Risk of child being harmed in the school by another child
  • Risk of child being harmed in the school by volunteer or visitor to the school
  • Risk of child being harmed by a member of school personnel, a member of staff of another organisation or other person while child participating in out of school activities e.g. school trip, swimming lessons
  • Risk of harm due to bullying of child
  • Risk of harm due to inadequate supervision of children in school
  • Risk of harm due to inadequate supervision of children while attending out of school activities
  • Risk of harm due to inappropriate relationship/communications between child and another child or adult
  • Risk of harm due to children inappropriately accessing/using computers, social media, phones and other devices while at school
  • Risk of harm to children with SEN who have particular vulnerabilities
  • Risk of harm to child while a child is receiving intimate care
  • Risk of harm due to inadequate code of behaviour
  • Risk of harm in one-to-one teaching, counselling, coaching situation
  • Risk of harm caused by member of school personnel communicating with pupils in appropriate manner via social media, texting, digital device or other manner
  • Risk of harm caused by member of school personnel accessing/circulating inappropriate material via social media, texting, digital device or other manner

 

 

The school has the following procedures in place to address the risks of harm identified in this assessment -

 

  • All school personnel are provided with a copy of the school’s Child Safeguarding Statement
  • The Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools 2017 are made available to all school personnel
  • School Personnel are required to adhere to the Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools 2017 and all registered teaching staff are required to adhere to the Children First Act 2015
  • The school implements in full the Stay Safe Programme
  • The school implements in full the SPHE curriculum
  • The school has an Anti-Bullying Policy which fully adheres to the requirements of the Department’s Anti-Bullying Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools
  • The school has a yard/playground supervision policy to ensure appropriate supervision of children during, assembly, dismissal and breaks and in respect of specific areas such as toilets, changing rooms etc.
  • The school has clear procedures in respect of school outings
  • The school has implemented a sign-out system for the early dismissal of pupils
  • The school has a Health and Safety Policy
  • The school adheres to the requirements of the Garda vetting legislation and relevant DES circulars in relation to recruitment and Garda vetting
  • The school has a codes of conduct for school personnel (teaching and non-teaching staff)
  • The school complies with the agreed disciplinary procedures for teaching staff
  • The school has a Special Educational Needs Policy
  • The school has Intimate Care procedures in respect of students who require such care
  • The school has in place a policy and procedures for the administration of medication to pupils
  • The school –
    • Has provided each member of school staff with a copy of the school’s Child Safeguarding Statement
    • Ensures all new staff are provided with a copy of the school’s Child Safeguarding Statement
    • Encourages staff to avail of relevant training
    • Encourages board of management members to avail of relevant training
    • Maintains records of all staff and board member training
  • The school has in place a policy and procedures for the administration of First Aid
  • The school has in place a Code of Behaviour for pupils
  • The school has in place an ICT and Social Media Expected Use Policy
  • The school has procedures in place in respect of usage of mobile phones by pupils
  • The school has in place a Critical Incident Management Plan
  • The school has in place Home School Liaison procedures
  • The school has procedures in place for the use of external persons to supplement delivery of the curriculum
  • The school has procedures in place for the use of external sports coaches
  • The school has clear procedures in place for one-to-one teaching activities
  • The school has procedures in place for one-to-one counselling
  • The school has procedures in place in respect of student teacher placements
  • The school has procedures in place in respect of students undertaking work experience in the school
  • The school has procedures in place in respect of pupils of the school undertaking work experience in external organisations

Important Note:  It should be noted that risk in the context of this risk assessment is the risk of “harm” as defined in the Children First Act 2015 and not general health and safety risk. The definition of harm is set out in Chapter 4 of the Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post- Primary  Schools 2017

In undertaking this risk assessment, the Board of Management has endeavoured to identify as far as possible the risks of harm that are relevant to this school and to ensure that adequate procedures are in place to manage all risks identified.  While it is not possible to foresee and remove all risk of harm, the school has in place the procedures listed in this risk assessment to manage and reduce risk to the greatest possible extent.

This risk assessment has been completed by the Board of Management on 05/03/18.  It shall be reviewed as part of the school’s annual review of its Child Safeguarding Statement.

Signed         Patrick Meghen                                          Date  01/04/2019

Chairperson, Board of Management

Signed          Grace Burke                                            Date     01/04/2019

Principal/Secretary to the Board of Management

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Distance Learning Child Protection Statement

Scoil Íde is committed to a child-centred approach in all our work with children. We undertake to provide a safe environment and experience, where the welfare of the child is paramount.

This policy extends the Child Protection Policy of Scoil Íde. A copy of the school’s Child Protection Policy and Statement is available:

  • To download at: www.scoilide.ie
  • On request: By emailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • By writing to: Scoil Íde, Corbally, Limerick

Distance Learning

In facilitating access to safe communication between Scoil Íde staff and pupils, Scoil Íde extends the opportunity to learn via GSuite. In providing these opportunities, we commit to adhering to the following best practices in the interest of safeguarding both students and staff.

Child Protection Concerns Related to Distance Learning

Communicating with students over the internet raises the following concerns in relation to child protection:

  • The situation introduces the student to the idea of communicating with an adult that is not part of their family group over the internet. This is not a practice that should come to be considered normal by the student and it should be emphasised by parents that communicating in this manner is something that requires permission and supervision;
  • This method of communication invites the teacher/SNA into the student’s home, and vice versa, without being physically present and, therefore, possibly unknown to other members of either household. There should be an awareness on behalf of all involved that there is someone virtually present in their home and that everyone’s actions need to be reflected in this.
  • Scoil Íde staff undertake as part of our Child Protection Policy to report any concerns over child welfare to Grace Burke (Principal Teacher), who is the Designated Liaison Person or in her absence to Ray D’Arcy (Deputy Principal and Deputy Designated Liaison Person).

Parental Consent

Written parental consent shall be sought for the purposes of:

  • Engaging with the pupil in their home via live video calls (Google Meet/Zoom)
  • Parental consent will be sought using Google Forms.

Location and Supervision of Lessons

  • All calls should be held in an area of the home that is open and accessible to the parents of the student. Lessons should not, for instance, take place in a room with a closed door without parental/guardian’s supervision.
  • Teachers/SNA should hold the video call in a location that respects the privacy of the pupils learning.
  • Lessons will, however, need to be held in an area where student and staff members can concentrate on the call and not be unnecessarily interrupted. This may be hard to balance with younger children in the house and may take a few sessions to establish a good routine. All concerned need to show some patience in forming a routine and be willing to discuss ways to improve concentration during
  • All one to one calls require a parent/guardian to be present during the video.
  • For all one-to-one calls there will be two staff members on the video call.
  • Parents are responsible for the supervision of their child during the video call.
  • No lessons are permitted to be recorded by any pupils
  • If a class teacher wishes to record a lesson online prior consent will be sought from parents.

Time Keeping

· All parties will login on time for a video call.

· If any party is delayed or unable to attend video call they should make prior contact to discuss with other party where possible.

·  Staff will end non-attended calls 10 minutes after start time. 

Alternative Contact Methods

  • All arrangements / re-arrangements to lessons must be made through a parent and teacher using @scoilide.ie email or phone call.
  • Students and staff members are only allowed to communicate using GSuite.

G Suite communication

  • Google Classroom is used for 4th, 5th and 6th class to engage in school activities.
  • Teachers/SNAs will respond to messages during school hours. Any messages received after these hours will be responded to the following school day.
  • Pupils may request help or clarifications using this method of communication.
  • Pupils may submit schoolwork via Google Classroom.
  • Teachers will provide feedback to pupil via Google Classroom.
  • If parents wish to raise any concerns or discuss anything with teacher/SNA they must use the @scoilide.ie email or request that the teacher phone them to discuss the issues.

Seesaw Communication

  • Seesaw may be used for all other classes to engage in school activities.
  • Teachers/SNAs will respond to messages during school hours. Any messages received after these hours will be responded to the following school day.
  • Pupils may request help or clarifications using this method of communication.
  • Pupils may submit schoolwork via Seesaw.
  • Teachers will provide feedback to pupil via Seesaw.
  • If parents wish to raise any concerns or discuss anything with teacher/SNA they must use the @scoilide.ie email or request that the teacher phone them to discuss the issues.

Boundaries Professional Distance

While encouraging and fostering a positive relationship with learners, all Scoil Íde staff must retain a sense of themselves as ‘professionals’ and, thus, maintain a professional distance with learners and parents in both the workplace and while working with pupils on G Suite, Zoom or Seesaw. Staff members should ensure that they do not place themselves in situations where learners have undue expectations of a staff member’s ability to resolve conflicts or personal issues. Pupils and parents themselves have a responsibility to recognise the ‘professional’ nature of their relationship with a staff member and hence not hold undue expectations of how staff should relate to them in the workplace or online.

Grounds for Concern

The grounds for concern laid out in the Scoil Íde Child Protection Policy shall apply in all lessons given over the internet and shall apply to all children in the student’s home. If a staff member witnesses any concerning issues during the videocall they must report these to Designated Liaison Person in accordance with the Child Protection Guidelines. This includes things that happen in the background or off-camera.

If a parent has any concerns about the process or relationship between student and staff member, they should contact Grace Burke, the Designated Liaison Person to discuss the situation. Scoil Íde undertakes to investigate all complaints or concerns regarding its teaching staff in line with our Child Protection Policy.

Raising Concerns

Concerns for the welfare of students will be dealt with in line with the Scoil Íde Child Protection Policy.

Recording of Lessons

  • No recordings are to be made of lessons, without the explicit consent of both teacher and parent/guardian.

Record Keeping

·         Teacher will share an agenda with pupils prior to the Google Meet/Zoom call

·         Teacher will make a record of each call

·         Details

o   Time & Date

o   Consent received

o   Location

o   Attendees

o   Duration

o   Topics discussed

o   Any concerns

General Code of Conduct

All participants in Distance Learning must agree to:

  • Treat all users, educators and colleagues fairly and equally. Stimulate conversation, be respectful of others’ views, and refrain from personal
  • Respect the legitimate intellectual property rights, do not plagiarise work, and give credit to the originators of ideas.
  • Don’t share the posts of others without

The policy was ratified by the Board of Management of Scoil Íde on 27th April 2020. It will be reviewed on a cyclical basic or as the need arises.

Signed: Maureen Hobbins                      Signed: Grace Burke

Chairperson of Board of Management     Principal/Secretary to the Board of Management

 

Date:  27th May 2020                              Date:  27th May2020