Primary education: listening and observing
Primary education: listening and observing

Start this free course now. Just create an account and sign in. Enrol and complete the course for a free statement of participation or digital badge if available.

Free course

Primary education: listening and observing

5 Child protection and safeguarding

People who work and volunteer in schools have a legal duty of care to protect children. Every school will have a clear policy on child protection and safeguarding, and will make this available to visitors. Think of ‘safeguarding’ as the overall concept or plan to keep children safe and cared-for, and think of ‘child protection’ as the specific steps or actions within the overall plan. Schools will also have explicit processes for reporting any concerns about children, and a named person, usually a senior member of staff, who is responsible for safeguarding.

You met headteacher Mark Millinson in Activity 1. He says that any person who wants to work or volunteer in a school will need to have a formal check on their identity and their background. This is appropriate, because primary school staff have close contact with children.

Watch the following video in which Mark talks about the importance of safeguarding.

Download this video clip.Video player: Video 2
Skip transcript: Video 2

Transcript: Video 2

MARK MILLINSON
It's very, very important that our children in school are safeguarded. And so a volunteer coming to school to say, please, may I come in. Well, we need assurance that that person is the right person to be in contact with our children. We wouldn't open the front door and say, do come in, all of you. Come and work with our children, because there are evident safeguarding concerns there. So as it stands at the moment, a check is required-- an identity check. And through the questions that are asked such as proving who you are via your passport or your driving licence and your date of birth and where you've lived, the authorities can actually check against your name that there are no criminal convictions that would prevent you, most reasonably, from working with children. That does not mean to say that somebody with a criminal conviction cannot, but there are obviously some misdemeanours, shall we say, or crimes, even, that would prevent you from working alongside a child. And so as your interest in becoming a volunteer, the school would actually ask you to come in to take that, to give those pieces of information so it can be forwarded via a website. And then the school gets information that actually, absolutely everything is fine. Do invite them in. So please don't let that deter you, but I'm sure everybody's in a position to understand why it is so necessary.
End transcript: Video 2
Video 2
Interactive feature not available in single page view (see it in standard view).

How is safeguarding defined, and what does it cover in a primary school? Find out in the next section.

PDP_1

Take your learning further371

Making the decision to study can be a big step, which is why you'll want a trusted University. The Open University has 50 years’ experience delivering flexible learning and 170,000 students are studying with us right now. Take a look at all Open University courses372.

If you are new to university level study, we offer two introductory routes to our qualifications. Find out Where to take your learning next?373 You could either choose to start with an Access courses374or an open box module, which allows you to count your previous learning towards an Open University qualification.

Not ready for University study then browse over 1000 free courses on OpenLearn375 and sign up to our newsletter376 to hear about new free courses as they are released.

Every year, thousands of students decide to study with The Open University. With over 120 qualifications, we’ve got the right course for you.

Request an Open University prospectus371