Suspected abuse of a child
TAMARIKI SCHOOL BOARD OF TRUSTEES
POLICY ON SUSPECTED OR DISCLOSED ALLEGATIONS OF ABUSE AGAINST A CHILD
327 NAG 5
1. To protect children from abuse by ensuring all children are treated with respect and dignity and they have their rights and needs meet in a safe environment.
2. To put in place procedures to ensure an appropriate and supportive response is taken with regards to disclosed or suspected allegations of sexual or physical abuse within the school
3. To provide clear pathways which allow staff to respond to situations of suspected or disclosed allegations of abuse in an effective manner.
4. To protect the child from having its play or age characteristic behaviours turned into a matter for serious enquiry.
1. On any site where school is deemed to be in operation, children may not subjected to any form of physical or emotional abuse.
2. All complaints of alleged abuse must be taken seriously. Schools need to act immediately to ensure the safety of the students and to prevent any problem from escalating.
3. In the event of a seriously made allegation of suspected or disclosed abuse the Procedures for responding to disclosed or suspected physical or sexual abuse must be referred and adhered to. Staff members may contact outside agencies for guidance regarding concerns if these procedures prove inadequate, where appropriate this external contact must be made with the knowledge of the Principal
4. The welfare and interests of any child are always to be the first considerations in matters of abuse
5. The Board and Principal recognise that their primary responsibility is to the child, and are committed to working towards the safest short-term response, both physically and emotionally, and to the most effective long-term resolution emotionally.
6. The Board relies on the professional judgment and alertness of the staff to be sensitive to the possibility that children may call meetings on a fabricated charge of abuse as a way of forming relationships or practicing skills needed to understand the meeting system. These meetings must be recorded in the incident book and the principal should be satisfied that appropriate action is taken.
7. It is expected that staff will be able to access the policies and procedures related to responding to disclosure of, or suspected, abuse. It is also expected that staff will be familiar with ways to respond to situations of abuse.
8. Details of disclosures or suspicions of abuse must be clearly documented, dated and reported to the Principal (see procedure for guidelines on documentation) If the Principal is involved in the allegation, the disclosure or suspicion should be reported to the Board of Trustees Chairperson.
9. In the event of an accusation of abuse, two staff members should attend any meeting that may be called about the accusation and all proceedings should be entered in the incident book and signed by both staff members.
10. Procedures will be in place to protect students and staff from unwarranted allegations of abuse.
11. The Principal should notify the parent that such an incident has occurred.
12. Information on procedures and policies relating to abuse within the school environment should be available to the school community
Children needed to be treated with respect and protected from abuse
Drafted by: Edwards, Kendrick, Gibbons 1997
Reviewed: 2003, 2013