Our Safeguarding Statement
Willows Academy Trust remains deeply committed to raising standards and achievement for all children regardless of ethnicity, race, disability, gender or religion.
If children are to achieve academically, socially and emotionally to the best of their ability, it is essential that their basic needs for safety, protection and inclusion are successfully and confidently addressed. All children have a fundamental right to be protected from harm, attend school and have their specific individual needs met.
Safeguarding and the protection of our children, young people and staff is a key priority for the Trust and that's why we have established our 'Guardian's Group, to specifically monitor all safeguarding areas. The group is made up of a member of the Local Safeguarding Board, Associate headteachers and Governors. The core function of our Guardians Group is to provide support and guidance; to share and learn practice; and to challenge schools to ensure that children and staff are kept safe, attend, have equal access and their welfare promoted.
Our Guardians also have responsibility for ensuring that our schools are compliant with safeguarding legislation. This includes having rigorous recruitment processes for staff and volunteers, induction and mandatory and ongoing training.
We have a range of Trust safeguarding policies and guidance for all of our schools that ensures clear and robust action can be taken when required.
Our safeguarding practice allows our schools to provide a safe place for children, young people and adults to engage with us. We aim to demonstrate that our safeguarding practices are like a golden thread running through our schools, their curriculum and everyday life.
Safeguarding is paramount and we expect all our employees to undergo a DBS check and attend annual safeguarding training (see individual school websites for policy).
We ask all our staff to act responsibly and ensure that they are using the highest level of protections on social media networking sites. We do not expect staff to have Facebook or any other social media accounts with anyone under the age of 16 and advise all staff to give careful consideration before having accounts with young people under the age of 18. We expect staff to use their professionalism and discretion at all times.
We have a number of policies and procedures in place that contribute to our safeguarding commitment. Each of our schools has its own Child Protection Policy which is based on the Derbyshire County Council recommended model policy. All our policies can be viewed in the policy section on each school's website and also accessed from the policy section on this website. Printed copies can be provided on request. Also - if you can't see a policy or document you require, please contact us and we will make it available if possible.
Sometimes we may need to share information and work in partnership with other agencies when there are concerns about a child's welfare. We ensure that our concerns about our pupils are discussed with parents/carers first unless we have reason to believe that such a move would be contrary to the child's welfare.
Each school has a Designated Safeguarding Lead (the headteacher) and at least one Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead. These are fully trained. Each school also has a link governor with responsibility for safeguarding. Details of all these posts are available on each school's website.
The link director for Safeguarding is Dr Pip Dean.
If you have any cause for concern, you can contact the Designated Safeguarding Lead in school to discuss or:
Call Derbyshire Starting Point
Emergency situations should be reported to the police immediately on 999
Please also see our contact sheet attached below.
Family Liaison Officer
As part of our commitment to the welfare of children and supporting families, we have appointed a Family Liaison Worker - Mrs Claire Kudrick. Claire supports the families in all our schools. Please see the attached leaflet for information about the services that Claire can provide and how to make contact.