Palace Fields Primary School is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and expects all staff and volunteers to share this commitment.
We make every effort to provide a safe and welcoming environment underpinned by a culture of openness where both children and adults feel secure, able to talk and believe that they are being listened to.
The school has a comprehensive policy so that we can provide staff, volunteers and governors with the framework they need in order to keep children safe and secure in our school and to inform parents, carers and guardians how we will safeguard their children whilst they are in our care.
If anyone has any concerns regarding the safeguarding and well-being of children at our school they should see Miss Hitchin, Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) or in her absence Ms McCaffrey or Mrs Knowles, Deputy Designated Safeguarding Leads.
Operation Encompass (early reporting of Domestic Violence to schools)
Palace Fields Primary School has opted in to Halton’s Operation Encompass scheme. This is a scheme that provides a method of sharing information regarding domestic abuse between Cheshire Police, Halton Borough Council and Schools, and enables the designated safeguarding lead within the academy to be provided with information, explaining that a child was present in a household at the time that an incident of domestic abuse was recorded as having taken place.
Operation Encompass has been designed to provide early reporting of any domestic abuse incidents that occur outside school, which might have an impact on a child in school. This is communicated through a secure email to school following an incident.
The project ensures that at least one member of the school staff, known as the Key Adult, is available to liaise with children's services and the police and to use the information that has been shared, in confidence.
In this way, we aim to support each child who has been involved in, or witnessed, a domestic abuse incident.
The Key Adults at Palace Fields Primary School are Miss Hitchin (Head of School) or in her absence Ms McCaffrey (Family Support Worker) or Mrs Knowles (SENDCo).
If they receive an Encompass notification they will make sure that a person the child trusts is available to help - if the child needs this. Most of the time this support is silent; keeping a careful eye on him or her and making sure the child has a calm school day. The confidential information is ordinarily not shared with all staff, just an agreement on how to help, if needed.
All schools have a duty to share any information with other organisations if they feel a child is at risk of being hurt. The Key Adult may contact other organisations.
The sharing of information from the police allows the school to be ready to help your child straight away, and it means that parents are aware that the Key Adult knows that something has happened. Parents can come and talk to our Key Adult. The Key Adult can point you towards other people that can help.
Our aim is to support children and their families.
For more information on this scheme please visit https://www.operationencompass.org/