Safeguarding at Larkmead School

At Larkmead safeguarding and student welfare is of paramount importance and to that end we will always put the physical and mental wellbeing of students first.  This sometimes requires us to share information with other agencies such as police or medical professionals.  Where we can, our intention is always to consult and work with parents or carers to achieve the best outcome for the student.  Sometimes circumstances exist that do not allow for that consultation and the school has to take independent action in order to ensure a young person is safeguarded.

What is safeguarding?

Safeguarding is protecting children from maltreatment; preventing impairment of their health or development; ensuring that they grow up in circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective care; and taking action to enable all children and young people to have the best life chances and to enter adulthood successfully.

How are students safeguarded at Larkmead?

Some of the ways we safeguard students are as follows:

  • The school works with the Oxfordshire Safeguarding Children Board to ensure its practices and processes are in line with new legislation and initiatives around the safeguarding of young people.
  • All staff are trained to recognise the signs of a child whose wellbeing is being compromised by physical or emotional abuse and/or neglect.  They are also trained in how to manage disclosures from young people, and they also receive regular updates on safeguarding issues.
  • Two members of the school’s leadership team, Lionel Crowe and Liz Watkins, have a specific responsibility for safeguarding and have been trained to become Designated Leads for Safeguarding.
  • All adults who work in school have been subject to a Disclosure and Barring Service check (DBS), which means the school has checked to ensure that any adult working at Larkmead in any capacity is an appropriate person to work with children and young people.  This will include a criminal records check.
  • The school ensures all its IT systems are secure and user histories are monitored.
  • A school safeguarding policy is reviewed and updated annually with the support of governors, led by Carole Lushington, who closely monitor the schools safeguarding actions.
  • Through assemblies and PDC lessons students are made aware of the risks associated with being on line and using social media; as well as what is a healthy relationship and appropriate behaviour.
  • Both adults and students also have access to electronic reporting methods to allow them to report any safeguarding or wellbeing concerns they have about themselves or others. Students are also introduced to websites which can also offer them some support e.g. OXME

Further details of the schools safeguarding practices can be found on the school here. If you have any concerns regarding the safeguarding of any young person, you can contact the school and ask to speak to the Designated Safeguarding Officer.

Alternatively you can contact Schools Safeguarding Team at LADO.safeguardingchildren@oxfordshire.gov.uk or telephone them on 01865 810603