Safeguarding Policy

Safeguarding Statement

Perform For Life (PFL) believe that the safety and protection of children and young people is paramount. We are committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people, and believe that all children and young people without exception have the right to protection from abuse. We recognise our responsibility to take all reasonable steps to promote safe practice and to protect children from harm, abuse and exploitation, regardless of their age, gender, disability, race, sexual orientation, faith or belief.

All welfare concerns should be taken seriously and responded to swiftly and appropriately, and all staff have a responsibility to take appropriate action if they have any concerns. It is noted and accepted that the Safeguarding Children Policy and Procedures applies to every staff member involved with PFL, whether in a paid or voluntary capacity, as well as students under the age of 18 and parents / guardians. 

PFL is committed to promoting good practice through transparency and consistency within our Safeguarding practice. We therefore communicate our Policy publicly and honestly online, and send its literature and guidelines to host schools, organisations and parents / guardians to highlight reporting and complaints procedures.

Aims 

PFL will, at all times, ensure our Safeguarding Statement by:

  • putting the welfare of children at the heart of all our work
  • listening to the children and respecting them
  • assessing the risks to children of its activities
  • providing and maintaining a safe, secure and nurturing environment, where adults are trusted and children are safeguarded whilst receiving a high quality Performing Arts education and reaching their potential  
  • fully acknowledging that the field of Performing Arts may exert specific pressures on children and young people, and aim to be proactive in addressing the inherent risks that this presents
  • ensuring children and their parents / guardians know about PFL’s Safeguarding Policy and what to do if they have a concern
  • making sure all staff are aware of, understand and follow the safeguarding and child protection procedures
  • building a safeguarding culture where staff and children / young people know how they are expected to behave and feel comfortable about sharing concerns
  • reviewing its policy and procedures regularly

Recruitment of Staff

We endorse and adopt Responsible Recruitment guidelines for recruiting new staff members and will:

  • Specify what the role is and what tasks it involves
  • Request identification documents, an Enhanced DBS Disclosure and Public Liability Insurance proof. If an applicant does not have an Enhanced DBS Disclosure, they will be required to apply for one
  • Before appointing a new member of staff, we will, as a minimum and in addition to the above, meet the applicant(s) in person and arrange for them to attend a trial day to ensure their suitability 
  • Consider the relevance and significance of the information obtained via an Enhanced DBS Disclosure, and ensure all decisions are made in the best interests of the children
  • Prevent people with a history of relevant and significant offending from having contact with or practice with children
  • Ensure that only staff members who hold a clear and current DBS will be left in charge of children

During any technical/dress rehearsals for shows and performances of such shows, PFL may recruit Parent Helpers / volunteers to assist with supervision of children back stage. All Parent Helpers will be given a copy of the PFL’s Safeguarding Policy and will be asked to sign to confirm that they have received, read and accepted these. 

All PFL staff members are educated on the following methods while in post with us.

DO:

  • Set a good example by using appropriate language, attitude and demeanour at all times
  • Wear PFL staff uniform so children are aware of who staff members are, and are happy to approach them
  • Stop or cancel activities if conditions are unsafe or unreasonable demands are being made
  • Agree on appropriate discussion topics and exit strategies in advance if an activity has a particularly sensitive or emotional content
  • Keep physical contact to an appropriate level. Due to the nature of the activities in our Performing Arts lessons, physical contact is sometimes involved at a suitable and appropriate level

DO NOT EVER:

  • Verbally or physically abuse children
  • Show favouritism towards a child
  • Promise to keep secrets
  • Embarrass, ignore or single out a child
  • Allow or engage in inappropriate touching
  • Allow children to engage in abusive peer activities, e.g. bullying or mocking
  • Arrange meetings with children outside organised activities without the prior consent of parents / guardians and PFL’s Director
  • Smoke, use inappropriate language or have conversations of an adult nature while around the children

Safeguarding and Child Protection Procedures

The Designated Safeguarding Officer (DSO) for PFL is Katrina Simon. She can be contacted on 07910 51 55 52 or hello@weperformforlife.com.

The DSO will take lead responsibility for safeguarding at PFL at the highest level. She will, among other duties:

  • be the first person staff or parents / guardians approach with concerns
  • receive, record and retain information from anyone who has concerns about a child who takes part in PFL’s activities
  • take the lead on responding to information that may constitute a child protection concern, including a concern that an adult involved with PFL may present a risk to children
  • ensure that safeguarding policy and procedures are being implemented, and contact statutory child protection agencies if necessary

What constitutes as a child protection concern?

  • Unsettling remarks made by a child
  • Concern about the inappropriate behaviour of a worker, such as negligence or favouritism
  • Disclosures of information regarding abuse/harm of any kind

Please note: concern of any kind – no matter how minor – should be reported to the DSO. 

Other Safeguarding Information with Perform For Life

Please refer to our Terms & Conditions and Behaviour and Privacy Policies, with particular regard to emergency contact details, arriving on time for and being collected from lessons, medication brought to lessons, and information regarding Photographic / Video content.

Please also refer to our Online Lesson Policy for all Online lessons. 

Parents / guardians are made aware of the above documents and Policies in our Terms & Conditions, and must send confirmation of having read and accepted them, before children are registered with PFL and lessons of any format can be scheduled.