Safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children is everyone’s responsibility. Child protection is both a necessity and a top priority. At Karis School, we have zero tolerance of all forms of abuse of children. We take child protection seriously.

This policy reflects our active commitment to promote and protect the welfare of all pupils of Karis School. We strive to provide a safe and welcoming environment where children are respected and valued. We are alert to the signs of abuse and neglect and follow our procedures to ensure that children receive effective support, protection and justice.

Policy Aims

The aim of this policy is to:

  • Provide a framework for child protection and safeguarding
  • To provide all staff with the necessary information to enable them to meet their safeguarding and child protection responsibilities
  • To educate our pupils to understand the appropriate behaviour that relatives, friends and strangers may demonstrate towards children
  • To demonstrate the School’s commitment with regard to safeguarding and child protection to pupils, parents and other partners

Our Principles

Karis School operates on these five basic Guiding Principles of Child Protection:

  • Having zero tolerance for child abuse
  • Protecting children’s rights and their best interests
  • Placing the child as the first priority when dealing with all identified or suspected cases of child abuse
  • Empowering and educating children on their rights, personal safety, and steps they can take, if there is a problem
  • Integrating child protection into all aspects of our organizational strategy, structures and work practices



Guidelines for Best Practices and Staff Conduct

To fulfill and uphold our obligations to pupils, it is essential to establish and adhere to standards of exemplary conduct that serve as a code of ethics for all staff members. This code encompasses practices deemed as effective and beneficial, including:

  • Remaining vigilant for changes in pupil behavior and signs of abuse, neglect, or exploitation
  • Understanding and adhering to the School’s child protection policy, Staff Behavior Policy (code of conduct), and guidance on broader safeguarding issues, including but not limited to bullying, behavior management, physical contact, and information-sharing
  • Demonstrating respect towards all pupils
  • Involving pupils in decisions that affect them
  • Using reasonable force and physical intervention only as a last resort and in accordance with School procedures and guidance
  • Promoting positive, respectful, and safe conduct among pupils
  • Modeling appropriate behavior
  • Recognizing that certain pupils may be at increased risk of abuse due to personal, family circumstances, or lifestyle factors
  • Maintaining appropriate standards of communication and interaction with and between pupils, avoiding the use of sexualized or derogatory language
  • Being a good listener and observer
  • Seeking consent from pupils before engaging in physical contact, such as assisting with dressing, providing physical support during physical education, or administering first aid
  • When possible, refraining from physical contact with pupils
  • Reporting all concerns regarding a pupil’s safety and well-being to the Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL)
  • Adhering to the school’s regulations regarding communication and relationships with pupils, including on social media platforms.


Staff Training

It is essential for all staff members to undergo training to be able to identify potential signs of abuse, neglect, and exploitation, and to understand the appropriate steps to take if they have concerns. New staff members who will have direct interaction with children, as well as volunteers, will receive comprehensive information during their induction, which will cover:

  • The School’s child protection and safeguarding policy.
  • Indicators and manifestations of abuse and neglect.
  • Procedures for responding to disclosures of abuse or neglect by a child.
  • Protocols for reporting and documenting incidents.
  • The Staff Behavior Policy (code of conduct).
  • Contact details of the Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL).


Our approach to preventing the abuse and exploitation of children

The Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL):

  • The DSL holds a senior position within the School’s leadership team, possessing the necessary authority and status to execute the responsibilities of the role, including allocating resources and guiding other staff members.
  • Assumes primary responsibility for safeguarding and child protection within the School, with duties that are not delegated, although certain tasks may be assigned to appropriately trained individuals.
  • Is attentive to the specific needs of children in need, including those those with special educational needs and disabilities.
  • Maintains detailed written records of all concerns, ensuring secure storage and flagging these records separately from the pupil’s general file.
  • Refers suspected abuse cases to the Police as appropriate.
  • Participates in child protection conferences and strategy meetings, contributing actively.
  • Ensures that all staff members acknowledge having read and understood the child protection and safeguarding policy, as well as the Staff Behavior Policy (Code of Conduct), through signature confirmation.

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All safeguarding concerns, issues, discussions, decisions made and the rationale behind those decisions, must be properly recorded. Non-confidential records will be easily accessible and available. Confidential information and records will be safely and securely maintained, and only available to those who have a right or professional need to see them.


Reporting incidents

For all reported child-abuse incidents, Karis School requires that the child’s best interest be the first priority. In addition, all incidents must be dealt with promptly, and they must be handled in a confidential manner that does not harm the victim or the person reporting the abuse.

Preventing abuse

Preventing abuse entirely is the ultimate goal for any child-aid organization. Karis School believes that we must do everything in our power to reduce cases of abuse as much as possible to help ensure children’s safety. The key to our strategy is education:

  • Training children, staff and volunteers on how to identify and prevent child abuse.
  • Giving children the opportunity to participate in programs that educate them on their rights, personal-safety techniques and steps they can take in case of a problem.
  • Encouraging and supporting children, staff and community members to report cases of abuse.
  • Incorporating child protection information into other Karis School programs. In this way, we reach a broader audience and reemphasize the importance of protecting children.
  • Allowing all children the opportunity to participate in programs regardless of gender, sexual orientation, disability, ethnicity or religion.


Confidentiality and Sharing of Information:

All staff members are expected to recognize that issues related to child protection demand a high level of confidentiality, not only as a means of showing respect for the individuals involved—such as the pupil, family, and staff—but also to safeguard against the compromise of evidence when information is disclosed publicly.

Staff members are required to adhere to confidentiality protocols and share information appropriately. If uncertain about confidentiality, staff members should seek guidance from the DSL or another senior member of the leadership team as necessary.

All staff members must acknowledge that they cannot promise a child or parent to keep secrets, particularly as it involves the safety of the child.