Our Early Help Offer – Stronger Families, Safer Children.
Focus on preventing problems before they occur and offer flexible, responsive support
when and where it’s required.
Work to families’ strengths especially those of parents and carers and take time to understand their needs fully.
People, children and communities to support each other.
Base all we do on evidence of both what is needed and of what works and be brave enough to stop things that are wrong.
Ripley Junior School’s Early Help Offer is:
Hearing what children have to say: The school can provide a neutral place where the child feels it is safe to talk, such as our positive play rooms or our nurture rooms. Sensitivity to the disclosure is vital. Staff listen carefully to what the child is saying, treat it seriously, and value what they say.
Using the voice of the child: Pupils our annual pupil survey about their wellbeing and safety as well as taking part in half termly pupil voice discussions. Results are monitored, and interventions are put in place where appropriate.
Valuing safeguarding training at all levels: The DSL and deputy DSLs undergo training every two years and also attend termly briefings run by the LA. All other staff members also receive single agency training every 2 years, but every member of staff receives ‘in house’, cluster based and bespoke training depending on the needs of the children who attend our school at that time. New staff carry out online safeguarding training as part of their induction, and are provided with the following information:
Seeking advice from credible sources: The DSL or deputy DSLs (or other members of staff if necessary) readily seek advice from the safeguarding partners in the event of a disclosure or if they are concerned about a pupil’s wellbeing.
Being knowledgeable and aware: The headteacher, DSL and the deputy DSLs are signed up for alerts from the safeguarding partners, keeping knowledge and awareness of safeguarding up-to-date and at the heart of their practice.
Working with local support organisations: The school works with the local multi-agency safeguarding hub (MASH) team to support families.
Understanding links: Staff understand the correlation between domestic abuse and child protection – staff are vigilant, listening to the child and making referrals as required.
Sharing risk management practice: The school is fully engaged with the multi-agency risk assessment conference process, where necessary.
Raising awareness: The school raises parents’ awareness of self-harm and eating disorder support websites, as well as their understanding of the correlation between self-harm and suicide, aiming for early identification of pupils at risk.
Identifying risks at the earliest opportunity: All staff are aware of the risks which may indicate the need for early help – this includes children who:
Recognising where early help is effective: Staff understand that, where a statutory intervention is not required, early help may be used to address non-violent harmful sexual behaviour to prevent escalation of sexual violence.
Understanding legal responsibilities: Staff are aware of the extent of FGM and forced marriages and understand how to fulfil their legal responsibilities.
The Role of our school:
Day to Day Support
Most families, most of the time, can get on with their lives quite happily with little or no outside help. If they need help it is usually provided by universal services, such as speaking to their school for general advice.
Focused Pastoral Support
All families can have times, however, when difficulties arise and they either may not recognise it or may not know how to start putting things right. Our school may play a role in supporting families to address these difficulties through more focused pastoral support, which might include bringing in support via an external agency.
Early Help Assessment
For those children and families whose needs and circumstances make them more vulnerable, or where our school need the support of other agencies to meet the needs of the family, a coordinated multi-agency approach is usually best. In Derbyshire this is achieved through undertaking an Early Help Assessment and assigning an Early Help Advisor to work closely with the family to ensure they receive the support they require. Our school will be a key partner in any multi-agency work to support families
The following four commitments are the core elements to Ripley Junior School School’s Early Help Offer.
By implementing these commitments Ripley Junior School aims to ensure:
We will know if our work in early help is successful if it delivers these outcomes:
Children and Young People:
• Are physically and emotionally healthy
• Are resilient and able to learn well
• Are supported by their families, their community, and - when necessary -professionals to thrive and be successful
• Live in environments that are safe and support their learning and development.
Parents and Carers:
• Are supporting one another in their communities
• Know where to get help if they need it
• Have trusted relationships with practitioners, neighbours and other parents
• Are well informed about how best to help their child develop, and motivated to make great choices.
Our offer is embedded into our Ripley Junior School practise, Child Protection and Safeguarding Policy, Early Help, and is part of a continuum of work in helping keep children safe. We also have a system to address any concerns in our delivery of the offer, and this is addressed in our school’s complaints procedure.