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Carmel Caterpillars Preschool


Carmel Caterpillars Pre-School 

Child Protection and Safeguarding Policy

Please note: this is a short overview/summary of our full, and lengthy, Child Protection and Safeguarding Policy. You can request to read the full paper copy of this policy from Louise Leppenwell, Manager and Designated Safeguarding Lead Person


The Carmel caterpillars Pre-School Child Protection Policy has been developed in accordance with the principles established by the Children's Acts 1989 and 2004 and related guidance. 

  • The Early Years Foundation Stage (2017)
  • DfE guidance " Keeping Children Safe In Education" (2016)
  • Working Together to safeguard Children (2015)
  • Framework for the Assessment of Children In Need and Their Families (2000)
  • Kent and Medway Online Safeguarding Children Procedures 

What is Safeguarding

Working Together to Safeguard Children (2015) defines safeguarding children as " the action we take to promote the welfare of children and protect them from harm". This includes:

  • Protecting children from maltreatment
  • Preventing impairment of children's health or development
  • Ensuring that children grow up in circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective care
  • Taking action to enable all children to have the best outcomes

It also reminds us that safeguarding "is everyone's responsibility. Everyone who comes into contact with children and families has a role to play" ( WTSC 2015 p.9 ) 


The setting acknowledges that this policy will incorporate a range of specific safeguarding issues including ( but not limited to):

  • Bullying ( including cyber bullying)
  • Children missing Education
  • Child missing from home or care
  • Child Sexual Exploitation ( CSE)
  • Domestic Violence
  • Drugs and Alcohol Misuse
  • Fabricated or induced illness
  • Faith Abuse
  • Female Genital Mutilation ( FGM)
  • Forced marriage
  • Gangs and youth violence
  • Gender based abuse and violence against women and girls
  • Hate
  • Honour based abuse
  • Mental Health
  • Missing children and adults
  • Online safety
  • Prevent duty ( radicalisation and extremism)
  • Private fostering
  • Relationship abuse
  • Human trafficking and modern slavery
  • Youth produced sexual imagery or " sexting"


" Every child deserves the best possible start in life, and the support that enables them to fulfill their potential. Children develop quickly in the early years and a child's experiences between birth and age five, have a major impact on their future life chances. A secure, safe and happy childhood is important in it's own right." ( EYFS 2017 p5 )

The committee of Carmel Caterpillars Pre-School believe that all those directly involved with our setting have an essential role to play in making it safe and secure. Our setting aims to create the safest environment, within which every child has the opportunity to achieve their full potential, and we take seriously our responsibility to promote the welfare, and safeguard, of all the children and young people entrusted to our care. 

As part of the safeguarding ethos of the setting we are committed to: 

  • Maintaining children's welfare as our paramount concern
  • Providing an environment and culture in which children feel safe, secure, valued and respected, confident to talk openly and sure of being listened to. 
  • Developing appropriate and positive relationships between children and the adults that care for them.
  • Providing suitable support and guidance so that children have a range of appropriate adults, who they feel confident to approach if they are in difficulties.  
  • Using learning opportunities to increase self-awareness, self-esteem, assertiveness and decision making. This is so that young children develop a range of contacts and strategies to ensure their own protection, and understand the importance of protecting others. 
  • Working with parents/carers to build an understanding of the setting's responsibility to ensure the welfare of all children including the need for referral to other agencies in some situations. 
  • Ensuring all staff have regular and appropriate training ( including induction), to enable them to recognise the signs and symptoms of abuse and ensure they are aware of the setting's procedures and reporting mechanisms. 
  • Monitoring children who have been identified as  "in need", including the need for protection, keeping confidential records which are stored securely and shared appropriately with other professionals. 
  • Developing effective and supportive liaison with other agencies. 

Carmel Caterpillars Pre-School adheres to the KSCB Safeguarding Children Procedures. The full KSCB procedures document and additional guidance relating to specific safeguarding issues can be found on the KSCB website: 


Related Safeguarding Policies

We are aware that safeguarding is fundamental to the welfare of all children in our care. This policy is therefore one of a series in the Pre-School's integrated safeguarding portfolio and should be read in conjunction with the policies as listed below:

  • Behaviour management
  • Online Safety/ Social Media
  • Data Protection and Information Sharing
  • Drugs
  • Health and safety
  • Risk Assessments
  • First Aid and Accidents ( including Medicines)
  • Managing Allegations Against Staff
  • Code of Conduct for Staff ( including Acceptable Use of Technology or "AUP") 
  • Safer Recruitment
  • Whistle Blowing


Responsibilities for Staff and Designated Lead Person

All Staff

  • The EYFS 2017 requires providers " to take all necessary steps to keep children safe and well" and accordingly, everyone involved in the care of young children has a role to play in their protection. All members of staff in Carmel Caterpillars Pre-School are part of the wider safeguarding system for children, and are in a unique position to observe any changes in a child's behaviour or appearance. 
  • All members of staff have a responsibility to identify children who may be in need of extra help, or who are suffering, or are likely to suffer significant harm. All members of staff have a duty of care to take appropriate action and work with other services as needed. 

The Designated Safeguarding Lead Person ( DSL)

  • The EYFS 2017 states " a practitioner must be designated to take lead responsibility for safeguarding children in every setting".
  • The committee of Carmel Caterpillars Pre-School , who's responsibility it is to ensure all legal requirements are met, have appointed an appropriately qualified and experienced Designated Safeguarding Lead ( DSL), to fulfill this role in our setting. They are committed to ensuring that the DSL is properly supported in being able to carry out this role fully, including providing them with appropriate time and resources away from other job commitments. 

The Designated Safeguarding Lead is LOUISE LEPPENWELL. The DSL assistant is JULIE PRATT. 

Louise has the overall responsibility for the day to day safeguarding and child protection systems, in the setting. These responsibilities include:

  • Liaising with other professionals in all agencies, including social services, police, and health colleagues. 
  • Keeping appraised of any updates in policy and practice as agreed by Kent Safeguarding Children's Board ( via the Education Safeguarding Team). 
  • Being a source of support, advice and guidance to any other setting staff, both paid and voluntary, on an ongoing basis and on any specific safeguarding issue as required. 
  • Coordinating child protection action within the setting, including making referrals as necessary. 
  • Maintaining a confidential recording system for safeguarding and child protection concerns. 
  • Ensuring all staff, visitors and volunteers are aware of the setting's policies and procedures, and their responsibilities in relation to safeguarding children. 
  • Ensuring all staff, both paid and voluntary, have received appropriate and up to date child protection training, at least every 3 years ( as stipulated by the KSCB), and provide them with appropriate annual updates.
  • Ensuring their own training is kept up to date by attending appropriate Designated Safeguarding Lead training every 2 years ( as stipulated by the KSCB), and accessing updates, at least annually, through a variety of methods via e-bulletins, conferences, local meetings, other training etc, to keep up with any developments relevant to their role.
  • Representing the setting at inter-agency meetings in particular strategy discussions, child protection conferences and core groups. 
  • Managing and monitoring the setting's role in early help, child in need, and child protection plans. 

The welfare and safety of children are the responsibility of ALL staff in the setting, and ANY concern for a child's welfare MUST be reported to the DSL.  


Recognition and Categories of Abuse

All staff in the setting are aware of the definitions and signs and symptoms of abuse. There are four categories of abuse:

Emotional abuse

Physical abuse


Sexual abuse

The most up to date definitions and possible indicators and signs of abuse are found in Appendix 1.  ( To see this Appendix, please ask for the full paper copy of this policy from Louise Leppenwell). 

Staff should also refer to part 1 and Annex 1, within "Keeping children safe in Education 2016 (see Appendix 2), and " What to do if you are worried a child is being abused " 2015. 

All members of staff are aware that abuse, neglect and safeguarding issues are rarely standalone events that can be covered by one definition or label. In most cases multiple issues will overlap with one another. 

Members of staff are aware that child welfare concerns may arise in many different contexts, and can vary greatly in terms of their nature or seriousness. For example children may be abused in a family, in an institutional or community setting, by those known to them, or a stranger. They may be being abused via the internet by their peers, family members or by unknown, or in some cases unidentifiable, individuals. In the case of honour based abuse, including forced marriage and female genital mutilation, children may be taken out of the country to be abused. An abused child may often experience more than one type of abuse, as well as other difficulties in their lives. 

Abuse and neglect can happen over a period of time, but can also be a one-off event. This can have major long-term impacts on all aspects of a child's health, development and wellbeing. 

The warning signs and symptoms of child abuse and neglect can vary from child to child. Children also develop and mature at different rates, so what appears to be worrying behaviour for a younger child might be normal for an older child. Parental behaviours may also indicate child abuse or neglect, so staff should also be alert to parent-child interactions or concerning parental behaviours. This could include parents who are under the influence of drugs or alcohol or if there's a sudden change in their mental health. 

By understanding the warning signs, we can respond to problems as early as possible and provide the right support and services for the child and their family. It is important to recognise that a warning sign doesn't automatically mean that a child is being abused. 


Safeguarding and child Protection Procedures

Carmel Caterpillars Pre-School adheres to the KSCB Safeguarding Children Procedures. The full KSCB procedures document and additional guidance relating to specific issues, can be found on the KSCB website 

Additional guidance includes:

  • What to do if you are Worried About a Child Being Abused ( DfE 2015)
  • Information Sharing advice for Safeguarding Practitioners (2015)
  • Kent and Medway Inter-Agency Threshold Criteria for Children In Need 
  • The Assessment Framework for Children in Need and Their families (2000) 


Confidentiality and Information Sharing

We recognise that all matters relating to child protection are confidential. The DSL will only disclose information about a child to other members of staff on a need to know basis. 

All staff are aware that they have a professional responsibility to share information with other agencies in order to safeguard children. 

All staff are aware that they cannot promise a child to keep secrets which might compromise the child's safety or wellbeing. 

If the setting is made aware of any safeguarding concerns which they feel need to be shared with the wider community ( including other local settings), then advice will be sought from the Education Safeguarding Team to ensure that the integrity of any subsequent investigations are maintained, and that all members of the community are safeguarded. 



The setting has a Complaints Procedure available to parents/carers, children and members of staff  who wish to report concerns. 

All reported concerns concerns will be taken seriously and considered within the relevant and appropriate process. Anything that constitutes an allegation against a member of staff or volunteer will be dealt with under the specific Procedures for managing Allegations against staff policy. 


The full and original of this document was signed on behalf of Carmel Caterpillars Pre-School Committee by the current Chairperson.