Early Help Offering
‘Early Help’ Statement- January 2021
‘’What appears to be an interruption, is often an intervention’’.
Being a parent is one of the most important jobs there is - it is also one of the hardest. Parents are the key to giving children a happy and stable childhood. From time to time families need additional support and advice. We aim to provide them with the support they need, but also recognise that on occasions they may need more specific support. We will signpost other agencies or support referrals where appropriate.
Every family is different; each needs options from which to choose to find an early solution to challenges as they arise. This solution could be as simple, for example, as talking with a worker in; a Children's Centre; School; with a voluntary worker; a support worker; a GP; a health visitor or using a self help checklist.
This statement sits alongside our Safeguarding Policy.
Early Help and Child Protection
At Creswell Junior School staff are trained in recognising the signs of Child Abuse and Extremism and are committed to and know the benefit of Early Help as a way of supporting families and young people before their needs become acute and Social Care or other specialist intervention may be necessary.
The school has a range of robust safeguarding procedures in place which puts the safety and protection of children at the heart of any decisions. The school’s safeguarding team is made up of the following school personnel:
Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) – Mrs A Pymm
Deputy Designated Safeguarding Leads (DDSL) – Mr A Burton, Mrs A Wilson, Mrs E Hind
Head of Care – Mrs A Wilson
Safeguarding Governor – Mrs C Gilfillan
The DSL and all DDSLs complete inter-agency safeguarding training on a two yearly programme. All other school staff complete safeguarding training on a three yearly basis and are updated regularly to any changes in legislation.
The Early Help Offer is an approach not a service.
It respects every family's right to access information to help manage their own lives successfully, whilst guiding them to seek support from appropriate sources. Help can then be agreed as soon as concerns start to emerge. The 'Offer' is for all children, as issues may arise at any point in a child or young person's life. It includes both universal and targeted /specialist services, to reduce or prevent concerns from growing or becoming entrenched.
- Help is there when parents, children and young people need it ‘nipping problems in the bud’
- Together we will find a way forward that is right for everyone – there is a choice of help and it will be easy to access.
- Families are at the centre of everything we do – they will only have to tell us their story once. This will be via structured conversations that are held with all new families and with the families of children in receipt of Pupil Premium.
- We will be assertive with families who may not want support but need it (where school believes that no support would impair a child’s development)– and we will continue to support families until they no longer need our help.
- Staff are encouraged to sign up for Derbyshire’s Safeguarding Children’s Boards’ alerts keeping their knowledge and awareness of Safeguarding up to date and at the heart of their practice.
- The school works with local outside agencies and service providers to support families.
- Staff understand the correlation between Domestic Abuse and Child Protection – Staff are vigilant, listening to the child and making referrals as required.
- As part of our partnership with Derbyshire County Council, we recognise how we can access support through Starting Point.
- The school uses the Child Sexual Exploitation Tool for early identification and makes referrals as necessary.
- Staff are aware about the extent of Female Genital Mutilation and Forced Marriages and understand how to fulfil their legal responsibilities.
Involvement of Families
The school will always involve the family in all Early Help strategies and most will only be put in place with their permission. The school will aim to work with families in a supportive, non-judgemental way so that trust is built up and the best possible outcomes achieved.
There are occasions, however, when the school’s safeguarding team or member of school staff may believe that a child may be at immediate risk of significant harm and that by informing the parents/carers of the concern may put the child at further risk. In these cases the school will implement section 47 procedures. This will involve an immediate referral to social care with or without the parents/carers knowledge.
If you would like to discuss our offer of Early Help or are in need of support, please contact the school office on 01909 721260 and ask to speak with a member of our Safeguarding Team or you can email: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com