Protective Practices - Department for Education and Child

Protective Practices
for staff in their interactions
with children and young people
Guidelines for staff working or volunteering
in education and care settings.
2011 edition
These guidelines were developed to:
o safeguard the emotional and physical
wellbeing of children & young people in
education & care settings
o provide clear advice to adults to assist them
to feel comfortable, clear and confident
about the professional boundaries of their
interactions with children & young people
They apply to
government and
“no touching!”
Teachers lose their caring touch
New IT stock stalls
Despite media hype, the guidelines
They describe respectful ways of providing
caring, encouraging and instructive touch.
p 16
In your practice what are situations where
you may touch a child/young person? How
does this fit with the good practice
recommendations? Are there alternatives?
How do you/might you ensure this touch is
experienced as respectful?
Professional Boundaries
1 • communication
2 • personal disclosure
2 • physical contact
3 • place
1 • targeting individual child/young person
2 • role
3 • possessions
In a group of three, each person read
and share with the other two, the
sections of the table as above.
Concentrate on examples which are
particularly relevant to your setting.
p 8-9
Further to
• personal disclosure
Getting to know people
usually involves some
information about yourself
but professional
boundaries prevent harm
to child or young person,
undermining of learning
&/or harm to your
professional reputation.
What and how might you disclose about
yourself to children/young people while being
protective of them and yourself?
Further to
• place – for country & local communities
Look at the guiding principles on p11.
What are some of the
challenges for you in this
situation? Share strategies
that you use to ensure you are
able to enjoy your life in the
community while still being
protective of children, young
people and yourself.
p 11
Social Networking
We are expected to model responsible &
respectful conduct; consider the electronic
social environment as part of this.
p 11
• own information and images of self appropriate
• do not have children/young people in your
educational community as “friends”
• no hurtful/ embarrassing /libellous/ reputationally
harmful comments about child(ren)/ young person(s)
or staff or workplace.
“gain written permission
from parents before
publishing video,
photographs, comments or work
samples of their child”
Children and young
people with additional
needs or disabilities
In many cases staff will need to engage more
in physical contact to meet their duty of care
and learning program requirements.
The vulnerability of these children and young
people requires even more vigilance and
p 19
Outlining the requirements in the individual
plan is protective of both the child or
young persons and the adults who interact
with him/her in care and education.
When staff see concerning
behaviour in other adults …
Suspected Child Abuse
Report to CARL irrespective
of who is implicated as per
RAN procedures
p 14
behaviour which is inappropriate but not abusive
through site leader
individual made aware of potentially negative
impact on child/young person and self;
if it is disclosed by child/young person do not minimise, ignore or delay.
When I as site leader am made aware
of such a concern I am required to:
• raise it with the adult referred to
• explicitly outline conduct expectations
• record the concern, outlined expectations, and any
additional information/ explanation/ clarification;
have this record signed and dated by the adult and
me; and give a copy of this to the adult and
securely and confidentially file the original.
• inform parents if appropriate
This is protective of all parties:
• any children/young people put at risk or made uncomfortable by
inappropriate (intentional or otherwise) conduct
• the referring person who can be confident their concern has
been checked out
• the adult referred to as s/he has opportunity to respond, to clarify
if referral not justified, to improve practice if unintentional, and to
have the whole picture on record.
A colleague comes to you concerned
about a situation below. What more might
you ask? What issues would you raise?
a. While I was in the playground, a child fell over, burst into tears
and came to me for comfort. I didn’t know what to do.
b. I have just got an email inviting me to one of my senior
student’s 18th birthday party.
c. One of my middle school students has asked me to see them
after school because they are very worried about something.
d. My neighbour is a single parent who works shift work and s/he
has asked me if I will give their child a lift in the mornings.
e. One of the children in special education keeps asking me to
help them in the toilet.
f. Lee has fits of apparent rage and bangs his/her head on the
table. I am worried s/he will be hurt.
g. OR explore a situation specific to your experience.
• ensure you have read the guidelines
• raise any questions or concerns about your
practice, school routines or other situation
with your line manager
In conclusion