Heartlands Academy is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of all of its students.
Safeguarding is about ensuring that everyone is safe from harm – safe from bullying, safe from potential abuse, safe from discrimination and harassment and that everyone feels safe in our environment.
If you have any concerns about the welfare of yours or another child, please talk to any teacher at the academy, or you can speak directly to a member of the academy’s safeguarding team.
- Education Director: Mr S Cox
- Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL): Mr S Hussain
- Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead (DDSL): Ms J Christie
- SEND Co-ordinator: Mrs Y Parson
- Deputy SEND Co-ordinator: Ms S Nawaz
- Safeguarding Officer: Mrs S Blake
- Safeguarding Officer: Ms L Delaney
Safeguarding children and young people is central to everything we do at Heartlands Academy, and, as such, it features prominently throughout the whole academy.
The full suite of current and ratified safeguarding policies is available to interested parties on request. However, the key policies are freely available to all and are clearly signposted, as appropriate, on this website.
At Heartlands Academy, we fully recognise our responsibility for safeguarding children and young people. It is difficult to accept, but every child can be hurt, put at risk of harm or abused, regardless of their age, gender, religion or ethnicity. That is why we do everything within our power to:
- Protect children from maltreatment
- Prevent impairment of children’s health or development
- Ensure that children grow up in the circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective care
- Take action to enable all children and young people to secure the best outcomes
The action we take at Heartlands Academy to promote the welfare of children and protect them from harm is everyone’s responsibility. Everyone who comes into contact with children and families has a role to play and we recognise and take our part very seriously in this. We ensure that we operate a child-centred safeguarding system. We recognise that children want to be respected; to have their views heard; to have stable relationships with their teachers, built on trust; and to have consistent support for their individual needs.
The academy works in partnership with external agencies and professionals for specialised support where needed. These involve local police, counselling services, mental health services, and local community groups. Students are also made aware of the academy’s open-door policy, whereby they can speak to any member of the safeguarding team about any concerns they may have.
The academy’s personal, social, health and economic (PSHE) education programme is our main vehicle for delivering safeguarding topics to students. This is delivered by tutors within personal development sessions. We are keen that as many external providers as possible deliver sessions, to ensure that as much expertise as possible.
Across Years 7-11, the following topics are examples of the kinds of issues we cover: cyberbullying, British culture, world cultures, sexual health, British values, immigration, homosexuality, homophobia, healthy relationships, globalisation, free speech, internet safety, drugs/alcohol education, the economy, the rule-of-law, government, multi-culturalism, human rights, the media, work-related learning, etc. This programme ensures students are aware of how to keep themselves safe in a range of situations and have a good understanding of the challenges they face growing up in modern Britain.
Heartlands students can email Chatterbox in confidence at any time to report any concern using a computer or their mobile phone.
Within the academy, all students are informed every morning of key messages which include how to report a concern. Another way of reporting a concern is to speak to any member of the safeguarding team or another member of staff that the student feels comfortable with. This is then followed through by the safeguarding officers.
Students also have the opportunity to write any concern they may have and place it on a box that is situated in the library. All students are reminded of this every morning.
Staff within the academy use CPOMS to report concerns that are followed through by the safeguarding team.
Parents and carers are able to share any concerns and report these to the academy using the link on the safeguarding page ‘Get in touch’.
Mental health resources for children, students, parents, carers and school/college staff.
Think U Know is a set of resources developed by the Child Exploitation and Online Protection (CEOP) Centre at the website:
Know IT All is a set of resources developed by Childnet International at the website:
The NSPCC Share Aware campaign has useful facts and advice for Parents/carers:
The NSPCC provide excellent parent and student support about protecting yourselves online. Especially during lockdown periods, or school holidays, it is really important to ensure you KNOW the signs of e-safety risks, like grooming, exploitation or cyberbullying, you actively LOOK for things like changes in behaviour, or secretive screen time, and then ACT to ensure you protect and potentially save your child or yourself from online harm. For more information about protecting individual devices, from parent locks and controls to understanding the risks and dangers around online devices and the internet, please see internetmatters.org where you can pick your child’s device and it will give you a step by step guide to support.
West Midlands Police
Heartlands Academy is an active member of the Ladywood Police and the North West Sharing Panels, working closely and collaboratively to support students and their families in the local community. We strongly value the importance of working alongside other schools and organisations in the area to benefit the community. As part of our commitment to safeguarding, we maintain open lines of communication with West Midlands Police. This ensures that we are active in both supporting community policing initiatives and also in making sure our students and carers are informed of issues pertaining to safety in the community.
Heartlands Academy is committed to keeping our students safe, both in the academy and the wider community. As part of our safeguarding arrangements, we have a two-way information-sharing agreement in place with West Midlands Police. The agreement is compliant with the Crime & Disorder Act 1998, Data Protection Act 2018 – 2021 Update and the United Kingdom General Data Protection Regulation (UK-GDPR); and focuses on preventing young people from becoming involved, or further involved, in crime and anti-social behaviour, as either a victim or an offender. If you have any queries about the partnership policy, please contact Mr M Ranford email@example.com.
We are also very fortunate to have a School-Police Liaison officer who can support our students if they themselves, or wider families, are concerned they’re at risk of, or have been involved in, criminal activity.
Open door counselling
To further support the wellbeing and safety of our students, from their mental health and wellbeing to traumas in their past or support around potential criminal activity, we also collaborate with the open door counselling service. We are fortunate enough to have an excellent Counsellor who attends our site weekly and provides 1:1 support for our students wherever needed.
If you have any queries about the police partnership policy or the open door counselling service, please contact the Headteacher’s PA via firstname.lastname@example.org.
Online grooming is where someone befriends a child online and builds up their trust with the intention of exploiting them and causing them harm. The harm caused by grooming can be sexual abuse, both in person and online, and exploitation to obtain sexually explicit images and videos of the child.
WATCH ONLINE SAFETY ADVICE FOR PARENTS
ONLINE GROOMING GUIDE – WHAT PARENTS NEED TO KNOW
Sexual violence and harassment
Sexual harassment is any kind of unwanted behaviour of a sexual nature that makes you feel humiliated or intimidated, or that creates a hostile environment.
When someone calls you insulting sexual names, talks about you in a sexual way that makes you feel uncomfortable (like commenting on your body), or spreads sexual rumours about you, that’s sexual harassment. It can happen in person, over the phone, or online.
Sexual harassment can make you feel anxious and depressed and lead to other problems, such as difficulties sleeping.
‘Everyone’s Invited’ support
Many of you will have seen media coverage of a website called ‘Everyone’s Invited‘
At Heartlands Academy, we continue to proudly promote a culture that fosters respect and healthy relationships, and challenges abuse of all kinds. We are encouraged by the fact that Ofsted will be reviewing safeguarding practices in schools across the country as a result of ‘Everyone’s Invited’.
As an academy we will always:
- Enable all children to report concerns freely and in the knowledge that they will be taken seriously
- Challenge any form of derogatory language or behaviour
- Ensure our curriculum helps to educate pupils about appropriate behaviour
- Work with external agencies where appropriate to ensure the right support is in place for all
- Work with external agencies where appropriate to ensure the right support isin place for all
We would also like to highlight some of the support available to you. In addition to contacting us here at the academy at any time, the NSPCC has recently created a helpline (0800 136 663) for parents/carers and young people, and they can also be contacted via email@example.com.
The following websites also provide additional information and support:
Child criminal exploitation
Criminal exploitation (also known as ‘county lines’), is when gangs and organised crime networks groom and exploit children to sell drugs. Often, these children are made to travel across counties, and they use dedicated mobile phone ‘lines’ to supply drugs.
You can find more information about child criminal exploitation, including signs and where to get help from:
Child sexual exploitation
Child sexual exploitation (CSE) is a type of sexual abuse. When a child or young person is exploited they’re given things, like gifts, drugs, money, status and affection, in exchange for performing sexual activities. Children and young people are often tricked into believing they’re in a loving and consensual relationship. This is called grooming. They may trust their abuser and not understand that they’re being abused.
You can find more information about child sexual exploitation, including signs of CSE and where to get help from:
Modern slavery is a serious crime. It encompasses slavery, servitude and forced or compulsory labour and human trafficking.
- Help for adult victims of modern slavery (english version).
- Leaflets in other languages can be found here.
- Further materials
Radicalisation is the process through which a person comes to support or be involved in extremist ideologies. It can result in a person becoming drawn into terrorism and is in itself a form of harm. Extremism is vocal or active opposition to fundamental British values, including democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of different faiths and beliefs.
You can find more information about radicalisation, including signs and where to get help from:
Everyone has mental health – some people call mental health ‘emotional health’ or ‘well-being’ and it’s just as important as good physical health. Everyone’s mental health is different. We all have times when we feel down or stressed or frightened. Most of the time those feelings pass, but sometimes they develop into a more serious problem. This can happen to anyone.
You can get more information about mental health, including signs of poor mental health, and where to get more help from:
Please find further information here to raise awareness of Birmingham Childrens Trust support for children and young people’s mental health
Child-on-child abuse occurs when a young person (under 18 years old) is exploited, bullied and/or harmed by their peers, who are the same or similar age. Child-on-child abuse can include physical and sexual abuse, sexual harassment and violence, emotional harm, bullying (including cyber bullying) and teenage relationship abuse.
You can get more information about child-on-child abuse from:
Domestic abuse isn’t just being hit or threatened, but it is controlling behaviour, as well as put-downs and emotional abuse. It can make you feel like you’re not capable of escape, or that you’re worried for your children or another family if you leave.
There is support out there: Women’s Aid www.womensaid.org.uk and The National Domestic Abuse Hotline nationaldahelpline.org.uk 0808 2000 247 are great sources of support and information, as well as where to get help from. They’re safe, secure and open 24-hours a day. The telephones numbers are also Freephone so don’t worry if you don’t have credit.
It is proven that children who witness domestic abuse in their lifetime, especially from their parents, have a higher risk of mental health and wellbeing worries, being a victim of domestic abuse themselves and behavioural worries.
We don’t think anyone in our community should have to face going hungry. We signpost Birmingham Central Foodbank. The foodbank provides three days of nutritionally balanced emergency food and support to local people who are referred to us in crisis.
Further support and links:
- Relate ‘0300 003 0396’ – You can talk to Relate about your relationship, including issues around domestic abuse.
- Men’s Advice Line ‘0808 801 0327’ – Advice and support for men experiencing domestic violence and abuse.
- National LGBTQI+ Domestic Abuse Helpline ‘0800 999 5428’ – Emotional and practical support for LGBT+ people experiencing domestic abuse.
- The Hideout thehideout.org.uk – Specific support for children suffering through domestic abuse and violence.
- Food Banks trusselltrust.org
Child Protection and Safeguarding Policy
Keeping children safe in education (KCSIE)
Further safeguarding information from the Department for Education:
Keeping children safe in education
Working together to safeguard children
What to do if you’re worried a child is being abused
Educational psychologist telephone helpline for parents and carers
Further safeguarding information from the Government: