Child Safeguarding Statement and Risk Assessment 2021

Mandatory Template 1: Child Safeguarding Statement and Risk Assessment          

Child Safeguarding Statement 

Cosby National School is a primary school under Church of Ireland management providing education to pupils from Junior Infants to Sixth Class.

In accordance with the requirements of the Children First Act 2015, Children First: National Guidance for the Protection and Welfare of Children 2017, the Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post Primary Schools 2017 and Tusla Guidance on the preparation of Child Safeguarding Statements, the Board of Management of Cosby National School has agreed the Child Safeguarding Statement set out in this document.

  1. The Board of Management has adopted and will implement fully and without modification the Department’s Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post Primary Schools 2017 as part of this overall Child Safeguarding Statement
  1. The Designated Liaison Person (DLP) is Jackie Cooper (Principal)
  1. The Deputy Designated Liaison Person (Deputy DLP) is Laura O’Neill 
  1. The Board of Management recognises that child protection and welfare considerations permeate all aspects of school life and must be reflected in all of the school’s policies, procedures, practices and activities In its policies, procedures, practices and activities, the school will adhere to the following principles of best practice in child protection and welfare: 

The school will:

  • recognise that the protection and welfare of children is of paramount importance, regardless of all other considerations;
  • fully comply with its statutory obligations under the Children First Act 2015 and other relevant legislation relating to the protection and welfare of children;
  • fully co-operate with the relevant statutory authorities in relation to child protection and welfare matters
  • adopt safe practices to minimise the possibility of harm or accidents happening to children and protect workers from the necessity to take unnecessary risks that may leave themselves open to accusations of abuse or neglect;
  • develop a practice of openness with parents and encourage parental involvement in the education of their children; and 
  • fully respect confidentiality requirements in dealing with child protection matters.

The school will also adhere to the above principles in relation to any adult pupil with a special vulnerability. 

  1. The following procedures/measures are in place:
  • In relation to any member of staff who is the subject of any investigation (howsoever described) in respect of any act, omission or circumstance in respect of a child attending the school, the school adheres to the relevant procedures set out in Chapter 7 of the Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools 2017 and to the relevant agreed disciplinary procedures for school staff which are published on the DES website.  
  • In relation to the selection or recruitment of staff and their suitability to work with children, the school adheres to the statutory vetting requirements of the National Vetting Bureau (Children and Vulnerable Persons) Acts 2012 to 2016 and to the wider duty of care guidance set out in relevant Garda vetting and recruitment circulars published by the DES and available on the DES website.
  • In relation to the provision of information and, where necessary, instruction and training, to staff in respect of the identification of the occurrence of harm (as defined in the 2015 Act) the school-
  • Has provided each member of staff with a copy of the school’s Child Safeguarding Statement 
  • Ensures all new staff  are provided with a copy of the school’s Child Safeguarding Statement 
  • Encourages staff to avail of relevant training 
  • Encourages Board of Management members to avail of relevant training 
  • The Board of Management maintains records of all staff and Board member training 
  • In relation to reporting of child protection concerns to Tusla, all school personnel are required to adhere to the procedures set out in the Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools 2017, including in the case of registered teachers, those in relation to mandated reporting under the Children First Act 2015.
  • In this school the Board has appointed the above-named DLP as the “relevant person” (as defined in the Children First Act 2015) to be the first point of contact in respect of the child safeguarding statement.
  • All registered teachers employed by the school are mandated persons under the Children First Act 2015.
  • In accordance with the Children First Act 2015 and the Addendum to Children First (2019), the Board has carried out an assessment of any potential for harm to a child while attending the school or participating in school activities. A written assessment setting out the areas of risk identified and the school’s procedures for managing those risks is included with the Child Safeguarding Statement. 
  • The various procedures referred to in this Statement can be accessed via the school’s website, the DES website or will be made available on request by the school.

Note:  The above is not intended as an exhaustive list. The Board of Management shall also include in this section other procedures/measures that are of relevance to the school.  

  1. This statement has been published on the school’s website and has been provided to all members of school personnel and the patron.  It is readily accessible to parents and guardians on request. A copy of this Statement will be made available to Tusla and the Department if requested.  
  1. This Child Safeguarding Statement will be reviewed annually or as soon as practicable after there has been a material change in any matter to which this statement refers.

This Child Safeguarding Statement was adopted by the Board of Management on 07/03/2018.

This Child Safeguarding Statement was reviewed by the Board of Management on 03/03/2020  and again on 27/04/2021

This Child Safeguarding Statement was reviewed by the Board of Management on 29/09/21

Signed:________________________ Signed:____________________________

Thomas Cosby           Jackie Cooper

Chairperson of Board of Management                     Principal/Secretary to the Board of   Management

Date:    29/09/2021 Date:    29/09/2021

Written Assessment of Risk of Cosby National School.  Roll no 10544w 

In accordance with section 11 of the Children First Act 2015 and with the requirement of Chapter 8 of the Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post-Primary Schools 2017, the following is the Written Risk Assessment of Cosby National School.     

List of school activities The school has identified the following risk of harm in respect of its activities – The school has the following procedures in place to address the risks of harm identified in this assessment –
Daily arrival & dismissal of pupils Access to pupils by strangers or other adults.Risk of harm from other pupils

Risk of medicine being tampered with.

Parents deliver all pupils to the front gate.Parents may accompany younger/vulnerable children to the gate. A member of staff will be waiting at the gate to welcome the children. Parents are asked not to enter the building or the school grounds in the morning.Parents are also asked not to congregate or chat at the school gates.  One member of staff will open the school gate for the children at 8:40am and another member will close it again at 9.Infants – 2nd class will at all times enter the building by the new front door.3rd- 6th Class will enter and exit the building by the new back door. If a parent needs to speak with a teacher, they are asked to ring the school and make an appointment with the secretary over the phone SNA collects the medicine bag from parents and brings it to the classroom.  It is kept on high shelf.All pupils will enter through their respective doors to the building  and then go straight into their classrooms on arrival, where  their teachers will supervise them before classes start at 9am.Infants are collected by parents/minders at the fence to the play area outside between 1:15p.m. and 1:25p.m. Teachers will escort the children to the  small gate and will have their school bags and coats spaced out and ready to go in an area outside the building.Cones will be placed in the waiting area for parents to allow them to socially distance whilst waiting for their child. If it is raining the parent/minder will collect the infants from the infant entrance between these times.  A member of staff will be present to escort the children to the door from the classroom. SNA/teacher accompanies SEN pupils to parent/minder and hands over the medicine bag.1st-6th class will be accompanied to the front of the building at 2.40pm and supervised by their teachers. Both classrooms will have designated areas where they can wait for parents. Parents will be asked to wait at the designated pick up points outside the school gates. There will be six points in all. Parents will be asked to vacate the pickup point as soon as they have collected their child. Parents will be asked to wait for a pickup point to be free before approaching the railings. 
Break times Risk of harm from other pupils One teacher and SNA supervising 
Visitors / Visiting tutors / Sports coaches Visitors / tutors behaving inappropriatelyVisitors / tutors lacking awareness of child safety issues. Tutors / coaches from reputable organisations with appropriate vetting.Garda Vetting Policy adhered to.A teacher/ teachers are always present with visitors / tutor.
Access / Egress Access to pupils by strangers or other adults.Flight risk for some pupils Front door is locked and can only be accessed with code. Secretary or member of the teaching staff will buzz visitors into the building once they have identified themselves over the intercom. All other doors to the building are locked after each use except the back door, this is left open as it is a fire exit.The front gate is closed at 9:00 am and latched
School tours / Outings  Access to pupils by strangers.Inappropriate activity by pupils.Dangers posed by unfamiliar environment Adequate supervisionAdequate planning and preparation by staff.School Tour policy followed
Swimming Lessons/Sports Events Potential for unsupervised times in changing areas.Access to pupils by strangers or other adults. Adequate supervision provided.Trained lifeguards on pool deck
Social Media Potential for bullying.Potential for grooming of pupils No phones/personal devices allowed in school or on school tours without express permission of the principal Mobile phone / Devices policyInternet usage policyAUP policy 
Training of school personnel in Child Protection matters Harm not recognised or reported promptly Child Safeguarding Statement & DES procedures made available to all staffBOM reps watched CPSMA training video (November 2021)All Staff undertook online training offered by Tusla, as a whole staff (15th November 2021)DLP& DDLP attended PDST online training offered by PDST (November 2021)BOM records all records of staff and board training.
One to one teaching Harm by school personnel Door to SEN room has been fitted with a large glass panel which gives full view of both teacher and pupils in the room desks positioned in the centre of the room and clearly visible through the glass panel
Care of pupils with special needs,including intimate care needs. 

Harm by school personnel Plan for attending to care needs drawn up with parents. Parents train SNAs how to care for peg and administer meds/calorie shots. Staff receive webinar training on how to deal with Type 1 Diabetes and plan for attending to care needs drawn up with parents along with a Hypo/Hyper action plan 
Toilet areas Inappropriate behaviour Classroom Rule:Two toilets located at the back of each classroom designated boys and girls toilets in the senior room children must ask permission before going to the toiletChildren from the senior room may use the Universal Access toilet with the teacher’s permission.Yard rule: One pupil at a time to the toilets, with the teacher on duty’s permission.The teacher will give the child a peg which the child must return to the teacher when they come back outside. No other child may go inside the building until the peg has been returned.All children will enter the building through the back door and go straight to their classroom when going to the toilet at break times 
Curricular provision in respect of SPHE, RSE, Stay Safe  Non-teaching of same. School implements SPHE, RSE and Stay Safe programmes
Important Note:  It should be noted that risk in the context of this risk assessment is the risk of “harm” as defined in the Children First Act 2015 and not general health and safety risk.  The definition of harm is set out in Chapter 4 of the Child Protection Procedures for Primary and Post- Primary Schools 2017.

In undertaking this risk assessment, the Board of Management has endeavoured to identify as far as possible the risks of harm that are relevant to this school and to ensure that adequate procedures are in place to manage all risks identified.  While it is not possible to foresee and remove all risk of harm, the school has in place the procedures listed in this risk assessment to manage and reduce risk to the greatest possible extent.

This risk assessment has been completed by the Board of Management on _______________________ 2021.  

It shall be reviewed as part of the school’s annual review of its Child Safeguarding Statement.

Signed _____________________________________ Date ________________ 

Chairperson, Board of Management 

Signed _____________________________________ Date ________________ 

Principal / Secretary to the Board of Management