The safe in an environment, such as school,

The NSPCC
defines Safeguarding as, “the action that is taken to promote the
welfare and to protect them from harm. Safeguarding means: protecting children
from abuse and maltreatment. Preventing harm to children’s health or
development. Ensuring children grow up with the provision of safe and effective
care.”.  Preventing harm towards
children contributes to their development. When a child is raised in a harmful
environment, it can bring large setbacks towards their development. For
example, major milestones could be missed by the child and parent, caused by
neglect, maltreatment and/or abuse. If a child feels that they do not feel safe
in an environment, such as school, they will not be able to concentrate or
focus as well as when they feel safe and comfortable. When a child is unable to
focus because they are not comfortable in their environment, their progress and
development will possibly be slower than the other children.

A main part
of a practitioner’s role is to support the emotional well-being of the
children. When a child has a lack of support or no support in that area of
development, they are likely to suffer long term problems that will occur later
on in their lives. Emotional well-being is focused around the way that the
child is able to positively interact and being able to communicate with others.
When a child does not understand how they are supposed to deal with their
emotions, it can make them feel irritated. This can lead to a setback in their
emotional development because without the right support, they may never be able
to fully understand how to handle their irritable emotions. Some children will
act out their feelings which are relatively normal. However if they are producing
this behaviour frequently, it could indicate that they need some extra support
in dealing with their emotions. This is usually the case of when a child is
showing signs of angry and irritable behaviour. Support and guidance are two
ways in which practitioners are able to help children develop confident and
encouraging communication skills. This includes improved social interactions
and feeling more positive about their own way of dealing with their emotions
with the correct support from others. In order for a child to develop these key
aspects if communication and dealing with emotions, they need to be trusting of
the person(s) that are helping them. As stated by Carolyn Meggitt, “Babies
and Children need to be able to trust others in order to feel emotionally
secure.”

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“A safeguarding or child
protection policy is a statement that makes it clear what an organisation or
group will do to keep children safe.” There are policies in all settings. Each place will have
different policies and procedures; however, they all basically mean the same
thing. It is all about keeping the children as safe as possible. In some
settings, visitors are given a copy of the policies and procedures in order to
make sure the children are as safe as possible. One procedure that is very
important with working with children is keeping records. If a child is harmed,
accidentally or purposefully, there must be a record kept of that incident. For
example, if a child is playing outside and falls and hits their head, if the
practitioner does not record this incident, there could be a lot of trouble
following if that child ends up suffering long term injuries as a cause of that
small incident. S36o by following the recording procedure, the practitioner and
the setting is covered if that child suffers complications. This is a very
important way of keeping children safe because keeping track of incidents will
also help to determine if they are in need of help with learning about how to
be careful when playing. In my placement, there is a locked door policy, along
with a signing in and out policy. When you are cleared to have access to the building,
you are given a lanyard with a card that specifies why you are there, e.g.
Teacher, training teacher, teaching assistant, training teacher assistant,
visitor, inspector, etc. On those lanyards, is a sensor fob which you hold up
to the doors and it unlocks it. If you do not have one, you have to always get
permission to enter the place you wish to be and sometimes give an explanation
as to why you need access there. This is to ensure full safety to the children
so that there are not just strangers able to walk in and out of the school.
When you enter the school, you must sign your name, company you came from
(college, university, health department etc.), why you are there, time you
arrived, lanyard number and car registration plate of you are parked in the car
park. Then when you leave you have to put the time you are leaving at the end
of when you signed in. the reason this is so important is because if there are
any incidents, there needs be a record of your time there.

Routines are
a very important feature in a child’s development process. “Routines allow children to feel
comfortable and settled” since the children have been able to learn
what is happening next. For example, in my placement, the children know that
when they first come I they have to hang up their coats and but their bags in a
box. Then they have a a lesson followed by snack time then break time. However,
they know that if the weather is bad, they will have break time first and snack
second. Then it is lessons and usually reading. Then lunch. After lunch they
have lessons and activities then one last break. When they get back from break
they know to go get their bags and all other belongings. They sit on the carpet
while the teacher will hand out any work or letters that they need. They have
learned the routine and are able to follow it swiftly. They feel comfortable
that they know what is happening next and not as anxious as they were when they
first started. Routines are also useful when it comes to the emotional
well-being of the children. If a child is does not cope well with change, then
they are going to greatly benefit form set routines. It will make them feel
more confident and comfortable in the setting that they are in if they know
what the order of the day will be. Many children do find comfort from having a
set routine at school because they may not have any routines at home or they
are always going through changes in their life. Even if they are just moving
house, they will benefit from knowing they have that set routine at school to
follow that will not change too much if it were to change. Another routine that
the children know to follow is the register. In the morning after they have
settled onto the carpet, the teacher takes the register to see who is there and
who is absent. They do the same after lunch to check that everyone who was
there before, still is there one unless they know that child has been sent
home. This links with safeguarding children in the setting because it is a
physical document that proves if the child is there or not. If there in a child
not there in the afternoon that was there in the morning and the teacher has
not been notified that they have gone home, it will cause a problem in the
safety and security of the children and the setting.

When working
with children, you must have a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check. The
DBS “helps
employees make safer recruitment decisions and prevent unsuitable people from
working with vulnerable groups, including children.”. This check has
replaced the Criminal records Bureau (CRB) after it proved to not cover all the
aspects that would help keep children safe. The legislation states that they
are using all means necessary to do background checks on anyone who is working
with children. If there was just a CRB check, there could be so much missing
information on that person, such as in the case of the Ian Huntley. He had a
CRB check but it was not discovered that he had very serious allegations about
him involving young girls. Because nothing showed up on his CRB check, he was
able to work in a school full of young children. This ultimately resulted in
two young girls being murdered. The flaw in the system spurred on a wider check
of criminal back grounds. Then the DBS was introduced nearly 10 years later. It
checks all records of any criminal record. This is one step closer to keeping
children as safe as possible. So to keep children safe, everyone working with
them needs to have a DBS check so that they can be ruled safe to work with
children. This will make sure the children are in a safe environment with
adults that they can trust.

Inclusive
practice is very important in an early years setting because it can impact on
the child’s future. If a child is not included in an activity because they do
not understand it or they are scared of doing something new and unknown, they
could develop low self-esteem issues that will follow them into further life. “Inclusivity
recognises that every child is uniquely different and benefits from us all
working together as a untitled community.” If a child is from another
race or religion, it is important to show them that they are able to
participate in the events that the other children are doing. It is also
important that the other children understand why that child does not feel
comfortable partaking in those activities. For example, if a child does not
celebrate Christmas but the other children do, instead of having just Christmas
activities, the setting could do a holidays of different cultures activity. It
would be fun for the children to learn about what other religions and cultures
celebrate. It would also help that child that celebrates the holiday to feel
more comfortable and confident. It would even make them feel special and like
they are important because they are helping the others to understand what they
celebrate. This will also help to teach the children from a young age that
everyone is equal and we should all be treated equally even if we are
different. This is very important for children to lean at a young age because
it will help them in later life to nit discriminate against others and be
inclusive in their daily life. Inclusive play is about getting the children to
bond and experience new things and not being afraid of something they don’t
understand because it is different.