All of our policies and procedures can be viewed by clicking on the appropriate section below.
If you are unable to find what you’re looking for, please contact us and we will help you as best we can.
All of our policies and procedures can be viewed by clicking on the appropriate section below.
If you are unable to find what you’re looking for, please contact us and we will help you as best we can.
ICT and the related technologies such as email, the internet and mobile devices are an expected part of our daily working life in school. This agreement is designed to ensure that all staff are aware of their professional responsibilities when using any form of ICT. All staff are expected to sign this policy and adhere at all times to its contents. Any concerns or clarification should be discussed with Lynn Johnston school e-Safety Co-ordinator.
I agree to follow this code of conduct and to support the safe use of ICT throughout the school
Signature …….………………….………… Date ……………………
The promotion of self-discipline and good behaviour are essential qualities if children are to be given the best opportunity to develop to their full potential and learn how to interact happily and successfully with those around them.
At Wylam First School we operate a traffic lights system for behaviour. In each classroom we have coloured cards indicating the green positive behaviour that we want, and a reminder that some behaviour (yellow and red) is not wanted in our school. These behaviours and their consequences are described in clear, easy to understand language and are discussed and explained with the children.
This is our “Green – go ahead” behaviour. We believe that this behaviour helps us to be safe, happy and to learn. This is what we want to see in our school:
This is our “Yellow – watch out” behaviour. We believe that this behaviour is harmful to a happy and purposeful learning environment and therefore we do not want to see this in our school. This includes:
This is our “Red – Stop” behaviour. This behaviour is unacceptable in our school and will have serious consequences. This includes:
It is recognised that some children require alternative strategies in order to encourage positive behaviour, for a multitude of possible reasons. This school recognises that a rigorous approach to behaviour is important, and that this goes hand in hand with caring for the emotional needs of all children, including those who may be some of the most vulnerable. When there is a behavioural need in school that is not being met by the current system, the following will happen:
Exclusion will only be used when all other strategies have been exhausted and have not been effective. A decision to exclude a pupil for a fixed period will be taken, on a balance of probabilities, only in response to breaches of the school’s behaviour policy, including persistent disruptive behaviour, where these are not serious enough to warrant permanent exclusion and lesser sanctions are considered inappropriate. Individual fixed period exclusions will be for the shortest time necessary, bearing in mind that exclusions of more than a day or two make it more difficult for a pupil to reintegrate into the school afterwards.
A decision to exclude a child permanently is a serious one and will only be taken where the basic facts have been clearly established on the balance of probabilities. It will usually be the final step in a process for dealing with disciplinary offences following a wide range of other strategies which have been tried without success. It is an acknowledgement by the school that it has exhausted all available strategies for dealing with the child and will be used only as a last resort.
The Education and Inspection Act 2006 has introduces a requirement that schools arrange full-time education from the sixth day of any fixed term exclusion of more than five days.
For any fixed term exclusion the school will:
We will also:
It is vital that school and home, work as a partnership. As already mentioned, if inappropriate behaviour persists, parents will be invited to the school to discuss how the problem can be solved.
Confidentiality will be respected and all matters relating to this policy will be treated with sensitivity.
This positive discipline policy will be promoted and the values implicit in it will be taught through the PSHE programmes of study (see Policy for PSHE) and through other relevant curriculum areas.
A copy of this policy will be provided to each member of staff, each member of the Governing Body and parents. Copies will also be available for consultation in the school entrance.
This policy applies to all pupils regardless of gender, race, creed and ability.
Staff will have a timetabled meeting every term focused on behaviour to discuss any issues or concerns.
This policy will be reviewed annually to ensure its effectiveness and relevance. Monitoring of the effectiveness of the positive discipline scheme will take place during lesson observations.
Policy Adopted …Autumn 2013… Review date ……Autumn 2014……………………………….
DfE have recently reinforced the need “to create and enforce a clear and rigorous expectation on all schools to promote the fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs.”
The Government set out its definition of British values in the 2011 Prevent Strategy, and these values have been reiterated this year (2014/15).
At Wylam these values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways.
Each year the children decide upon their class rules and the rights associated with these. All the children contribute to the drawing up of their class agreements.
Key Stage 2 children are introduced to the concept of democracy through an ‘Islands’ thinking skills unit of work which explores how communities work together and learn to respect the need to have a system that helps decision making. They also have to explore how it feels when they do not have their own choices taken on board by a majority, leading to an understanding of tolerance and respect.
The Student Voice group regularly vote on issues and they take ideas back to other classes who learn about voting.
Key Stage 1 pupils learn about voting and making choices through P4C activities.
The importance of Laws, whether they be those that govern the class, the school, or the country, are consistently reinforced throughout regular school days, as well as when dealing with behaviour and through school assemblies.
Pupils are taught the value and reasons behind laws, that they govern and protect us, the responsibilities that this involves and the consequences when laws are broken. Visits from authorities such as the Police and Fire Service help reinforce this message.
Within school, pupils are actively encouraged to make choices, knowing that they are in a safe and supportive environment.
As a school we educate and provide boundaries for young pupils to make choices safely, through provision of a safe environment and empowering education. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and advised how to exercise these safely, for example through our E-Safety and PSHE lessons.
Whether it be through choice of learning challenge, of how they record, of participation in our numerous extra-curricular clubs and opportunities, pupils are given the freedom to make choices
At Wylam mutual respect is at the heart of our values. Children learn that their behaviours have an effect on their own rights and those of others. All members of the school community treat each other with respect.
Philosophy for Children (P4C) is introduced to children at the end of KS1 and through KS2. This promotes an understanding and respect for the views of others but also that views need to be back up with an understanding of why they hold these views. It encourages tolerance and mutual respect aiming to develop an understanding that people can be different.
Wylam is situated in an area which is not greatly culturally diverse, therefore we place a great emphasis on promoting diversity with the children. Assemblies are regularly planned to address this issue either directly or through the inclusion of stories and celebrations from a variety of faiths and cultures.
Our RE, P4C and PSHE teaching reinforce this. Members of different faiths or religions are encouraged to share their knowledge to enhance learning within classes and the school.
At Wylam we will actively challenge pupils, staff or parents expressing opinions contrary to fundamental British Values, including ‘extremist’ views
Wylam First School seeks to provide a safe, secure and positive environment where all children can achieve their potential, making full use of the opportunities available to them.
We believe that children have a right to have themselves and their property treated with respect and to be free from intimidation.
The school seeks to protect basic human rights by ensuring that we have a range of preventative measures in place and that we actively listen to children and where appropriate their parents and carers.
Wylam First School will provide an environment, which aims to combat bullying by:
This policy has been developed in consultation with the school staff, governors, school council and parents.
Bullying occurs when a person is exposed persistently to targeted verbal or physical abuse with the intent of causing distress. This can also include teasing by individuals or deliberate isolation by a group. It is repeated over a period of time on those who feel powerless to resist. Bullying is deliberately hurtful and is always significant to the person being bullied.
Bullying does not only occur between children. The above definition can also be seen to characterize some relationships between adults or between adults and children.
In more serious incidents where adults abuse their power over a child bullying may be viewed as child abuse and should be treated as such.
Bullying can also stem from thoughtlessness, such as in name-calling or stem from institutional attitudes, for example in relation to gender or race. That does not make it any less unacceptable.
Bullying is always significant to the person being bullied.
A child may be targeted for representing a group. Incidents may include:
Sexual bullying is characterized by the following:
Children with special needs or disabilities are often at greater risk of being bullied, both directly and indirectly. The bullying is usually about their specific difficulties or their appearance. This is compounded by the fact that these children may not be able to articulate their experiences.
What children should do if bullying occurs:
What the school will do:
What Parents/Guardians can do:
The school has a comprehensive PSHE programme which includes a strand specifically addressing bullying. This is part of the programme for each year group from reception to year four.
The children are also encourage to develop tolerance for others views through ‘Philosophy for Children’ work.
The children are given a voice through the School Council, which meets regularly to discuss issues of concern to the children.
Care should be taken that there is no bias when dealing with cases of bullying with regard to pupils of different race, gender or those with different religious beliefs.
The policy will be reviewed each year to see if it is manageable and effective in practical terms.
Incidents of bullying will be monitored on an annual basis and reported to Governors.
All new staff should be made familiar with the current bullying policy. Details of the policy are included in the Handbook for Supply Teachers and the full policy is available for all staff in the school policies file kept in the admin. office.
This policy was adopted by Governors on ……………………………………………
This policy will be reviewed on ……………………………………………………………..
In accordance with Sections 449– 462 of the Education Act 1996, the Governing Body makes no charge for education or educational activities provided during school hours as part of the published curriculum. The objectives of the charging and remissions provision set out in legislation are to:
The Governing Body recognises the valuable contribution that the wide range of additional activities offered by school can make towards the personal and social education of pupils. The Governing Body therefore reserves the right to levy charges, or request voluntary contributions, for the activities listed below. Charges will not however exceed the actual cost of the activity.
The Governing Body recognises that the school may wish to offer opportunities for pupils to broaden the range of experience in connection with certain curriculum areas during school hours. Such opportunities might comprise an educational visit to an historic site, a theatre visit, work in an art gallery or museum, or use of swimming pools.
The Governing Body’s policy is to encourage the school to work jointly with parents in this respect, and invite voluntary contributions from parents, either generally to school funds or specifically for certain activities, in accordance with section 460 of the 1996 Act.
In encouraging such co-operation the Governing Body is anxious to ensure that parents are made aware that any such contributions are voluntary and that pupils will not be treated differently according to whether or not their parents have made any contribution.
The Governing Body recognises that the viability of visits in support of the curriculum, which are desirable but not essential, depends upon the level of voluntary financial support received from parents and delegates to the Head Teacher responsibility for decisions in relation to the viability of such visits.
Out of School Hours Learning (OSHL) is defined as learning activity outside normal lessons which pupils take part in voluntarily. OSHL activities may take place before the start of the day, at lunch times, after school, at the weekends or during school holidays. They may be provided by the school or independently by an outside provider and may include such activities as chess club, sports clubs, French club, Karate etc. This list is not exhaustive but is there as a guide. Whilst OSHL activities can be closely linked to the school curriculum, they are not a ‘necessary part’, and as such charging is permitted. Where this occurs, the charge levied will not exceed the cost of the provision. For places that have been booked a charge will be levied if attendance is cancelled within 24 hours as resources will have been purchased and arranged in anticipation of attendance, except in exceptional circumstances at the discretion of the HT. In the event of closure due to unforeseen circumstances i.e. bad weather, heating failure etc no charge will be levied.
“Optional extras” wholly or mainly outside school hours include such activities as residential visits, educational visits, sports participation and theatre excursions. The full cost of these activities may be charged to parents provided that they are not a necessary part of the National Curriculum, an examination syllabus, or religious education where no charge will be made. Prior written agreement to the charge will be obtained from parents of pupils involved in an optional extra. In fixing the charge the school may take account of:
Remission of charges will be applied to pupils whose parents are in receipt of the following benefits in respect of board and lodging costs for activities taking place wholly or partly in school hours:
The school may also offer remission for other costs associated with activities to pupils whose parents are in receipt of the above benefits. Where activities are organised and charged by a third party e.g. an independent tour operator, the school may provide for full or partial remission of charges.
Letters to parents giving information and costs of an activity will invite parents in receipt of any of the above benefits or whose child(ren) are entitled to free school meals to make school aware of the situation as assistance could be offered.
A charge will be made to parents of pupils receiving tuition in the playing of any musical instrument, except where it is provided to fulfil the requirements of the National Curriculum or a public examination. The charge will include the cost of the Teacher providing the tuition, the hire and insurance of the instrument (if require) and may include the cost of sheet music.
Charges will be levied in accordance with the County Council’s published scale of charges and parents will be asked to indicate their written agreement in advance of provision of tuition. Parents will also be asked for written confirmation, a term in advance, if their child(ren) wishes to cease tuition. Families in receipt of free school meals may be entitled to a reduction in tuition charges per term and free use of a musical instrument.
Accidental breakages and damage are unavoidable and no charge will be requested by the school. A request for the recovery of costs may occur if it is felt that damage or breakage has been caused through wilful or deliberate action.
Voluntary contributions or provision of goods in kind may be requested from parents for materials for practical lessons (Design Technology, Food Technology or other subject areas as the Governing Body may from time to time determine), if parents indicate in advance a wish to own the finished product.
Although legislation states that no charge can be made for equipment in connection with education provided during school hours it specifically excludes clothing. Parents can therefore be asked to provide their children with appropriate clothing items such as cooking aprons or football boots.
All payments should be made within 30 days of the receipt of an invoice or reminder. A reminder will be issued after 14 days. In the event of non-payment then we reserve the right to withdraw the service until the invoice is paid.
The Governing Body will review this policy every three years and may review and
amend the categories of activity for which charges can be made.
Wylam First School fully recognises the responsibility it has to have arrangements about safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children.
Wylam First School believes that pupils have a fundamental right to be protected from harm and that they cannot learn unless they feel secure. We also believe that all staff working in school have a right to personal support and guidance concerning the protection of pupils.
There are four main elements to our policy:
Our policy applies to all staff and volunteers working in the school including community education staff and governors. Teaching assistants, mid-day supervisors, secretaries as well as teachers can be the first point of disclosure for a child. Concerned parents may also contact school governors.
ensure every member of staff (including temporary and supply staff and volunteers, and on-site contracted services) and every governor knows:
provide training for all staff from the point of their induction, and updated every three years at a minimum, so that they know
undertake appropriate discussion with parents prior to involvement of another agency unless the circumstances preclude this.
notify the local Children’s Social Care Team if:
work to develop effective links with relevant agencies and co-operate as required with their enquiries regarding child protection matters including attendance and written reports at initial child protection conferences, core groups and child protection review conferences;
keep clear detailed written records of concerns about children (noting the date, event and action taken), even where there is no need to refer the matter to the locality team immediately;
ensure all records are kept secure and in locked locations;
ensure that all staff and volunteers recognise their duty and feel able to raise concerns about poor or unsafe practice in regard to children and that such concerns are addressed sensitively and effectively in a timely manner in accordance with agreed whistle blowing policies
Our policy on bullying is set out in a separate document and is reviewed annually by the governing body. We acknowledge that to allow or condone bullying may lead to consideration under child protection procedures.
Our policy on racist incidents is set out in a separate document and is reviewed annually by the governing body. We acknowledge that repeated racist incidents or a single serious incident may lead to consideration under child protection procedures.
Our Health & Safety policy, set out in a separate document, is reviewed annually by the governing body. It reflects the consideration we give to the protection of our children both within the school environment and when away from the school when undertaking school trips and visits.
We recognise that statistically children with behavioural difficulties and disabilities are most vulnerable to abuse. School staff who deal with children with profound and multiple disabilities, cerebral palsy, sensory impairment and or emotional and behaviour problems are particularly sensitive to signs of abuse.
To view Northumberland County Council’s policy on reducing the risk of children going missing from education please see Appendix D.
Our designated member of staff with responsibility for Child Protection issues is:
Lynn Johnston – Head Teacher
Last trained: September 2013
Deputising arrangements if absent or unavailable
Linda Cooper Davie – SENCO
Last trained: January 2012
Our E-Safety Co-ordinator is:
Becky Kroese ICT Co-ordinator
Safer Recruitment and Selection on-line training
One member of the selection panel for staff appointments must have completed either the on-line or face-to-face safer recruitment training
We have 4 trained member of our staffing committee
Lynn Johnston, Ken John, Jenny Sinclair and Lynn Clarke.
This procedure is for use for complaints against the school, a member of staff or the governing body. There are separate arrangements, laid down by law to cover the following:
For further guidance on any of the above please contact the Head teacher.
It is in everyone’s interest that complaints are resolved at the earliest possible stage. The experience of the first contact between the complainant and the school can be crucial in determining whether the complaint will escalate. To that end, if members of staff are made aware of the procedures, they know what to do when they receive a complaint.
In the first instance the complaint should be discussed between the person making the complaint and the member of staff involved. If a complainant indicates that he/she would have difficulty discussing a complaint with that particular member of staff he/she should be referred to another staff member. Where the complaint concerns the head teacher, or a governor, the complainant should be referred to the chair of governors.
Similarly, if a member of staff/Head Teacher/Chair of Governors feels too compromised to deal with a complaint it should be referred to another member of staff or another governor. The ability to consider the complaint objectively and impartially is crucial and it is also important to give an indication of timescale if it is found that the complaint requires further investigation.
If a complainant first approaches a Governor, he/she should be referred to the appropriate person i.e. the member of staff concerned or the Chair of Governors. Governors should not act unilaterally on an individual complaint outside the formal procedure or be involved at the early stages in case they are needed to sit on a committee at a later stage of the procedure.
It is hoped the majority of complaints can be resolved at this stage and to this end it may be useful to involve the Client Relations service, within the Children’s Services Directorate of the Local Authority, who are available to advise parents on the complaints process and may on occasion help to facilitate contact with the school.
If the complainant is dissatisfied with the way the complaint has been handled at stage one and wishes to pursue their initial complaint, the head teacher/chair of governors may delegate the task of investigating the complaint to another staff member or another governor.
The Head Teacher/Chair of Governors may also, in exceptional circumstances commission an investigating officer report to be undertaken by an external consultant. The person making the complaint should be informed that an investigation is underway and that they will receive a response within 25 working days, or a letter explaining the reason for any subsequent delay.
Once the relevant facts have been established the Head Teacher/Chair of Governors should relay the decision, and the reason for the decision, in writing to the complainant.
If the complainant is still dissatisfied with the outcome he/she should write to the Head Teacher/Chair of Governors giving details of the complaint within ten school days of receipt of the decision letter. The Chair or another nominated Governor will convene a governing body complaints committee, if they consider it appropriate, after considering the report of the Investigating Officer.
The Committee will consist of a minimum of three Governors with delegated powers. The Committee will be appointed by the Chair of Governors with the Chair of the Committee being appointed when they meet. The Complaints Committee will take a decision as to any action to be taken in response to the complaint. For example they may choose to:
In reaching a decision the committee may take the advice of such bodies as they see fit, in particular the Local Authority and where appropriate the Diocesan Authority.
If it is decided that it is appropriate to hold a hearing, The Clerk of the Complaints Committee will inform both parties in writing of the decision of the committee within five school days.
If, after following the school’s own complaints procedure, the complainant is dissatisfied with the outcome, or if there are reasons why they cannot use that procedure – for example, they feel their complaint has not been or will not be given a fair consideration due to a conflict of interest – they can forward their complaint to the Department for Education, using the online school complaints form.
Making a complaint to the Department should only happen once all other routes have been followed. The exception to this may be where there is a Child Protection concern, or where a child is missing education.
More information about making a complaint can be found on the DfE website:http://www.education.gov.uk/schools/leadership/schoolperformance/b00212240/making-complaint-school/how-to-complain
If a complaint has been made by a number of parents and it is about whole school issues they may, at any stage of the procedure, ask the Chief Inspector of schools to investigate their complaint. The Chief Inspector may or may not require the school’s complaints procedure to be exhausted before he decides whether or not to investigate.
The e-Safety Policy is part of the School Development Plan and relates to other policies including those for ICT, anti bullying, child protection and PSHE.
This document is available to the school community through the school website. The document was produced in consultation with the Northumberland Healthy School Standards representative, school staff, pupils, parents and governors.
Wylam First School takes the health and well being of our pupils and staff very seriously. We aim to ensure that all aspects of food and nutrition in school promote the school’s commitment to healthy eating and encourages healthy lifestyle choices.
Our school Food Policy will encourage, reflect and build upon the values outlined in the National Curriculum and is based on the advice and guidance from the Food in Schools materials and supported by the Northumberland Healthy School Programme.
We believe that schools share the responsibility with parents and the wider community to educate pupils in all aspects of food and nutrition so enabling them to make healthy, informed choices through increasing knowledge, challenging attitudes and practicing skills.
We will meet our objectives through:
How do we know are objectives are being met?
The school will monitor and evaluate objectives by:
Amendments have been made to the 2006 regulations in the Education (Pupil Registration) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2013. These amendments, as described below, will come into force on 1 September 2013.
The Education (Pupil Registration) (England) Regulations 2006 currently allow Head Teachers to grant leave of absence for the purpose of a family holiday during term time in “special circumstances” of up to ten school days leave per year.
Head Teachers can also grant extended leave for more than ten school days in exceptional circumstances.
Amendments to the 2006 regulations remove references to family holiday and extended leave as well as the statutory threshold of ten school days.
The amendments make clear that Head Teachers may not grant any leave of absence during term time unless there are special circumstances. Head Teachers should determine the number of school days a child can be away from school if the leave is granted.
If you wish to request the Head Teacher to consider an application for leave due to special circumstances please write a letter explaining the reasons for the requested absence. You may be asked to attend a meeting to discuss the absence.
After consideration of the application a letter regarding the decision will be sent to parents informing them if the absence will be authorised.
Please note that from September 2014 if parents are requesting permission due to holidays being unable to be taken during school holiday time a letter confirming this will be requested from their employer.
At Wylam First School we believe that marking is about responding appropriately to children’s work. Evidence of our response to children’s work can be found recorded in books and on display, but since children’s work is often practical a great deal of verbal praise will be given. We will use our judgement as professionals in a constructive way when working with all children to take their learning forward.
Our policy is underpinned by key principles.
Good marking occurs when it:
Our marking will include:
It will not always be necessary to write on a child’s work to mark it. Dialogue with an individual or to a group or class may be appropriate.
The teacher will not mark all work for assessment purposes.
Work may be:
Marking must take into account a child’s age, experience and ability, and whenever possible should be done with the child present.
The quality of a piece of work should be judged on it’s content as well as its correctness.
Care must be taken not to destroy a piece of work by ‘over-marking’. However, work presented at a much lower standard than a child is capable of should not be accepted.
It is not necessary, or constructive, to correct every single error, but providing some correct examples can be useful models for a child to follow.
Spelling errors of key words can be underlined with a small line, and the correct word written at the end of the work. Professional judgement should be used as to when and how much to correct.
Examples of emergent writing should be praised and shown to be valued. Correct models of the child’s oral translation can be written at the bottom of the page.
Pupils should be encouraged to check, self correct, edit or redraft their work. Computer programmes and co-operative writing tasks can help pupils develop self-editing skills.
Pupils should be helped and encouraged to identify when they have achieved a learning objective and begin to identify their future learning targets with the support of a teacher.
Detailed marking should take place once a fortnight in Literacy – across a range of genres during the year.
Achievements will be acknowledged with a *
An arrow will indicate children next steps.
Extension activities will be identified when required.
vf will be used to indicate that verbal feedback has been shared with individual children.
If a child has needed support in an activity this will be recorded.
The school aims to promote understanding of the marking policy through promoting parental involvement in their children’s learning. Teachers will explain the general principles of our marking at parents evenings and the policy will be made available through the school website.
We acknowledge that many parents may be unsure about how we mark children’s work and we will be proactive in explaining the main aims behind our policy.
Care must be taken with written and oral comments to ensure that there is no significant infringement of the school’s Equal Opportunities Policy, particularly with regard to gender, race or religion of a pupil.
New staff should be given a copy of the school’s policy for reference. Supply staff will have the main points made available to them in our handbook for supply teachers.
The marking policy should be reviewed yearly to ensure that it reflects current school practice.
This whole school policy sets out the arrangements that the governing body will use to decide termination payments for staff arising from redundancy or efficiency of the service and applications for early retirement. It includes all areas where it has discretion to make these decisions for teachers and support staff.
The policy applies to current employees where employment is terminated during the period 1st September 2014 to 31 March 2015. Where provisions relate to former employees, this policy applies to any applications received between those dates. The policy may be reviewed at any point during that period, subject to the consultation process described below.
The governing body will publish its agreed scheme no later than 1st July 2014 and will confirm the provisions of its scheme upon request to its HR or payroll provider to enable services under the relevant Service Level Agreement to be supplied.
In formulating and reviewing this policy the governing body has regard to the extent to which the exercise of their discretionary powers, unless properly limited, could lead to a serious loss of confidence in the public service and will ensure it is satisfied that the policy is workable, affordable and reasonable having regard to the foreseeable costs.
This policy takes account of and will be operated to comply with:
Under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 the governing body will publish this policy through its scheme of publication.
Termination payments are a confidential matter between the governing body and the individual employee. The headteacher, the clerk to the governing body, school administrator and the school’s HR and payroll provider need to be aware of such payments in order to perform their duties, but appropriate details will be kept strictly confidential.
The hearing body or committee will ensure that decisions about payments made under this policy are confidential. They will report their decisions to the full governing body as a confidential item without discussion. The confidential matters referred to in such minutes shall only be revealed to persons who require access as part of their official duties.
Records of decisions will be retained by the governing body for a minimum period of 6 years. All staff will be granted reasonable access to their own records.
Any complaint by an employee regarding the application of this policy to their own situation will be heard in the first instance by the committee who made the decision (for example, the hearing body at the representations meeting under the Redundancy Procedure). If the complaint does not concern the application of this policy within the context of another HR procedure with its own arrangements for hearings, the Procedures for Conducting Hearings and Appeals will apply.
The Procedures for Conducting Hearings and Appeals will apply to all appeals regarding the application of this policy.
The governing body will monitor its application of this policy, particularly to ensure that its practices are fair and do not discriminate unlawfully.
The governing body will review this policy at least annually and usually with effect from 1 April. It will seek to agree any revisions to the discretions that can be exercised by the governing body with recognised trade unions after consultation with all staff. This consultation will be usually be arranged by circulating a draft policy to all school staff and seeking written comments.
For the avoidance of doubt, this scheme is not contractual, and the governing body may vary the discretionary terms of the scheme from time to time, subject to the requirement that the scheme cannot come into effect until one month has elapsed following the publication of the amended policy.
Statutory regulations and guidance will take precedence in the event of any inadvertent contradictions with this policy.
Such payments arise where the termination of employment is as a result of the governing body conducting an exercise to reduce its staffing establishment under its Redundancy Procedure on the grounds that the work the employee undertakes is ceasing or diminishing and the school (or any other body covered by the Redundancy Payments (Continuity of Employment in Local Government etc) (Modification) Order 1999) does not intend to re-employ the employee.
B1.1 Service requirement
Redundancy payments will be made on the basis of continuous local government service to all eligible teachers and support staff. Employees with a minimum of two years of continuous local government service at their dismissal date, including all organisations covered by the Redundancy Payments (Continuity of Employment in Local Government etc) (Modification) Order 1999, as amended plus any other service transferred in under a Statutory Transfer Order (STO) or the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations, are eligible to receive a payment when they are dismissed for the reason of redundancy. An exception to this requirement is made for an employee who has had a break in service for maternity or reasons concerned with caring for children or other dependents. Previous service will be taken into account providing that the break in service does not exceed eight years and no permanent paid full time employment has intervened (and no redundancy/ severance payment has been made in respect of previous service).
B1.2 Calculation of redundancy/severance payment for teachers
The governing body has set a discretionary redundancy payment scheme for permanent and fixed-term employees that includes the statutory redundancy payment payable, which is:
B1.3 Calculation of redundancy/severance payment for support staff
The governing body has set a discretionary redundancy payment scheme for permanent and fixed-term employees that includes the statutory redundancy payment payable, which is:
B2.1 The governing body will not use its discretion to release pension to eligible teachers under the premature retirement arrangements that apply to dismissal on the grounds of redundancy within the Teachers’ Pension Scheme.
B3 Release of pension for members of Local Government Pension Scheme
B3.1 It is mandatory that the governing body releases pension to eligible members of the Local Government Pension Scheme who are aged 55 or over at their leaving date and their contract ends for the reason of redundancy.
B3.2 This may incur a “strain on the fund” cost from the Northumberland Pension Fund for early release of pension if the employee’s leaving date is before they reach normal pensionable age.
B3.3 The governing body will not grant additional pension to LGPS members entitled to early retirement on grounds of redundancy.
B4 Payback period for voluntary redundancy
B4.1 When considering applications for voluntary redundancy and having first considered whether the case is in its operational/managerial interests, the hearing body will consider that the case could be in its financial interests if the costs incurred will be recouped by savings within a one-year period. However it retains its sole discretion to:
The governing body has discretion to award early retirement and/or severance where the termination of employment is considered to be in the interests of the efficiency of the service. It is the governing body’s policy that no such awards will normally be made.
D1 Flexible retirement is available to a LGPS member aged 55 or over who, with the agreement of the governing body, changes the capacity in which they are working without taking a break in service so that their pensionable salary is reduced by at least 40%. The reduction in salary could be a result of a decrease in working hours or taking up a post with less responsibility. The employee will continue to receive salary in their new role and may continue to contribute to the LGPS and build up further benefits.
D2 The relevant committee will consider employee requests to take flexible retirement on a case-by-case basis after taking into factors such as the impact on operational requirements and any costs that may apply. An application for flexible retirement may be submitted as part of a request for flexible working in which case the governing body should follow the process set out in its Flexible Working Policy when considering the request.
D3 Where the pension benefits payable to the employee would be reduced for early payment under the LGPS rules, the governing body will apply the policy regarding actuarial reductions set out in section G below.
E1 A current LGPS member aged 55 or over can elect to access their pension before normal retirement age on leaving pensionable employment and does not require the consent of the governing body. An application should be received three months before the employee proposes to leave employment (which may be longer than their contractual notice period).
E2 Where the pension benefits payable to the employee would be reduced for early payment under the LGPS rules, the governing body will apply the policy regarding actuarial reductions set out in section G below.
F1 Where a deferred member requests the early release of their benefits, the relevant committee will consider the request on its merits and will only approve the application where it is in the financial and managerial interests of the school. Costs arising from such decisions will be met from the school’s budget.
F2 Where the pension benefits payable to the employee would be reduced for early payment under the LGPS rules, the governing body will apply the policy regarding actuarial reductions set out in section G below.
G1 Where a person retires before their normal retirement age, their pension will normally be subject to an actuarially assessed reduction to take account of the fact that the pension will be paid for a longer period of time. The LGPS rules allow the governing body to waive the reductions which would apply to the pension, subject to the cost being met from the school’s budget.
G2 The governing body will not waive actuarial reductions in full or in part.
H1 Phased retirement is available to a TPS member aged 55 or over who, with the agreement of the governing body, changes the capacity in which they are working without taking a break in service so that their pensionable salary is reduced by at least 20%. The reduction in salary, which must last for at least 12 months, could be a result of a decrease in working hours or taking up a post with less responsibility. The teacher may take up to 75% of the pension benefits accrued to date and can take phased retirement on up to two separate occasions. The employee will continue to receive salary in their new role and may continue to contribute to the TPS and build up further benefits.
H2 The relevant committee will consider employee requests to take phased retirement on a case-by-case basis after taking into factors such as the impact on operational requirements and any costs that may apply. An application for phased retirement may be submitted as part of a request for flexible working in which case the governing body should follow the process in its Flexible Working Policy when considering the request.
I1 These cases arise when an eligible TPS member applies to leave employment before their normal pensionable age to access a lower lump sum and pension than would have been awarded. The reduction applies for the lifetime of the benefits, not just until normal pensionable age is reached.
I2 The governing body will not incur any costs in approving an application for AAB, however it is entitled to delay the employee’s leaving date for up to six months from the date on which the member requests their pension benefits.
I3 The governing body notes that it is not possible for an in-service member to take a “token break” in employment in order to become entitled to AAB in the Teachers’ Pension Scheme. In addition to other qualifying conditions, access to AAB requires that there is an actual break in employment of at least one day and that any future employment is no longer pensionable (known as “excluded employment”). If the individual is to be re-employed, this should be under a new contract of employment. Where a person is subsequently re-employed by the same employer, there should be a new contract with an expectation that the person would move to a different or changed role. If the person returns to substantively the same post, that should result from an openly competitive recruitment process.
I4 These rules do not apply to scheme members who attain normal pensionable age. They can become entitled to age benefits that are not actuarially adjusted if they opt out of the scheme on or after NPA and enter “excluded employment”. The age benefits payable are a retirement lump sum (if applicable) and pension, although the pension with stop immediately, or at any point during the tax year depending on the amount of re-employment earnings under the scheme’s abatement provisions.
J1 In certain circumstances the salary used to calculate annual pension and lump sum upon retirement will be restricted. This may apply to the award of retirement benefits under the rules for age retirement, actuarially adjusted benefits (Section F of this scheme), premature retirement (Sections B and C of this scheme) or phased retirement. It does not apply to ill health retirement.
J2 Where it applies, the regulation requires that the growth in salary in the last 3 years prior to retirement is reviewed to make sure that the increase, year on year, does not exceed the greater of 10% or £5,400 (this figure is reviewed annually). If it does, the average salary used in the calculation of benefits will be restricted unless the employer decides to purchase additional pension, up to the maximum allowed, within six months of leaving pensionable employment.
J3 It is the policy of the governing body not to exercise its discretion to purchase additional pension from its delegated budget share in circumstances where this regulation applies. It understands that the Teachers’ Pension Scheme will refund unused pension contributions.
The safe recruitment of staff in schools is the first step to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of the children in education. The school is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people and expects all staff and volunteers to share this commitment. It is recognised that this can only be achieved through sound procedures, good inter-agency co-operation and the recruitment and retention of competent, motivated employees who are suited to, and fulfilled in the roles they undertake.
This school recognises the value of, and seeks to achieve a diverse workforce which includes people from different backgrounds with different skills and abilities. The school is committed to ensuring that the recruitment and selection of all who work within the school is conducted in a manner that is systematic, efficient, effective and promotes equality of opportunity. The school will uphold its obligations under law and national collective agreements to not discriminate against applicants for employment on the grounds of age, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, race, colour, nationality, ethnic origin, religion or creed.
The following pre-employment checks will be undertaken:
It is the responsibility of the governing body to:
It is the responsibility of all potential and existing workers, including volunteers, to comply with this document. It is the responsibility of all contractors and agencies to comply with safe recruitment pre-employment checks. It is the responsibility of the school’s HR provider to deal with the administration of the disclosure system for the school in accordance with the School Staffing Regulations. The Governing Body has delegated responsibility to the Head Teacher to lead in all appointments outside of the leadership group.
To ensure equality of opportunity, the school will advertise all vacant posts to encourage as wide a field of candidates as possible. However, where there is a reasonable expectation that there are sufficient qualified internal candidates or where staff are at risk of redundancy, an internal advertisement may be considered appropriate.
The school requires candidates to account for any gaps or discrepancies in employment history on the application form. Where an applicant is shortlisted, these gaps will be discussed at interview. Applicants should be aware that providing false information is an offence and could result in the application being rejected or summary dismissal if the applicant has been selected, and possible referral to the police and other professional regulatory bodies (eg: General Teaching Council for England).
References for shortlisted candidates will be sent for immediately after short-listing. The only exception to this is where candidates have indicated on their application forms that that they do not wish their current employer to be contacted. In such cases, this reference will be taken up immediately after interview and prior to any offer of employment being made. One reference will be sought prior to interview wherever possible.
References must be in writing and be specific to the job for which the candidate has applied – open references or testimonials are not acceptable. The school will not accept references from relatives or people writing solely in the capacity as a friend. Only references from a trusted authoritative source will be acceptable.
The selection process will always include the following:
Shortlisted applicants for all posts will be required to provide proof of identity by producing documents on the day of interview in line with those set out in The Immigration, Asylum and Nationality Act 2006. Similar information is also required to undertake a Criminal Records Bureau check on the preferred candidate. Short-listed candidates will also be required to provide proof of their qualifications and professional status by producing documentation on the day of interview.
The school will verify that candidates have actually obtained any qualifications legally required or deemed essential for the job and claimed in their application by asking to see the relevant certificate, or a letter of confirmation from the awarding body / institution.
If the original documents are not available, the school will require sight of a properly certified copy. Where candidates have obtained qualifications abroad, a certified comparability check by NARIC will also be required. Proof of identity and other documentation will be verified by the Head Teacher.
It may be possible to negotiate a provisional start date with the preferred candidate, however, the checks detailed above must all be completed BEFORE a person’s appointment is confirmed. Once all pre-employment checks have been satisfactorily completed / received, an offer of employment will be made and the contract of employment issued. The contract will be issued as soon as possible but in all circumstances within 8 weeks of employment commencing.
The school will retain all interview notes on all applicants for a 6 month period, after which time the notes will be destroyed (ie: shredded). The 6 month retention period will allow the school to deal with any data access requests, recruitment complaints or to respond to any complaints made to the Employment tribunal.
Under the Data Protection Act 1998, applicants have a right to request access to notes written about them during the recruitment process. Applicants who wish to access their interview notes must make a subject access request in writing to the chair of the panel / Headteacher within 6 months of the interview date.
From January 2010, the school will retain the following information which will make up part of the personal file, for the successful candidate :
In line with DCSF requirements, the school will keep and maintain a single central record of recruitment and vetting checks. The central list will record all staff who are employed at the school, including casual staff, supply agency staff whether employed directly or through an agency, volunteers, governors who also work as volunteers, and those who provide additional teaching or instruction for pupils but who are not staff members, eg: specialist sports coach or artist. The central record will indicate whether or not the following have been completed:
It shall also indicate who undertook the check and the date on which the check was completed or the relevant certificate obtained.
In order to record supply staff provided through an agency on the record, the school will require written confirmation from the supply agency that it has satisfactorily completed the checks described above. The school does not need to carry out checks itself except where there is information contained within the disclosure. However identity checks must be carried out by the school to check the person arriving is the person the agency intends to refer to them.
The school has a specific safeguarding related whistle blowing policy that is available in the staffroom.
The school adopts a culture of vigilance where all concerns are listened to and taken seriously.
The school will follow DFE guidelines and refer any allegation for initial consultation with the LADO.
The aim of this Sun Safety Policy is to protect children and staff from skin damage caused by the effects of ultraviolet radiation from the sun. The successful of this health promotion programme will be more successful when an integrated whole school approach is adopted.
This policy covers all off-site visits and activities organised through the school and for which the Governing Body and Head Teacher are responsible.
The Governing Body endorses the Northumberland County Council policy document “Safe Management of Visits and Off-site Activities” as the basis for the school’s health and safety policy for the management of visits and off-site activities.
The Governing Body seeks to ensure that every pupil has access to a wide range of educational experiences as an entitlement. As part of this entitlement the Governing Body recognises the significant educational value of visits and activities which take place away from the immediate school environment.
The Governing Body aims to enable Wylam First School to become an educational environment in which all members of the school community can thrive, regardless of race, religion, culture, gender or individual need. We intend to apply this aim to the planning and management of all visits and off-site activities.
Visits and off-site activities support, enrich and extend the curriculum in many subject areas, encourage co-operation, team work and the application of problem solving skills and develop independence and self confidence.
Residential opportunities, physical challenge and adventure can have a particular part to play in the development of personal and social qualities for all young people. Outdoor education helps young people to be physically active and to understand how to assess and manage risk.
The management of visits and off-site activities places particular responsibilities for the health, safety and welfare of all participants on the Governing Body, Head Teacher, the Visit Leader, members of staff and volunteers, pupils and parents. The school also has responsibilities to other members of the public and to third parties. This policy on visits and off-site activities therefore complements the wider school health and safety policy.
It is a priority of this school that all visits and off-site activities are safe, well-managed and educationally beneficial.
The Head Teacher will:
In order to carry out the above responsibilities effectively the Head teacher may delegate specified tasks to a suitably experienced and competent Educational Visits Co-ordinator (EVC). The Head Teacher will be considered to be the EVC where tasks are not delegated to a named member of staff. The EVC will be responsible for carrying out agreed tasks and attending relevant training provided by the Council.
The Head Teacher (or the EVC on his /her behalf) will be responsible for approving all off-site activities. This includes approving the Visit Leader for each visit or off-site activity.
A summary of the programme for the following categories of visits, together with a risk assessment, will be sent to the Outdoor Education Safety Adviser, Northumberland Health and Safety Team, for endorsement:
The Head Teacher will monitor off-site visits and activities and will provide a regular report to the Governing Body about the off-site activities which have taken place from the school.
The Visit Leader will:
Members of staff, volunteers and parent helpers should:
Whilst taking part in off-site activities pupils also have responsibilities about which they should be made aware by the Party Leader or other members of staff, for their own health and safety and that of the group.
Young people should:
Parents have an important role in deciding whether any visit or off-site activity is suitable for their child. Subject to their agreement to the activity parents should:
A copy of this policy and associated school procedures will be made available to all staff within the school who may be responsible for leading off-site visits and activities and to any parent requesting a copy.
The Head Teacher will make additional information available to staff to help ensure the safe management of off-site activities, including the Northumberland policy statement “Safe Management of Visits and Off-Site Activities 2009” and access to the DES website: www.northumberlandvisits.org.uk
Appropriate training will be made available to leaders and other adults taking part in off-site activities in order to reflect identified school health and safety priorities and educational priorities.
The Head Teacher (or EVC on his /her behalf) will maintain a record of the qualifications held by staff and volunteers involved in outdoor activities including first aid, life-saving, mini-bus driving and specific hazardous activities.
The Head Teacher will ensure that emergency arrangements are in place, known to staff and in line with Council policy, to cover the range of activities undertaken from the school and the times at which they take place. This will include a minimum of two emergency contact numbers for designated senior members of staff or the governing body out-of hours. First aid provision and training of staff will be in accordance with good practice.
Any accidents and incidents that occur during off-site visits and activities will be reported and recorded in accordance with the school health and safety policy. Northumberland County Council will be informed of notifiable accidents and incidents. Accidents and incidents will subsequently be reviewed within the school to identify any learning points.
The Governors will review this policy: