Steiner Schools have a good reputation for caring for the whole child and helping them realise their own unique potential. This has been supported and enhanced by the implementation of government legislation with which we work. As in any other school, every staff member is responsible for the wellbeing of pupils, and they are supported by the Wellbeing Team who have specialised areas of expertise.
As a school, we have a responsibility to support all areas of our pupil’s wellbeing – Safety, physical and mental Health, Achievement, Nurture, physical Activity, Respect, Responsibility and Inclusion (no one area being more, or less, important than the others). This is often abbreviated to SHANARRI and is part of Getting It Right For Every Child, abbreviated as GIRFEC.
The Wellbeing Team brings together Pupil Support, Social Inclusion, Safeguarding and Child Protection through the Coordinators of these groups. Each has a duty towards pupil wellbeing but work together so that as much as possible of the pupil’s situation is understood and they are supported to the best of our collective ability.
The School’s role in this is to work with parents, carers, pupils and outside agencies to make sure that we are doing as much as we possibly can to support pupils, within the limited means we have. Kindergarten Teachers, Class Teachers and Guardians therefore are the Lead Professionals to whom parents turn for advice or to raise a concern (although this can be done independently as well – see below). We also see having a Named Person with accountability for Wellbeing as being best practice. As an Independent School, we cannot access all the facilities provided by Local Authorities, but we do have a unique understanding of the child and access to our own specialised support.
Greater detail on the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014 can be found on the Scottish Governments website (GIRFEC).
Child Protection Team
‘Child protection’ means protecting a child from child abuse or neglect. Abuse or neglect need not have taken place; it is sufficient for a risk assessment to have identified a likelihood or risk of significant harm from abuse or neglect.
All Child Protection situations are different. Trust your gut – feelings are an excellent guide. All staff have child protection awareness training.
Social Inclusion Group
This group looks at cases of bullying reported to it by a member of staff, parents or by pupils.
Attention can be drawn to cases directly, by speaking to a member of the group (via the School Office), or anonymously via the ‘Eyes and Ears’ box.
Pupil Support Department
Pupils with additional support needs are identified through whole Class screening assessment and through teacher and parental concerns.
The Pupil Support Department will then discuss appropriate means of support with the Class Teacher or Class Guardian and the parents/carers of the pupil.