Child Protection and Safeguarding

At St Nicholas Catholic High School, safeguarding our students underpins everything we do and we are proud of the recognition that it has received for its safeguarding practices.

What is Safeguarding?

It can be difficult to accept, but every child can be hurt or put at risk of harm or abused. Government guidance says that safeguarding means:

  • Protecting children from maltreatment
  • Preventing impairment of children’s health or development
  • Ensuring that children are growing up in circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective care
  • Taking action to enable all children and young people to have the best outcome
  • “the action we take 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.”

Working Together to Safeguard Children (2018)

The School’s Child Protection and Safeguarding Policy can be found here .

Should you have any safeguarding concerns regarding a student at St Nicholas Catholic High School please contact the Safeguarding Team:

The School Governor linked to Child Protection and Safeguarding is Chris Mottram.
For contact details please refer to Mrs Vicky Hill Tel: 01606 706 000

Useful websites and resources

Chester’s Children’s Safeguarding Partnership is a statutory body. Its purpose is to agree how the relevant organisations in each local area will cooperate to safeguard and promote the welfare of children in Cheshire West and Chester, and to ensure the effectiveness of what they do.

Cheshire West and Chester Local Safeguarding Children’s Board:

Services for Children and Families in Cheshire West and Chester – The Local Offer
A new website that provides comprehensive local information, advice and support for families is now available:

E-Safety Provision

St Nicholas Catholic High School’s commitment to E-safety reflects the philosophy of Safeguarding at the School, particularly with reference to “The safety, well-being and protection of young people is a prime concern”.

The purpose of internet use in School is to raise educational standards, to promote student achievement, to support the professional work of staff and to enhance the School Management Information systems. Our commitment to E-safety provides a framework to help staff and students remain safe online and develop their knowledge and understanding. Those whose behaviour is unacceptable are dealt with in a firm, fair and reasonable way so as to support staff and students as individuals yet demonstrate clearly that certain patterns of behaviour are unacceptable.

All staff and students must agree to abide by the School ICT Acceptable Usage Policy prior to using any School ICT facilities. There are clear measures in place to support staff and students facing online safety issues.

E-Safety Training for Staff

All staff receive regular and appropriate E-Safety training in addition to regular Safeguarding updates. This training is supported and endorsed by the CWAC Local Safeguarding Children’s Board and the Safeguarding Children in Education Team.

E-Safety Guidance for students

Students learn about e-Safety in Computing lessons and in the Pastoral Curriculum. This includes the use of external speakers, such as the Police. The guidance and information provided is regularly reviewed and updated to ensure its relevance. Individual and personalised online safety support can be provided by a School Learning Mentor.

E-Safety Guidance for Parents and Carers

The school will regularly update parents and carers on any e-safety matters which cause concern with a view to working in partnership to safeguard students. This will most likely be through the School newsletter or through Parent Pay. This guidance can be responsive to local and national trends.

There is an annual E-Safety Guidance session for all parents and carers to provide further information and guidance.

E-Safety Concerns

Students are regularly reminded that they should report any E-Safety concerns they have to a member of staff as soon as possible.

If you are concerned about something that may have happened while online you can now report it to the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre. You are doing the right thing and by taking this action you may not only help yourself but also help make other people safer as well.

Parents and students who have concerns about e-safety can contact

The School Governor linked to E-Safety is Mr Chris Mottram. For contact details please refer to Mrs Vicky Hill Tel: 01606 706 000

Below are some sites about Internet Safety that you might find useful.

E-Safety Provision for Students

Year Group Computing / ICT Lessons Year Group / Form activities
7 Social networking, plagiarism, copyrights, cyber bullying Safety online
8 Cyberbullying, staying safe online, safe use of chat rooms and social media Privacy settings and personal details, social networks
9 Viruses, security of passwords, digital footprints Police talk (Assembly); Snapchat guidance in Form Time
10 Sexting, Police talk (assembly)
11 E-safety: information and guidance to students and parents
12 E-safety: digital footprint and staying safe online(delivered as part of Enrichment)
13 E-safety: digital footprint and staying safe online(delivered as part of Enrichment)

Learning Mentors

Believing very much in prevention before intervention, St Nicholas Catholic High School is rightly proud of its investment in six Learning Mentors to provide a range of pastoral support for students. Learning Mentors are neither teachers nor counsellors but they do provide support to issues that students may be facing both within school and outside of school. They can provide immediate response to difficulties that students and their families may be facing. They also lead support for students through groups with a focus on such areas as improving self-esteem and managing anxiety.

If you wish to speak to a Learning Mentor, please contact the School Reception.

What to do if you have concerns about a child

If you wish to contact the school because you have concerns about a child, please e-mail or contact the School Reception and ask for a member of the Safeguarding Team.
Alternatively, if you have concerns about a child’s welfare, or feel that they may be being abused or neglected, please call CWAC Children’s Social Care Integrated Access and Referral Team (i-ART) 0300 123 7047 . The team can be contacted 8.30am to 5pm from Monday to Thursday and 8.30am – 4.30pm on Friday.

If you have an urgent concern outside these hours, or over a bank holiday, please call the Emergency Duty Team (out of hours) on 01244 977277.

Alternatively call Cheshire Police: 0845 458 0000/01244 350000 (999 in an emergency)

Mental Health

When your child is struggling  it will affect the whole family.

As a parent or a carer it is often difficult to know what to do, how to handle the situation and how to provide the best support.

Below are some of the most common scenarios and advice provided by the NHS.

   What to do if you think your child has an eating disorder

   Supporting your child during a mental health crisis

   Self-care tips for parents of children with mental health problems

   Parenting a child with mental health issues

   How to support your child’s mental health

   How to support a child who doesn’t want to go to school

   How to protect my child on the internet

   How to prepare for your child’s first CAMHS appointment

   How to moderate your child’s video gaming

   How to help someone who self-harms

   How to talk with your child about mental health

   How to find support for parents of a child with mental illness

   How to establish trust and boundaries with a teenager

   How to build family resilience

   How to be prepared for a mental health emergency

   A parent’s guide to understanding teenagers

   How to de-escalate your child’s anger and aggression

   How to help your child through the teenage years

   How to help your teenager sleep better

   How to make decisions about mental health medication

   How to support a child with anxiety

   How to support siblings

   How to talk about mental health

   How to talk with mental health professionals

   Ten things you need to know about the teenage brain

   What to do if your child is misusing drugs or alcohol

   What to do when your child is a fussy eater