Section A: Learning Outcome 1 (LO 1)
Understanding legislation, guidelines, policies, and procedures for safeguarding children and young people in their musical learning
Learning activity 1a – relating to Learning Outcome (LO 1)
Read the section headed ‘Introductory material’ and then answer the questions that follow.
Safeguarding includes protecting children and young people from harm, protecting children’s health and development from being impaired and ensuring children grow up in safe and effective care. Whilst Local Authorities play a lead role in Safeguarding children and young people, all adults working with children and young people have a role to play in Safeguarding. This includes people teaching in schools, whether they are employees, contractors or volunteers, and it also includes adults working for charities or other voluntary organisations, at home and in any other settings.
This Unit explains what harm is and knowing what actions to take, as well as what actions to avoid, if you have evidence or suspicions that children or young people are being harmed.
Music educators working in schools, pupil referral units or other organisations will encounter a variety of policies and guidance. These policies are designed to make sure schools or organisations fulfil their statutory obligations in line with the law. However, schools and other organisations are able to, and do, vary their policies to fit their particular environment and beliefs and to match the needs of children and young people they work with. It is essential for music educators working in education and other settings to read and understand the policies of all the organisations they work in. Failure to comply with policies can place the most well-meaning music educator in danger of allegations and resulting investigation and/or disciplinary procedures.
Music educators are in a position of trust with children and young people, and their families, sometimes over several years. This means music educators may be well placed to notice signs of neglect, abuse or other harm. Music educators often work in isolation with limited support from other colleagues. This isolation can place educators in a vulnerable position in respect of potential allegations by children and young people, or others, who may misinterpret their actions. For this reason, it is essential for music educators to have a thorough understanding of how to create a safe learning environment for themselves and the children and young people they teach or work with.
Learning activity 1b – QUESTIONS
Read the following statements carefully and tick the box to show if you think this is OK (appropriate) or NOT OK (inappropriate). Tick none of the boxes for a statement if you are unsure.
1 = Highly inappropriate 2 = Inappropriate 3 = Appropriate 4 = Highly appropriate
Learning activity 2 – relating to Learning Outcome (LO 1)
Follow this link to a short podcast setting out how the legislative background works and why it affects music educators.
Many music educators will have had some Child Protection Training at some time or another and be familiar with being observant for the signs of abuse in children and young people. Safeguarding though is more than just responding to possible abuse or neglect. In schools, there will be a range of other policies setting out how the school, or other setting, sets a secure environment overall for the welfare and safety of staff and students.
Have a look at the chart below. It shows the policies that fall under Safeguarding. You would expect to find policies and guidance on all these areas in any school or other institution where you work. They all have a bearing on keeping children and young people safe. As a music educator, you need to have a view and if you teach at home, you may wish to develop your own policies. You may still wish to develop your own policies even though you work in schools or other institutions where they are provided.
Discuss this if possible with your co-learners, especially if you don’t fully understand what some of these policies may be about. If you work alone, it is useful to understand the context in which the children and young people you teach are learning. Also, there are elements from each of these which you will find are relevant for you running your own practice.