Questions Parents Should Ask to Check Safeguarding

Some questions parents could ask of groups/clubs include:

  • Have staff and volunteers undertaken DBS checks? How recent were the checks?
  • Will any adults besides the instructor be present at the venue while my child is there? If so, will they be there on a regular basis?
  • What training have staff had? Did this include safer working practices, e.g lone working contacting children, use of phones?
  • May I have a copy of your child protection policy?
  • Who is your designated safeguarding lead (DSL) and what training have they had? How recent was this training?
  • My child has Special Educational Needs and / or a disability (SEND). What steps will you take to accommodate this?
  • My child needs help with: using the toilet; changing; feeding; their medication, etc. How will these personal care needs be addressed?
  • How are you securely storing the information you hold on my child? Who has access to it and are you giving it to anyone else?
  • Is my child allowed to access the internet unsupervised?
  • Do you have filtering and monitoring systems in place? What are they?
  • Do you have an up to date code of conduct for staff?
In addition to the questions to ask, the draft guidance for parents sets out some 'red flags' that the might prompt parents to send their children to a 'different setting'. The red flags are:

  • Staff are not DBS checked
  • No child protection policy
  • Signs of abuse on other children who attend the setting, for example, unexplained bruises
  • Provider unable to name a designated safeguarding lead
  • The designated safeguarding lead has not had relevant training
  • If they allows children access to the internet, no filtering or monitoring systems in place
  • Dangerous physical environment e.g. loose wires, damp, no fire escape, no first aid kit
  • No designated first aider
  • No parental consent form or requirement for emergency contact details
  • Other adults coming into the out-of-school setting who are not staff members / a lack of clarity on the roles of different adults in the setting
  • No health and safety policy
  • No fire escape plan
You can download the full document here: Questions for Parents and Carers

Considerations When Using Tutors

Around 1 in 4 children receive extra, out of school tuition. Even more children take part in extra-curricular clubs. It is best that parents and carers use tutors employed by reputable tutor agencies where reference and criminal record checks will have been undertaken. If you are hiring a private tutor directly, advice from The Tutor Pages includes:

  • Hire a tutor who has an up-to-date DBS (Disclosure & Barring Service, formerly CRB) check. The Disclosure & Barring Service perform a DBS check on anyone before they work at schools, charities or other organisations to make sure there is no known reason why they may not work with children or vulnerable adults. You can ask to see their DBS disclosure certificate when you meet them. However, please remember that paper credentials are no substitute for parental vigilance, that many excellent tutors do not possess a DBS certificate and that it is not a legal requirement for tutoring.
  • Ask the tutor for details of two referees, and follow them both up with a phone call.
  • Ask the tutor for details of the parents of some current or former students, and follow them up with a phone call.
  • Check to see whether the tutor is properly accredited and qualified by asking to see evidence such as certificates, and then contact the relevant accreditation body or organisation.
  • Ask the tutor pro-active questions, listen for inconsistencies in information you are being told and observe body language.
  • Be clear where the tutoring will take place and who will be present. You may wish either to be present in the same room, or to leave the door open and enter the room at random. Your child’s bedroom is not a suitable study space.
  • Trust your instincts, and don’t be afraid of calling off the lessons if you or your child feels uncomfortable.
  • Be clear about contact – phone/text etc. e.g. that this will be between you and the tutor not the tutor and your child.

E-Safety and Cyber Bullying


  • ICT is an everyday part of people’s lives and schools are making increasing use of new technology.
  • At Outwood we have systems in place to protect your children.
  • Outwood Academy Freeston urge all parents / carers to enable security settings on home devices to help protect your children online.
  • We recognise that we encourage students to go online for work out of school where there is less supervision and they have more freedom.

Golden Rules to Safe Internet Browsing

  • Children should ideally only add on social media sites people they know and trust in real life.
  • Some predatory paedophiles can convincingly pose as another teenager and may spend months or years ‘grooming’ the victim until they meet face to face.
  • Children must always be accompanied by an adult if meeting an online friend in person.
  • Don’t ban children from these sites; they will just use them at friends houses or on their phone, personal media player or hand-held games console.
  • Take an interest and suggest they add you as a friend so you can keep an eye on them when they first join.
  • Have the main computer in a communal area of the home where there is passive supervision and be reasonable about time online. Talk if you feel it’s getting out of hand (but remember how many hours you spent watching TV when you were their age – the internet is at least active not passive and they can learn a lot from it.
  • If they have a wireless laptop and you want to stop them going online after a quota of hours is up, unplug the ‘router’ where the phone line comes into the house.

What to Look for on a Website

  • The CEOP report button is the online equivalent of dialling 999.
  • We need to train young people, just like we do with 999, to recognise it and know how to use it if they need to.
  • Look out for good websites that have the button built in.
  • Some websites refuse to add the button, so visit direct:

Online Bullying/Cyber Bullying

Cyber bullying is the use of the Internet and related technologies to harm other people, in a deliberate, repeated, and hostile manner.

  • Children can be unkind to each other online. Bullying is not new but the technology has changed making it is easier to track and prove who is responsible.
  • If you suspect your child is having a problem, the evidence will be on your computer. If you can print off copies of messages and screen shots of web postings (ctrl + prnt scrn) we can investigate.

Want to find out more about understanding and stopping Cyber Bullying?

Extremism and Radicalisation

The website below gives Parents, Teachers and School Leaders practical advice on protecting children from extremism and radicalisation.

Information can be found at

Water Safety

There are many parks and countryside sites that have open water in Wakefield. Part of enjoying the natural beauty of these areas is understanding the dangers of open water and knowing what to do in an emergency. The majority of accidental drownings in open water happen to people that didn't mean to go into the water and were walking, running or cycling next to it.

You’ll notice that in the parks and countryside sites there are water safety signs. These have important information to help you stay safe, but also feature a reference code that the emergency services can use to find exactly where you are. This helps them to be able to respond more quickly and save lives.

Simple advice to stay safe near open water

  • Look out for dangers
  • Follow safety signs and advice
  • Stay well away from the banks of the water
  • Learn swimming and lifesaving skills

If you see someone in danger:

  • Don't try to rescue people or pets by following them onto the water
  • Call for help - dial 999 and shout out to others nearby
  • If possible, provide the emergency services with the reference on the nearest water safety sign
  • Tell the person to stay calm
  • Try finding something that will extend your reach, such as a rope, pole or branch, to help pull the person out
  • If attempting to reach the person from the bank lie flat on the ground to avoid falling in yourself
  • Once the person has been rescued keep them warm. Take them to hospital even if they appear to be unaffected or wait for the emergency services to arrive if they have been called

Water Safety - Yorkshire Regional Underwater and Marine Search Unit: