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Safeguarding Policy

Sells Pro Training is an organisation, which provides high quality football training for young people. Training may take place on community sports grounds or schools in the evening or at weekends or full time at residential facilities.

The organisation is committed to keeping young people safe and has this policy to ensure that parents, staff and pupils know this. This policy sets out the procedure to follow in order to keep young people safe,

The persons responsible for following this policy are James Norton and Matthew Nash.
Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL)

The person to report any problems to is Matthew Nash (Child Protection Officer CPO)

Any concerns or issues must be reported immediately and to the person responsible for ensuring this matter is followed up without delay.

Before any residential courses Sells Pro Training will clarify with staff the arrangements for that venue.

This will include;

1. Areas that will be communal and during which times
2. Areas that should be private
3. Areas and times where staff should be accompanied

It will make clear to students the arrangements for the venue and the need for students to be helpful and supportive of staff and each other.

Arrangements for contacting staff at different times and in case of emergency will be made clear.

The times for being in different areas will be put on the timetable.

This will be set out in writing for each venue.

Sells Pro Training will ensure that all staff recruited for courses have been vetted to ensure they are suitable to work with young people.

Through the ethos of Sells Pro Training, its transmission of values and the expectation that its students will help and care for each other, Sells Pro Training provides a platform to ensure young people support and respect themselves and others.

We value inclusion, tolerance, freedom of speech and the honest expression of beliefs as fundamental rights underpinning healthy communities. However, freedom comes with responsibility. Students and staff should be sensitive to the feelings of others and take care to only use appropriate language ensuring they always treat others with respect.


Sells Pro Training insists that young people use social media responsibly during courses. Social media may only be used during agreed times and in suitable locations.


Our courses are active and intensive. Young people are shown how to be team players and to support each other. Young people are expected to accept responsibility for their actions to show respect to others at all times.


Sells Pro Training will make every effort to keep student’s belongings safe. Staff will ensure student’s belongings will remain private. Young people should not bring any inappropriate items to courses.

Confidentiality and Record Keeping

Staff must keep records and the responsibility to share relevant information with the appropriate authorities if the need arises.

If a student confides in a member of staff and requests that the information is kept secret, it is important that the member of staff tells the student sensitively that he/she has a responsibility to refer the matter should it relate to a safeguarding matter.

Guidance for all Staff on Dealing with Disclosure / Suspected Abuse / Neglect

1. Always listen carefully and quietly
2. Do not press for any evidence at all
3. Remain calm and reassuring
4. Do not dismiss the disclosure
5. Do not show distress or concern
6. Do not refute the allegation
7. Show that you care through open and reassuring facial and body language
8. Do not interrogate or ask leading questions (it could later undermine a case)
9. Tell me, Explain, Describe are ok
10. Ensure you take a written verbatim account of the child’s disclosure using the appropriate Disclosure Form as soon as possible after the disclosure

At this point, take the following steps:

1. Explain to the student that the disclosure must be reported
2. Emphasise your trust in them
3. Do not promise to keep the allegation secret or that “everything will be alright”
4. Reassure by telling the student that they have done the right thing in telling you, do not offer physical reassurance
5. Do not admonish in any way e.g. “I wish you had told me sooner”
6. Inform the DSL initially verbally
7. Under no circumstances discuss the matter with any other person if the allegations prove to be untrue, any such discussion would be deemed defamatory. Information to staff is on a ‘need to know’ basis at the discretion of the CPO
8. If the child agrees, take them with you to the CPO
9. With the CPO, prepare a detailed report itemising:
• The information revealed by the student in every precise detail
• Actions taken, including when the suspicions were reported, to whom the suspicions were reported, and follow up action taken within Sells Pro Training
• Date and sign any written record of events and action taken and keep confidential and secure
10. You must keep, in absolute confidence, a copy of the report, as will the CPO
11. The CPO keeps Child Protection records centrally and securely, and are not kept in the child’s file
12. All members of staff are under a duty to report all suspicions of abuse to the CPO
13. The CPO is responsible for passing on these concerns to Children’s Services

Accurate records are essential in the event of further investigations.

If you see or hear something that concerns you:

• Don’t ignore it
• Write up on the Sells Pro Training chronology sheet and seek advice immediately from your CPO
• Don’t feel silly
• If it worries you, someone else needs to know
• If it is something related to safeguarding, but not a child whose safety is immediately at risk
• If it is related to a child being at risk see the CPO, or Deputy CPO immediately and definitely before the child goes home that day
• All staff may raise concerns directly with Children’s Services, if they feel an incident is not being dealt with appropriately, or they are unable to locate relevant staff
• Concerns about adults in Sells Pro Training should be made directly to the CPO

Child Protection Procedures

Points of Action

1. Discovery or Suspicion of Child Abuse, inform the CPO. The CPO will, in the appropriate manner and according to procedures, assess the situation
2. They will, if appropriate, take the following steps:
• Where it is clear that a Child Protection Referral (significant harm) is needed, contact Social Services without delay
• Where the CPO is not sure whether it is a Child Protection issue, or where the CPO needs to check if a child is subject to a child protection plan, they may seek advice from the single access point

Leicester +44 (0)116) 454 1004 (24 Hours)
York +44 (0)1904 55190
Out of Hours +44 (0)1609 780780
Reading +44 (0) 0118 937 3641
Out of Hours +44 (0)1344 786543

• Follow locally agreed protocols which can be found on the LSCB website
• The CPO will attend a Child Protection Conference. We recognise the importance of multi-agency working and will ensure that staff including the DSL are able to attend all relevant meetings, case conferences, core groups and strategy meetings

Allegations against Staff

Reporting Procedures

We will manage cases of allegations that might indicate a person would pose a risk of harm if they continue to work in regular or close contact with children in their present position, or in any capacity. It will be used in respect of all cases in which it is alleged that a teacher or member of staff;
1. Behaved in a way that has harmed a child, or may have harmed a child;
2. Possibly committed a criminal offence against or related to a child; or behaved towards a child or children in a way that indicates he/she is unsuitable to work with children

We have a duty of care to our employees. We will ensure we provide effective support for anyone facing an allegation. And the matter is followed up in a fair and consistent way that provides effective protection for the child and at the same time supports the person who is subject to the allegation.

The procedures for dealing with allegation will be applied with sensitivity, common sense and fair judgement.

Appendix 1

Additional Information on Child Abuse Categories of Abuse

The definitions should reflect the ones on the Early Help Safeguarding Strategy and include physical abuse, FGM, Forced Marriage, Prevent and CSE, these are standard so could be cut and pasted. It would also be helpful to link to the Early Help Safeguarding Strategy.

Emotional Abuse

Emotional abuse is the persistent emotional maltreatment of a child such as to cause severe and persistent adverse effects on the child’s development. It may involve conveying to children that they are worthless or unloved, inadequate or valued only insofar as they meet the needs of another person.

It may include not giving the child opportunity to express their views, deliberately silencing them or ‘making fun’ of what they say or how they communicate. It may feature age or developmentally inappropriate expectations being imposed on children. These may include interactions that are beyond the child’s developmental capability, as well as overprotection and limitation of exploring or learning, or preventing the child participating in normal social interaction. It may involve seeing or hearing the ill treatment of another. It may involve serious bullying (including cyber-bullying) causing children to frequently feel frightened or in danger, exploitation or corruption of children. Some level of emotional abuse is involved in all types of maltreatment of a child, though it may occur alone.

Sexual Abuse

Sexual abuse involves forcing or enticing a child or young person to take part in sexual activities, not necessarily involving a high level of violence, whether or not the child is aware of what is happening.

The activities may include physical contact, including assault by penetration (for example, rape or oral sex) or non-penetrative acts such as masturbation, kissing, rubbing and touching outside of clothing.

They may also include non-contact activities, such as involving children in looking at, or in the production of, sexual images, watching sexual activities, encouraging children to behave in sexually inappropriate ways, or grooming a child in preparation for abuse (including via the internet). Sexual abuse is not solely perpetrated by adult males -women can also commit acts of sexual abuse as can other children.


Neglect is the persistent failure to meet a child’s basic or physical and/or psychological needs, likely to result in the serious impairment of the child’s health or development. Neglect may occur during pregnancy as a result of maternal substance abuse. Once a child is born, neglect may involve a parent or carer failing to: provide adequate food, clothing and shelter (including exclusion from home or abandonment); protect a child from physical and emotional harm or danger, ensure adequate supervision (including the use of inadequate caregivers); or ensure access to appropriate medical care or treatment. It may also include neglect of, or unresponsiveness to a child’s basic emotional needs.

All staff and volunteers should be concerned about a child if he/she presents with indicators of possible significant harm. Training will be provided to all staff on the ‘signs of abuse’.

Physical Abuse

Physical abuse is deliberately hurting a child causing injuries such as bruises, broken bones, burns or cuts.

It isn’t accidental – children who are physically abused suffer violence such as being hit, kicked, poisoned, burned, slapped, or having objects thrown at them. Shaking or hitting babies can cause non-accidental head injuries (NAHI). Sometimes parents or carers will make up or cause the symptoms of illness in their child, perhaps giving them medicine they don’t need and making the child unwell – this is known as fabricated or induced illness.

Signs of Abuse in Children

The following non-specific signs may indicate something is wrong:

  •  Significant change in behaviour
  • Extreme anger or sadness
  • Aggressive and attention seeking behaviour
  • Suspicious bruises with unsatisfactory explanations.
  • Lack of self-esteem
  • Self-injury
  • Depression
  • Age inappropriate sexual behaviour

Child Sexual Exploitation

The factors described in this section are frequently found in cases of child abuse. Their presence is not proof that abuse has occurred, but:

• Must be regarded as indicators of the possibility of significant harm
• Justifies the need for careful assessment and discussion with designated/named/lead person, manager, (or in the absence of all those individuals, an experienced colleague)
• May require consultation with and/or referral to the Single Access Point (SAP)

The absence of such indicators does not mean that abuse or neglect has not occurred. In an abusive relationship the child may:

• appear frightened of the parent/s carer
• act in a way that is inappropriate to her/his age and development (though full account needs to be taken of different patterns of development and different ethnic groups)

The parent or carer may:

• persistently avoid child health promotion services and treatment of the child’s episodic illnesses
• have unrealistic expectations of the child frequently complain about/to the child and may fail to provide attention or praise (high criticism/low warmth environment)
• be absent or misusing substances
• persistently refuse to allow access on home visits
• be involved in domestic abuse

Staff should be aware of the potential risk to children when individuals, previously known or suspected to have abused children, move into the household.

Recognising Physical Abuse

The following are often regarded as indicators of concern:

• An explanation which is inconsistent with an injury
• Several different explanations provided for an injury
• Unexplained delay in seeking treatment
• The parents/carers are uninterested or undisturbed by an accident or injury
• Parents are absent without good reason when their child is presented for treatment
• Repeated presentation of minor injuries (which may represent a “cry for help” and if ignored could lead to a more serious injury)
• Family use of different doctors and A&E departments
• Reluctance to give information or mention previous injuries
• Bruising – Children can have accidental bruising, but the following must be considered as non-accidental unless there is evidence or an adequate explanation provided:
• Any bruising to a pre-crawling or pre-walking baby
• Bruising in or around the mouth, particularly in small babies which may indicate force feeding
• Two simultaneous bruised eyes, without bruising to the forehead, (rarely accidental, though a single bruised eye can be accidental or abusive)
• Repeated or multiple bruising on the head or on sites unlikely to be injured accidentally
• Variation in colour possibly indicating injuries caused at different times
• The outline of an object used e.g. belt marks, handprints or a hairbrush
• Bruising or tears around, or behind, the earlobe/s indicating injury by pulling or twisting
• Bruising around the face
• Grasp marks on small children
• Bruising on the arms, buttocks and thighs may be an indicator of sexual abuse
• Bite Marks – Bite marks can leave clear impressions of the teeth. Human bite marks are oval or crescent shaped. Those over 3 cm in diameter are more likely to have been caused by an adult or older child. A medical opinion should be sought where there is any doubt over the origin of the bite
• Burns and Scalds – It can be difficult to distinguish between accidental and non-accidental burns and scalds, and will always require experienced medical opinion. Any burn with a clear outline may be suspicious e.g.:
• Circular burns from cigarettes (but may be friction burns if along the bony protuberance of the spine)
• Linear burns from hot metal rods or electrical fire elements. Burns of uniform depth over a large area
• Scalds that have a line indicating immersion or poured liquid (a child getting into hot water of his/her own accord will struggle to get out and cause splash marks)
• Old scars indicating previous burns/scalds which did not have appropriate treatment or adequate explanation
• Scalds to the buttocks of a small child, particularly in the absence of burns to the feet, are indicative of dipping into a hot liquid or bath
• Fractures – Fractures may cause pain, swelling and discolouration over a bone or joint. Non-mobile children rarely sustain fractures.

There are grounds for concern if:
• the history provided is vague, non-existent or inconsistent with the fracture type
• there are associated old fractures
• medical attention is sought after a period of delay when the fracture has caused symptoms such as swelling, pain or loss of movement
• there is an unexplained fracture in the first year of life
• Scars – A large number of scars or scars of different sizes or ages, or on different parts of the body, may suggest abuse

Recognising Emotional Abuse

Emotional abuse may be difficult to recognise, as the signs are usually behavioural rather than physical. The manifestations of emotional abuse might also indicate the presence of other kinds of abuse.

The indicators of emotional abuse are often also associated with other forms of abuse.

The following may be indicators of emotional abuse:

• Developmental delay
• Abnormal attachment between a child and parent/carer e.g. anxious, indiscriminate or not attachment
• Indiscriminate attachment or failure to attach
• Aggressive behaviour towards others
• Scape-goated within the family
• Frozen watchfulness, particularly in pre-school children
• Low self-esteem and lack of confidence
• Withdrawn or seen as a “loner” –difficulty relating to others

Recognising Signs of Sexual Abuse

Boys and girls of all ages may be sexually abused and are frequently scared to say anything due to guilt and/or fear. This is particularly difficult for a child to talk about and full account should be taken of the cultural sensitivities of any individual child/family.

Recognition can be difficult, unless the child discloses and is believed. There may be no physical signs and indications are likely to be emotional/behavioural.

Some behavioural indicators associated with this form of sexual abuse are:

• Inappropriate sexualised conduct
• Sexually explicit behaviour, play or conversation, inappropriate to the child’s age.
• Continual and inappropriate or excessive masturbation
• Self-harm (including eating disorder), self-mutilation and suicide attempts
• Involvement in prostitution or indiscriminate choice of sexual partners
• An anxious unwillingness to remove clothes e.g. for sports events (but this may be related to cultural norms or physical difficulties)

Some physical indicators associated with this form of abuse are:

• Pain or itching of genital area
• Blood on underclothes
• Pregnancy in a younger girl where the identity of the father is not disclosed
• Physical symptoms such as injuries to the genital or anal area, bruising to buttocks, abdomen and thighs, sexually transmitted disease, presence of semen on vagina, anus, external genitalia or clothing

Sexual Abuse by Young People

Peer on Peer abuse

The boundary between what is abusive and what is part of normal childhood or youthful experimentation can be blurred. The determination of whether behaviour is developmental, inappropriate or abusive will hinge around the related concepts of true consent, power imbalance and exploitation. This may include children and young people who exhibit a range of sexually problematic behaviour such as indecent exposure, obscene telephone calls, fetishism and sexual abuse against adults, peers or children.

Developmental sexual activity encompasses those actions that are to be expected from children and young people as they move from infancy through to an adult understanding of their physical, emotional and behavioural relationships with each other. Such sexual activity is essentially information gathering and experience testing. It is characterised by mutuality and of the seeking of consent.

Inappropriate sexual behaviour can be inappropriate socially, in appropriate to development, or both. In considering whether behaviour fits into this category, it is important to consider what negative effects it has on any of the parties involved and what concerns it raises about a child or young person. It should be recognised that some actions may be motivated by information seeking, but still cause significant upset, confusion, worry, physical damage, etc. it may also be that the behaviour is “acting out” which may derive from other sexual situations to which the child or young person has been exposed.

If an act appears to have been inappropriate, there may still be a need for some form of behaviour management or intervention. For some children, educative inputs may be enough to address the behaviour.

Abusive sexual activity including any behaviour involving coercion, threats, aggression together with secrecy, or where one participant relies on an unequal power base.


In order to more fully determine the nature of the incident the following factors should be given consideration. The presence of exploitation in terms of:

• Equality –consider differentials of physical, cognitive and emotional
development, power and control and authority, passive and assertive tendencies
• Consent –agreement including all the following:
• Understanding that is proposed based on age, maturity, development level, functioning and experience
• Knowledge of society’s standards for what is being proposed
• Awareness of potential consequences and alternatives
• Assumption that agreements or disagreements will be respected equally
• Voluntary decision
• Mental competence
• Coercion –the young perpetrator who abuses may use techniques like bribing, manipulation and emotional threats of secondary gains and losses that is loss of love, friendship, etc. Some may use physical force, brutality or the threat of these regardless of victim resistance. In evaluating sexual behaviour of children and young people, the above information should be used only as a guide

Recognising Neglect

Evidence of neglect is built up over a period of time and can cover different aspects of parenting.

Indicators include:

• Failure by parents or carers to meet the basic essential needs e.g. adequate food, clothes, warmth, hygiene and medical care
• A child seen to be listless, apathetic and irresponsive with no apparent medical cause
• Failure of child to grow within normal expected pattern, with accompanying weight loss
• Child thrives away from home environment
• Child frequently absent from school
• Child left with adults who are intoxicated or violent
• Child abandoned or left alone for excessive period