School Policies

Our school policies are designed to make sure that everyone at the school is safe and happy, and that you have the best conditions for learning English. On this page you can find all our policies, together with a short explanation of each one.

Attendance & Punctuality Policy

We have some important rules about attending class and arriving on time. For example:

Adult Courses

  • If you arrive more than 15 minutes late, you are not allowed to enter the class
  • 16- and 17-year-olds are permitted to enter the class even when late, for safeguarding reasons
  • You need 80% attendance or more to receive a course certificate
  • Holidays must be booked through Reception by Wednesday the week before
  • We have an Attendance Warning System for repeated absences

Attendance & Punctuality Policy – Adults

We expect you to arrive on time for lessons, but we understand that sometimes this is not possible. If it is difficult for you to arrive on time every day, please tell your teachers.

If you arrive more than 15 minutes late, you will not be allowed to enter the classroom. However, 16- and 17-year-olds are permitted to enter the class even when late, for safeguarding reasons.

You must come to 80% of your lessons. If you do not, we will not give you a certificate when you finish your course, and you may also have problems if you wish to extend your visa. If you cannot come to class for any reason, it is very important that you telephone or email the school to explain.

If you arrive more than 15 minutes late, you will be marked absent. For Tier 4 visa students, please see below.

Holidays
If you want to take a holiday, please tell Reception by Wednesday the week before and complete the Holiday Request Form.

Absences
If you do not attend class without giving a reason, this is recorded on our database as an ‘unauthorised absence’. If you are absent for one of the reasons listed below, this will be recorded as an ‘authorised absence’. We expect authorised absences to be notified to us in advance.
• Illness
• Medical appointment (including a dependant’s medical appointment)
• Appointment with the Nationalities Office or embassy
• Bereavement
• Holidays, including religious holidays
• Major transport or weather-related disruption
• Other exceptional circumstances at the School’s discretion.

1:1 Lessons
If you cannot attend your 1:1 lesson, you must contact the school by phone or email to cancel the lesson.
For lessons at 11.30–17.30, you must contact the school by 9.30 on the day of the lesson.
For lessons at 9.30 you must contact the Director of Studies the day before if possible, or by 8.00 on the day of the lesson.

Attendance Warning System

Regular attendance is very important. You must come to at least 80% of your classes. It may be difficult for you to extend your visa if your attendance is low. Please call the school as soon as possible if you cannot attend or email suzie@lewis-school.co.uk.

Important things you should know about your attendance

  • If your attendance is less than 80% you will not receive your certificate when you finish your course.
  • Repeated absences are reported to the Welfare Manager.
  • If you are absent for 10 consecutive days without any contact, we will inform your agent / embassy / parents / guardians.

If you start to miss classes your teacher will talk to you. If your attendance does not improve, the following steps may be taken:

Step 1

After 2 days of absence, The Welfare Officer checks with the student to see if there is a good reason for their absence.

When attendance continues to be irregular or after 4 consecutive days of absence –>

Step 2

An academic manager has a mini-tutorial with the student and a verbal warning is given.

When attendance continues to be irregular or after 8 consecutive days of absence –>

Step 3

An academic manager issues a written warning.

When attendance continues to be irregular or after 10 consecutive days of absence –>

Step 4

The Welfare Officer contacts the sponsor, if applicable.

Step 5

Failure to comply with the School’s policy on punctuality and attendance may result in expulsion without refund – see paragraph on Attendance & Punctuality in Terms and Conditions.

IMPORTANT information for Tier 4 students enrolled on a CAS

Unsatisfactory attendance will be dealt with by following Steps 1-5.

If you are absent for 10 consecutive days without any contact or pre-arranged authorization, your sponsorship will be withdrawn and the UK Border Agency (UKBA) will be informed.

Updated January 2016

Junior Programmes

  • You are required to attend, and arrive on time for, all lessons and activities.
  • If you are ill, you or your homestay host must contact us. You can call your Group Leader / Guardian or the centre emergency number, which is on your student card.

Attendance & Punctuality Policy – Junior Students

Attendance

You must attend all of your lessons and activities. It is very important that we know where you are at all times. We check your name on the attendance list before every lesson or activity. If you are ill, you or your host family must contact us. You can call your Group Leader / Guardian or the centre emergency number, which is on your student card.

If you are absent without permission, we will search for you until we have made contact and know how you are and where you are.

Punctuality

You must arrive on time for lessons and activities. If you are delayed for any reason, please inform your Group Leader / Guardian or call the centre emergency number. You can ask your host family to call for you if you prefer.

We have an attendance register for every class and activity. If you are late, you will be marked ‘late’ on the register. Unexplained absence or persistent lateness will be treated as a disciplinary matter and you may be excluded from certain activities.

Illness During Lessons or Activities

If you start to feel ill during a lesson or an activity, tell your teacher or activity leader. Another member of staff can supervise you away from class or the activity if you need to have a break. We have staff who are trained in first aid for minor injuries, and if necessary, we will arrange for you see a doctor.

Last updated – May 2015

Discipline Policy

This policy explains the behaviour we expect of our students. It also explains the school’s procedure for dealing with misconduct.

Discipline Policy – Adult Courses

Our priority at the Lewis School of English is to provide a safe, friendly and caring place to study offering the best conditions for your learning. It is very important to us that everyone at the school behaves respectfully towards each other and towards the school buildings and facilities. This includes when in homestay and residential accommodation and on social activities. Please think about other people at all times, and remember that something that may be fine for one person might be upsetting or unacceptable to another person. This is particularly important in our multicultural school.

We take all forms of misconduct very seriously.  Misconduct may include, but is not limited to:

  • Vandalism
  • Damage to property
  • Theft
  • Drug abuse
  • Drunk and disorderly behaviour
  • Display of offensive material – pictures or writing – including sexting
  • Unwelcome body contact
  • Insensitive, insulting or abusive comments or gestures, including about race, sex, age, nationality, religion or belief, sexual orientation or disability
  • Threats – physical or verbal
  • Acts of violence
  • Any behaviour which would reasonably upset or offend any student, visitor or staff member
  • Any action which puts at risk your safety or the safety of others

If you feel that somebody is behaving in any of these ways, speak to the Welfare Manager or another member of staff.

Discipline Procedure

The School’s procedure for dealing with misconduct by students is as follows.

  1. A teacher or relevant member of staff will speak to the student and explain what behaviour we wish the student to stop.
  2. If the behaviour continues, the Director of Studies will give the student a verbal warning
  3. If this does not solve the problem, the Director of Studies will give the student a written warning
  4. If the behaviour continues, the Owner/Director will have a meeting with the student to decide what to do
  5. The student may be expelled from the School without refund.

Depending on how serious the misconduct is, this procedure may begin at any step from 1 to 5.

 

Our terms and conditions of enrolment state:

In the case of serious misconduct the Student may be asked to leave immediately and no refund will be given. The School will decide if the situation is an example of serious misconduct. See the paragraph entitled ‘Misconduct in the Conditions of Enrolment.

 

The Student will be asked to pay for any damage they have caused. See the paragraph entitled ‘Damage’ in the Conditions of Enrolment.

Our priority at the Lewis School of English is to provide a safe, friendly and caring place to study offering the best conditions for your learning. It is very important to us that everyone at the school behaves respectfully towards each other and towards the school buildings and facilities. This includes when in homestay and residential accommodation and on social activities.

Please think about other people at all times, respect other nationalities and cultures, and remember that something that may be fine for one person might be upsetting or unacceptable to another person. This is very important in our multicultural school.

Misconduct

We take all forms of misconduct very seriously.  Misconduct may include, but is not limited to:

  • Vandalism
  • Damage to property
  • Theft
  • Bullying – physical (e.g. violent or intimidating behaviour), verbal (e.g. calling people offensive names or making racist comments) and cyber bullying
  • Drug abuse
  • Drinking alcohol
  • Smoking
  • Display of offensive material – pictures or writing – including sexting
  • Unwelcome body contact
  • Violence
  • Absence and lateness
  • Any action which puts at risk your safety or the safety of others

If you feel that somebody is behaving in any of these ways, speak to the Welfare Manager or another member of staff.

 

UK Law

You must follow the law at all times. Some UK laws may be different to laws in your country, for example the minimum age for smoking and drinking, which in the UK is 18. Your student book includes information on UK laws. If you break the law, we will involve the police as well as our own discipline procedure.

Absence and Lateness

You must attend all lessons and activities. If you are late or absent, this puts your safety at risk, as we are unable to supervise you. See our Absence & Punctuality Policy

Discipline Procedure – Junior Programmes

If you are found to be breaking any of the rules, you may be reported to the Centre Manager and asked to leave your class/activity. Depending on the seriousness of the case, you may be excluded from lessons/activities.

In extreme cases, Lewis School may inform you agent and/or parents/guardian and you may be sent home at your expense.

Step 1 – Verbal warning

Step 2 – Exclusion from lessons / activities

Step 3 – Written warning to parents / guardians

Step 4 – Student expelled from course

The discipline procedure may start at step 1, 2, 3 or 4 depending on the seriousness of the case.

Last updated: February 2017

Student Selection Policy

While we would like to welcome all students at Lewis School, we recognise that there are occasions when we are either unable to accommodate a student’s needs, or our learning environment is not is suited to that particular individual.

Student Selection Policy – Adult Courses

While we would like to welcome all students at Lewis School, we recognise that there are occasions when we are either unable to accommodate a student’s needs, or our learning environment is not suited to that particular individual.

Age

At our Adult School, the minimum age that we accept for students is 16. However, there is no maximum age. For Year-Round Junior Groups, the minimum age is 8.

Passports and Visas

We are unable to accept a student if their passport has expired or if their visa is not in order. For someone wanting to enrol on a General Student Visa (GSV) their level of English must be a minimum of B1. If their level is lower than B1, we are not able to accept them, but would recommend they apply for a Short Term Student Visitor Visa (STSVV)instead.

Physical Disabilities

We regret that due to the listed status of the buildings, we are unable to make alterations to enable wheelchair access. Therefore, we are not in a position to accept students with disabilities which prevent them from entering or exiting the premises safely.

Nationality Mix

As it is important to us to maintain a good nationality mix, our quota for students of the same mother tongue is no more than 50% of the total number of students. This does not apply to Year-Round Junior Groups, which are usually monolingual groups. Where appropriate, Year-Round Junior Group classes may be combined to create an international mix.

Learning Difficulties

If we are aware that a potential student has learning difficulties, the Academic Team discusses whether we are able to accommodate their needs or not, and a decision is made on a case by case basis.

Exam Courses

Depending on the exam they wish to take, we inform students of the minimum level required, and ensure that their level of English meets with this requirement. A separate class may be opened for lower level students if there are a group of similar ability wanting to enrol and we feel it is in their interest to do so.

1:1 Lessons

If we feel that a student may not fit into a group class dynamic, we will encourage them to consider 1:1 lessons as an alternative. This may be for reasons such as their cultural background, a lack of confidence, an extreme difference in level or learning difficulties, and is assessed case by case.

Last updated January 2016

Policy for Under-18s Joining Adult Courses 

Our minimum age for Adult Courses is 16. If you are under 18, please make sure you read this policy.

Policy for Under 18s Joining Adult Courses

Travelling to the UK
• If you are travelling alone, you must bring a completed parental consent form and show it to the airport staff.

On Arrival in the UK
• You must let us know your travel arrangements from the airport/station/port to Southampton. We recommend taxi transfers, which we can arrange, but if you would like to travel by train or coach, please let us know and we can help you.

At School
• You must attend weekly welfare tutorials so that we can check everything is ok
• You must attend all lessons at all times.
• We have free Study Clubs and optional social activities at extra cost. There may be some social activities, such as pub nights, which you will not be able to attend because they are for students over 18 only.
• We sometimes have evening parties at the school. You are welcome to attend these but you must not drink any alcohol.

Outside School
• Lewis School of English is not responsible for your supervision outside class times
• In the UK, you must be over 18 to buy alcohol or cigarettes

Health & Safety Policy

We aim to provide a safe and secure place for you to study. Please read our advice about how to stay safe inside and outside the school.

Health & Safety Policy – Adult Courses

Health & Safety at the School

We aim to provide a safe and secure place to study. As such, the Lewis School complies with statutory Health and Safety requirements such as Fire Regulations and First Aid. Please tell a member of staff if you see anything which you think is a Health and Safety hazard.  Al Clunnie is our appointed Health & Safety Officer.

First Aid

If you need first aid, please go to Reception to see Suzie Brierley, who is our principal appointed first-aider. First aid kits are located in Reception, the Teacher’s room in No 31 and the Teacher Training office in No 30

Fire Regulations

Please read and remember these instructions:

If you see a fire

  1. Press / break nearest red fire alarm
  2. Tell teacher or other staff
  3. Leave building IMMEDIATELY. Don’t collect bags
  4. Wait in the park with the other students

If you hear the alarm

  1. Leave building IMMEDIATELY. Don’t collect bags
  2. Wait in the park with the other students

Health & Safety Outside the School

Southampton is a safe place to live and study, but it is important to think about your safety at all times. Please read and follow our safety recommendations below.

After Dark

Walk in small groups (not on your own). Walk on a well-lit road (not through the park). If you need a taxi, make sure you call one or use Uber app. Do not stop one in the street.

On the Bus

When you travel on the bus at night, sit near the driver, or near other people.

 

Lifts Home

Do not get into a car with someone you don’t know.

Valuable Items

Keep money and valuable items (mobile phone, camera, iPod) in your bag or pocket.

Drinks

In pubs and nightclubs, look after your drinks.  When you go to the dance floor or to the toilet, make sure a friend watches your drink.

Remember

If you see a fight, walk away. In an emergency, call 999.

 

For more information about safety in the UK, visit www.educationuk.org/UK/Article/Stay-safe-during-your-UK-studies or ask at Reception.

Health & Safety on Social Activities

For trips and other activities not at the school, we provide the phone number for the person leading the trip on your ticket. Please call this number in an emergency or if you are lost.

Make sure you understand the meeting time and place. Take enough money for the journey home in case you are late for the meeting time.

Last updated: February 2017

Health & Safety Policy – Junior Programmes

Health & Safety at the School

We aim to provide a safe and secure place to study. As such, the Lewis School complies with statutory Health and Safety requirements such as Fire Regulations and First Aid. Please tell a member of staff if you see anything which you think is a Health and Safety hazard.
First Aid
If you need first aid, please go to Reception to see Suzie, who is a first-aider. First aid kits are located in Reception and the crèche.
Fire Regulations
Please read and remember these instructions:
If you see a fire:
1. Press / break nearest red fire alarm
2. Tell teacher or other staff
3. Leave building IMMEDIATELY. Don’t collect bags.
4. Wait in the park with the other students
If you hear the alarm:
1. Leave building IMMEDIATELY. Don’t collect bags.
2. Wait in the park with the other students.

Health & Safety on Activities

To make sure you gain the most from our activities programme please read and follow the advice below. If you endanger yourself or another person’s safety during an activity, we reserve the right to remove you from our activities programme.
Before All Activities
• Make sure you are at the meeting point on time.
• Bring water, and any medication you need.
• Wear sensible shoes.
During Trips
• Bring pocket money and good shoes for walking. You may need a raincoat or umbrella.
• Stay in pairs or groups at all times. Do not go off on your own.
• If there is a problem, contact your Activity/Group Leader
• If you do not have their number, call the emergency number on your student card.
Road Safety
Please read, remember and follow our Road Safety policy.

If You are Lost or in Difficulty

If you are lost or in difficulty, call the number on your student card. If you do not have a phone, go into a shop or public building and ask someone to call the number for you.

Emergencies – 999

In an emergency, dial 999 and ask for the Police, Ambulance or Fire Services. You do not pay for this call.

Health & Safety Outside the School

Travelling Home
At the end of the day, you will be taken to your accommodation or bus stop. Always walk in small groups (not on your own). Always walk on a well-lit road (not through the park). If you need a taxi, make sure you call one. Don’t stop one in the street.
On the Bus
When you travel on the bus at night, sit near the driver, or near other people.
Lifts Home
Don’t get into a car with someone you don’t know.
Valuable Items
Keep money and valuable items (mobile phone, camera, iPod) in your bag or pocket.
Remember
If you see a fight, walk away. In an emergency, call 999.
For more information about safety in the UK, visit www.educationuk.org/UK/Article/Stay-safe-during-your-UK-studies or ask at Reception.

Safeguarding Policy

This explains how we ensure the safety and protection of all children and vulnerable adults at the school.

Safeguarding Policy

The welfare of the child is paramount.  All children, whatever their age, culture, disability, gender, language, racial origin, religious beliefs and/or sexual identity, have the right to protection from abuse. All suspicions and allegations of abuse will be taken seriously and responded to swiftly and appropriately. All staff and Group Leaders working with children and vulnerable adults, whether paid or unpaid, have a responsibility to report concerns to the appropriate officer.

Safeguarding Policy Statement

Lewis School of English has a duty of care to safeguard all children and vulnerable adults in its care.  All children have a right to protection, and the needs of disabled children and others who may be particularly vulnerable must be taken into account.

Lewis School of English will ensure the safety and protection of all children and vulnerable adults enrolled on its programmes through adherence to the Safeguarding guidelines that we have adopted.

A child is defined as a person under the age of 18 (The Children Act 1989).

We will endeavour to ensure that children are protected from harm whilst visiting our centres.  We will do this by:

  • Making sure our staff are carefully selected
  • Providing appropriate training for staff in issues of child protection
  • Taking all reasonable steps to ensure the health, safety and welfare of any child or vulnerable adult in contact with the Lewis School of English
  • Not physically, emotionally or sexually abusing an child or vulnerable adult in contact with Lewis School of English
  • Taking all reasonable steps to prevent any staff member, person working for us or member of the public from putting any child in a situation where there is unreasonable risk to their health and safety
  • Taking all reasonable steps to prevent any staff member, person working for us or member of the public from physically, emotionally or sexually abusing any child or vulnerable adult
  • Reporting to the appropriate manager any evidence or reasonable suspicion that a child or vulnerable adult has been physically, emotionally or sexually abused in contact with Lewis School of English
  • Referring to statutory authorities any incidents of this nature reported to senior staff
  • Implementing this policy in conjunction with the health and safety guidelines
  • Ensuring that all visitors and interested parties are aware of this policy and have access to copies

 

 

Policy Aims

 

The aim of the Lewis School of English Safeguarding Policy is to promote good practice by:

  • Providing children with appropriate safety and protection whilst in the care of the Lewis School of English
  • Allowing all staff to make informed and confident responses to specific child protection issues

‘Safeguarding’ refers to reducing risk and providing appropriate general care for children and vulnerable adults.

‘Child protection’ refers to protecting children from any kind of abuse.


Definitions of Abuse

 

  • Abuse is a violation of an individual’s human and civil rights by any other person or persons.
  • Abuse may consist of a single act or repeated acts
  • Abuse can be seen as an act of negligence or omission to act and may be the unintended consequences of a person’s actions

The four main categories of abuse are listed below.

Physical abuse includes hitting, slapping, pushing, kicking, misuse of medication, undue restraint, or inappropriate sanctions.

Sexual abuse includes inappropriate physical contact, taking indecent images or sexual acts to which the child or vulnerable adult has not or could not consent, for the purpose of adult gratification.

Emotional abuse includes threats of harm, abandonment, humiliation, verbal or racial abuse, isolation, persistent lack of affection, verbal bullying or cyber-bullying.

Neglect and acts of omission includes failure to access medical care or services, negligence through risk-taking, failure to give prescribed medication, poor nutrition or lack of heating.

 

Sexual Offences Act 2003

It is important for all staff to understand that legislation covers ‘Abuse of a position of trust’ and considers all children under the age of 18 as minors in this case.

 

Abuse of position of trust is defined as ‘causing or inciting a child to engage in sexual activity’ and includes ‘sexual activity in the presence of a child’.

A copy of the Sexual Offences Act can be provided to you or found online.

Code of Conduct for All Adults

This code of conduct must be followed by all Lewis School of English employees, clients, contractors and third party suppliers over the age of 18.

Dos and Don’ts for Working with Children

 

Do:

  • Remember the child comes first
  • Behave professionally
  • Treat everyone with respect and communicate at their level
  • Listen to children
  • Be aware of policies and procedures
  • Report any suspicion within Lewis School of English guidelines
  • Be aware, approachable and understanding

Do not:

  • Touch inappropriately
  • Use inappropriate language
  • Harm or frighten a child
  • Be alone with a child, if avoidable,
  • Threaten, shout or be aggressive
  • Mistreat, demean, ignore or make fun of a child
  • Force a child to do something they do not want to do
  • Let a child expose him/herself to danger
  • Take photos of children without the consent of Lewis School of English senior staff

Additionally, all students must remain under the supervision of Lewis School of English staff or nominated persons who have undergone a similar screening process that can be sufficiently evidenced.

 

You have a strict duty never to subject any child to any form of harm or abuse.  Failure to honour this will be treated as gross misconduct.  This means that it is unacceptable, for example, to:

  • Distress a child by shouting at them or calling them derogatory names
  • Slap a child
  • Hold a child in such a way that it causes pain, or to shake them
  • Physically restrain a child except to protect them from causing harm to themselves or others
  • Take part in horseplay or rough games
  • Allow or engage in inappropriate touching of any kind
  • Do things of a personal nature for children that they can do for themselves, this includes going to the toilet with a child unless another adult is present
  • Allow or engage in sexually suggestive behaviour within a child’s sight or hearing, or making suggestive remarks to or within earshot of a child
  • Give or show anything to a child that could be construed as pornographic
  • Seek or agree to meet a child outside of their visit/stay with Lewis School of English without the full prior knowledge and consent of the parents/guardians
  • Seek or agree to have any electronic form of contact with a child during or after their visit/stay with Lewis School of English without the full prior knowledge and consent of the Lewis School and the child’s parents/guardians

 

Incidents that must be Reported / Recorded

If any of the following occur you should report this immediately to an appropriate member of Lewis School of English staff and record the incident.

 

  • If you accidentally hurt a child or young person
  • If he/she seems distressed in any manner
  • If a child or young person appears to be sexually aroused by your actions
  • If a child or young person misunderstands or misinterprets something you have done

If a child has an accident which does not require hospital treatment:

  • Management should be notified and monitor the individual.
  • The child’s parent should be notified of the incident at an appropriate time.
  • The accident/incident should be completed.
  • A member if Lewis School of English staff should be informed immediately.

Responding to Allegations or Suspicions

It is not the responsibility of anyone working in Lewis School of English in a paid or unpaid capacity to decide whether or not child abuse has taken place.  However, there is a responsibility to act on any concerns through contact with the appropriate authorities.

The Lewis School of English will assure all staff/volunteers that it will fully support and protect anyone who in good faith reports his/her concern that a colleague is, or may be, abusing a child.

If you notice any suspicious signs, report this to your line manager or the person responsible for welfare.

If a child tells you they are being abused, react as follows.

What to Do What Not to Do
Stay calm Don’t panic. Don’t over-react. It is unlikely that the alleged victim is in immediate danger.
Listen and be child-focused Don’t probe for more information or ask leading questions. Questioning the participant may affect how the disclosure is received at a later date.
Give the person the chance to say what they want to say. Use TED to help you: Tell me, Explain to me, Describe to me Don’t assume, don’t paraphrase and don’t offer alternative explanations
Reassure that they have done the right thing by telling you. Explain that you will need to inform your line manager in order to provide the best possible help. Don’t promise to keep secrets or that everything

will be OK. You can’t guarantee this.

Act immediately in accordance with the procedure in

this policy

Don’t wait or try to deal with it yourself: listen and

refer

Record in writing exactly what the student said as soon as possible. Don’t make negative comments about the alleged

abuser. Don’t ‘gossip’ with colleagues about what has been said to you. Don’t make a child repeat a story unnecessarily.

If there is, or seems to be, immediate risk to a child or children, contact the police directly.  The parents or carers of the child will be contacted as soon as possible following advice from the relevant local authority department.

The manager responsible should only notify other members of Lewis School of English of events on a need to know basis, see confidentiality below.

Internal enquiries and suspension

The Lewis School of English manager responsible will immediately remove the adult from contact with students pending further police and social services inquiries.  In accordance with the findings of the social services or police inquiries the Lewis School of English senior management team will assess all individual cases to decide whether a member of staff or volunteer can be reinstated and how this can be sensitively handled. The welfare of the child should remain of paramount importance throughout.

Allegations of previous abuse

Allegations of abuse may be made some time after the event (eg by an adult who was abused as a child, or by a member of staff who is still currently working with children).

Where such an allegation is made, the school will follow the procedures as detailed above and report the matter to the local authority or the police. This is because other children, either within or outside the organisation, may be at risk from this person.

Anyone who has a previous criminal conviction for offences related to abuse is automatically excluded from working with children.  This is reinforced by the details of the Protection of Children Act 1999.

Action if bullying is suspected

If bullying is suspected, the same procedure should be followed as that set out in the table above.

Action to help the victim and prevent bullying

  • Take all signs of bullying very seriously
  • Encourage all children to speak and share their concerns. If anyone talks about or threatens suicide, seek professional help immediately. Help the victim to speak out and tell the person in charge or someone in authority.
  • Investigate all allegations and take action to ensure the victim is safe.
  • Speak to the victim and the bully(ies) separately.
  • Reassure the victim that you can be trusted and will help them, although you cannot promise to tell no-one else.
  • Keep records of what is said (what happened, by whom, when).
  • Report any concerns to the person responsible for welfare or your line manager.

 

Action towards the bully(ies)

  • Talk with the bully(ies), explain the situation, and try to get the bully(ies) to understand the consequences of their behaviour. Seek an apology for the victim(s) with a staff member present to keep a written record.
  • The School will inform the parents of the bully(ies) and of the victim(s).
  • The School will impose sanctions as necessary.
  • Encourage and support the bully(ies) to change their behaviour.
  • The School will hold meetings to monitor progress.
  • The School will inform all relevant staff members of action taken.
  • Keep a written record of action taken.
  • Look at supporting the bully(ies) with any issues they may have.
  • Further incidents of bullying may result in the bully(ies) being sent home (see discipline policy).

 

Concerns outside the immediate environment (e.g. about a parent or carer)

  • Report your concerns to the person responsible for welfare or the relevant line manager, who should contact the local authority or the police as soon as possible.
  • See below for the information that social services or the police will need.
  • If the relevant manager is not available, the person being told of or discovering the abuse should contact social services or the police immediately.
  • The local authority and the person responsible for welfare or relevant line manager will decide how to involve the parents/carers.
  • Maintain confidentiality, disseminating information on a need-to-know basis only.

Information for Social Services or the police about suspected abuse:

To ensure that this information is as helpful as possible, a detailed record should always be made at the time of the disclosure/concern, which should include the following:

  • The child’s name, age and date of birth
  • The child’s home address and telephone number
  • Whether or not the person making the report is expressing their own concerns or those of someone else
  • The nature of the allegation. Include dates, times, any special factors and other relevant information
  • Clear distinction made between what is fact and what is opinion or hearsay.
  • A description of any visible bruising or other injuries, and also any indirect signs, such as behavioural changes
  • Details of witnesses to the incidents
  • The child’s account, if it can be given, of what has happened and how any bruising or other injuries occurred
  • Whether the parents have been contacted, and if so, what has been said
  • Whether anyone else has been consulted, and if so, the relevant details
  • If the child was not the person who reported the incident, whether the child has been spoken to, and if so, what was said
  • Whether anyone has been alleged to be the abuser, and if so, the relevant details
  • Where possible, referral to the police or social services should be confirmed in writing within 24 hours and the name of the contact who took the referral should be recorded.

                                               

If you are worried about sharing concerns about abuse to a senior colleague, you can contact social services or the police direct, or the NSPCC Child Protection Helpline on 0808 800 5000, or Childline on 0800 1111.

 

Confidentiality

Confidentiality shall be maintained at all times.  Information shall be handled and disseminated on a need-to-know basis only.

This includes the following people:

  • The line manager responsible for the alleged abuser
  • The parents of the student who is alleged to have been abused
  • The person making the allegation
  • Social services/police
  • The alleged abuser (and parents if the alleged abuser is a child).

Social services will advise on who should approach the alleged abuser. This will rarely be someone from the company itself.

Information must be stored in a secure place with limited access to designated people, in line with data protection laws (e.g. the information must be accurate, relevant, secure and, where necessary, regularly updated).

 

Support to deal with the aftermath of abuse

Consideration should be given to the kind of support that children, parents and members of staff or volunteers may need.  Use of help-lines, support groups and open meetings will maintain an open culture and help the healing process.  The British Association for Counselling directory is available from The British Association of Counselling, 1 Regent Place, Rugby, CV21 2PJ, Tel: 01788 550899, Fax: 01788 562189, E-mail: bac@bacp.co.uk, Internet: www.bacp.co.uk

Consideration should be given to what kind of support may be appropriate for the alleged perpetrator.

Other Welfare Considerations

 

Alcohol and Illegal Drugs

If there appears to be illegal drinking in or around one of our centres, or you see anyone apparently taking drugs, giving them to others or being given them you should:

In the event that they are a student

  • Immediately deliver them to the relevant Manager
  • Complete a detailed incident report
  • Be alert and aware to any other similar incidents amongst their peers

In the event that they are a visitor

  • Not apprehend the person but…
  • Stay within reasonable distance as a barrier between them and the children
  • Usher away any students discreetly
  • Contact the police
  • Contact your line manager

In the event that they are a staff member

  • Similarly to that of the visitors scenario, stay within reasonable distance, preventing them from contact with any students
  • Immediately contact their line manager

Protecting yourself from false accusation

It is important, when working with children, to also ensure your own personal safety.  This includes protecting yourself from false accusation.  The following guidelines exist to protect you.

  • Avoid any being alone with a child wherever possible
  • Never enter a student’s room without reasonable cause
  • Never enter a student’s room without another member of staff. At least one staff member must be of the appropriate gender.
  • Never agree to keep a secret for a student
  • Complete incident reports – any inappropriate behaviour of any nature should be recorded on an incident report

 

Use of photographic/filming equipment

 

Lewis School of English staff are strictly prohibited from taken photographs or film footage of students unless authorised by a senior staff member. This includes taking photographs as keepsakes. Photographs and film footage may be required by the Marketing Department for publicity purposes.

 

Communication with students including use of mobile phones, email, social media etc

 

Staff may join the company Facebook group and other company social media and message the students collectively.  However, no personal messaging of any kind is allowed during or following employment. This includes, but is not limited to, texting, emailing, messaging through social media and telephones calls.

Lewis School of English staff are in a position of authority and therefore the relationships with the students is, and should remain, a professional one only. You are role models to the students and not friends regardless of age.

 

 

Promoting Good Practice

Child abuse, particularly sexual abuse, can arouse strong emotions in those facing such a situation.  It is important to understand these feelings and not allow them to interfere with your judgment about the appropriate action to take.

Abuse can occur within many situations including the home, school and other youth sector environments. Some individuals will actively seek employment or voluntary work with young people in order to harm them.

All suspicious practice shall be reported following the guidelines in this document.

 

 

Recruitment and Training of Staff

All reasonable steps are taken to ensure unsuitable people are prevented from working with children.

Pre-selection Checks

All staff should complete the Lewis School of English application form, which details of gives two referees.  References must be taken up in writing.

All employees working with children should complete an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check application form.

Interview and Induction

All employees and volunteers will be required to undergo an interview carried out to acceptable protocol and recommendations. During the recruitment process:

  • The individual’s identity should be verified and copies of proof of identity taken
  • A check should be made that the DBS check application form has been completed in full
  • Their qualifications should be substantiated where necessary

All employees should receive a formal or informal induction, during which they should receive, or be directed to, copies of the following documents, policies and procedures:

  • Health & Safety Manual
  • Risk assessments
  • Radicalisation & Extremism Policy
  • Company Handbook
  • Relevant role manual

The job description and responsibilities should also be clarified during this induction.

Training

All staff must receive training in child protection covering all aspects laid out in the child protection guidance. Access to additional training in relation to safeguarding and child protection must be available at all times.  Staff should request such training as and when necessary.

The Lewis School of English requires:

  • Employees to attend in-house child protection awareness training, to encourage good practice and to facilitate the development of a positive culture towards good practice and child protection.
  • This training to be repeated annually.
  • Senior coordinating staff to have sufficient and up-to-date knowledge on child protection legislation and issues.
  • Relevant, nominated personnel to hold recognised and appropriate first aid qualifications.
  • Staff to sign to say that they have read and understood this Safeguarding Policy and agree to the Code of Conduct. All staff will undertake an online training course from North Yorks Training Board at http://www.safeguardingchildren.co.uk/course-signup.html. Further clarification on Safeguarding / Child Protection is given at induction.
Useful Contact Details
L.A.D.O Southampton 023 8083 2556 / LADO@southampton.gov.uk

The NSPCC (National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children) 0207 825 2500 Helpline: 0808 800

5000 www.nspcc.org.uk

Childline UK 0800 1111 www.childline.org

DBS 0870 909 0811 www.crb.gov.uk

Social Services Southampton 023 8083 3336

Emergency Out Of Hours Social Services 023 8023 3344

Samaritans: 08457 909090 www.samaritans.org.uk

Southampton Social Services Southampton – (023) 8083 3336 / (023) 80233344 out of hours
Reading Access and Assessment Team Sandra.Davies@scstrust.co.uk

– 01189 373641 / 01344 786543 emergency duty team

New Forest Children’s Services Department – 0845 603 5620 (8.30am – 5:00pm) or 0845 600 4555 (out of hours)

Radicalisation & Extremism Policy

This explains how we safeguard our students against extremist views.

Radicalisation and Extremism Policy

Policy Statement

Lewis School of English is a multinational, multicultural and multi-faith learning environment with students and staff originating from all parts of the world.

Our school is fully committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of all its students and staff.  Safeguarding against radicalisation and extremism falls under the umbrella of safeguarding against any other vulnerability. All staff are expected to remain vigilant of any potential threat of radicalisation and to uphold and promote equality, individual liberty, respect for other cultures, faiths and beliefs, and respect for the rule of law.

 

Definition of radicalisation and extremism

 

Extremism is defined as vocal or active opposition to fundamental human values of our society, including democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of different faiths and beliefs.

Radicalisation is defined as the act or process of encouraging extremist views or actions in others, including forms of extremism leading to terrorism.

Links to other policies

The above policy statement links to the following policies:

  • Safeguarding Policy
  • Equality Policy
  • Disciplinary Policy

Aims

The main aim of this policy statement is to ensure that staff are aware of and fully engaged in being vigilant about radicalisation; that they overcome any professional or personal disbelief that such issues will not happen here

Principle objectives

 

All teaching and non-teaching staff will have an understanding of what radicalisation and extremism are and why we need to be vigilant in school.

All staff will be made aware of what the school policy is on anti-radicalisation and extremism and will follow the school’s procedure if any issues arise.

Students will know that the school has policies in place, as part of a safeguarding ethos, to keep them safe and that the school regularly reviews its systems to ensure they are appropriate and effective.

Procedures

Although no incidents involving radicalisation and extremism have occurred at Lewis School of English to date, it is important for all staff to be consistently vigilant and report to their line manager any instances or suspicions arising from behaviours, conversations or comments made by others – inside and outside of the classroom – which might indicate a particular leaning or perceived interest in this direction

The role of the curriculum

Our curriculum covers a wide image of topics. These topics need to be handled sensitively to ensure the promotion of respect, tolerance and diversity. Students should be encouraged to share their views and recognise that they are entitled to have their own different beliefs which should not be used to influence others.

It is generally recognised that young people with low aspirations are more vulnerable to radicalisation. Our students typically come from a reasonably well-off and educated background; however we tend to know very little about their home environment and personal circumstances.  We strive to nurture confidence and self-belief within all our students, while promoting respect and tolerance as well as setting high standards and expectations for them.

 

INSET

Through INSET opportunities in school, we will ensure that our staff are fully aware of the threats, risks and vulnerabilities that are linked to radicalisation, are aware of the process of radicalisation and understand how this might be identified early on.

Policy review

The Radicalisation and Extremism policy statement will be reviewed annually as part of the overall Safeguarding Policy review.

February 2016

Equality Policy

Our school is commited to equality and we encourage tolerance and respect among our staff and students. This policy explains how we do not discriminate on the basis of age, gender, sexual orientation, race, religion or belief, nationality or disability.

Equality Policy

Statement of Intent

  1. Lewis School of English oppose all forms of unlawful and unfair discrimination or victimisation. To that end the purpose of this policy is to provide equality and fairness for all in our school community in order to create an environment in which all students and staff feel comfortable and at ease, confident and able to learn and work
  1. It is the aim of the Company to ensure that no staff member or student receives less favourable treatment (either directly or indirectly) on grounds of age, disability, gender / gender reassignment, marriage / civil partnership, pregnancy / maternity, race, religion or belief, sex, or sexual orientation .

This policy and the associated arrangements shall operate in accordance with statutory requirements. In addition, full account will be taken of any guidance or Codes of Practice issued by the Equality and Human Rights Commission, any Government Departments, and any other statutory bodies. This policy has been developed with reference to the provisions of the Equality Act 2010.

Our Commitment

 

  • To create an environment in which individual differences and the contributions of all our staff are recognised and valued.
  • Every community member is entitled to an environment that promotes dignity and respect to all. No form of intimidation, bullying or harassment will be tolerated.
  • Staff are readily available in a welfare role to deal with any issues arising
  • Training, development and progression opportunities are available to all staff.
  • Breaches of our equality policy will be regarded as misconduct and could lead to disciplinary proceedings. Any such breaches will be investigated in an urgent and timely manner.
  • This policy is fully supported by senior management and will be monitored and reviewed annually
  • The school Director and managers are responsible for the successful implementation of the policy.

Policy Statement

Any form of discrimination, once identified, will be dealt with in accordance with our existing polices, namely:

  • Discipline Policy – Adult Courses
  • Discipline Policy – Junior Programmes
  • Safeguarding Policy
  • Radicalisation & Extremism Policy
  • Equality Policy (in Company Handbook for Lewis School staff)
  • Bullying & Harassment Policy and Procedure (in Company Handbook for Lewis School staff)

 

Religion

Students of all faiths are welcome in the school. Information about places of worship in Southampton is available on our student portal, Lewis Online. Our main school has a designated prayer room for Muslims and accepts the use of classrooms as areas of prayer at appropriate times. The school is researching a better solution to accommodate washing facilities prior to prayer. On Fridays, Muslim students in our Adult School are allowed to either leave the second lesson early or arrive late for the third class (up to 14.30), depending on the time of prayers.

 

Physical Disabilities / Illness

 

We regret that due to the listed status, age and design of the buildings at our main school, we are unable to make alterations to enable wheelchair access. Therefore, we are not in a position to accept students or staff with disabilities which prevent them from entering or exiting the premises safely. 

 

All our summer junior centres are accessible sites with wheelchair access.

 

Applications for enrolment for partially sighted and hard of hearing students are judged on a case-by-case basis to evaluate the effectiveness and feasibility of following a course of study with us.

 

For students at our main school with a partial physical disability or illness, suitable accommodation is arranged with an experienced host family and, where possible, within a short distance of the school. A classroom is allocated in the most accessible location.

 

Both on- and off-site social activities are selected to ensure that the programme remains as inclusive and risk-free as possible, whilst also maintaining a suitable level of variety.

Learning Difficulties 

 

Lewis School operates on an inclusive basis and every effort is made to accommodate students with learning difficulties. If we are aware at enrolment that a potential student has learning difficulties, the Academic and Welfare teams undertake a risk assessment and feasibility study to assess whether we are able to accommodate their needs or not. Decisions are made on a case-by-case basis.

If a learning difficulty is not declared pre-arrival, every effort is made to accommodate that student. However, in conjunction with the parent/sponsor, we reserve the right to refuse admission or extend enrolment if we judge the continued presence of the student to be a high risk to the well-being of the student, other students and staff.

 

Staff training is given to help identify such cases and classroom strategies are proposed for dealing with them. In all cases regular meetings are held to help to ensure the continued well-being of the student.

 

 

Last updated: January 2017

Student Charter

This represents our promise to you.

Student Charter

The Lewis School of English aims to provide high quality English language teaching. In meeting this aim the relationship of the school with its students is of the highest importance. The Lewis School will:

  • treat students with courtesy and respect
  • provide all new students with a welcome pack and induction session
  • provide time for students to discuss problems, in a supportive, confidential environment
  • provide homestay accommodation if required, and deal quickly and fairly with any difficulties (this includes placing a student with another host if necessary)
  • students’ progress on a regular basis, moving them up through the levels on merit
  • promptly resolve any difficulties a student may be having in class and move them to a more appropriate level where necessary
  • support and guidance to students to enable them to complete their studies
  • enrol students on courses that are appropriate to their level of language skill
  • ensure that all teachers employed have the Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages as a minimum qualification

Last updated: March 2017

Complaints Procedure

This explains what to do if you are not happy with our school and wish to make a complaint.

Complaints Procedure – Adult Courses

If you wish to make a complaint, please follow the procedure below.

Step 1. Speak to the member of staff responsible for the area of the complaint, e.g. the Director of Studies for academic issues. See page 3 of Welcome to Lewis School.

Step 2. If you are not happy with their response, please speak or write to the Director. You must put your complaint in writing before leaving the school.

Step 3. If you are still not satisfied, you may complain to English UK or the British Council. Please speak to a member of staff for these contact details.

Last updated:  8 February 2017

Complaints Procedure – Junior Programmes

If you wish to make a complaint, please follow the procedure below.

 

Step 1. Speak to an appropriate member of staff, such as a teacher, activity leader or group leader. We will speak to you within 24 hours.

Step 2. If this does not resolve your complaint you (or your representative) should speak to the appropriate manager at the Lewis School. You must submit any complaint before leaving to allow the school the chance to resolve the problem.

Step 3. If you are not happy with our response, you (or your representative) can write to Alistair Walker, Director, Lewis School of English, 30-33 Palmerston Road, Southampton, SO14 1LL or email alistair@lewis-school.co.uk.

Step 4. If you are still not happy, you can contact English UK: English UK, 219 St John Street, London EC1V 4LY. Tel: +44 207 608 7960. Fax: +44 207 608 7961. Email: info@englishuk.com

Last updated:  8 February 2017

If you wish to make a complaint, please follow the procedure below.

Step 1. Speak to the member of staff responsible for the area of the complaint.

Step 2. If you are unable to resolve your complaint, please speak or write to the Director. If you are not happy with our response, you must submit your complaint in writing before leaving the school.

Step 3. If you are still not satisfied, you may lodge your complaint with English UK, British Council, or Ecorys UK (regarding in-service course complaints, including Erasmus+), and for CertTESOL related complaints Trinity College London. Please speak to a member of staff for these contact details.

Last updated:  8 February 2017

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