This is defined as birth to 5 years. If you are caring for children aged between birth and five, you have to deliver the EYFS Early Years Foundation Stage (unless you are a nanny). Most providers who care for children in that age range have to join Early Years Register, but some providers are exempt from registration.


Making a Referral

If you have concerns about a child discuss with your manager / Designated Safeguarding Officer (DSO) if you remain concerned call the local authorities in your area.

If you require further advice please call the Early Years Advice Line on 01305 228425


Child Protection Case Conferences

As a professional in your own right, you will be invited to attend Initial and Review Child Protection Case Conferences. You will need to prepare a report based on your knowledge of the child / family. Before you write your report read the guidance available to help you then use the report pro forma to present your information in writing for the conference.

It is good practice to write your report in enough time to share it with the parent (s) before you attend the meeting, that way they can add their comments and the report will not be a surprise to them on the day. Any issues you may have had to tackle that were difficult will have been discussed prior to arriving at the meeting and will then be easier to discuss on the day, even if you disagree.

Once you have written your report email it securely if you do not have access to a secure email account then you can encrypt the document by using the security settings on your computer, make it a password protected document, email the ICR Service the encrypted document then e mail them separately giving them the password to unlock it, and your contact details in case they have a problem opening it. The ICR Service who will ensure it goes to the Conference Chair person before the meeting.

If you are bringing your report with you, you must bring at least 10 copies so it can be distributed to all at the meeting.

On arrival at the meeting if you have confidential information you wish to share, ensure the chair is aware so a confidential section can be arranged prior to parents joining the meeting.

Confidential information can be restricted to professionals.

After the Chair has summarised the information from the meeting, each professional is expected to give a view on each of the children in the family that are subject to the Conference about whether or not they feel they are at risk of significant harm or not. As you hear information during the meeting it is a good idea to take notes with a view to verbalising your decision at the end of the meeting. You will be expected to talk about each of the children even if they do not attend your setting.

A Conference is a multi-agency decision making process you are a professional and are part of the process, with out all the information an informed decision cannot be made.

If you require further advice please call the Early Years Advice Line on 01305 228425


Safeguarding Training

Login to Nexus for more info re dates and venues – book on ASAP to avoid disappointment.

Dorset’s Early Years safeguarding training programme covers:

  • Level 2 Safeguarding Children
  • Level 3 Safeguarding Children (and 3 yearly update)
  • Safer Recruitment (and 3 yearly update)
  • Supervising to Safeguard Children
  • Safer Working Practice
  • Designated Safeguarding Lead – your role explained (and 3 yearly update)
  • Internet Safety

Courses can be booked on Nexus. There is also National Safer Working Practice Guidance available which will help you in your responsibilities.

Do this quiz on Safer Working Practice for Early Years to see how well you are meeting the regulations.


Supervising to Safeguard

The Early years and Childcare Service commissioned In-Trac’s Managing Director, Jane Wonnacott (who wrote the Serious Case Reviews for Little Teds, Nursery Z and Little Stars in Birmingham) to work with us and provide a comprehensive training package.  This enabled Dorset County Council Early Years staff to deliver excellent standards of supervision through this ‘train the trainer’ programme.

We know that Good quality Supervision will have an impact upon the staff member the stake holders, i.e. the family / child, professionals who work with the unit, the community. It ensures that open honest communication happens on a regular basis any concerns’ about a child are discussed and decisions are made promptly about how to manage the situation.


Learning from Serious Case Reviews

There are Serious Case Reviews nationally that have learning which is of significance in Dorset.  To read the reports please click on the relevant links:


Policies and Procedures

The Dorset Safeguarding Children Board produces the statutory policies and procedures for safeguarding children in Dorset.


Safer Recruitment

View up-to-date information on DBS checks including who requires them.  At least one member of any recruitment panel must have attended Safer Recruitment Training.


Managing Allegations against people who work with children

You will have a procedure in your setting that refers to the pan-Dorset Safeguarding Children Procedures for Managing Allegations.

Use them.

This is specifically important for the Employer to know about and understand.


Female Genital Mutilation

For up to date information and helpful checklists, please go to FGM Amnesty