Joining a Taekwondo School/Academy is a great way for young people to learn new skills, meet and make friends, improve health and fitness and potentially take their Taekwondo to a high level. Everyone has a responsibility to ensure Taekwondo activities are both fun and safe for young people. As a parent one way you can contribute to this is to choose a school/academy where safeguarding all young participants is a priority.
But how do you know you are choosing the right School/Academy?
Here are some questions you should ask your chosen School/Academy:
1) Does the School/Academy have a formal accreditation? If a School/Academy has achieved their accreditation many of the following points will have been covered in the process.
2)Does the School/Academy have qualified instructors and leaders? You can ask to see qualifications and check with the National Governing Body (NGB) if you are unsure. Most NGBs will have websites.
3) Are sessions run with the appropriate ratio of adult to participants? All sessions should have at least 2 adults taking the session and more if numbers are high or for higher risk activities. Higher adult to child ratios should be expected for younger participants.
4) Have all coaches and leaders been vetted, including an enhanced DBS/PVG disclosure. Everyone in regulated activity with children and young people should have been properly recruited; DBS/PVG checked and have attended safeguarding training.
5) Is there a first aider at all sessions with access to a telephone and first aid box and is the equipment appropriate in terms of size and condition?
6) Does the School/Academy have appropriate insurance cover?
7) Do instructors and leaders hold relevant insurance cover?
8) Does the School/Academy have a Code of Conduct for parents/carers, instructors, volunteers and participants?
9? Does the School/Academy make reasonable adjustments for disabled participants?
10) Who is the School/Academy’s Welfare Officer?
11) Does the School/Academy have a Safeguarding policy, including how to report any concerns?
Photography & Videoing
Your permission for your child to be photographed or videoed must always be sought before a School/Academy/Instructor can do so. If you have any concerns they should be reported to the Welfare Officer.
The School/Academy has a responsibility to take care of your child at all sessions and when travelling away. The trip leader or Welfare Officer should take the lead to ensure the safety of all participants. You should complete a consent form with all details of your child including any medical needs.
It is important that parents and carers ensure that young people taking part in Taekwondo feel safe, happy and confident and have fun. Children and young people should know who to contact in the School/Academy should they have any concerns.
Children and young people should never experience any of the following through Taekwondo, by being:
- Shouted at or pushed too hard in a training session
- Bullied by other participants or adults
- Made to feel inferior or insignificant
- Offered drugs
- Made to feel uncomfortable in any way
- Touched inappropriately
- Asked to keep secrets
- Called names and/or made to cry
- Exposed to inappropriate images or photographs
Concerns relating to poor practice in a School/Academy should be reported to the Welfare Officer in writing and a copy sent to the secretary of the School/Academy. Speak to your School/Academy for the relevant contacts.
Concerns relating to possible abuse within a School/ Academy environment should immediately be reported to the School/Academy Welfare Officer, the NGB lead Welfare Officer and/or directly to your Local Safeguarding Children Board where appropriate. Serious concerns of a criminal nature should immediately be reported to the police. If you are unsure what action to take seek some advice. Social care or the NSPCC are available to discuss your concerns.
Points of good practice when dealing with Safeguarding issues:
- Stay calm and don’t make assumptions
- Read the School/Academy Safeguarding Policy
- Record your concerns - write down what you have seen or heard
- Seek advice from those best to deal with
- REFER CONCERNS – within your organisation you should have a Welfare Officer or manager to whom you can refer concerns
- Report serious concerns of a criminal nature to the police
- Be honest with a child who confides in you
- Don’t promise to keep secrets
- Don’t speculate your concerns to others
- NEVER ignore concerns.
Help us make this the best Taekwondo club for your child to grow.