Welfare and wellbeing

Safeguarding at the RAD

We are committed to the safeguarding of all our students, teachers and staff. Promoting the welfare and wellbeing of all our dancers is at the centre of what we do.

The Children Act 1989 provides the legislative framework for child protection in England. (see below for information relating to Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales). Key principles established by the Act include:

  • the vital nature of the child’s welfare, and
  • the expectations and requirements around duties of care to children.

All organisations that work with or come into contact with children should have safeguarding policies and procedures to ensure that every child, regardless of their age, disability, gender reassignment, race, religion or belief, sex, or sexual orientation, has a right to equal protection from harm. The RAD has three Senior Safeguarding Officers, a Safeguarding Manager, a Safeguarding Committee chaired by a Director and a Safeguarding Policy and set of procedures.

We do not, however have the authority to investigate allegations of abuse or other safeguarding concerns. If a safeguarding concern is reported to us, we will report it to the relevant Local Authority, or equivalent in Scotland, Wales & N Ireland) or to the Police.

Reporting concerns

What do I do if I’m worried?

Safeguarding is everyone’s responsibility. If you have a concern about a child, you should report it to the local authority child protection services or to the Police. Many people worry, “What if I am wrong?” but if we take a child-centred approach to safeguarding, we should all be asking, “What if I am right?” By raising a concern, you could be protecting not just one child but future children. Whenever you are worried, whether it’s a big or little worry, always tell someone who can help.

  • If a child is in immediate danger, call the police on 999.
  • Contact your local child protection services. Their contact details can be found on the website for the local authority the child lives in.
  • Contact the police. They will assess the situation and take the appropriate action to protect the child.
  • Contact the NSPCC Helpline on 0808 800 5000 or email help@nspcc.org.uk.

The RAD has a dedicated Safeguarding Manager who can sign post you to help on +44 (0)20 7326 8014, +44 (0) 7552613529 and via email at safeguarding@rad.org.uk.

Advice for RAD Teachers

RAD teaching members have access to a dedicated Safeguarding Hub in the Members’ Area, which outlines safeguarding requirements in accordance with best practice, as well as guidance on the principles of safeguarding and safer recruitment. We are committed to supporting and guiding teachers through their own commitment to keeping children safe whilst dancing. The Hub will be regularly updated with useful resources, training opportunities and advice on best practice.

All dance teachers or dance school owners, have a duty of care toward the children and adults at risk* who attend their classes or the premises in which they operate their business. While it is their personal responsibility to ensure that they meet the safeguarding requirements of the region/country** that they operate in, our guidelines are there to support them. Teachers should follow the highest possible standard and these guidelines as a minimum.

The RAD advises teachers put in place three things as a minimum, in accordance with good practice:

1. A well-planned, accessible Safeguarding and Child Protection policy, to be reviewed annually.
2. Annual safeguarding training for themselves, their staff and volunteers.
3. Criminal record checks (enhanced disclosure or international equivalent where possible), at least every three years (or sign up to an update service) for themselves, their staff and volunteers as part of their safer recruitment practice.

Scotland

National guidance for child protection in Scotland (Scottish Government, 2021). In Scotland, a child legally becomes an adult when they turn 16, but statutory guidance which supports the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014 includes all children and young people up to the age of 18.

Wales

Welsh Government (2021) Safeguarding guidance.
Welsh Government (2022) Working together to safeguard people: code for safeguarding practice.

Northern Ireland

Safeguarding Board for Northern Ireland (SBNI) (2021) Revised regional core child protection policies and procedures for Northern Ireland.

Resources for Parents and Students

How do I choose a safe Dance class?
Who do I contact if I need help?
Who do I contact if I am worried about the mental wellbeing of my child?

Useful international resources

Who can I contact if I live outside the UK?