Our school has been given the opportunity to take part in a national project, which is being run locally in partnership with Worcestershire County Council and West Mercia Police.
Operation Encompass is a process whereby the police and county council will inform a member of staff if a child or young person has experienced any domestic incident. This will be done prior to the start of the next school day. Information sharing between professional agencies allows school staff to provide emotional and practical support to their pupils experiencing domestic abuse.
Domestic abuse can broadly be defined as ‘any incident or pattern of incidents of controlling, coercive or threatening behaviour; violence or abuse between those aged 16 or over who have been intimate partners or family members. This can include, but is not limited to the following types of abuse – psychological, physical, sexual, financial and emotional.
Operation Encompass ensures that a member of the school staff, usually the Designated Safeguarding Lead, is given special training, to enable them to liaise with the police and county council in receiving and using the information that has been shared, in confidence.
The sharing of details under Operation Encompass is permitted under Statutory Safeguarding Legislation and in respect of local authority schools under the Crime and Disorder Act (for the prevention of crime) and doing so without the child’s or parent’s consent is permissible under both pieces of legislation and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
We want to offer the best support possible to all our pupils and we believe, that where necessary, this will be beneficial in helping us to achieve that goal. Please make contact with me or the school’s Safeguarding Lead should you wish to discuss this further.
101 or 999
Worcestershire Domestic Abuse Service (DAS) and 24 hour helpline – 0800 980 333
National Centre for Domestic Violence (NCDV) – 0800 970 2070
Worcestershire Rape and Sexual Abuse Support Centre (WRSASC) – 01905 724514
ChildLine – 0800 555 111