Study Links – Discipline & Restraint Policy
The Legal definition of a child is a person under the age of 18 as outlined in the Children’s Act 1989. Study Links accommodates students of a range of ages and is AEGIS accredited and matches the requirements of the British Council for being a service provider and placement organiser to international students of all ages studying in the UK.
At Study Links we recognise our duty of care towards our students who are living away from their normal residence without their usual support network.
The Study Links Discipline & Restraint Policy has been designed in order to guide our employees and those working with us of how to respond in instances when the behaviour of the children in their care becomes unacceptable or out of control.
- Discipline: The methods used to prevent behavioural problems in children.
- Restraint: To hold back physically or to bring a child under control.
Study Links adheres to a strict policy of no physical chastisement of children (i.e. defined as anybody below the age of 18). Our employees and those working with us must always agree not to use any unreasonable or excessive controlling measures or restraints with the children under their care. The use of corporal punishment is also strictly prohibited.
Our employees and those working with us must always endeavour to obtain as much information as possible about the children in their care and then use this information to help make informed decisions about which approach to utilise with regards to discipline.
It is appreciated that there will be instances in which the behaviour of the child/ children in the care of our employees and those working with us may become completely unreasonable or intolerable. When these instances arise, they must be reported to immediately to the Child Protection Co-ordinator (Ailie Fan), or other deputy on site.
On occasion, our employees and those working with us may need to physically restrain a child. All our employees and those working with us must be fully trained in order to restrain children and this training must be repeated every 12 months in order for it to remain valid.
A child should only be restrained to ensure their safety, the safety of bystanders and the safety of our employees and those working with us. A child may also need to be restrained to prevent damage to company property. Whenever such intervention is necessary, a risk assessment must be undertaken and the ultimate goal is to make sure the situation is made safe for all parties. Note that in some instances, if one of our employees or somebody working with us fails to restrain a child in their care, this may be deemed as neglect.
In some instances, our employees and those working with us may need to restrain a child due to an impairment or disability the child may have. In such instances, our employees and those working with us should already have behaviour support plans in place and should follow these accordingly. If the child has a learning disability, our employees and those working with us may use physical prompts to help the child with their day to day activities.
It may be permissible for our employees and those working with us to restrain the child in their care if there is reasonable cause for believing that this is the only way to prevent the child from being injured or harmed (e.gs. to prevent them from taking recreational drugs or being the victim of sexual exploitation).
Note that a child cannot be restrained by our employees and those working with us for the following reasons:
- To reinforce a position of authority over the child;
- To encourage a child to comply with the instructions of our employees and those working with us &
- To reprimand a child.
For further details on any aspect of this Policy, please consult the Study Links Child Protection Officer / Lead Safeguarding Officer, Ailie Fan.
This policy is reviewed annually taking into account any changes in legislation, practice or roles concerned throughout the year.