Implemented from July 2008
VENUE: Dogsthorpe Infant and Junior Schools, Central Avenue, Peterborough
DATES: Annually held during the month of March
The safety of the children and members of other vulnerable groups is paramount and all, without exception, have the right to protection from abuse. All suspicions and allegations of abuse will be taken seriously and responded to swiftly and appropriately and all the charity’s trustees, staff and volunteers have a responsibility to report concerns. Throughout this policy where children are mentioned, this also includes members of other vulnerable groups.
PURPOSE AND FUNCTION OF ORGANISATION
To stimulate an interest in Dramatic Arts, encourage excellence in performance and offer competitors the chance to hear positive criticism and encouragement from professional adjudicators.
THE FESTIVAL ENVIRONMENT
The two schools form part of the same building and entrance is available through one manned door only during Festival times. It is our aim to make the Festival environment as safe as possible for everyone. Each competition room is well supervised. There are also Festival personnel in the corridors and on every door that leads to a performance area. The Festival is run by responsible volunteers in partnership with teachers and parents. It is everybody’s responsibility to heed the guidelines set out in this policy so our Festival may operate safely and efficiently. The Festival cannot accept responsibility for children less than 18 years who are left unaccompanied.
TO WHOM DOES THIS POLICY APPLY?
This policy relates to children under the age of 18 years and members of vulnerable groups of any age who are identified to the organisers prior to their arrival at the Festival. This may be done by contacting the address or telephone number at the end of this document. In recognising the needs of children from ethic minority groups and children who are disabled, the Festival actively seeks to meet needs previously notified by parents, teachers, carers and guardians.
The Festival seeks help at Festival time. These are recruited from people well known to committee members and are often former teachers, serving teachers or personal friends. There are at least two people working in each room as well as the adjudicators. The committee are CRB checked. Details of helpers are kept on file. All jobs are regularly reviewed and brief job descriptions are provided. All helpers sign into the Festival and a register is kept. Helpers identified with badges, are able to direct people to the committee room. Committee members wear badges and are able to deal with problems and queries. The committee room is labelled clearly and manned at all times. Refreshment areas are the responsibility of the school staff. Helpers meet prior to the Festival to discuss their responsibilities.
PREPARATION FOR ATTENDANCE AT THE FESTIVAL
A teacher, parent or guardian should sign all entry forms. Parents/ guardians are encouraged to attend the Festival with their children. If this is not possible, they should satisfy themselves that the children are accompanied and supervised by a responsible and trustworthy adult acting on their behalf. Be aware that a teacher cannot be in all rooms at the same time.
This document should be read carefully by all parent and teachers as we are partners in the implementation of this policy. If schools are entering groups of children, then the teacher in charge will receive a copy of this policy in good time before the Festival and it is their responsibility to make this available to all parents to read. Teachers must receive parental permission for all children to attend the Festival.
Up to four different rooms may be used for performances. Each is well supervised with Festival personnel both on the door and seated alongside each adjudicator. Children sit in the audience with their parents/guardians/teachers, who are responsible for their supervision. There are no changing areas and no back stage areas.
PHOTOGRAPHS AND VIDEO TAPES
In line with Child protection procedures, there is no videoing or photography allowed at the Festival. This protects the children's rights and prevents any images being used illegally. Tape recording is prohibited by copyright. In the event of a child winning a trophy, you may take a photograph of the presentation by agreement with the parent/guardian. No other child should be in the picture unless parents are present and give their consent.
THE LEGISLATION AND GUIDANCE THAT SUPPORTS THIS POLICY
The Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974, The Children Act 1989, The Police Act 1977, The Data Protection Act 1998, The Human Rights Act 1998, The Protection Of Children's Act 1999, The Criminal Justice and Court Service Act 2004, The Vulnerable Groups Act 2006.
The organisers will constantly review their policy revising and enhancing it as necessary. In doing this they will look to the British Federation of Festivals for support and that body in turn will look to other agencies for good practice, mostly notably the NSPCC and Arts Council of England policy guidelines.