Who will be delivering the lessons and what training have they had?
All the lessons are delivered by staff who work regularly for Dudley Performing Arts (DPA). We follow safer recruitment process for all new appointments and all staff regularly update safeguarding training as per Dudley policy. All staff have DBS checks every three years.
A specific briefing has been given in relation to online lessons. Online lessons with DPA are delivered with a secure understanding of safeguarding issues and a process in place to manage concerns.
How will you communicate with parents and students?
To receive these lessons parents need to enrol specifically with DPA, regardless of the current level of engagement with us. This way we can be sure that parents have seen the guidance and we can take them through general data protection regulation.
Our teaching staff will liaise with parents via either @dudley.gov.uk or @dpa.dgfl.org email addresses and will never use any other form of communication. All communication will be direct with parents.
In the event that a student's email address needs to be used (e.g. it is the only way of connecting with a device) we insist that all communications are copied to the parent and the line manager of the member of staff.
Will parents be present during lessons?
For individual lessons a parent/responsible adult should be present (and visible) at the start and end of each lesson. If this is not possible please contact DPA or your teacher in advance to discuss alternatives. We encourage parents to stay in the room throughout the lesson. Our staff will end the session if there is no sign of an adult.
For group tuition parents are encouraged to be in the room but must not appear on the camera.
How will online lessons be conducted?
Our staff will be dressed 'as if at work' and will have Dudley ID on show. They will deliver the session from an area that does not show any items of personal interest in the background and will keep other family members away from the camera.
We advise parents to create a sensible space for the session. If the session has to take place in a bedroom, then the parent must remain visible at all times.
Will the lesson be recorded?
No. We acknowledge that there are some advantages, in terms of managing allegations, from recording the lessons. The counter argument is with issues relating to the risks of storing videos of children, and videos of our staff that are not intended for wider viewing. We therefore feel that the control measures we have put in place are more appropriate.
What about general safer practice?
Our staff will conduct lessons 'as if they were in school'. We regularly work one-to-one with children and are used to managing risks.
Our staff are instructed that if anything does not seem right, or that there is even a hint of inappropriate behaviour that the session should stop immediately and contact made with the head of Dudley Performing Arts.
We also remind our staff of their responsibility for referring any safeguarding related concern they may pick up during these session.
What platform is used?
We use Teams, part of the Office 365 suite, wherever possible along with Zoom. At no point will lessons be delivered by messenger/whatsapp/facetime, etc.
What if something goes wrong?
Staff have been very clearly briefed on their responsibility to log/report anything that happens that could in any way be considered a mistake in process.