Thank you for volunteering to help in school.
Parent support in school is invaluable and can enrich children’s learning and well-being in many ways. You may have been volunteering for a while and already ‘know the ropes’ or this may be the first time you have helped. Please read the information below to help you understand the role of volunteer helper (grandparents and other carers are also welcome) and give you the information you require to carry out this important role successfully. If you would like to volunteer, please complete this Parent Volunteer Form.
There is a wide variety of activities you can get involved with if you want to help in school. These may include working in class with small groups, helping at lunchtime in the hall or on the playground, supervising the children on school trips or on local walks, giving lifts to children to and from off-site activities, gardening, photocopying, preparing resources, helping with displays, pool supervision…. the list goes on and on. Some activities may need particular skills, some just a willing pair of hands, eyes and feet! Some may require ongoing support, some may be one-off activities. Whatever time you can give, there will be an activity to suit!
Schools are now required to ensure that all adults working in school, either employed or on a voluntary basis, have an up to date DBS check. Hertfordshire guidance recommends that if you volunteer to work in school for more than 4 times a month , you must undergo a DBS check. If you are not sure how often you are going to be able to help, it is wise to wait and see. If you have worked in school on up to 4 occasions and wish to continue then you will only be able to when you have received your DBS certificate and you have brought it into school.
This process can now be completed on line and you will need the following documents on hand to go through the process.
Driving Licence - both parts
Marriage Certificate - if you have changed your name
Recent utility bill/bank or building society bill/community tax bill - (dated within last 3 months)
National Insurance Number
It is extremely important that you respect confidentiality at all times. Any information about pupils, staff or families gained through observation, documentation or any other means may not be shared with other parents either directly or indirectly. The importance of this cannot be emphasised strongly enough as any breach of confidentiality can damage relationships and trust. Should you have any concerns at all, you must discuss them with the head. If you are asked by other parents to share information, you should remind them you have a duty to respect confidentiality and refer them to the class teacher or Headteacher. (Please note that it is not appropriate to seek information about the progress of your own child during the times when you volunteer)
The Staff Room
You are very welcome to use the staff room during your time in school at set break times. Please remember that this is primarily a rest area for staff when not on duty and their time is often very short. Please be aware of this, particularly at busy times, and ensure that staff access to refreshments takes priority.
The school operates a Child Protection Policy in line with Hertfordshire’s Child Protection Procedures. You should make yourself familiar with the policy and operate within it at all times. Copies are available from the school office. The senior designated staff for Child Protection are: Mr Hall, Mrs Getley and Miss Bailey. Should you have any concerns or questions with regard to Child Protection, you must speak to one of these named staff in the first instance and as soon as possible.
Health and Safety
The school operates a Health and Safety policy in line with Hertfordshire’s Health and Safety Procedures. You should make yourself familiar with the policy and operate within it at all times. Copies are available from the school office.
Teachers undertake a risk assessment for any off-site activities they lead. This may include individual risk assessments for pupils with specific needs. If you are helping on an off-site activity, the class teacher will share the risk assessment with you and make sure that you know what to do. If you are unsure of your responsibilities, please check with the class teacher.
Duty of Care
The class teacher has the duty of care for all children in their class. This duty cannot be delegated to you and the class remain the teacher’s responsibility at all times.