Overnight stay and travelling abroad
Overnight stays and travelling abroad are great for budding sport enthusiasts. It provides them with new experiences, opportunities and competition whilst playing in venues that previously would have proved very difficult. However, we must ensure that safeguarding policies and procedures accompany overnight stay/travelling students and/or athletes to ensure the safety of all involved.
There are many things that need to be taken into consideration when looking to travel with young athletes and the possibility of overnight stay. Please see the below template checklist for suggestions.
Managing challenging behaviour
Staff/volunteers who deliver sports activities to children may, on occasions, be required to deal with a child’s challenging behaviour. Planning for activities should include consideration of whether any child involved may need additional support or supervision to participate safely.
The CPSU website has guidance for managing challenging behaviour.
Photography and filming
Photography in sport has always been a difficult topic. Photos and videos are great for celebrating and promoting young people’s involvement in sport, and in more modern cases has and continues to be used in classrooms for learning. However, we must make sure that images are used in a safe manner. Photography and the use of mobile phones in changing rooms is an area of risk which could be reduced. Your school should have a policy on the use of mobile phones in changing rooms but to find out more please read the CPSU’s advice on mobile phones and cameras in changing rooms.
We understand that you as parents love to take photos of your children playing sport, but we must ensure we are safe with our images. Photography in sport has always been a difficult topic. Photos and videos are great for celebrating and promoting young people’s involvement in sport, and in more modern cases has and continues to be used in classrooms for learning.
When at sporting events we must remember that views vary and parents may provide different responses regarding photographic consent. We believe it is entirely your decision whether you are happy to provide consent, or not, but urge parents to check with the relevant organisers at an event to ensure you have permission to snap away.
The CPSU website has more information for parents who wish to photograph their children.
We want to make it clear that as a parent you have every right to question your school or club organisation to check that the correct procedures are in place. You have the right to know where and what you child is doing whilst in school and club sport. It is your right to know if your child feels protected, happy and safe.
It is also your right to check that the coach who is working with your child has the correct and authentic Safeguarding, First Aid and sport related qualifications. We want you to feel comfortable to be able to ask about anything that you are concerned about.
The CPSU website has more information and advice about parenting in sport.
E-Comms, Social Media and Online Safety
Herts Sports Partnership takes the use of social media within sport seriously. As technology develops, the internet and its range of services can be accessed through various devices including mobile phones, computers and game consoles. While the internet has many positive uses, it provides the key method for the distribution of indecent images of children. Furthermore, the use of social networking sites, chat rooms and instant messaging systems are ever increasing.
In addition, electronic communication is being used more and more by young people as a means of bullying their peers. We ask that you read the below document to understand how you should act as a coach within the realms of social media, and what is, and is not acceptable.
The CPSU has guidance for using social media.
Online technology has advanced and changed the way people communicate and interact on a daily basis. Sports organisations, coaches and others involved in providing activities for children and young people are increasingly using the Internet and social media to promote sport and communicate with them.
Although these forms of digital media and communication can provide benefits for those involved, they also pose potential safeguarding risks to children and young people. The Child Protection in Sport Unit (CPSU) has produced guidance to ensure that sports clubs are doing all they can to ensure children and young people are safeguarded from harm when using online media.
The CPSU has guidance information for online safety.
Duty of Care
Sports clubs and organisations have a duty of care for all those involved in their organisation. In order to fulfil its duty of care a sports body needs to take reasonable measures in the circumstances to ensure that individuals will be safe to participate in the activity.
When children and young people are involved in organised sports activities and are to any extent under the care of one or more adults, the adult(s) have a duty to take reasonable care to ensure their safety and welfare is met at all times. A duty of care may be imposed by common law or statute, contract, acceptance by an individual. Please see the CPSU Duty of Care information sheet below.
Code of Practice for Coaches
Coaches play a crucial role in the development of any sport and in the lives of the performers that they coach. Good coaches ensure participants in sport have a positive experience and therefore are increasingly likely to continue in sport and achieve their potential.
Good coaching practice should reflect the following principles:
Rights: Coaches must respect and champion the rights of every individual to participate in sport
Responsibilities: Coaches must demonstrate a proper personal behaviour at all times
Professionalism: Maximise the benefits and minimise the risks to performers; coaches must attain a high level of competence throughout qualifications and a commitment to ongoing good practice
Relationships: Coaches must develop a coach-athlete relationship through honest, openness and mutual trust
You can find out more information on the above in the Coaching Code of Practice document below.
Code of Conduct for Participants
Sometimes your clubs and coaches will ask you to sign up to a Code of Conduct. The reason they do this is to make sure that everyone agrees to behave in the correct way, meaning everybody can enjoy sport without any issues or concerns. Below is a template of a Code of Conduct for children and you may be asked to complete something looking like this.