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Welcome to Big Wood School Report Abuse page.
Here you will find definitions of abuse and a link to our online incident reporting system.
If you wish to report an incident click the icon on your right.

Big Wood School fully recognises the contribution it can make to protect children and young people using our services.

We fully endorse the belief that all children deserve the opportunity to achieve their full potential as reflected in the outcomes from Every Child Matters and we work with partner agencies and the Nottingham Local Safeguarding Children Board to protect, safeguard and promote the welfare of children in our care. We recognise that because of the day to day contact with children, School staff are well placed to observe the outward signs of abuse and can therefore make a significant contribution to the protection and safeguarding of children and young people.

We recognise that effective information sharing by professional s is central to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and makes an important contribution to the addressing of children's needs at an early stage, helping children, young people and families who need additional services to achieve positive outcomes and averting the development of serious problems.

In sharing information we are aware that the law permits the disclosure of confidential information necessary to safeguard a child or children though disclosure should be justifiable, according to the particular facts of the case. We are guided by the 8 principles as described in 'Information Sharing: Guidance for Practitioners and Managers 2008 and if in doubt, would call upon the advice of the Schools and Education Safeguarding Coordinator.

The key issues that may put children at risk are:


Domestic Abuse, Drug / Alcohol Abuse

We recognise that in a home environment where there is domestic violence, drug or alcohol abuse, children may also be vulnerable and in need of support or protection.

Furthermore, we are fully aware that statistically, children with behavioural difficulties and disabilities are most vulnerable to abuse.


We recognise the damage that bullying can inflict and that, in extreme circumstances, it can cause significant harm, including self harm. There is no legal definition of bullying.

However, it’s usually defined as behaviour that is:

  • repeated
  • intended to hurt someone either physically or emotionally
  • often aimed at certain groups, eg because of race, religion, gender or sexual orientation
It takes many forms and can include:
  • physical assault
  • teasing
  • making threats
  • name calling
  • cyberbullying - bullying via mobile phone or online (eg email, social networks and instant messenger)

Child protection:

Part of safeguarding and promoting welfare. This refers to the activity that is undertaken to protect specific children who are suffering, or are likely to suffer, significant harm.


A form of maltreatment of a child. Somebody may abuse or neglect a child by inflicting harm, or by failing to act to prevent harm. Children may be abused in a family or in an institutional or community setting by those known to them or, more rarely, by other (e.g. via the internet). They may be abused by an adult or adults, or another child or children.

Physical abuse

A form of abuse which may involve hitting, shaking, throwing, poisoning, burning or scalding, drowning, suffocating or otherwise causing physical harm to a child. Physical harm may also be caused when a parent or carer fabricates the symptoms of, or deliberately induces, illness in a child.

Emotional abuse

The persistent emotional maltreatment of a child such as to cause severe and persistent adverse effects on a child’s emotional development. It may involve conveying to a child that they are worthless or unloved, inadequate, or valued only insofar as they meet the needs of another person. It may include not giving the child opportunities to express their views, deliberately silencing them or ‘making fun’ of what they say or how they communicate. It may feature age or developmentally inappropriate expectations being imposed on children. These may include interactions that are beyond a child’s developmental capability, as well as overprotection and limitation of exploration and learning, or preventing the child participating in normal social interaction. It may involve seeing or hearing the ill-treatment of another. It may involve serious bullying (including cyber bullying), causing children frequently to feel frightened or in danger, or the exploitation or corruption of children. Some level of emotional abuse is involved in all types of maltreatment of a child, though it may occur alone.

Sexual abuse

Involved forcing or enticing a child or young person to take part in sexual activities, not necessarily involving a high level of violence, whether or not the child is aware of what is happening. The activities may involve physical contact, including assault by penetration (for example, rape or oral sex) or non-penetrative acts such as masturbation, kissing, rubbing and touching outside of clothing. They may also include non-contact activities, such as involving children in looking at, or in the production of, sexual images, watching sexual activities, encouraging children to behave in sexually inappropriate ways, or grooming a child in preparation for abuse (including via the internet). Sexual abuse is not solely perpetrated by adult males. Women can also commit acts of sexual abuse, as can other children.


The persistent failure to meet a child’s basic physical and/or psychological needs, likely to result in the serious impairment of the child’s health or development. Neglect may occur during pregnancy as a result of maternal substance abuse. Once a child is born, neglect may involve a parent or carer failing to:

  • provide adequate food, clothing and shelter (including exclusion from home or abandonment);
  • protect a child from physical and emotional harm or danger;
  • ensure adequate supervision (including the use of inadequate care-givers); or • ensure access to appropriate medical care or treatment.
  • It may also include neglect of, or unresponsiveness to, a child’s basic emotional needs.

Young carers

Are children and young people who assume important caring responsibilities for parents or siblings, who are disabled, have physical or mental ill health problems, or misuse drugs or alcohol.