CaSS Code of Practice for work in schools

Below is a Code of Practice for Christian volunteers or visitors going into schools.

Introduction

CaSS aims to help Christians serving schools to understand the parameters of the school environment, to help them to operate with a clear code of conduct and to provide a positive role model demonstrating Christ’s love and acceptance. Christians should serve schools with grace and integrity and make sure that their contribution is professional and of the highest possible standard.

Principles

People working in /serving schools are responsible for their own actions and behaviour. They should be careful to avoid any conduct which would lead any reasonable person to question their motives or intentions and should work in an open, transparent manner. They should be fully committed to safeguarding the welfare of all the students and taking every reasonable step to protect them.

Safeguarding

Christian visitors to schools should be fully committed to the protection, safekeeping and nurture of all the children and young people they come into contact with. Christian visitors to the school have a responsibility to protect children from abuse and to report any suspected abuse to the member of staff in charge of safeguarding. It is wise to avoid touching a pupil (unless it is necessary for their protection). Remember not to be alone with just one pupil.

Professional Conduct

Be familiar with the policies, framework, practices and ethos of the school, so that you can work within them. Behave in a mature, respectful, fair, safe and considerate manner at all times. This means no sarcastic remarks, jokes of a personal, racist, offensive, sexual or discriminatory nature. Do not humiliate or embarrass students or discriminate favourably/unfavourably. Dress appropriately & make sure you carry your ID to confirm who you are and wear any ID given to you by the school.

Professional Separation

Relationships with students should always be on a professional footing. Do not behave in any way that could lead an observer to question your intentions. Do not make arrangements to contact (email, text etc.) or meet students outside school.

Professional Reporting

Take advice promptly from school staff about any incident which gives rise for concern. A record should be kept of any such incident and decisions/actions agreed.

Personal Conduct

Choose your language wisely and be polite. Don’t speak negatively about a school. Know who to call if you are ill and cannot fulfil your commitment. You will make mistakes –be prepared to learn from them.

Timekeeping

Schools run to a very strict timetable –know the timings and work within them. Arrive with enough time to set up your session. Make sure you end on time.

Preparation

Preparation is everything–be clear about your aims! Don’t over commit.Think about any risks involved in your session and the environment/room you are in.

Discipline

Know and respect the rules of the school. Do not tolerate breaches of discipline. Know where to get help or advice.

Collective Worship

Confirm your venue, equipment, resources and the time you will have. Know how many pupils will be present and their age. Project your voice & think how you are going to communicate your main points. Do not make a direct gospel challenge or recruit for a church activity.

Lessons

Be clear about your learning objective & what the school is expecting. Know your material well & leave time for questions.Try to plan in some differentiation for students of different abilities. Be relevant to the age group.

Christian Clubs

Be clear about the aim of the club & what you can deliver.You can present the gospel clearly, but do not present a gospel challenge or recruit for church activities.

Christians & Sheffield Schools is grateful to Chester Schools Christian Work for help in preparing this code of practice.