Changes to Government SEN Policy



You may be aware that government are making changes to the current SEN policy.


This link opens a calendar  which outlines different events taking place to brief parents on the new SEND reforms. There are 4 events in Kingston which are highlighted.


Please try to attend to learn more about these changes.








Single Equality Policy


This Equality Policy for Tolworth Girls School brings together all previous policies, schemes and action plans around equality including those that we had previously for Race, Gender and Disability.


It includes all the protected characteristics covered under the Equality Act 2010 as well as other aspects which have the potential to discriminate against or to devalue any individuals within our community.


This policy is a whole school policy which is closely linked with a number of other whole school policies, including Behaviour Policy, Accessibility Policy, Inclusion Policy (including SEN) and Anti bullying policy.



Principles/ Vision statement


The Governors have expressed the values they wish to promote in Tolworth Girls' School and Sixth Form. These are published and further expanded upon in the school prospectus, the Home–School agreement and the Community Code of Conduct.



Our approach and commitment to Equal Opportunities must ensure that everyone in our school community feels respected and valued as an individual – with due regard to his or her gender, age, ethnic origin, social group or class, ability or disability, religion, creed or sexuality. We seek to embed equality of access, opportunity and outcome for all members of our school community, within all aspects of school life.


We should at all times be accepting of differences, and seek to develop knowledge, understanding and empathy.


The purpose of this Policy is to outline how our practice and policies have due regard to the need to:

- eliminate discrimination, harassment and victimisation;

- remove/minimise disadvantages

- advance equality of opportunity and

- foster good relations between groups.


It explains how we aim to listen to and involve students, staff, parents and the community in achieving better outcomes for our children and young people.



School Context


Tolworth Girls School is a 8 form entry non selective urban school Academy with a mixed 6th form. We have over 1300 students on the register, including approximately 50 male students in our 6th form.


We are a diverse school with over 56 different languages spoken as a first language with approximately 30% of students with English as an additional language. We have 127 students who are eligible for FSM (9) and 5% of our students are identified as Gifted and Talented.14% of our students have identified SEN needs with 0.9% having a statement.


Tolworth Girls' School is committed to, and actively promotes, equal opportunities for all its pupils and staff.

This school is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people and expects all staff and volunteers to share this commitment.



Our Approach


All members of the Tolworth Girls' School and Sixth From community have a duty and responsibility to implement the Code of Practice.


Every opportunity must be taken to develop an awareness of and sensitivity to differences in social custom, behaviour and religious beliefs. This should include helping students to develop a capacity to understand and accept the unfamiliar.


Whilst the Senior Leadership Team (SLT) and the Leadership Team (HOF) will monitor equality of opportunity within the school, other key members of staff have a duty to ensure that there is equal access to the school's curriculum and other planned activities. Our recruitment policy and procedures will reflect our commitment to Equal Opportunities.


The school must comply with any reasonable recommendations and modifications as advised by external agencies working on behalf of students and adults in the school community. In addition the school must comply with the statutory regulations governing terms and conditions and access for those deemed to be different or vulnerable.



How we developed our Policy - Using information


We know our school well because we regularly collect information about ourselves in a variety of ways and other people help us to do this. We collect and analyse a range of data that helps inform us, determine equality objectives and evaluate our policy including;


• Attendance,

• attainment and progress,

• exclusions,

• incident records,

• admissions


We analyse this information in relation to protected characteristics to provide us with a picture of engagement and attainment across the school.


We also value more qualitative information which may be given to us through pupil/learner voice, less formally or even anonymously. Throughout the year we also undertake a survey where by our parents/carers are able to voice their views and inform our whole school practice.


The Local Authority provides us with a range of services which support the equality agenda and helps us to identify our strengths and those areas requiring action. We access support, as appropriate from local authority staff such as EMA consultant, Education Welfare Service and Behaviour Consultant. We have positive working partnerships with a range of local services, including FASS, FACT and Local Neighbourhood Police Teams.


We have established good links with our local and our wider community. We welcome them into our school in a variety of ways, including supporting lesson and schemes of work to making use of our site facilities. Such local partners include local primary schools, local Sikh and Hindu communities and community education providers.


The roles and responsibilities within our school community


Our Head teacher will:


• ensure that staff, parents/carers, students are engaged in the development and informed of the Equality Policy

• oversee the effective implementation of the policy

• make sure all staff know their responsibilities and receive training and support to implement these

• take appropriate action in cases of harassment and discrimination

• monitor the policy and report to the Governing Body at least annually on the effectiveness of the policy and publish this information

• ensure that the Senior Leadership team is kept up to date with any development affecting the policy or actions arising from it



Our Governing Body will:


• designate a governor with specific responsibility for the Equality Policy

• ensure that the objectives arising from the policy are part of the School Improvement Plan (SIP)

• support the head teacher in implementing any actions necessary

• monitor progress towards achieving equality objectives.

• publish data and publish equality objectives

• evaluate and review the policy annually and the objectives every 4 years



Our Senior Leadership Team will:


• have responsibility for supporting other staff in implementing this Policy

• provide a lead in the dissemination of information relating to the Policy

• with the Head teacher, provide advice/support in dealing with any incidents/issues

• assist in implementing reviews of this policy as detailed in the SIP



Our students will:


• be involved in the development of the Policy and will understand how it relates to them, appropriate to age and ability

• be expected to act in accordance with the Policy

• be encouraged to actively support the Policy



Our parents/carers will:


• be given accessible opportunities to become involved in the development of the Policy

• have access to the Policy through a range of different media appropriate to their requirements

• be encouraged to actively support the Policy

• be encouraged to attend any relevant meetings and activities related to the Policy

• be informed of any incident related to this Policy which could directly affect their child



Our school staff will:


• be fully aware of the Equality Policy and how it relates to them

• encourage students of all abilities and ethnic groups to take part in the full range of school activities

• monitor the take up of these activities by different groups of students and individuals

• actively promote and celebrate the achievements of all students across the spectrum of ability

• value the unique contribution made by those who can speak languages other than English

• use collaborative and cooperative approaches to learning, ensuring that students' religious, cultural and linguistic experiences are reflected and built upon positively in the classroom

• ensure at all times that students are paired or grouped in ways which encourage students to feel included and engaged

• use spoken and written language thoughtfully, in order not to cause possible offence. Be sensitive in the use of jocular comment to avoid causing unintentional offence

• ensure that students agree protocols in discussion of sensitive topics, alerting them to the need to listen respectfully and to avoid using provocative language

• ensure that all visiting speakers are made aware of the school's Equal Opportunities Policy

• address groups or assemblies appropriately

• ensure that students with limited mobility are accommodated in all activities through prior arrangement with their carer and/or teaching assistant

• have high expectations and set challenging targets for all students, making known to them our confidence in their ability to achieve, ensuring that each student's individual learning and social needs are met



Responding to hate or prejudice-based incidents and bullying


Through our school ethos and curriculum, we want our students to understand better the diversity that exists in society. We encourage this through our interactions with students, extra curricular activities, and directly through the curriculum, such as SPACE, Tutorial programme and Religious Education lessons.


We recognise that hate incidents or prejudice-based bullying behaviour is driven by negative assumptions, stereotypes or misinformation. These are then directed against an individual or group, based on difference (real or perceived), and linked to, for example, racism, homophobia, negative views of disabled people or sexism. We will take action to prevent, challenge and eliminate any such behaviour.


We want to provide opportunities for students to explore the subtleties and complexities in order to prevent and respond to incidents and situations. We will address the experience, understanding and needs of the victim, the perpetrator, bystanders and the wider school community through our actions and responses.


We will record all hate incidents and prejudice-based bullying. We use this information to identify trends and patterns so that we have approaches in place to provide appropriate responses to respond to such incidents.


Greater detail regarding our policy and practice can be found in our Anti bullying policy.



Equality Objectives


Using the views of students, parents, staff and community and analysis of the information as outlined above we have set ourselves specific and measurable objectives that will help us achieve the aims of the general equality duty. These will be reviewed every 4 years.


Advance equality of opportunity

Other -

Improve the attainment of students

Improved attainment

Students whose additional educational require support from outside agencies

Collate, monitor and analyse data relating to the attainment by target group.

Work with faculties to identify and implement strategies to improve attainment of target group



On going


Advance equality of opportunity

Health & well


To increase the confidence of some female students in accessing sexual health services

Reported increase in female students accessing local sexual health services


female students

Establish and run small group sessions for targeted students

School nurse



Dates set for group



Advance equality of opportunity


To promote opportunities for students to learn more about careers that challenge gender stereotyping

Increase interest and positive changes around work experience

Year 10

Provide activities that allow students to explore gender stereotyping in careers


Jan 2013 – July 2014



Implementation, monitoring and reviewing


This policy was published on. It will be actively promoted and disseminated through the school website, staff intranet and staff meetings.


Implementation, monitoring and review are the responsibility of our Senior Leadership Team and our governors who have agreed and published this policy which sets out our priorities and supports these with specific and measurable objectives.


We will report annually to the governing body on the policy and analyse whether our policy and related objectives have furthered the aims of the general equality duty and in particular educational outcomes for all within our school community with reference to the protected groups.


The Equal Opportunities Policy will be subject to regular review and its effectiveness monitored as part of the work of the Leadership Team.



April 2012

Next review date: April 2013



Confidentiality Policy




1. Principle

    At Tolworth Girls’ School and TCCE we believe that:

    • the safety, well-being and protection of our students is the paramount consideration in all decisions staff at this school make about confidentiality. The appropriate sharing of information between school staff is an essential element in ensuring our students well-being and safety
    • it is an essential part of the ethos of our school that trust is established to enable students, staff and Parents/Carers to seek help both within and outside the school in order to minimize the number of situations when personal information is shared to ensure students and staff are supported and safe
    • students, Parents/Carers and staff need to know the boundaries of confidentiality in order to feel safe and comfortable discussing personal issues and concerns, including sex and relationships
    • the school’s attitude to confidentiality is easily understood and everyone should be able to trust the boundaries for confidentiality operating within the school
    • issues concerning personal information including sex and relationships and other personal matters can arise at any time
    • everyone in the school community needs to know that no-one can offer absolute confidentiality
    • everyone in the school community needs to know the limits of confidentiality that can be offered by individuals within the school community so they can make informed decisions about the most appropriate person to talk to about any health, sex and relationship or other personal issue they want to discuss
    • staff have the right to discuss events and discussions that occur as part of their working life but should ensure that all comments are respectful and made within a professional context when within the hearing of others



    Consultation has taken place with the whole school community, including our partner agencies. The final policy was agreed by the Leadership Team and the school’s Governing Body, and has been disseminated to all staff as well as being made available to all students Parents/Carers and partner agencies. The policy is disseminated to all new staff joining the school.



    Confidentiality is defined as ‘something which is spoken or given in private, including texts, emails, phone messages and letters etc entrusted with another’s secret affairs’.

    The confider is asking for the content of the conversation to be kept secret. Anyone offering absolute confidentiality to someone else would be offering to keep the content of his or her conversation completely secret and discuss it with no-one.

    In practice there are few circumstances where absolute confidentiality is offered in our school. We strive to strike a balance between ensuring the safety, well-being and protection of our students and staff, ensuring there is an ethos of trust where students and staff can ask for help when they need it and ensuring that when it is essential to share personal information, child protection issues and good practice are followed.


    This means that in most cases what is offered is limited confidentiality. Disclosure of the content of a conversation could be discussed with professional colleagues, but the confider would not be identified except in certain circumstances.

    Staff should make it clear that there are limits to confidentiality at the beginning of any relevant conversation. These limits relate to ensuring a young person’s safety and well-being. The student will be informed when a confidence has to be broken for this reason and be involved in the information sharing.

    Different levels of confidentiality are appropriate for different circumstances:


    a. In the classroom in the course of a lesson

    Given by a member of teaching staff or an outside visitor including health professionals.
    Careful thought needs to be given to the content of the lesson setting the climate and establishing ground rules to ensure confidential disclosures are not made. It should be made clear to students that this is not the time or place to disclose confidential personal information. When a health professional is contributing to a school’s health education programme in a classroom setting, they are working with the same boundaries of confidentiality as a teacher.

    b. One-to-one disclosures to members of school staff

    It is essential all members of staff know the limits of the confidentiality they can offer to both students and parents and carers and any required actions and sources of further support or help available both for the student or Parent/Carer, within the school and from other agencies where appropriate. All staff at this school encourage students to discuss different issues with their Parents or Carers and vice versa.
    However, the needs of the student are paramount and the school staff will not automatically share information about the student with his/her Parents/Carers unless it is considered to be in the child’s best interests.

    c. Disclosures to a counsellor, school nurse or health professional
    operating a confidential service in the school
    Health professionals such as school nurses can give confidential medical advice to students provided they are competent to do so and follow the Fraser Guidelines (guidelines for doctors and other health professionals on giving medical advice to under 16’s). School nurses are skilled in discussing issues and possible actions with young people and always have in mind the need to encourage students to discuss issues with their Parents or Carers. However, the needs of the student are paramount and the school nurse will not insist that a student’s Parents or Carers are informed about any advice or treatment they give. (If you operate a school based health service at your school, you should have an agreement with the relevant local health trust which should be appended to this policy).

    Contraceptive advice and pregnancy
    The Department of Health has issued guidance (July 2004) which clarifies and confirms that health professionals owe young people under 16 the same duty of care and confidentiality as older patients. It sets out principles of good practice in providing contraception and sexual health to under 16’s. The duty of care and confidentiality applies to all under-16’s. Whether a young person is competent to consent to treatment or is in serious danger is judged by the health professional on the circumstances of each individual case, not solely on the age of the patient.

    The younger the patient the greater the concern that they may be being abused or exploited even in circumstances where the young person themselves is adamant that they are fully aware and consensual. The Guidance makes it clear that health professionals must make time to explore whether there may be coercion or abuse. Cases of grave concern should be referred through child protection procedures.

    All school staff should not promise confidentiality. Students do not have the right to expect they will not be reported to their Parents or Carers and may not, in the absence of an explicit promise, assume that information conveyed outside that context is private. No member of this school’s staff can or should give such a promise. The safety, well-being and protection of the child is the paramount consideration in all decisions staff at this school make about confidentiality.
    School staff are NOT obliged to break confidentiality except where child
    protection is or may be an issue, however at Tolworth Girls’ School and TCCE we believe it is important staff are able to share their concerns about students safety and well-being is maintained.

    Teachers, counsellors and health professionals
    Professional judgment is required by a teacher, counsellor or health professional in considering whether or not he or she should indicate to a student that they could make a disclosure in confidence and whether such a confidence could then be maintained having heard the information.
    In exercising their professional judgment the teacher, counsellor or health professional must consider the best interests of the student, including the need to both ensure trust to provide safeguards for our young people and possible child protection issues.
    All teachers at this school receive basic training in child protection as part of their induction to this school and are expected to follow the school’s child protection policy and procedures.

    Counsellors and health professionals
    At Tolworth Girls’ School and TCCE we offer students the support of a School Counsellor. The school nursing service operate a drop-in service for students.
    These services are confidential between the School Counsellor or health professional and the individual student. No information is shared with school staff except as defined in the school’s child protection policy.

    This is essential to maintain the trust needed for these services to meet the needs of our students.

    Visitors and non-teaching staff
    We expect all non-teaching staff to report any disclosures by students or Parents/Carers of a concerning nature to the designated child protection co-coordinator as soon as possible after the disclosure and in an appropriate setting, so others cannot over hear.
    The designated child protection co-coordinator will decide what, if any, further action needs to be taken.

    We believe that it is essential to work in partnership with Parents and Carers and we endeavour to keep Parents/Carers abreast of their child’s progress at school, including any concerns about their progress or behaviour. However, we also need to maintain a balance so that our students can share any concerns and ask for help when they need it. Where a student does discuss a difficult personal issue with staff at Tolworth Girls’ School and TCCE they will be encouraged to also discuss the matter with their Parents or Carers and may be supported to do so where it is appropriate. The safety, well-being and protection of our students is the paramount consideration in all decisions staff at this school make about confidentiality.

    Where there are areas of doubt about the sharing of information, the school will consult with the local area Safeguarding Board.

    See the school Child Protection Policy.

    Staff may have support needs themselves in dealing with some of the personal issues of our students. We prefer staff to ask for help rather than possibly making a poor decision because you don’t have all the facts or the necessary training, or taking worries about students home with you. Staff should discuss any concerns with their line managers or another senior staff member they feel able to talk to.


    This policy has links with the following school policies:

      • Child Protection
      • PSHE
      • Sex and Relationships Education (SRE)
      • Drug Education
      • Bullying


    This policy has been distributed to all teaching and non-teaching staff as part of whole school training on Child Protection/Safeguarding. A copy of the policy can always be found ……………………………………………… All new staff will
    Receive a copy of the policy when they join the school.

    10. REVIEW

    This policy will be reviewed annually and amended as necessary.
    Date of this draft July 2009


Policy on Collective Act of Worship and Spiritual and Moral Development



School Statement

Through the life and ethos of the school, the pastoral care, the tutorial programme, our Collective Acts of Worship and the curriculum including Religious Studies, we aim to provide the necessary experience and opportunities for the spiritual and moral aims of the school to be realised.

All Students attend our Collective Acts of Worship and lessons in Religious Studies unless their parents wish to withdraw them on grounds of conscience. Several world religions are studied in addition to Christianity. Tolworth Girls’ School & TCCE has no affiliation with a particular denomination.

In Y7 - Y11 we follow syllabuses agreed with the Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames SACRE. However, in the sixth form it is our policy to continue the spiritual and moral development of Students through our Collective Acts of Worship, the religious forums and debates within the PSE programme.


Moral Development Policy


  • To ensure that the school's aims, climate and ethos are conducive to moral development 
  • To provide students with a moral framework in which to operate and mature
  • To encourage students to behave and act in a morally acceptable way
  • To make students aware of the principles, beliefs and reasons behind moral values
  • To present moral issues for students to reflect upon and consider and to formulate their own standpoints


  • Students and staff should work together to develop a climate of co-operation and discipline within the school and recognize that this is the basis of good personal relationships.
  • The school as a whole should uphold moral values such as honesty, reliability, respect and consideration for others and property. (Such values are cultivated particularly in Religious Education lessons, PSE, Collective Acts of Worship and the pastoral curriculum).
  • Students should be given the opportunity to take responsibility for their own actions and develop self-discipline (for example in their approach to their own work, through holding positions of responsibility and belonging to teams). The school rules, rewards and sanctions are intended to ensure that students behave acceptably within the school society and beyond.
  • Staff and students should be encouraged to recognize that the principle of equal opportunities should be upheld in all aspects of school life. Empathy should be fostered for example through actively promoting charity and community work and through the study of prejudice. It should be clearly understood by all that bullying is unacceptable.
  • Students should be given the opportunity in the school curriculum to discuss moral issues and to develop their own approaches and reasoned solutions to these whilst being sensitive to the attitudes of others.


Spiritual Development Policy


  • To provide students with the opportunity to develop personal beliefs and values
  • To encourage in students a thoughtful and enquiring approach to ultimate questions about existence
  • To recognize that even though spiritual development is personal to each individual, it also involves interpersonal relationships
  • To encourage reflection and exploration and the development of feelings and emotions in students


  • All students should be given, through the whole curriculum and activities outside the curriculum, the opportunity to develop and express their own beliefs, values and feelings.
  • Students should consider questions about the origin of the universe and the purpose of life and the uniqueness of human beings. Students should be encouraged to consider the nature of life and the ultimate questions of existence.
  • Religious Education and Collective Acts of Worship should provide knowledge and understanding of the beliefs, practices, ideas and attitudes of those who follow the major religions and should help to develop an awareness of the relationship between belief and practice and a personal response to experience.
  • The ethos of the school should promote development of individual beliefs and values. Students should be enabled to develop respect for others who express their spirituality through diverse religious traditions or secular beliefs.