Nurseries and colleges could benefit from domestic abuse scheme in Wakefield

Coun Maureen Cummings
Coun Maureen Cummings

A scheme to identify school pupils who may be suffering from or witnessing domestic abuse could be extended to nurseries and colleges.

Operation Encompass was started earlier this year by West Yorkshire Police to give better support to youngsters having serious troubles at home.

A total of 109 cases have been referred to the authorities by school staff since the summer.

Among the warning signs identified for those who may be at risk, are a child turning up to school in their own clothes, rather than in uniform, and unexpectedly showing aggression.

Now a review into Operation Encompass’ success has said that those below and above school age should be included.

A report by councillor Maureen Cummings, who sits on the regional Safer Together Partnership, said: “Operation Encompass, funded by the Safer Together Partnership, has now had a six-month review which reveals that 109 school notifications have been issued. This means that those children are silently observed, if they show aggression, they are not excluded but supported, if they turn up for school out of uniform they are not sent home but supported through the day and if they turn up with a comforting toy they are allowed to keep it for that day and it’s not taken off them. “School staff have embraced this approach and almost all schools across our district have accepted the training.

“The six-month review recommends that we now move onto training nurseries and colleges.”