What is Operation Encompass?
Operation Encompass is a police and education early information safeguarding partnership, enabling schools to offer immediate support to children experiencing domestic abuse. Its purpose is to safeguard and support children and young people where a domestic incident has been reported from their home. Following such an incident, children will often arrive at school distressed, upset and unprepared. Operation Encompass will ensure that appropriate school staffs are made aware early enough to support children and young people in a way that means they feel safe supported and listened to.
Children are negatively impacted by experiencing domestic abuse and without early intervention and support, this negative impact can last through a child’s life course. Domestic abuse can impact upon social, psychological, physical, emotional and behavioural outcomes with an often negative impact upon a child’s academic success.
Operation Encompass aims, by directly connecting police and schools, to:
- secure better outcomes for children
- enable schools to better understand the impact living with domestic abuse has upon children
- help schools to better understand a child’s lived experience
- be able to support and nurture each child
How does it work?
Schools within Halton have all identified a “Key Adult” and in most schools this is the existing Senior Designated Person for Safeguarding. All Key Adults have attended training specific to the role in preparation for Operation Encompass.
Each morning a locally-based Police Officer from the Integrated Referral Unit (IRU) will review all violent or abusive incidents that would indicate domestic abuse. In incidents where children are living at the home and aged between 4 and 18 years old, the school that the child or young person attends will be contacted by telephone and information will be passed to a designated “Key Adult” in the school. The staff in contact with those pupils will then be in an informed position to support them in a way that is right for that particular child or young person, either with silent or overt support.