Safeguarding: Jesuit Schools & Parishes
The Role and Responsibility of the Commission in regard to schools and parishes associated with the Jesuits.
In safeguarding matters, parishes are the responsibility of the local diocesan bishop. Safeguarding policy and practice in all parishes are the remit of the local diocesan safeguarding commission.
The Jesuit Safeguarding commission will work in partnership with diocesan commissions, guided by the CSAS protocol when agreeing who has the lead responsibility, in the functions of the respective safeguarding commissions, in particular by:
- The promotion of a culture of safeguarding in all Jesuit run parishes.
- Making training available to parish staff.
- Ensure that DBS and PVG checks are kept up-to-date.
- Auditing the application of safeguarding requirements required by diocesan commissions.
- Cooperating with any criminal or canonical investigations.
- Preparing the ‘preliminary investigation’ and other procedures required by canon law.
In the British Province, there are eleven schools which carry the description “Jesuit School”, for which in Church law the Provincial has responsibility. Each school has its own governance structure, and the governors of each school are responsible for the school’s own safeguarding policy and procedures. The governing bodies are obliged to follow the statutory codes of practice laid down by Parliament (KCSIE in England and GIRFEC in Scotland). The province has no role in safeguarding as this is the responsibility of each school guided by the DO. (If there is an historical case of abuse, then the province might be involved if it was a member of the Society). The schools are inspected with regard to safeguarding by OFSTED (for the three voluntary aided schools), by ISI (for the six independent schools in England), or by Education Scotland (for the two independent schools in Scotland).
Because the trustee and legal proprietor of the two schools of St John’s Beaumont and Donhead Preparatory School is the Jesuit Provincial, he is ultimately responsible for safeguarding compliance in these two schools. However in practice this is delegated to the governing bodies of the two schools who are vested with the responsibility for safeguarding in their schools.
There is at least one Jesuit on each governing body, but this is not laid down in the governing statutes and having a Jesuit as a governor does not have any bearing on responsibilities for current safeguarding issues.