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Intimate Care Policy

Intimate Care Policy

Intimate Care Policy

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Version Number

Date issued


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First Published Version

Principles and values

The purpose of this policy is to set out clearly the process that will take place at Co-op Academy Woodslee, should a child need intimate care in school. Intimate care is any activity such as feeding, oral care, washing, changing clothes, toileting, first aid and medical assistance, comforting and support, or supervising intimate self-care that is required to meet the personal needs of a child regularly or during a one-off incident.

School staff have a duty to safeguard children and school personnel at all times. It is important to develop independence in each child but on those occasions when children need assistance they must feel safe, have personal privacy, feel valued, be treated with dignity and respect and be involved and consulted about their own intimate care with school personnel that are specially trained in intimate care procedures.

We as a school community have a commitment to promote equality. Therefore, an equality impact assessment has been undertaken and we believe this policy is in line with the Equality Act 2010.


  • To safeguard the rights of children.
  • To safeguard school personnel trained in intimate care procedures.
  • To work with other schools to share good practice in order to improve this policy.

Intimate Care Good Practice Guidelines

These guidelines should be viewed as expectations upon staff, which are designed to protect both children and staff alike. In situations where a member of staff potentially breaches these expectations, other staff should be able to question this in a constructive manner. If staff are not comfortable with any aspect of the agreed guidelines, they should seek advice from the Headteacher. For example, if they do not wish to conduct intimate care on a 1:1 basis, this should be discussed and alternative arrangements considered. For example, it may be possible to have a second member of staff in an adjoining room or nearby so that they are close to hand but do not compromise the child’s sense of privacy.


Much intimate care is carried out by one staff member along with one child. This practice should be actively supported unless the task requires two people. Having people working alone does increase the opportunity for possible abuse. However, this is balanced by the loss of privacy and lack of trust implied if two people have to be present – quite apart from the practical difficulties. It should also be noted that the presence of two people does not guarantee the safety of the child or young person – organised abuse by several perpetrators can, and does, take place. Therefore, staff should be supported in carrying out the intimate care of children alone unless the task requires the presence of two people. For older children it is preferable if the member of staff is the same gender as the young person. However, this is not always possible in practice.


Involve the child as far as possible in his or her own intimate care. Try to avoid doing things for a child that s/he can do alone, and if a child is able to help ensure that s/he is given the chance to do so. This is as important for tasks such as removing underclothes as it is for washing the private parts of a child’s body.

Support children in doing all that they can themselves. If a child is fully dependent on you, talk with her or him about what you are doing and give choices where possible. Be responsive to a child’s reactions. It is appropriate to ‘check’ your practise by asking the child – particularly a child you have not previously cared for – “Is it OK to do it this way?”; “Can you wash there?”; How does mummy do that?”. If a child expresses dislike of a certain person carrying out her or his intimate care, try and find out why. Conversely, if a child has a ‘grudge’ against you or dislikes you for some reason, ensure your head of school is aware of this.


Practice in intimate care should be as consistent as possible. This does not mean that everyone has to do things in an identical fashion, but it is important that approaches to intimate care are not markedly different between individuals. Liaison with other professionals is essential where there are a number of carers and settings.

Staff should never do something unless they know how to do it. If unsure how to do something, it is the responsibility of the staff member to ask. Treatment procedures, such as intermittent catheterisation, must only be carried out by staff who have been formally trained and assessed as competent. All school personnel will have equal chances of training, career development and promotion. Periodic training will be organised for all school personnel so that they are kept up to date with new information and guidelines concerning equal opportunities.

Intimate Care Plans

Each child who requires intimate care will have a written ‘Intimate Care Plan’ (appendix 1). This includes pupils requiring any oversight, assistance and supervision. Close involvement of parents/carers and child/young person are essential in developing ‘Intimate Care Plans’ and written consent must be given by them. The plan should be disseminated to all staff involved in the intimate care of the pupil. Care plans must be renewed regularly, at least once a year at the Annual Review.


A pupil changing record sheet (appendix 2) should be signed by all staff involved in any intimate care tasks. Copies will be kept in a file in the hygiene suite/toilet area (these are coded to protect the identity of the children), and completed sheets stored in pupil’s individual confidential files There is also a section on the sheet to record any comments or observations, e.g. skin impairment / changed bowel or urinary pattern.

If you are concerned that during the intimate care of the child: -

  • You accidentally hurt the child
  • The child seems sore or unusually tender in the genital area
  • The child appears to be sexually aroused by your actions
  • The child misunderstands or misinterprets something
  • The child has a very emotional reaction without apparent cause (sudden crying or shouting)

Report any incident as soon as possible to another person working with you and make a brief written note of it. Then please discuss immediately with a senior member of staff or Designated Safeguarding Lead.

This is for two reasons: first, because some of these could be cause for concern, and secondly, because the child or another adult might possibly misconstrue something you have done. Additionally, if you are a member of staff who has noticed that a child’s demeanour has changed directly following intimate care, e.g. sudden distress or withdrawal, this should be noted in writing and discussed with the Designated Safeguarding Lead.

Role of the Governing Body

The Governing Body has:

  • delegated powers and responsibilities to the Headteacher to ensure all school personnel and stakeholders are aware of and comply with this policy;
  • responsibility for ensuring that the school complies with all equalities legislation;
  • have in place a designated governor to ensure that appropriate action will be taken to deal with all prejudice related incidents or incidents which are a breach of this policy;
  • responsibility for ensuring funding is in place to support this policy;
  • responsibility for ensuring this policy and all policies are maintained and updated regularly;
  • responsibility for ensuring all policies are made available to parents;
  • nominated a Safeguarding link governor to visit the school regularly, to liaise with the Headteacher or other named person and to report back to the Governing Body;
  • responsibility for the effective implementation, monitoring and evaluation of this policy

Role of the Headteacher

The Headteacher will:

  • ensure all school personnel, pupils and parents are aware of and comply with this policy;
  • ensure school personnel who provide intimate care are suitably trained to do so;
  • ensure that new developments, resources and equipment are brought to the attention of the appropriate school personnel;
  • monitor the effectiveness of this policy;
  • annually report to the Governing Body on the success and development of this policy

Role of the Nominated Safeguarding Governor

The Nominated Governor will:

  • work closely with the Headteacher and the coordinator;
  • ensure this policy and other linked policies are up to date;
  • ensure that everyone connected with the school is aware of this policy;
  • report to the Governing Body every term;
  • annually report to the Governing Body on the success and development of this policy

Role of School Personnel

School personnel will:

  • receive training in Child Protection, First Aid, intimate care procedures, and Health and Safety training in moving and handling;
  • be professional in their duties at all times;
  • be respectful of a child’s needs;
  • preserve a child’s dignity and respect with a high level of privacy, choice and control appropriate to the child’s age and situation;
  • be aware of a child’s method and level of communication;
  • make sure practice in intimate care is consistent;
  • be aware of their own limitations;
  • promote positive self-esteem and body image;
  • work in partnership with parents/carers;
  • report any concerns they have about a child;
  • report any concerns they have about a colleague’s intimate care practice;
  • be aware of the danger of allegations being made against them.

Nappy changing procedures:

  • Nappy changing undertaken in an allocated room.
  • Nappy changing being carried out by the child's key person where possible.
  • Record kept when each nappy is changed and with information shared with parents/carers.
  • Children's nappies are checked at appropriate intervals by key person.
  • Nappy changing resources readily supplied.
  • A new set of gloves and apron to be worn for every nappy change.
  • Child to be placed on a mat during a nappy change.
  • Soiled nappies to be placed in a nappy sack for disposal.
  • Any soiled clothes to be sent home in a separate bag.
  • All cleaning wipes to be placed in a nappy sack.
  • Nappy sack to be securely tied and placed in the appropriate bin for disposal.
  • Before dressing the child dispose of all personal protective equipment used in the appropriate bin.
  • Hands to be washed before dressing child.
  • Return child to the classroom/play room.
  • Nappy changing area thoroughly cleaned using anti- bacterial spray and disposable paper towels.

Role of Parents/carers:

Parents/carers will:

  • be aware of and comply with this policy
  • advise the school of any known intimate care needs relating to their child;
  • be involved with their child’s intimate care arrangements on a regular basis;
  • be asked to take part in periodic surveys conducted by the school;
  • support the school Code of Conduct and guidance necessary to ensure smooth running of the school Rights of the child;

All children have the right to be treated:

  • with sensitivity and respect in such a way that their experience of intimate care is a positive one;
  • by professionals suitably trained and assessed to be competent to undertake procedures in intimate care.

Raising awareness of this policy:

We will raise awareness of this policy via:

  • the School Handbook/Prospectus
  • the school website
  • the Staff Handbook
  • meetings with parents such as introductory, transition or parent-teacher consultations school events
  • meetings with school personnel
  • reports such as Headteacher reports to the Governing Body
  • information displays, e.g. in the main school entrance

Equality Impact Assessment

Under the Equality Act 2010 we have a duty not to discriminate against people on the basis of their age, disability, gender, gender identity, pregnancy or maternity, race, religion or belief and sexual orientation.

This policy has been equality impact assessed and we believe that it is in line with the Equality Act 2010 as it is fair, it does not prioritise or disadvantage any pupil and it helps to promote equality at this school. (See Initial Equality Impact Assessment)

Intimate Care Plan



Date of Birth


Relevant Background Information


Identified need – specific individual requirement

e.g. cream applied


Self-care skills

Fully dependent/aided



Independent/steady/grab rail

Unsteady/wheelchair user

Fine motor skills

Can do:

tapes / zips / buttons / taps / towels /adjust own clothing

Moving and handling Assessment

Step by step guide to what happens



Nappies, wipes, sudocrem

The disposal of soiled articles of clothing as

agreed with parents/carers

Solid waste into the toilet.

Clothes sent home in tied plastic bag. Indicate in bag or in diary contents of bag.

Frequency of procedure


Review date

If your child needs cleaning, plain water will be used with a few drops of liquid cleanser added to the water. Please advise if this is not suitable for your child and send in an alternative.

I/we have read, understood and agree to the plan for Intimate Care

Signed………………………………… Print Name………………………. Date………………………………….

Changing Record


        Week beginning          

W(wet), D(dry), B(bowels open), M(menstruation), U(urinated), S(soiled)




W, D

B, M

U, S


E.g. skin impairment / changed

bowel or urinary pattern

Please remember – if you have any concerns, then discuss immediately with a member of staff.