Code of Practice for Staff


The following code of practice must be adopted by anyone working with children and young people hired by Galway Youth Musical Theatre . The aim is to ensure that the creativity and individuality of each student is accommodated while acknowledging the right of each child to education in a relatively disruption free environment.

Youth-Centred Approach

  • Treat all children and young people equally
  • Listen to and respect children and young people
  • Involve children and young people in decision-making, as appropriate
  • Provide encouragement, support and praise (regardless of ability)
  • Use appropriate language (physical and verbal)
  • Have fun and encourage a positive atmosphere
  • Offer constructive criticism when needed
  • Treat all children and young people as individuals
  • Respect a child’s or young person’s personal space
  • Discuss boundaries on behaviour and related sanctions, as appropriate, with children and young people and their primary carers
  • Agree group ‘contract’ before beginning session
  • Encourage feedback from group
  • Use age-appropriate teaching aids and materials
  • Lead by example
  • Be aware of a child’s or young person’s other commitments when scheduling rehearsals or activities, e.g., school or exams
  • Be cognisant of a child’s or young person’s limitations, due to a medical condition for example
  • Create an atmosphere of trust
  • Respect differences of ability, culture, religion, race and sexual orientation 

Good Practice

  • Register each child/young person (name, address, phone, special requirements, attendance, emergency contact).
  • Make primary carers, children/young people, visitors and facilitators aware of the Child Protection Policy and procedures.
  • Have emergency procedures in place and make all staff aware of these


  • Be inclusive of children and young people with special needs.
  • Plan and be sufficiently prepared, both mentally and physically
  • Report any concerns to the Designated Person and follow reporting procedures. 
  • Organisations should have an anti-bullying policy. Encourage children

and young people to report any bullying, concerns or worries and to be aware of anti-bullying policy. (For further information on anti-bullying policy see ‘Our Duty to Care’, Fact sheet 2, Department of Health and Children, 2002)

  • Observe appropriate dress and behaviour
  • Evaluate work practices on a regular basis
  • Provide appropriate training for staff and volunteers
  • Report and record any incidents and accidents
  • Update and review policies and procedures regularly
  • Keep primary carers informed of any issues that concern their children
  • Ensure proper supervision based on adequate ratios according to age, abilities and activities involved.
  • Ensure clear communication between artist and organisations; have

guidelines and a prompt sheet for artists.

  • Have a written agreement with any external organisation that an artist is working with.
  • Don’t be passive in relation to concerns, i.e., don’t ‘do nothing’
  • Don’t let a problem get out of control
  • Avoid taking a session on your own. If this is not possible then it should be in an open environment with the full knowledge and consent of primary carers.
  • Avoid if at all possible giving a lift to a child/young person and if you do then make sure that primary carers are informed.
  • Maintain awareness around language and comments made. If you think that something you said may have caused offence or upset, then try to address it in a sensitive manner. 


Inappropriate Behaviour

  • Avoid spending excessive amounts of time alone with children/young people. 
  • Don’t use or allow offensive or sexually suggestive physical and/or verbal language.
  • Don’t single out a particular child/young person for unfair favouritism, criticism, ridicule, or unwelcome focus or attention.
  • Don’t allow/engage in inappropriate touching of any form
  • Don’t hit or physically chastise children/young people.
  • Don’t socialise inappropriately with children/young people, e.g., outside of structured organisational activities.


Physical Contact


  • Seek consent of child/young person in relation to physical contact (except in an emergency or a dangerous situation).
  • Avoid horseplay or inappropriate touch.
  • Check with children/young people about their level of comfort when doing touch exercises.

Health & Safety

  • Don’t leave children unattended or unsupervised
  • Manage any dangerous materials
  • Provide a safe environment
  • Be aware of accident procedure and follow accordingly


Photography and Filming

  • Images of children posted to our website and facebook page will be identified by their first name only.
  • To reduce the risk of inappropriate use of images only images deemed suitable will be used.
  • Anyone with any complaints about images posted on our website and facebook page can speak to the child protection officer and the images will be removed.
  • Anyone concerned about inappropriate use of images can report the matter to the child protection officer and procedures will be followed to report the matter to the appropriate authority.
  • The expectations for parents and spectators who wish to take photographs or film at an event are to avoid inappropriate or intrusive photography. Any child or parent who has concerns regarding inappropriate or intrusive photography must report their concerns to the child protection officer who will act in the same manner as they would with any other child protection concern.


Implementation of the Code

All teachers/persons working for Galway Youth Musical Theatre who work with children and young people will be informed of Galway Youth Musical Theatres Child Protection Policy and requested to sign letter of understanding. Failure to sign the policy will result in contracts being cancelled.