Student Protection Policy
At Nishimachi, we are committed to providing and maintaining a safe school environment for all of our students. Aligned with the recommendations of the International Task Force on Child Protection, we hold ourselves to the highest standard of effective recruiting practices with specific attention to student protection.
Please take a moment to read through our Student Protection Policy.
Please also find our Health and Wellness Curriculum which includes the outcomes for Child Protection from the AISA (Association of International Schools in Africa.)
All applicants for positions at Nishimachi are asked to provide/verify appropriate student protection or "working with children" certification as part of their application.
All staff must complete Student Protection training and sign the Employee Code of Conduct annually.
Below you will find our Child Protection Policy and Volunteer Declaration form in English and Japanese, as well as the Nishimachi Employee Code of Conduct.
Updates on Student Protection
Below are the actions taken by Nishimachi International School in relation to student protection matters since the first report of inappropriate behavior by a former school staff member:
- Developed a comprehensive student protection policy, aligned to standards put forth by the Council of International Schools and other worldwide organizations
- Developed extensive student protection procedures, aligned to standards put forth by the Council of International Schools and other worldwide organizations
- Screened all current staff by an external organization
- Adopted full screening and international police checks for all new staff hired overseas
- Adopted full screening and reference checks for all new staff hired locally, including after school activities instructors, sports coaches, substitute teachers, etc
- Developed and implemented a Kindergarten to Grade 9 student protection curriculum, which includes common language for all students to discuss personal safety
- Instituted training for all staff, including additional professional development for the School Counselor, Nurse and other key members of the Student Protection Committee
- Attended world summits about student protection
- Made annual sign off and declarations by all staff, parent volunteers, faculty, after school activity instructors, substitute teachers, etc.
- Developed and continue to maintain the Student Protection page on our website
- Formed our Student Protection Committee comprising of the leadership team, as well as the school nurse and counselor
Nishimachi is committed to seeking the full truth about past misconduct by faculty or staff, to supporting and apologizing to alumni who were harmed in the past, and to ensuring the best possible safety protocols and support resources are in place to protect our current and future students.
The Jenner & Block Investigation
The international law firm of Jenner & Block conducted a broad investigation into any allegations of sexual misconduct by former or current faculty or staff members. The investigation was led by a former prosecutor who is very experienced in sexual abuse investigations. The School gave Jenner & Block full independence to take the investigation wherever it may lead and to report its findings to our community.
The Jenner & Block Report, which was released on April 30, 2019, can be accessed HERE. If you have questions about the Jenner & Block investigation or wish to report misconduct, please feel free to reach out directly to Karen O'Neill, our Head of School, via email (email@example.com) or phone (+81 (0)3-3451-5520).
The Nishimachi Therapy Fund
As announced in our community letter dated September 17, 2018, Nishimachi has established the Nishimachi's Therapy Fund, a referral and reimbursement program for survivors who wish to obtain professional counseling & Survivors of sexual abuse that occurred while they were attending Nishimachi may obtain counseling at no cost, whether or not they speak to the investigators.
We have entered into an arrangement with RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network), a leading provider of sexual assault services in the U.S., known for its victim-centered, trauma-informed approach. RAINN will provide support to alumni in two ways: 1) immediate emotional support services and 2) assistance in obtaining reimbursement for the cost of future therapy sessions through the Nishimachi Therapy Fund Hotline.
RAINN is available 24/7 to support survivors through the National Sexual Assault Hotline (NSAH). RAINN operates the NSAH in partnership with over 1,000 U.S. providers. Hotline staff are trained and available to support anyone in or outside the U.S. in need of immediate crisis intervention. RAINN can provide U.S.-based callers with resources to help them locate a counselor or therapist in their area. The NSAH be reached via telephone at +1 800-656-4783 or via online chat at www.online.rainn.org.
Alumni who wish to access the Therapy Fund, established to support alumni who want help paying for current therapy needed because of adult sexual misconduct they experienced during their time at Nishimachi, should call RAINN &Nishimachi-specific line at +1 (855) 245-4955 (toll-free in the U.S.). International access is available at +1 202-849-7729.
For more information about the Therapy Fund, please see our FAQ page.