What is your safeguarding process?

Information about safeguarding at Zero Gravity

Elliot avatar
Written by Elliot
Updated over a week ago

Working with Safeguarding experts, we have developed industry-leading safeguarding technology and policies to protect the welfare of our students in the digital world.

Safeguarding by design

Zero Gravity is built on a safeguarding-by-design methodology. This means that every element of the platform has been built with safeguarding at its core.

Zero Gravity’s safeguarding is built upon four pillars

  • Mentor verification and training

  • Communication exclusively through Zero Gravity’s mentoring platform

  • Tracking, recording and monitoring

  • Continuous feedback and safeguarding reporting

Mentor verification and training

  • Verification: All mentors are identity verified via their university institution before they are onboarded by Zero Gravity - we have the details and university status of every mentor.

  • Anonymity: No identifiable or sensitive information is shared between mentee and mentor. Personal identities of mentors and mentees are semi-anonymised on the Zero Gravity platform, with no identifiable details or data shared between mentors and mentees (i.e. profile names are displayed as ‘Tom C’).

  • Training: All mentors complete safeguarding training on the platform as part of their onboarding to join Zero Gravity. They must do this before they’re able to be matched with a mentee.

  • Community Expectations: All mentees and mentors must attend a webinar on Zero Gravity and the expectation of its members before they're matched. The expectations are upheld by our members and overseen by the Zero Gravity team - neither mentee or mentor are able to be matched until they have attended the webinar.

Communication exclusively through Zero Gravity’s platform

  • Controlled communication: All communication between mentees & mentors occurs through the Zero Gravity Platform, with no communication outside the platform. All communication is tracked and recorded.

  • Controlled matching: The Zero Gravity platform uses a personalised matching algorithm to match mentees and mentors, meaning the selection process is operated by Zero Gravity and not the students.

  • Chat filtering: Our technology identifies and blocks attempts to share information that would allow matches to disintermediate from the platform.

  • AI powered tech - Our technology is able to detect sentiment in use that would suggest a member may be at risk, when sentiment is detected, triggers are automatically created for the Zero Gravity Safeguarding team to review

Tracking, recording and monitoring

  • Supervision by the Zero Gravity team: The Zero Gravity community are in constant contact with Zero Gravity’s Community Manager and Mentoring Success Lead who ensure positive progression of mentoring. They have complete oversight of students’ mentoring and act as an additional point of contact for students.

  • Tracking via schools dashboard: Schools have oversight of student mentoring via their schools’ dashboard, knowing who is in an active match and engaging with Zero Gravity - providing the opportunity to check in with those engaging with Zero Gravity mentoring and make sure they’re progressing positively.

  • Automated Tracking: The platform includes automatic inbuilt cloud recording functionality so all sessions and written communications are recorded and overseen by Zero Gravity.

Continuous feedback and safeguarding reporting

  • Pause communication: If a mentee or mentor has any concerns, they can pause their match and stop all communication at the click of a button, whilst simultaneously triggering an alert to the Zero Gravity team to check in on the student.

  • Report: There is a safeguarding report button integrated into the platform for instant safeguarding concern reporting direct to Zero Gravity’s Safeguarding Protection Officer (SPO).

  • Constant feedback: We have an inbuilt feedback feature that allows students to rate the quality of their mentoring and raise any issues directly to the Zero Gravity team.

Watch our presentation Zero Gravity’s Safeguarding by Design Pillars below:

A PDF version of the presentation can be obtained upon request.

DBS checks

Every member of the Zero Gravity team undergoes an Enhanced DBS check before they join the organisation. Additionally, all Zero Gravity team members are NSPCC safeguarding training accredited. Both Enhanced DBS Check and NSPCC Safeguarding Certificates are available upon request.

Safeguarding Policy

Zero Gravity’s Safeguarding contacts:

  • Tom Haywood-Pope (COO) - Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL)

  • Alex O’Connor (Student Talent Lead) - Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead (DDSL)

  • Gill Camina - Independent Safeguarding Advisor (ISA)

You can find the full Zero Gravity safeguarding policy below:

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