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Please be aware that all forms of exploitation are considered to be abuse. Understanding of the context, situations, and relationships in which exploitation of children is likely to manifest is an essential component to understanding the child's situation.

Child abuse is when anyone under the age of 18 is either being harmed or not properly looked after. There are four main categories of child abuse: physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse and neglect. The first step in helping children who have been abused or neglected is learning to recognise the signs of maltreatment. The presence of a single sign does not necessarily mean that child maltreatment is occurring, but a closer look at the situation may be warranted when these signs appear repeatedly or in combination. To protect children, school staff need to be professionally curious and know the signs to look for.