Keeping Children Safe in Education – an update
I know last year I had some great feedback when I highlighted some changes in key guidance. So I am taking this opportunity to update you that in September 2022 the document ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education’ will have some changes.
The current version of this document can be found here (PDF).
As the guidance states:
‘Schools and colleges in England must have regard to it when carrying out their duties to safeguard and promote the welfare of children.’
However, I work with many groups who – although they are not schools or colleges - find this guidance useful. For example, a group providing holiday activities for children have checked their own ways of working using this document and found some helpful advice.
Helpfully, the main changes are summarised by the NSPCC here (PDF).
Different parts of the changes will resonate with different people, but considering some of the questions and discussions I have been having with some of the groups I have trained recently I would particularly note:
- It is fab to see that the updated guidance stresses that a children may not feel ready or know how to disclose abuse
- A increased emphasis on Domestic Abuse is welcome, supporting recent changes in the law in this area (more information here.)
- The emphasis on safeguarding training for governors and trustees – something which is SO important
- When managing disclosures, the need to take account of low level concerns
- More information on online safety
- The section about child on child sexual violence and harassment has been expanded to incorporate guidance previously covered in the DfE’s Sexual violence and sexual harassment between children in schools and colleges advice
- As part of safer recruitment, an online search for any shortlisted candidate should be carried out. I have already had some concerns raised about this – including - how long it will take, is it over intrusive? A reminder that:
- This is for shortlisted candidates only
- It is looking for information in the public domain
- It should be carried out by someone independent of the interview panel to avoid inadvertent discrimination
- Start off with google, then look at popular social media sites
- You are asking yourself two questions:
- Is there anything here which make me think this person is not suitable to work with children?
- Does their social media presence suggest they could be a reputational risk to your establishment?
As always, I hope this is useful and