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STOP PRESS - DfE Publishes Response to KCSIE Consultation and Revised Draft Guidance

on Friday, 18 May 2018.

The DfE published its response to the KCSIE consultation and revised draft guidance yesterday to enable schools to plan for its commencement on 3 September 2018.

Schools and colleges should continue to refer to the 2016 version of the guidance until then.

A link to both documents can be found here.

There are a number of changes from the draft which was consulted on earlier this year and further changes could be made before implementation, albeit that these are likely to be minor.

The key points to note are:

  • Most changes have been made to add clarity to the document. There are however some new obligations, including in Part 1 which all staff must read and understand.
  • Part 1 - Safeguarding Information for All Staff:

- There is an extension of the materials to be covered on induction.

- Staff are required to be particularly alert to the potential need for the early help of some defined classes of individuals.

- The DSL and their deputies should have a complete safeguarding picture and are identified as the most appropriate staff members to advise on the school's response to safeguarding concerns and to lead on early help considerations, but if they are not available, staff should speak to the SLT or children's services without delay and follow up/escalate matters if information is not forthcoming.

- Schools should identify other whistleblowing mechanisms available to staff who feel unable to raise concerns with the school directly.

- All staff should consider the wider context in which safeguarding incidents or behaviours occur.

  • Part 2 - Management of Safeguarding:

- Governing bodies and proprietors should have a senior board level lead to take leadership responsibility.

- School groups should ensure that each school has its own child protection (or safeguarding) policy.

- Information sharing is justified where safety may be at risk and/or to support pupils' transition to new schools.

- All staff should be clear about procedures for managing allegations of peer-on-peer abuse.

- Schools should have clear arrangements to support previously looked-after children and care leavers, as well as looked-after children.

- Schools should have policies in place to support appropriate physical contact and the use of reasonable force for all pupils.

- School leaders and those who work directly with children should read Annex A which contains new information about specific forms of abuse and safeguarding issues.

Further revisions are likely to be made to this section (and other areas of the guidance) to reflect the changes to be made to Working together to safeguard children (WT), GDPR and the Data Protection Bill.

  • Parts 3 and 4 (Safer Recruitment and Allegations of Abuse Made Against Teachers and Other Staff): minor changes have been made to improve clarity. No new requirements have been introduced.
  • There is a new Part 5 - Child-on-Child Sexual Violence and Sexual Harassment. This is markedly different from the guidance attached to the consultation and focuses on the identification of concerns. It should be read in conjunction with the non-statutory advice on this topic.

Should you have any queries about the latest version of the guidance or how to implement it in your school, please contact Tabitha Cave on 0117 314 5381 or Richard Hewitt on 0117 314 5320.

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