How to keep children safe during the Coronavirus crisis

How to keep children safe during the Coronavirus crisis

Coronavirus (COVID-19): safeguarding in schools, colleges, and other providers.

This interim safeguarding guidance which was published on Friday will be regularly reviewed by The Department for Education. 

Here is a summary of what was covered and relevant online courses that can help at this time.

Where schools and colleges collaborate and children and/or staff from multiple settings are clustered in one place, the principles in Keeping Children Safe in Education remain.  

  • Always put the best interests of children first 
  • If anyone in a school or college has a safeguarding concern about any child, they should continue to act and act immediately 
  • There should be a DSL or deputy available 
  • It is essential that unsuitable people are not allowed to enter the children’s workforce and/or gain access to children 
  • Children should continue to be protected when they are online 

Child Protection Policy 

It is important schools and colleges, led by the Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) or deputy, review their Child Protection Policy and keep it under review in response to COVID- 19.  

The policy should reflect the following: 

  • Any update advice given by local safeguarding partners. 
  • Any update advice received from the local authority regarding children with EHCPs or children, looked after children and previously looked after children. 
  • Any update regarding reporting and referral thresholds. 
  • What staff and volunteers should do if they have safeguarding concerns and the importance of acting immediately, this should include if they have concerns about a staff member or volunteer who may pose a risk. 
  • DSL and deputy arrangements. 
  • Any arrangements in place to support children that the school or college are concerned about that do not meet the vulnerable definition. 
  • Peer-on- peer abuse. 
  • What arrangements are in place to those children who are not physically in school or college safe. 

It is important that all staff and volunteers are aware of the new policy and are kept up to date as it is revised. The revised policy should continue to be made available publicly. 

EduCare courses that can help 
Child Protection in Education Online Course

Child Protection in Education Online Course

Child protection is about protecting children from violence, exploitation, abuse and neglect and keeping them safe from harm. It is about promoting the health and welfare of children and young people helping them to grow up in a safe and supportive environment. Child Protection in Education, endorsed by Kidscape and Family Lives is designed for those who work with children and young people in an education setting. This course is important for anyone that works with children and young people in an education setting. It's purpose is to raise awareness of abuse, neglect and other harms, recognise early signs that might indicate a problem, and how to take appropriate action.

Read more
Raising Awareness of Peer-on-Peer Abuse

Raising Awareness of Peer-on-Peer Abuse

Peer-on-peer abuse is any form of physical, sexual, emotional, financial, and/or coercive control exercised between children and young people; this includes intimate and non-intimate relationships.

Read more

Child Protection in Education Online Course

This five module course delivers five CPD hours and comprehensively covers:

  • what forms child abuse can take and the effects it can have
  • signs that may mean a child is suffering abuse and how to respond if a child confides in you
  • processes for reporting abuse
  • the child protection system
  • good practice guidelines.

Additional information

Raising Awareness of Peer-on-Peer Abuse

The purpose of this course is to help you:

  • understand what peer-on-peer abuse is
  • understand the different types of peer-on-peer abuse
  • understand who peer-on-peer abuse may affect and what external influences there are
  • be aware of the prevalence of peer-on-peer abuse
  • understand social norms and peer pressure
  • recognise early signs that might indicate abuse
  • know what action to take if you know or suspect that a young person is experiencing abuse
  • implement preventative strategies within school or college.

Additional Information

DSL and deputy arrangements 

In normal circumstances, any school or college providing care for children should have a trained DSL or deputy available on site. It is recognised this may not be possible, and where this is the case there are 2 options to consider: 

  • a trained DSL or deputy from the school or college can be available to be contacted via phone or online video - for example working from home 
  • sharing trained DSLs or deputies with other schools or colleges (who should be available to be contacted via phone or online video) 

Where a trained DSL or deputy is not on site, in addition to one of the above options, the department recommend a senior leader takes responsibility for co-ordinating safeguarding on site. 

All staff and volunteers must have access to a trained DSL or deputy on any given day and know who that person is and how to speak to them. 

It is acknowledged that DSL training is very unlikely to take place during this period (although the option of online training can be explored). For the period COVID-19 measures are in place, a DSL (or deputy) who has been trained will continue to be classed as a trained DSL (or deputy) even if they miss their refresher training. 

Vulnerable Children  

School and college staff should continue to work with and support children’s social workers to help protect vulnerable children. 

Visit the government website to find out more

Click here >>

Attendance  

Local authorities and schools do not need to complete their usual day-to-day attendance processes to follow up on non-attendance. 

Schools and colleges should: 

  • be agreeing with families and social worker whether children in need should be attending education provision 
  • follow up any children's attendance who are expected to attend and do not it  
  • confirm emergency numbers with parents and carers 
  • complete a daily attendance form, this can be found on the Department for Education website.  

Visit the government website to find out more:

Click here >>

Suitable Courses
School Attendance and Children Missing Education

School Attendance and Children Missing Education

The purpose of this course is to help you understand the current law and guidance relating to school attendance and children missing education. It covers the main guidance documents, statutory duties for local authorities and schools, children not on roll and other key areas.

Read more

School Attendance and Children Missing Education

Staff training and safeguarding induction 

Where new staff are recruited, or new volunteers enter the school or college, they should be provided with a safeguarding induction. Existing school and college workforce may move between schools and colleges on a temporary basis in response to COVID-19, in these cases, induction training should be on a case-by-case basis. 

Suitable online courses for induction training

 

Child Protection in Education Online Course

Child Protection in Education Online Course

Child protection is about protecting children from violence, exploitation, abuse and neglect and keeping them safe from harm. It is about promoting the health and welfare of children and young people helping them to grow up in a safe and supportive environment. Child Protection in Education, endorsed by Kidscape and Family Lives is designed for those who work with children and young people in an education setting. This course is important for anyone that works with children and young people in an education setting. It's purpose is to raise awareness of abuse, neglect and other harms, recognise early signs that might indicate a problem, and how to take appropriate action.

Read more
Safeguarding Young People

Safeguarding Young People

Safeguarding Young People, endorsed by established youth organisations, provides the key information needed to help raise your awareness of young people who may be vulnerable because of their age, relative inexperience, past abusive experiences or current circumstances.

Read more

Child Protection in Education Online Course

This five module course delivers five CPD hours and comprehensively covers:

  • what forms child abuse can take and the effects it can have
  • signs that may mean a child is suffering abuse and how to respond if a child confides in you
  • processes for reporting abuse
  • the child protection system
  • good practice guidelines.

Additional information

Safeguarding Young People

This four module course delivers four CPD hours and comprehensively covers:

  •  Identify who may be vulnerable.
  • Recognise the signs and indicators of abuse.
  • Understand what to do if a young person confides abuse to you.
  • Learn about recording and reporting procedures.
  • Recognise good practice guidelines.

Additional information

A Practical Guide to the GDPR for Education

A Practical Guide to the GDPR for Education

This course offers practical advice for staff working within an education setting that deal with personal data. The GDPR applies to both automated personal data and to manual filing systems where personal data is accessible according to specific criteria.

Read more
Health and Safety in Education: Staff Awareness

Health and Safety in Education: Staff Awareness

This course is aimed at those who work within any educational establishment.

Read more

A Practical Guide to the GDPR for Education

This course outlines key elements of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in an education setting and will help you to understand:

  • what personal data is
  • how personal data is used
  • why there is a need for a change in data protection
  • the new GDPR
  • new legal requirements
  • Privacy Impact Assessments
  • new rights for ‘data subjects’

Additional information

Health and Safety in Education: Staff Awareness

This course covers:

  1. The legal position and who enforces health and safety law in the UK.
  2. Health and Safety policies and procedures.
  3. Risk assessments - including the HSE’s 5-step process for undertaking them.
  4. The importance of communication, co-operation, co-ordination and consultation in your organisation.
  5. Statutory inspection, maintenance and monitoring of systems and equipment.
  6. Specific health and safety considerations including fire/emergency procedures, first aid, display screen equipment, working at height, manual handling, hazardous substances, electricity, welfare, asbestos, water hygiene and lone working.

Additional Information

Fire Safety in Education

Fire Safety in Education

Fire Safety in Education provides the fundamental information needed to protect any education premises against fire.

Read more

Fire Safety in Education

This four module course delivers four CPD hours and comprehensively covers:

  • the importance of fire safety training including legislation
  • the nature of the fire
  • fire hazards
  • what to do in the event of a fire
  • how to use a fire extinguisher
Additional information

Children moving schools and colleges 

It will be important for any school or college whose children are attending another setting to do whatever they reasonably can to provide the receiving institution with any relevant welfare and child protection information. 

Safer recruitment/volunteers and movement of staff 

If schools and colleges are recruiting new staff, they should continue to follow the relevant safer recruitment processes for their setting, including, as appropriate, relevant sections in part 3 of Keeping Children Safe in Education. Schools and colleges should continue to consider and make referrals to the Teaching Regulation Agency where needed. 

Suitable EduCare course that may help
Safer Recruitment in Education

Safer Recruitment in Education

This course on safer recruitment looks at what you need to do to safeguard children and young people from unsuitable people who might apply to join your education setting.

Read more

Safer Recruitment in Education

This four module course delivers four CPD hours and comprehensively covers:

  • the four key stages of the recruitment process
  • pre-recruitment planning and what must be in place before you advertise your post
  • rejecting candidates and meeting the right ones
  • obtaining the correct checks and references, including what's required from a DBS check
  • post-recruitment activities, including observation and supervision

Additional information

Mental Health 

Teachers should be aware of how the current circumstances can affect pupils and parents and should be aware of this with their expectations when setting work. 

Department for Education has provided separate guidance to support this.  

Visit the government website to find out more

Click here >>

Suitable courses from EduCare that can help
Mental Health Awareness

Mental Health Awareness

This set of courses will help you to understand important mental health issues including self-harm, low mood and depression and anxiety.

Read more

Mental Health Awareness

This package of courses delivers a total of three CPD credits across three separate courses and comprehensively covers important aspects of mental health such as:

  • Low mood and depression
  • Self-harm
  • Anxiety

Additional information

Online safety in schools and colleges 

 Schools and colleges should continue to ensure that appropriate filters and monitoring systems are in place to protect children when they are online on the school or college’s IT systems or recommended resources. 

It is important that all staff who interact with children, including online, continue to look out for signs a child may be at risk. Any such concerns should be dealt with as per the child protection policy. 

Suitable courses from EduCare that can help:
Digital Resilience Online Course

Digital Resilience Online Course

Why is it important to know about digital resilience? Children and young people’s use of the internet has undergone rapid expansion with growing use of social media and increased use of mobile technologies. Smartphone and tablet ownership has risen sharply and young people have greater autonomy than ever before to explore their own online world, bringing both opportunities and risks.

Read more
Online Safety

Online Safety

The purpose of this course is to help you understand how technology is changing, the nature of children and young people’s online world, and the risk and protective factors when going online. The course has a wide range of practical advice on what can be done by you as an individual and by any organisation you work for. The course was written in partnership with Childnet International, a non-profit organisation working with others to help make the internet a great and safe place for children.

Read more

Digital Resilience Online Course

This one module course delivers two CPD credits and comprehensively covers:

  • the digital world
  • opportunities for children & young people
  • vulnerability
  • online risk
  • emotional wellbeing
  • what is resilience?
  • helping children and young people in the digital world
  • young people's views
  • expert recommendations

Additional information

Online Safety

This two-module course will help you to understand the following:

  • Understanding Online Safety
    • Violent and extreme content
    • Potential risk factors
    • Types of content
    • How children can make and receive contact online
    • Conduct (e.g. Sexting, Online reputaton)
    • The law and statutory guidance

  • Developing a Safe Online Culture
    • Positive conversations
    • Reporting
    • Promoting good practice
    • Scenario (Short-term & long-term actions)
    • Further support available

Additional information

 

DfE coronavirus helpline  

Email DfE.coronavirushelpline@education.gov.uk  

Telephone 0800 046 8687  

If you have a query about coronavirus (COVID-19), relating to schools and other educational establishments in England contact our helpline. 
 
Lines are open Monday to Friday from 8am to 6pm and weekends 10am to 4pm. 

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