Parental responsibility guidance
The Department for Education has published guidance to help schools and local authorities in England understand and deal with issues relating to parental responsibility as recognised by education law, in particular in situations where parental responsibility can be confusing or unclear.
Source: DfE Date: 03 September 2018
Welsh Government to offer more mental health support to school
The Welsh Government has announced that they will focus on a new ‘whole school ‘ approach to mental health and wellbeing in schools to ensure that it becomes central to the way schools work.
This means that the school ethos in Wales will support the broader mental health and wellbeing of learners, and should in turn help to prevent other issues from developing or escalating.
Source: Welsh Government Date: 07 September 2018
Experiences of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller pupils at school
The BBC reports that the House of Commons Women and Equalities Committee has heard evidence from experts pointing out that bullying, racism and feeling left out of the curriculum are major factors in low school attendance rates among children and young people from the Gypsy, Roma and Traveller (GRT) community. The Women and Equalities Committee is holding an inquiry to look at inequalities faced by the GRT community.
Source: BBC Date: 12 September 2018
Further information: Tackling inequalities faced by Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities
Updates to keeping children safe in education
The Department for Education (DfE) has updated the Keeping children safe in education statutory guidance for England to include: a link to The Childcare (Disqualification) and Childcare (Early Years Provision Free of Charge) (Extended Entitlement) (Amendment) Regulations 2018 (paragraph 132); and clarification on the point at which a school must make referral to the Disclosure and Barring Service (paragraphs 158 and 159). The flowchart titled ‘Actions where there are concerns about a child’ in Keeping children safe in education: for school and college staff (part 1) has also been updated to make it more accessible.
Source: DfE Date: 19 September 2018
Further information: Keeping children safe in education: statutory guidance for schools and colleges (PDF)
Child abuse image offences
The NSPCC has released figures from a freedom of information request sent to 43 police forces across England and Wales, and a formal request for information from police forces in Northern Ireland and Scotland, asking them for the number of recorded offences for indecent images (still or moving) of children. Figures show that 22,724 offences were recorded in 2017/18, an increase of 23% on the previous year. The NSPCC Wild West Web campaign is calling on the government to adopt new laws to protect children online.
Source: NSPCC: Child abuse image offence recorded Date: 13 September 2018
Further information: NSPCC Wild West Web campaign
Cafcass has published its monthly care application statistics for England. In August 2018, Cafcass received a total of 1,179 new care applications. This figure is 5.1% lower than August 2017.
Source: Cafcass Date: 14 September 2018
National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) is hosting a Facebook Live event on 29 August 2018 at 1.15pm looking at how we should respond to child abuse. NSPCC lead on tackling sexual abuse Jon Brown is taking part in the discussion and will focus on the signs of abuse and neglect, and describe the NSPCC Letting the Future In service which supports and helps children who have been sexually abused.
Source: Facebook Live: how should we respond to child abuse? Date: 23 August 2018
Further information: Child abuse and neglect: NICE guideline [NG76]
NSPCC: Letting the Future In
The BBC reports that the National Education Union (NEU) has called for all private home tutors to face criminal record checks before being allowed to work with children. Currently, unlike classroom teachers, classroom tutors do not have to undergo a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check before working with children.
Source: BBC Date: 17 July 2018
Further information: NSPCC: Trust to lead campaign
Children’s social care data: England
Ofsted has published inspection data and information about the providers and places of children’s social care in England and inspection outcomes for local authority children’s services. Figures show that: as at 31 March 2018, there were 2,209 children’s homes in England, a 3% increase on the previous year.
Source: Ofsted Date: 19 July 2018
Further information: Children’s social care data in England 2017 to 2018: main findings
Relationships and sex education and health education: consultation
The Department for Education (DfE) is seeking views on draft regulations, statutory guidance and a regulatory impact assessment for relationships and sex education and health education in schools in England. The guidance will become compulsory in all schools across England from September 2020. Proposals include: all schools will be required to teach compulsory relationships education in primary school; relationships and sex education in secondary school and health education (about physical and mental health) in all state funded schools. Lessons will also help young people keep personal information private, navigate the virtual world, challenge harmful content and balance online and offline worlds. The consultation closes on 07 November 2018.
Source: DfE Date: 19 July 2018
Further information: Relationships education, relationships and sex education, and health education (online survey)
Relationships education, relationships and sex education (RSE) and health education: draft for consultation (PDF)