Safeguarding in schools: call for evidence

18th April 2024

image of a teacher with a student

The Department for Education (DfE) has launched a call for evidence in relation to safeguarding in schools and colleges. Whilst the DfE makes annual updates to its Keeping Children Safe in Education guidance, safeguarding is an ever-evolving challenge, and the sector frequently faces new threats. A broad call for evidence has therefore been launched to consider how best to respond to threats to safeguarding in the sector, and to learn from issues which school safeguarding professionals have faced.

The areas to be covered by the call for evidence are broad, and include the role of the designated safeguarding lead, filtering and monitoring, and artificial intelligence (AI). Given that AI is not covered by the current Keeping Children Safe in Education 2023, this is perhaps indicative of the increasing role which AI is expected to play in day to day life, including the lives of pupils. Schools should be alert to how AI may impact the education sector in the future, and any threat is may pose in terms of safeguarding.

The 12-week call for evidence will close on 20 June 2024 and will help to carve out future development to Keeping Children Safe in Education and form long-term policies to support schools to comply with their safeguarding duties.

Safeguarding is one of the more challenging issues which schools face, and can also have serious consequences for not only pupils, but also for staff at the school if schools do not get it right. All schools must ensure that all staff have an understanding of their safeguarding obligations and are provided with training. You should also ensure that your child protection and safeguarding policy is kept up to date to ensure compliance with the current statutory guidance, which is updated on an annual basis.

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