Child abuse: Resources offer crucial safeguarding insights for schools

Written by: Pete Henshaw | Published:

Resources to help school and education professionals identify and respond to concerns of child sexual abuse have been published.

The Centre of Expertise on Child Sexual Abuse has created the resources which are relevant for colleagues working in England and Wales.

They include guidance on communicating with children, parents, and carers as well as a safety planning in education guide on harmful sexual behaviour. There are three guides:

Communicating with children: Provides guidance on how professionals should respond when they have concerns of sexual abuse, what to say and avoid, building an understanding of context, how to support children and advice on responding to harmful sexual behaviour at school.

Communicating with parents and carers: Designed to help professionals understand more about how child sexual abuse affects parents and carers and their children, so that they can support them effectively. Understandably, many teachers say they find it hard to talk to parents when there are concerns, this guide helps to support conversations of this kind and build confidence.

Safety Planning in Education: Provides practical support to respond to children’s needs and safety when incidents of harmful sexual behaviour occur. It is split into two: Part A looks at the key actions for a school when an incident of harmful sexual behaviour has occurred, including a safety plan template for recording and reviewing arrangements, and Part B focusses on broader practical advice such as how to communicate with children, and their parents, and an appendix with useful links and resources.

The resources also include an easy-to-use “signs and indicators” template which helps those working with children and young people to build a picture of their concerns.

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