Meeting your responsibilities
There are a number of practical things that schools should do to prevent students being drawn into terrorism and to challenge extremist ideas: carry out a risk assessment, work in partnership, train staff and have appropriate IT policies and practices in place.
First, as a school leader, you should familiarise yourself with key documents including keeping children safe in education and the Prevent duty guidance. You should also do the following:
Carry out an appropriate risk assessment:
- Assess the risk of children being drawn into terrorism, including support for extremist ideas that are part of terrorist ideology
- Make sure your school understands the risks that are likely to be relevant to your students and can respond appropriately
- Consider the risk to your students presented by extremist groups who use social media and the internet to recruit young people
- Talk to your local authority and police to get practical information to help you understand the risks in your area
Build on existing local partnership arrangements:
- Ensure your school’s safeguarding arrangements take into account your Safeguarding Partners Children policies. Safeguarding Partners are responsible for coordinating how agencies promote and safeguard the welfare of children in the local area.
- Work with your local authority who is a vital partner for all aspects of Prevent work and who can provide further advice on Prevent-related issues
- Seek advice and support from the police service, civil society organisations and families and parents
- Ensure that your school has effective arrangements for communicating with parents/carers and families, as they can often be key to spotting signs of radicalisation
Ensure staff have access to training:
- As a minimum, you should ensure that your designated safeguarding lead undertakes Prevent awareness training and is able to provide advice and support to other members of staff
- Other staff should also have access to training that will help them identify children at risk
Make sure that children are safe online at your school:
- Ensure that your school has suitable filtering in place
- Equip your students to stay safe online both at school and outside
- Integrate internet safety into your school’s ICT curriculum, which can also be embedded in PSHE and SRE
Free online training from the Home Office is available.
The following documents will be useful for head teachers, teachers and governors: Keeping children safe in education; Prevent duty guidance.