Safeguarding help and support from Andrew Hall
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Safeguarding Briefing - 6th July 2020

Dear Colleague

How Covid-19 is Affecting the Mental Health of Young People in the BAME Community (Kooth)

Children and young people from black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) backgrounds are showing greater increases in depression, anxiety, self harm and suicidal thoughts than white peers during COVID-19 pandemic.

A data insight report from young people's mental health & wellbeing platform, Kooth, found that the mental health concerns of their BAME users have seen a greater increase that those of their white peers. (The timeframe of this report does not include the more recent focus on Black Lives Matter; this will be a focus of future reports.)

Suicidal thoughts as a presenting issue has seen a worrying increase among BAME CYP of 26.6% on 2019. Among white CYP, we have seen a lower increase (18.1%).

White children and young people (CYP) have shown a decrease in depression (-16.2%) during COVID while BAME users have shown a 9% increase.

Anxiety/stress is the most prevalent issue for BAME CYP on Kooth and has seen a 11.4% increase on the previous year. Among their white counterparts, the issue has seen a far lower increase (3%).

You can download the infographic here:

What is Kooth?

Kooth is a British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) accredited digital mental health support service. It gives children and young people easy access to an online community of peers and a team of experienced counsellors. Access is free of the typical barriers to support.

Kooth can be accessed by young people here:


Supporting the mental health and wellbeing of education staff through professional supervision structures (Barnados Scotland)

"Supervision involves talking through the impact the work has* *on you personally, as well as exploring decision-making. It is vital for practitioners’ well-being, professional development, and management oversight. Most importantly, supervision helps you to achieve the best possible outcomes for children." Yvette Stanley, Ofsted National Director for Social Care (October 2018).

In Inspecting safeguarding in early years, education and skills settings (2019)(page 10), Ofsted cite regular supervision for staff who work with 'directly...with learners whose safety and welfare are at risk' as a 'sign of successful safeguarding arrangements'. Disappointingly, professional supervision was left out of the new Keeping Children Safe in Education for 2020.

In Scotland, Barbados have published a report looking at the benefits of, and need for, greater opportunities for supervision for school staff.

You can download their report here:

Supervision Training

Although I have offered an open supervision course in the past, I found I didn't really have the space to continue with it. I do however offer an introduction to supervision in my DSL course.

I get emails regularly asking for sources of supervision training, as it is surprisingly difficult to find.

The best and most practical book I found on the topic is 'Using Supervision in Schools' by Jo Rowe, an educational psychologist and Penny Sturt an independent consultant and registered social worker. The book covers the theory and practice of supervision, and partly arises from their pilot undertaken with Designated Safeguarding Leads in the West Country.

Using Supervision in Schools: A guide to building safe cultures and providing emotional support in a range of school settings can be purchased direct from the publishers here:

Or from Amazon here:

Online Learning (Katy Potts)

Katy Potts, is the Computing, Digital and Online Lead for Schools in Islington. Throughout the period of lockdown Kate has been keeping schools there updated with a website full of useful information.

Schools have reported a number of very serious online safety incidents during the lockdown period and continue to use a range of communication channels with children and families at home to share Online Safety support inc fun challenges, newsletter reminders and scripted weekly phone call. *internet use during the night is a key concern.

Katy has summarised a list of updated lockdown resources from LGFL, CEOP, Safer Internet Centre and Common Sense Media here:

Suggested wording for a letter to parents about being a good friend and staying safe online (LGfL)

Mark Bentley from LGfL writes: In response to requests from schools, here is a letter template you can use or adapt to send to parents, outlining a few principles that teachers and parents can remind children about while they are spending more time online, including friendship and bullying, sharing scary things and getting undressed.

ChildNet Film Competition

A few weeks ago I told you about the Child Net Film competition. The winners have now been announced.

First place went to Eva from Grafton Primary School, Dagenham. Her great stop motion film focusses on how an internet without bullies would look like.

Jess from Selston High School won the secondary school prize and the group winners were from Allesley Primary School in Coventry.

All these films are a great resource for learning resource, and also as a possible prompt for children to make their own.

You can see all the videos, and the runners-up, here:

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Government guidance for parents - online harms

The government has produced a useful webpage listing sources of advice and support for keeping their children safe. The guide includes information about:

  • Protect children from domestic abuse
  • Teenage relationship abuse
  • Child sexual abuse and exploitation
  • Sexual assault referral centres
  • Crime, Criminal Exploitation and County Lines, violence and gangs
  • Protect children from radicalisation
  • Prevent
  • Online child safety
  • Mental health

You can find the information here:

Death of 13-year old boy: 15, charged with supplying class A drug

A reminder that drug deaths can emerge anywhere. These two boys could be in your school, buying and selling ecstasy.

The teenager was found unconscious at a park around a mile from his home in April 2019. In May this year an inquest found the boy had died from a "violent reaction" to an "excessive" amount of ecstasy.

A 15-year old has now been charged with supplying a class A drug, MDMA, also known as ecstasy.

Information about ecstasy:

Guidance for parents and carers of children attending out-of-school settings during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak (

The government has issued guidance for parents about any out-of-school settings they use for their children. This will become particularly important as the summer holidays begin.

The guidance includes a section about choosing a suitable provider and provides some examples of positive signs to look out for when choosing an out-of-school setting for your child.

In addition to covid-19 related issues, the guidance covers safhiarding matters too, including finding out whether staff members and volunteers have relevant child protection training, and relevant checks have been made.

You can find the guidance here:

Online Tutors – Safeguarding Considerations

I think one growth area as we come out of the lockdown period, will be in tutoring, both online and in-person. Parents and students may well feel that they have gaps which tutors can fill.

Tutoring is not a well-regulated industry and essentially anyone can just set up as a tutor whatever their skills, qualifications or background history.

South West Grid for Learning have created two articles looking at the safeguarding issues for both tutors and those engaging them.

How to become an Online Tutor

Online Tutoring – Safeguarding Considerations for Schools

The London Borough of Redbridge has a useful leaflet for parents and carers who are looking for a tutor.

Thinking of using the services of a Private Tutor or Tuition Centre?

Book Whole School CPD for September 2020

I'm now able to take bookings for a safeguarding course for whole school staff teams. This course will be available from Tuesday 25th August 2020.

The course is approximately 2.25 hours (including a short-break) and is available in two formats:

  • at a scheduled time for one school or group (max. 100) with Andrew online in the chat box to answer questions and comments (pre-booked) Click to find and book a date (LIMITED DATES AVAILABLE); or
  • at a scheduled time for one specific school or group (pre-booked) Click here to book

Once set up, the courses will be available
on-demand for
the next month to either re-visit the content or for colleagues who missed the session.

The course will include the key messages around safeguarding including:

  • updates to Keeping Children Safe in Education (2020)
  • mental health
  • online harms
  • criminal exploitation of children
  • child protection refresher
  • post-COVID19 challenges

The course will conclude with an individual session review exercise and a certificate of completion for each person. For the scheduled course we will be able to supply a list of participants. For technical reasons this is not possible for the on-demand sessions.

The course can be viewed on a phone or tablet, as well as a computer. For your privacy and comfort, participants will not be on camera.

Forthcoming Courses

Advanced Safeguarding for DSLs (Online)

The last scheduled course with myself and a group of other people will be this week.

ONLINE Tuesday, 7th July 2020 10am start Book Online (30 places maximum)

The ON-DEMAND course will continue to be available until the end of July. Book online

Please note that if you have not completed the course, you should aim to do that before the end of July, as I can't guarantee your sign-up links will be valid after that.

Dates for September 2020

The first online DSL Course for next academic year will be:
Thursday 10th September 2020 10am start <<Book Online>>

Safeguarding and Remote Learning (Online)

Access to this course will end on Friday 31st July 2020.

Until then you can book online here:

Andrew Hall
Specialist Safeguarding Consultant
Success In Schools Ltd.

Telephone: 01223 929269

Our mailing address is:

Success In Schools Ltd., The Epicentre, Enterprise Way, Haverhill, SUFFOLK, CB9 7LR, United Kingdom

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