Safeguarding e-Bulletin - 5th June 2024

Sam Preston 5 June 2024 3 min read

Welcome to the SSS Learning June 24 e-bulletin.

I hope you had a good half-term break. I thought I’d take this opportunity to share details of the new training courses we’ll be adding to our portfolio over the coming months before a review of the latest safeguarding news below:
  • Keeping children safe in education (KCSIE)- There are a number of technical changes which staff should be aware of together with other legislative statutory requirements. So with that in mind, we will be releasing an update course as usual in time for the new academic year, one to support governance and SLT and one to support staff.
  • Modern Slavery
  • Managing Allergies
  • Asbestos
  • Slips, Trips and Falls
  • Legionella
  • Working at Height
  • Infection Control
  • E-safety (incl. online safety) refresher
  • Child-on-child abuse refresher

I’d also like to personally thank you for all the positive feedback we’ve received regarding our Group Training option. It is a fantastic way to engage in training together and I am so glad you are finding it useful. We created this option following a request, so if you have any ideas on how we can develop our system to support you, just let us know.

In The News:

  • Death of nine-month-old boy at nursery ruled as misadventure
  • New law on Cuckooing
  • Permanent exclusions - Children with SEND
  • Compulsory reporting of child sexual abuse axed
  • Information sharing guidance

Death of nine-month-old boy at nursery ruled as misadventure

The inquest into the death of nine-month-old Oliver Steeper, who died after choking on food whilst attending nursery, has been ruled as ‘misadventure’.

Oliver, who attended Jelly Beans Day Nurserey in Ashford, Kent, died after inhaling and choking on pasta which he had been fed at the nursery despite staff being made aware by his mother that he was only eating pureed food at home.

The Inquiry found that:

‘It is apparent from evidence in this case that when confronted with an emergency situation of a choking child that staff, even those with a valid certificate in place, were not able to put into place the Resuscitation Council guidelines.

For example, no chest thrusts, a mouth sweep was given against the guidelines, staff were unsure of the strength of backslaps. I am concerned that even staff with valid training, who had it up to three years earlier, without regular refresher may not recall the finer particulars to ensure effective first aid is given.’

Despite hospitalisation, Oliver died six days later and medical procedures revealed he had a significant amount of food debris in his lungs, which the doctors were unable to remove.

The area coroner, Katrina Hepburn is to issue a prevention of future of deaths report to the Department of Education on the following issues:

  • Early years childcare providers only needing to have one member of staff with a valid paediatric first aid certificate, despite the fact they could be responsible for large numbers, in this case up to 80, children.
  • Even staff with a valid paediatric first aid certificate were not able to put into place recommended guidelines and recommended regular refresher courses.

New law on Cuckooing

Cuckooing is illegal under an amendment to the Criminal Justice Bill, effective from June 1, 2024. This offence criminalises the control, whether exercised by means of coercion or otherwise, over a person’s home for the purpose of using it as a base to commit specified criminal activity.

Permanent exclusions - Children with SEND

Latest DFE statistics for the academic year 2022/2023 have revealed an increase in the number of school exclusions, and that children with special educational needs and disabilities are disproportionately affected.

The statistics for the academic year revealed that there were 3,039 permanent exclusions and that children with an Education Health and Care Plan were excluded at a rate of 0.7 compared to 0.2 for pupils without SEND. The rate of exclusions for SEND pupils without an EHCP was six points higher 0.12 than the national average.

Commenting on the data, former Children’s Commissioner for England, Anne Longfield remarked that:

‘Most schools are doing their very best to keep children in school but they are not being helped by an overstretched and underfunded SEND system that is failing some vulnerable children.’

The statistics also revealed that certain groups were more at risk of exclusion including boys, those eligible for free school meals and children from Gypsy Roma and Irish Traveller communities.

Compulsory reporting of child sexual abuse axed

The plans to introduce compulsory reporting of child sexual abuse (CSA) through the Crime Sentencing Bill have been dropped. The proposed Bill was in reaction to the recommendations of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse however, it did not pass through the parliamentary process, required to become enacted, due to the announcement of the pre-election period.

Under the planned Bill, staff who failed to report concerns could have been barred from working with young people, with those deemed to be actively protecting abusers facing up to seven years in prison.

Information sharing guidance

The DFE has updated its guidance on Information sharing advice for safeguarding practitioners The guidance has been updated to reflect the content of Working together to safeguard children, highlighting that a child is defined as anyone who has not yet reached their 18th birthday.

Sam Preston

SSS Learning Safeguarding Director

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