Schools have a legal duty, called the Prevent duty, to “have due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism”.
If you have any concerns about the wellbeing or safety of any young person or child in our care please contact TWGSB's Safeguarding Officers: Amanda Simpson, Headteacher and Harriet Cameron, Welfare Manager (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Anyone can be vulnerable to extremism and radicalisation, but children are particularly at risk. As they grow and become more independent, it is not unusual for them to take risks, explore new things and push boundaries. Teenage years are often a time when young people will be searching for answers to questions about identity, faith and belonging, as well as looking for adventure and excitement. Extremist groups know young people are vulnerable and may claim to offer them answers, identity and a strong social network, and using the internet and social media to spread their ideology.
Given the rise of extremist voices it’s important that schools know how to protect children from this threat. The Prevent duty, which is embedded as part of the school’s wider safeguarding policies, helps to:
- Protect students from radicalising influences
- Build students’ resilience to extremist narratives
- Identify any vulnerabilities or worrying changes in behaviour
- Know what to do if you there are concerns about a student
Prevent is not about spying on students or intruding unnecessarily into their families. It’s about making sure that worrying behaviour can be identified and knowing how to refer those students who may be at risk of radicalisation for appropriate support.
There are no mandatory reporting requirements under the Prevent duty. If staff have a concern, they should follow their school’s safeguarding procedures.
There are several things staff can do to increase students’ resilience to extremist narratives, such as:
- Making sure their classroom is a safe space where students can discuss ideas and controversial issues freely and openly
- Providing skills and knowledge to explore political and social issues critically, to weigh evidence, debate and make reasoned arguments
- Promoting the fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty, and mutual respect for and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs
What can make children vulnerable to radicalisation: https://educateagainsthate.com/parents/is-my-child-vulnerable-to-radicalisation/
What are the warning signs of radicalisation: https://educateagainsthate.com/parents/what-are-the-warning-signs-parents/
Click here for information on what to do if you think a child is being radicalised: https://educateagainsthate.com/parents/what-should-i-do-if-i-think-my-child-has-been-exposed-to-extremism-or-radicalisation/