19/01/2022: Covid in schools: Inquiry launched to find 100,000 pupils absent in England

An inquiry is being launched into children who are not attending school in the wake of national lockdowns, the children’s commissioner for England has said. Dame Rachel de Souza said between 80,000 and 100,000 children were not on any school rolls at all. “Literally, I am going to go out and find them,” she told BBC News.

Read: BBC

18/01/2022: Universities pledge to stop silencing sex-assault victims

Victims of sexual harassment at some UK universities will no longer be silenced by “gagging” clauses, as part of a pledge backed by the government. A 2020 BBC News investigation found nearly a third of universities had used non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) to silence student complaints about sexual misconduct, bullying and harassment. Now, the government is asking the more than 150 universities in the UK not to use NDAs for such “shabby practice”.

Read: BBC

10/01/2022: New Harmful Sexual Behaviour Support Service Launched

SWGfL and The Marie Collins Foundation is pleased to announce the launch of a brand new support service that is there to support professionals working with children and young people around tackling harmful sexual behaviour incidents, funded by the Home Office and in collaboration with the Department for Education.

Read: South West Grid for Learning

07/01/2022: Get Ready for Safer Internet Day 2022

While we all may be getting back in the swing of things, there’s already plenty to look forward to for the new school term. Safer Internet Day is just over a month away and there’s already so much you can do to get involved. Take a look at some of the activities you can do below to show your support on the 8th February 2022.

Read: South West Grid for Learning

03/01/2022: Heads warn of weeks of Omicron disruption in English schools

School leaders in England are warning of weeks of disruption owing to high levels of staff Covid absences, which could lead to children being sent home to learn remotely.

Read: Guardian

17/12/2021: Omicron: Schools prepared if Covid forces online move next term

Schools across the UK say they are prepared to switch to online learning if they have to next term, as more children stay at home because of Covid. Some children are being asked to take laptops home with them before Christmas in preparation. More than 30 local authorities told the BBC that some classes had moved online at schools.

Read: BBC

17/12/2021: Covid absences for disadvantaged pupils raise catch-up concerns

School absence due to Covid-19 is much higher among disadvantaged pupils and those with special educational needs (SEND), a report reveals. The latest findings from Ofsted, which has published three separate investigations into how Covid-19 continues to impact on children and students’ learning and personal development and the approaches education providers are using to help them catch up, found low attendance remains a “stubborn concern”.

Read: Children and Young People Now

10/12/2021: Student stalked at university calls for change

A woman who was stalked and threatened with kidnap by a fellow student has told the BBC her university’s failure to act swiftly left her terrified. Katie, which is not her real name, now wants universities to overhaul policies on how to deal with sexual misconduct. Sahil Bhavnani admitted stalking, and was given a four-month suspended sentence this week.

Read: BBC

08/12/2021: Too many children left at risk too long – Ofsted

Too many vulnerable children are being left at risk of harm for far too long in many areas, Ofsted Chief Inspector Amanda Spielman has warned. Struggling child protection services in England had lost “the line of sight” to children in risky situations during the pandemic, she said. Ofsted’s annual report found nearly half of council children’s services require improvement, or are inadequate.

Read: BBC

08/12/2021: Pupils pressured regularly for nude photos, Estyn report finds

Pupils are pressured regularly to send nude photos and girls harassed over the length of their skirts, a school inspection report has found. About half of secondary pupils said they had experienced sexual harassment from fellow students. Estyn’s study found many pupils would not tell their teachers, as incidents had become “normalised” and teachers often dismissed them as “trivial”.

Read: BBC

06/12/2021: Hundreds of calls made to UK helpline about sexual abuse in schools

More than 850 calls, many alleging sexual abuse and harassment in schools, have been made to a national helpline set up after the Everyone’s Invited website revealed widespread sexism, misogyny and abuse in education. A total of 150 were so serious that they have been referred to police and other agencies for further investigation, according to the NSPCC children’s charity, which runs the helpline.

Read: Guardian

03/12/2021: ‘Severe’ early years workforce shortage sparks childcare crisis, EYA data shows

“Severe and growing” staffing shortages in the early years sector is leaving families facing repeated disruptions to childcare services, new research shows. A survey of 1,395 early years providers, carried out by the Early Years Alliance (EYA) reveals that more than eight in 10 settings are currently finding it difficult to recruit suitable staff while 62 per cent of settings had employed staff who had left the early years sector completely over the previous six months.

Read: Children and Young People Now

02/12/2021: School Covid absence up 60% in England in two weeks

The number of pupils absent from school in England because of Covid rose by about 60% in the two weeks to Thursday last week, official figure show. Some 208,000 state-school pupils (2.6%) were absent with confirmed or suspected cases, on Thursday, 25 November. The sharp increase has drawn an angry response from teaching unions, who want more support in fighting infections.

Read: BBC

02/12/2021: Crime ‘hotspot’ schools to get county line gang support

The Department for Education has announced that schools in crime “hotspots” across the country at risk of violence and involvement in county lines gangs will be offered targeted support to boost pupils’ attendance and prevent exclusions.

Read: Times Education Supplement

29/11/2021: Trauma: NI teachers taught to spot children’s fears

An educational training programme to help raise awareness of the effect of trauma on children has been launched in Northern Ireland. The training will give 60,000 education staff the opportunity to improve their understanding of trauma. Education Minister Michelle McIlveen said she was confident the “thought provoking” training would help children achieve their full potential.

Read: BBC