Prevent leads: Mr A Joyce, Mrs N Charman & Mr C Perry
This ‘Preventing Radicalisation Policy’ is part of Sturminster Marshall First School’s commitment to keeping children safe. Schools have an important part to play in both educating children and young people about extremism and recognising when pupils start to become radicalised. In March 2015, new statutory duties were placed on schools by the Counter Terrorism and Security Act (2015) which means they must work to prevent children being drawn into extremism.
Safeguarding children is an important part of a school’s work and protecting them from extremism is one aspect of that.
This policy should be read in conjunction with the schools Safeguarding (child Protection) policy. Safeguarding children is an important part of a school’s work and protecting them from extremism is one aspect of that.
For the purposes of this policy the definition of radical or extreme ideology is:
“A set of ideas that could justify vilification or violence against individuals, groups or self”.
At Sturminster Marshall First School we ensure that through our school vision, values, rules, curriculum and teaching we promote tolerance and respect for all cultures, faiths and lifestyles. The governing body also ensures that this ethos is reflected and implemented effectively in school policy and practice and that there are effective risk assessments in place to safeguard and promote students’ welfare.
We have a duty to prepare our children for life in modern Britain and to keep them safe.
Pupils who attend our school have the right to learn in safety. We do not tolerate bullying of any kind and will challenge derogatory language and behaviour towards others.
The duty to prevent children and young people being radicalised is set out in the following documents.
- Counter Terrorism and Security Act (2015)
- Keeping Children Safe in Education (2019)
- Prevent Duty Guidance (2015)
- Working Together to Safeguard Children (2018)
- Departmental advice for maintained schools (DfE 2014)
- Improving the spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of pupils: supplementary information (DfE 2014)
- Promoting fundamental British values
Extremism is defined in the 2011 Prevent strategy as vocal or active opposition to fundamental British values, including democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of different faiths and beliefs. We also include in our definition of extremism calls for the death of members of our armed forces, whether in this country or overseas.
Radicalisation refers to the process by which a person comes to support terrorism and extremist ideologies associated with terrorist groups.
British Values are democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs.
Roles and Responsibilities
Role of the Governing Body
It is the role of the governing body to ensure that the school meets its statutory duties with regard to preventing radicalisation.
The governing body has a nominated person who will liaise with the headteacher and other staff about issues to do with protecting children from radicalisation.
Role of the Headteacher
It is the role of the headteacher to:
- ensure that the school and its staff respond to preventing radicalisation on a day-to-day basis,
- ensure that the school’s curriculum addresses the issues involved in radicalisation
- ensure that staff conduct is consistent with preventing radicalisation
Role of Designated Safeguarding Lead
It is the role of the designated safeguarding lead to:
- ensure that staff understand the issues of radicalisation, are able to recognise the signs of vulnerability or radicalisation and know how to refer their concerns
- receive safeguarding concerns about children and young people who may be vulnerable to the risk of radicalisation or are showing signs of radicalisation
- make referrals to appropriate agencies with regard to concerns about radicalisation
- liaise with partners, including the local authority and the police
- report to the governing body on these matters
- Carry out risk assessments to assess the role of pupils being drawn into terrorism including support for extremist ideas which are part of terrorist ideology. The DSL will also use regular risk assessments to demonstrate understanding of the risks and how to identify pupils who may be at risk of radicalisation.
Role of prevent leads
We expect the Prevent Leads to be proactive and vigilant in within their roles.
We are committed to ensuring that our pupils are offered a broad and balanced curriculum that aims to prepare them for life in modern Britain. We encourage our pupils to be inquisitive learners who are open to new experiences and are tolerant of others.
Our school curriculum includes appropriate age rated information to prevent our pupils for becoming radicalised.
These values support the development of the whole child as a reflective learner within a calm, caring, happy and purposeful atmosphere. Teaching the schools core values alongside the fundamental British Values supports quality teaching and learning, whilst making a positive contribution to the development of a fair, just and civil society.
The internet provides children and young people with access to a wide-range of content, some of which is harmful. Extremists use the internet, including social media, to share their messages. The filtering systems used in our school blocks inappropriate content, including extremist content.
We also filter out social media, such as Facebook. Searches and web addresses are monitored and the ICT technicians will alert senior staff where there are concerns and prevent further access when new sites that are unblocked are found.
Where staff, students or visitors find unblocked extremist content they must report it to a senior member of staff.
We are aware that children and young people have access to unfiltered internet when using their mobile phones and staff are alert to the need for vigilance when pupils are using their phones.
The Acceptable Use of ICT Policy (AUP) refers to preventing radicalisation and related extremist content. Pupils and staff are asked to sign the AUP annually to confirm they have understood what is acceptable.
Pupils and staff know how to report internet content that is inappropriate or of concern.
Staff will be given training to help them understand the issues of radicalisation, and extremism they will be able to recognise the signs of vulnerability and know how to refer their concerns. This information also forms part of induction safeguarding training.
Staff are required to attend update WRAP training every 3 years. This is provided by the school as part of the school’s commitment to safeguarding children in our school.
We ensure that the staff we appoint to the school are suitable, our recruitment procedures are rigorous, and we follow the statutory guidance published in Keeping Children Safe in Education (2019).
Vetting and barring checks are undertaken on relevant people, including governors and volunteers.
Visitors to the school are made aware of our safeguarding and child protection policies on arrival at the school and are given information about what to do if they are concerned about any aspect of child welfare.
Visitors who are invited to speak to pupils will be informed about our preventing extremism policy and relevant vetting checks are undertaken. We undertake due diligence to ensure that visiting speakers are appropriate. Speakers will be supervised at all times and will not be allowed to speak to children with a member of staff being present.
Staff must not invite speakers into school without first obtaining permission from the headteacher.
Hire and Lettings
The school is vigilant to the possibility that out-of-hours hire of the school premises may be requested by people wishing to run an extremist event. The school does not accept bookings from individuals or organisations that are extremist in their views.
Early indicators of radicalisation or extremism may include:
- showing sympathy for extremist causes
- glorifying violence, especially to other faiths or cultures
- making remarks or comments about being at extremist events or rallies outside school
- evidence of possessing illegal or extremist literature
- advocating messages similar to illegal organisations or other extremist groups
- out of character changes in dress, behaviour and peer relationships (but there are also very powerful narratives, programmes and networks that young people can come across online so involvement with particular groups may not be apparent.)
- secretive behaviour
- online searches or sharing extremist messages or social profiles
- intolerance of difference, including faith, culture, gender, race or sexuality
- graffiti, art work or writing that displays extremist themes
- attempts to impose extremist views or practices on others
- verbalising anti-Western or anti-British views
- advocating violence towards others
Staff and visitors to the school must refer all concerns about children and young people who show signs of vulnerability or radicalisation must be passed to the Designated Safeguarding Lead using the usual methods for reporting other safeguarding concerns.
When there are significant concerns about a pupil, the Designated Safeguarding Lead in liaison with the headteacher will make a referral to the appropriate body.
Monitoring and Review
This policy will be monitored by the governing body annually by receiving a report from the Designated Safeguarding Lead.