I hope that you have had an enjoyable Easter break and managed to get some downtime. Even though many of you have been away from school, I feel that it would be difficult for you to not have heard or seen the media coverage around allegations of sexual abuse made by school pupils on the Everyone’s Invited website.
You may remember that I did refer to this growing safeguarding concern in our last safeguarding bulletin. However, since then, the website has now recorded over 14,000+ testimonies of sexual abuse experiences from pupils as young as nine. These range from misogyny, sexual harassment to disclosures of rape and though they do not go as far as to name the identity of their alleged attackers, they do name 100+ schools, and this is increasing daily.
This led to the government asking Ofsted to undertake an immediate review of safeguarding policies in state and independent schools in relation to sexual abuse. The review will look at whether schools have ‘appropriate processes in place to allow pupils to report sexual abuse concerns freely, knowing these concerns will be taken seriously and dealt with swiftly and appropriately'.
The review will look at the following key questions:
- Safeguarding and curriculum
- Multi-agency safeguarding arrangements
- Victim’s voice and reporting
The review will conclude by the end of May 2021.