What parents and carers need to know about early years providers, schools and colleges during COVID-19

Page summary:
Information for parents and carers about attending schools, nurseries and colleges in the spring term 2021.

Change made:
We have updated advice on the use of face coverings in education and updated information to reflect commencement of step 2 of the COVID-19 response – spring 2021

Full details click here

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Relationships, sex and health education

Source: Department for Education
Date: 16 March 2021

The Department for Education (DfE) has updated its support and training materials for schools to help train teachers on relationships, sex and health education (RHSE) in England to include a training module on teaching RSHE to pupils with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND). Separately, a DfE blog discusses the role of schools in teaching about healthy relationships and consent.

Read the guidance: Teaching about relationships, sex and health
Read the blog:How schools and colleges are helping build a safer society based on respecting others and healthy relationships

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Care applications

Source: Cafcass
Date: 10 March 2021

Cafcass has published care application statistics for England for February 2021. Figures show that Cafcass received 962 new care applications in February 2021, which is 6.2% (64) fewer than the same period in 2020. These applications involved 1,519 children, which is 9.2% (153 children) fewer than February 2020.

View the data: Public law data: number of care applications received

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Considerations of dissociation, betrayal trauma, and complex trauma in the treatment of incest.

Authors: David M. Lawson and Sinem Akay-Sullivan
Format: Article
Summary: Examines relationships between trauma-related dissociation, betrayal trauma, and complex trauma, and how understanding these concepts and their relationships can inform the treatment of incest. Finds that little appears in the literature concerning these aspects for the purpose of treatment for incest.
Journal: Journal of Child Sexual Abuse (Vol.29, Iss.6), 2020, pp 677-696
Go to publication

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Sharing nudes and semi-nudes: responding to incidents and safeguarding children and young people.

Authors: UK Council for Internet Safety (UKCIS)
Format: Online report
Summary: Advice for professionals working with children and young people in Wales on how to respond to an incident of sharing nudes or semi-nudes. Includes information about: the law and non-consensual image sharing; understanding motivations and behaviours; handling and recording incidents; supporting parents and carers. Features NSPCC case studies.
Publication details: Cardiff: Welsh Government, 2020
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Sharing nudes and semi-nudes: advice for education settings working with children and young people.

Authors: UK Council for Internet Safety (UKCIS)
Format: Online report
Summary: Guidance to support professionals working with children in England to respond to incidents involving the sharing of nudes and semi-nudes. Part of a suite of documents, includes guidance on: risk assessing incidents; safeguarding and supporting children and young people; handling devices and imagery; recording incidents; providing education on the sharing of nudes and semi-nudes.
Publication details: [London]: Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, 2020
Go to publication

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Child arrests in England and Wales 2019: research briefing.

Authors: Howard League for Penal Reform
Format: Online report
Summary: Publishes findings from responses to a Freedom of Information (FOI) request from 43 police service areas in England and Wales and the British Transport Police. Finds that: in 2019 there were 71,885 child arrests in England and Wales, a reduction of 71 per cent since 2010; nearly 11,000 arrests were of girls; and nearly 400 arrests were of primary school aged children. Table shows numbers of child arrests by police service area 2010-2019.
Publication details: London: Howard League for Penal Reform, 2020
Go to publication

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Supervision of designated safeguarding leads

What Works for Children’s Social Care (WWCSC) has published a report exploring the impact of a trial providing monthly supervision sessions delivered by a senior social worker to designated safeguarding leads (DSLs) in primary schools in Bolton. The aim of the programme, developed by Bolton Council, was to improve the appropriateness and quality of contacts to children’s social care, and to better support DSLs in their role. The study found that the support was welcomed by DSLs with some reporting increased confidence and improvements in mental wellbeing.

Read the news story: Supervising designated safeguarding leads in Bolton
Read the report:Supervision of designated safeguarding leads in primary schools in Bolton (PDF)

Source: What Works for Children’s Social Care
Date: 15 February 2021

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Eating disorders

The Guardian reports that analysis of referrals of young people with eating disorders for NHS treatment in England shows that there were 19,562 new referrals of under-18s with eating disorders to NHS-funded secondary mental health services in 2020, a rise of 46% from 13,421 new referrals in 2019.

Read the news story: NHS sees surge in referrals for eating disorders among under-18s during Covid

Source: Guardian
Date: 20 February 2021

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