In modern Britain, we have developed into a very multicultural society. For example, there are over 300 languages spoken across schools today. We see this as something to promote and be proud of. The growth of a diverse culture that strengthens humanistic thinking is beneficial to many.
However, within Britain, there are threats to our safety that are voiced in opposition to multiculturalism, against a multi-religious, multi-ethnic existence. These are voices of extremism that come in many forms. They do not encourage the values that modern Britain seeks to uphold and better. This is the reason the Government introduced the Prevent Strategy.
At Violet Way Academy we aim to prepare our pupils to become good citizens of the future. Through our curriculum we teach pupils British Values and how to celebrate diversity. We have adopted the principles and advice found in ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education’ (2022). We believe that children should be given the opportunity to explore the issues of diversity and understand Britain as a multi-cultural society.
We aim to raise their awareness, in an age appropriate way, of radicalisation and extremist views, whatever the source. Our PSHE and Relationship curriculum (Jigsaw PSHE) enables children to explore sensitive issues and equips them with the knowledge and skills to understand and manage difficult situations. They are taught ways to recognise and manage risk, make safe choices, and recognise when pressure from others threatens their own wellbeing. Children are taught to develop positive character traits through our school values.
Staff are trained to identify children who may be vulnerable to radicalisation and know what to do when they are identified. Protecting children from the risk of radicalisation is part of our safeguarding duties.
There is a Trust Prevent Policy which can be found on the Trust Policy page: Fierté Multi-Academy Trust - Trust Policies (fierte.org)
The Fierté Multi-Academy Trust
The Fierté Trust Prevent Statement Prevent Duty Preventing Radicalisation
Across our Trust we know that building resilience in our young people and the promotion of fundamental British values is at the heart of preventing radicalisation. As an organisation, we do this by providing a safe place in which children can discuss issues, and we aim to give them the knowledge and confidence to challenge extremist beliefs and ideologies.
Our prevent duty, is conducted under the Counterterrorism and Security Act 2015, which legally requires us to take steps to prevent pupils from being drawn into terrorism. All staff take this duty seriously and carry out the four main actions responsibly, namely:
- risk assessment,
- working in partnership,
- staff training and
- IT policies.
If we assess a child as at risk, we will refer to the Channel Programme, which focuses on providing support at an early stage to people who are identified as being vulnerable to being drawn into terrorism. We recognise that we play a vital role in keeping children safe from harm, including from the risks of extremism and radicalisation, and in promoting the welfare of children in our care.
What we do if there is a concern
If we have a concern about a particular pupil we will follow the academy’s normal safeguarding procedures, including discussing with the academy’s designated safeguarding lead, and where deemed necessary, with ESAS (Education Safeguarding Advice Service). We may also contact the local police force or dial 101 (the non-emergency number). They can talk to us in confidence about concerns and help us gain access to support and advice. The Department for Education has dedicated a telephone helpline (020 7340 7264) to enable staff and governors to raise concerns relating to extremism directly. Concerns can also be raised by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please note that the helpline is not intended for use in emergency situations, such as a child being at immediate risk of harm or a security incident In an emergency situation, we will follow the recommended emergency procedures.
Prevent Risk Assessment Introduction
Everyone who comes into contact with children and their families has a role to play in safeguarding children. Academies have a duty of care to their pupils and staff which includes safeguarding them from the risk of being drawn into terrorism - this includes not just violent extremism but also non-violent extremism, which can create an atmosphere conducive to terrorism and can popularise views which terrorists exploit. Academies should be safe spaces in which children and young people can understand and discuss sensitive topics, including terrorism and the extremist ideas that are part of the terrorist ideology and learn how to challenge these ideas.
Academy staff are particularly important as they are in a position to identify concerns early and provide help for children, to prevent concerns from escalating. Academies and colleges and their staff form part of the wider safeguarding system for children. This system is described in statutory guidance Working Together to Safeguard Children (2018) and Keeping Children Safe in Education (2022). Academies and colleges should work with social care, the police, health services and other services to promote the welfare of children and protect them from harm.
Radicalisation is listed as a specific safeguarding issue within this statutory guidance and is addressed within the Government Prevent Strategy. The Counterterrorism and Security Act 2015 places a duty on academies to ‘have “due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism”.
The Prevent Strategy has three main objectives:
• Respond to the ideological challenge of terrorism & the threat we face from those who promote it;
• Prevent people from being drawn into terrorism and ensure that they are given appropriate advice and support;
• Work with sectors and institutions where there are risks of radicalisation which we need to address.
The Fierté Trust Prevent Risk Assessment recognises that it has a duty under Section 26 of the Counterterrorism and Security Act, 2015, in the exercise of its functions, to have due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism.