Issue - meetings
Safeguarding in Education
Meeting: 17/06/2021 - Joint Education, Youth & Culture and Social & Health Care Overview & Scrutiny Committee (Item 6)
- Webcast for 17/06/2021 - Joint Education, Youth & Culture and Social & Health Care Overview & Scrutiny Committee
(a) That the content of the safeguarding in education report be noted.
(b) That the positive work undertaken by Flintshire schools to safeguard children and young people during the pandemic be noted.
The report was presented by the Senior Manager (School Improvement) and provided an update on the discharge of statutory safeguarding duties in schools and the Education portfolio with the format different this year because of the pandemic.
Information was provided on how schools were looking at safeguarding and the challenges in lieu of the Wales Safeguarding Procedures, Keeping Learners Safe Guidance and requirements from Estyn. She praised the way pupils and teaching staff had adapted to the different ways of learning both in the classroom and virtually with teachers maintaining contact with children and parents which was a huge area of concern and responsibility for schools. She reported on the close working relationship with colleagues in Children’s Services and the Silver Tactical Group and said schools had different challenges every year with safeguarding at the forefront.
The response to Covid 19 and the ALN Act had resulted in the new procedures for safeguarding and appropriate training was provided to support this. She referred to the challenges with remote and blended learning with children having access to the internet and social media and confirmed a detailed report would be brought to the next meeting of Education Youth & Culture O&OC.
The Senior Manager then provided detailed information on the updated Wales Procedures, Update of the Schools Guidance, virtual training and professional support for Head Teachers, Governors and schools. She confirmed Claire Sinnott had co-ordinated this and provided an overview of the Safeguarding in Education Panel and its links with the Corporate Safeguarding Panel. The Panel met regularly to ensure schools had the processes in place, were supported, monitored and held to account around safeguarding which was something which never stood still and was always changing. She reassured members that this was constantly challenged and moving forward. The Senior Manager (Children and Workforce) praised the positive working between schools, education and social services with children at the forefront and that this was reinforced with the work of the Silver Tactical Group which he felt privileged to be a part of. The Chief Officer valued the contribution from the Senior Manager (Children and Workforce) which enabled robust responses to support vulnerable children and young people throughout the pandemic.
The Deputy Leader of the Council (Partnerships) & Cabinet Member for Social Services referred to the work covered within the Corporate Safeguarding Panel which ensure all children were supported and received the best care but that this had been carried out differently. During the pandemic Education and Social Care especially ensured all the families were monitored virtually and in person to ensure they received the support they needed. She was really proud of the way Flintshire responded to safeguarding and were always proactive developing new procedures, training and the great partnership working for children and adults. The Chief Officer (Social Services) added that he co-chaired the Safeguarding Panel with the Chief Officer (Education & Youth) and that with the support of the Cabinet Members for Social Services, Cabinet Member for Corporate Management & Assets this had solidified the ... view the full minutes text for item 6