This document outlines the need for staff to be aware of the PREVENT Strand of the national Contest strategy, the policy and procedure to follow if they identify any concerns in relation to radicalisation and extremism, and how we can work with partners to protect children from this form of child abuse.
Contest is the name of the UK’s strategy to respond to the threat of domestic and international extremism, and the steps that need to be taken to protect the public. The strategy aims to reduce the risk to the UK and our assets overseas, so that people can go about their lives freely and with confidence. Contest is split into four strands:
PREVENT – to stop people becoming terrorists or supporting terrorism
Protect – to strengthen our protection against terrorist attacks
Pursue: to stop terrorist attacks
Prepare: when an attack cannot be stopped to mitigate its impact
From July and September 2015 schools and colleges are subject to section 26 of the Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015, which states that in the exercise of their functions they are to have “due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism” i.e. the unofficial or unauthorised use of violence and intimidation in the pursuit of political aims.
This duty is known as the PREVENT duty and applies to a wide range of public-facing bodies.
The PREVENT strategy was revised in 2011 and has the three following objectives:
1. Challenging terrorist ideology by working closely with other local and national agencies and partners, including our communities
2. Supporting vulnerable individuals through intervention projects
3. Work closely with institutions where risks may occur such as education, prisons and health.
This duty is passed onto schools in the statutory guidance “Keeping Children Safe in Education” (September 2021) which states that protecting children from the risk of radicalisation (i.e. the process where someone is lead to adopt extreme political, social and religious ideals and aspirations), should be seen as part of schools’ and colleges’ wider safeguarding duties, and is similar in nature to protecting children from other forms of harm and abuse:
“Extremism is the vocal or active opposition to our fundamental values, including democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and the mutual respect and tolerance of different faiths and beliefs. This also includes calling for the death of members of the armed forces. Radicalisation refers to the process by which a person comes to support terrorism and extremist ideologies associated with terrorist groups. There is no single way of identifying whether a child is likely to be susceptible to an extremist ideology. Background factors combined with specific influences such as family and friends may contribute to a child’s vulnerability. Similarly, radicalisation can occur through many different methods (such as social media) and settings (such as the internet). However, it is possible to protect vulnerable people from extremist ideology and intervene to prevent those at risk of radicalisation being radicalised.”
Bright World Guardianships staff and homestays should be alert to changes in reports of changes in children’s behaviour which could indicate that they may need help or protection. Staff and homestays are encouraged to use their judgement in identifying children who may be at risk of radicalisation and to report any concerns to the Safeguarding Manager, Robbie Piper or Lana Foster (as per the reporting procedure outlined in the Safeguarding and Child Protection Policy).
Bright World Policy
Staff members are expected to have a general understanding of the risks affecting children and young people, how to identify individual children who may be at risk of radicalisation and what to do to support them. This policy outlines a clear procedure for protecting children at risk of radicalisation and is written with consideration of the Government’s Prevent Duty, Departmental Advice for Schools and Childcare Providers (2015) and the Revised Prevent Duty Guidance 2019.
Bright World Guardianships understands that the PREVENT duty builds on existing partnerships for example with schools, parents and Local Safeguarding Children Boards. This policy considers the need for effective engagement with partners who are in key positions to spot signs of radicalisation (where this would not expose the child to further risk) and the need to be able to offer assistance and advice to those who raise concerns, and who require signposting to the right support mechanism. Bright World Guardianships has a Prevent Lead who is responsible for dealing with any concerns in relation to radicalisation:
Bright World Guardianships understands the importance of awareness training for staff and homestays to identify children at risk of being drawn into terrorism and to challenge extremist ideas (i.e. extreme political or religious views). Staff and homestay training needs are assessed internally with the Prevent Lead and DSL being the point of advice and support for staff, with regular safeguarding updates being circulated.
Bright World Guardianships ensures that staff and homestays have an awareness of the advice offered to schools by the Department for Education on the PREVENT duty. The Government has launched the ‘educate against hate’ website which provides information, tools and resources needed to recognise and address extremism and radicalisation in children and young people.
Recognising risks and vulnerabilities of radicalisation
Local Safeguarding Partnership (LSP) guidance states that children and young people can be drawn into violence or exposed to messages of extremist groups by many means, including family or friends influences, direct contact with extremist groups of organisations, and through the internet.
The risk of radicalisation may be combined with other vulnerabilities including:
Identity Crisis – Distance from cultural/religious heritage and uncomfortable with their place in the society around them;
Personal Crisis – Family tensions; sense of isolation; adolescence; low self-esteem; disassociating from existing friendship group and becoming involved with a new and different group of friends; searching for answers to questions about identity, faith and belonging;
Personal Circumstances – Migration; local community tensions; events affecting country or region of origin; alienation from UK values; having a sense of grievance that is triggered by personal experience of racism or discrimination or aspects of Government policy;
Unmet Aspirations – Perceptions of injustice; feeling of failure; rejection of civic life;
Criminality – Experiences of imprisonment; poor resettlement / reintegration; previous involvement with criminal groups.
Potential risk indicators include:
• Use of inappropriate language
• Possession of violent extremist literature or accessing extremist websites
• Behavioural changes
• The expression of extremist views
• Advocating violent actions and means
• Association with known extremists
• Articulating support for violent extremist causes or leaders
• Using extremist views to explain personal disadvantage
• Joining or seeking to join extremist organisations
• Seeking to recruit others to an extremist ideology.
Some children may be at risk due to living with or being in direct contact with known extremists.
Bright World Guardianships will assess the specific risks of radicalisation for the students in our care and review this risk assessment at least annually.
Working with partners to protect children
Bright World Guardianships recognises the opportunity that the company has to support partners including schools and medical professionals in helping to protect and support children and young people at risk of radicalisations. Disclosures and concerns can be reported to Bright World staff in relation to our own students, and also in relation to other children and young people who our students may be in contact with.
As radicalisation and extremism are forms of child abuse, Bright World Guardianships is aware of the duty to report cases or concerns in line with the company’s Safeguarding and Child Protection Policy. The Prevent Lead will make a report to the police or the anti-terrorist hotline on 0800 789 321 for potential terrorist or extremist activity. Non-urgent concerns will be reported by the Prevent Lead to the PREVENT Single Point of Contact within the relevant police force.
Staff should be aware that anonymous reports of suspicious activity can be reported through Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111, via police force websites or the non-emergency number, 101. Anonymous reports of potential terrorist or extremist activity can also be made to the anti-terrorist hotline on 0800 789 321.
Awareness Training for Staff and Homestays
The following sites provide online training for staff who can regularly self-brief on how to identify children and young people who are at risk of radicalisation and extremism. Staff are expected to use these tools annually to complement the safeguarding training provided by Bright World Guardianships provided by the company.
Procedure for reporting concerns
Bright World Procedure
1. Bright World staff member receives a report about a child or young person displaying indicators of radicalisation from a student, member of staff at a school, parent or other source by face to face disclosure, email or telephone call, or staff member develops concerns that a child or young person is displaying possible indicators or radicalisation
2. Bright World staff member adheres to the Child Protection Policy including contemporaneously recording the disclosure in the most appropriate format (using the Tell Explain Describe model if the information is being given by a student), or reporting their concerns in writing to the Prevent Lead, Lana Foster at Head Office.
3. The record of the disclosure is reported verbally as soon as practicable to the Prevent Lead, Lana Foster at Head Office on 01273 835745.
4. The staff member must submit a written record of the disclosure or concern on an IBOS Student Record – Incident Record (Head Office staff) or an email to Robbie Piper (Robbie@brightworld.co.uk) or Lana Foster (email@example.com).
5. The Prevent Lead will hold an emergency strategy meeting to discuss the incident, assess the alleged threat and risk to the child, implement an action plan and continue to review the situation until a resolution has been achieved.
6. The meeting will be recorded with timed and dated entries within a Student Record – Incident Record to record all actions and updates.
7. The incident will be referred to a statutory agency for further review where this is a necessary, relevant and proportionate course of action where a child or young person may be at risk of suffering significant harm or in need of support.
8. In the event of an emergency, 999 will be called as usual.
Published: July 2016
Reviewed: February 2021