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Safeguarding and support for pupils

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NAHT members are at the forefront of safeguarding children. School leaders are committed to keeping children safe, so they can learn well. NAHT believes that all pupils should receive the support they need to maintain their well-being and achieve their potential, both within school and from wider services including health and social care.

NAHT is campaigning to:

Enable schools to play their part in supporting pupils' well-being

  • Lobby for pupils and schools to get the support they need from wider services including health, social care, police and youth services
  • Influence the implementation of the proposals from the mental health green paper, including the senior lead for mental health and mental health support teams
  • Support schools to access relevant, high-quality training and resources to enable pupils to exercise their right to support for their mental well-being.


Support schools to safeguard and protect pupils

  • Engage with the DfE over proposed changes to the role of the Designated Safeguarding Lead
  • Influence changes to Keeping Children Safe In Education, Working Together and Sexual Violence and harassment guidance
  • Campaign to improve online safety for children and young people
  • Press the government to ensure home educated children are adequately safeguarded
  • Promote guidance and resources to support schools to protect children at risk of harm including involvement with violence and other crime.


Enable schools to support vulnerable groups of pupils

  • Campaign to ensure pupils with SEND can receive the support they need from schools and wider services
  • Press for improved alternative provision and collaborative approaches across communities to support pupils excluded from school
  • Provide information to schools to help them to support disadvantaged children
  • Enable schools to make informed decisions regarding parental requests to home educate
  • Ensure reforms to behaviour guidance and networks is evidence-based and appropriate for all schools and a diverse pupil population. 

National Operation Encompass Helpline

The Operation Encompass helpline on 0204 513 9990 is available, Monday-Friday, 8am-1pm throughout term-time to provide school staff with the opportunity for guidance, information and support. The call will be answered by an experienced educational psychologist, who will have extensive experience of providing consultation and support to staff working in schools and education settings and who knows and understands Operation Encompass.

This unique helpline provides school staff with the opportunity to engage in an immediate consultation that is both and easily accessible, with no threshold other than the involvement of domestic abuse. The service ensures a reflective space to seek guidance and discuss any worries, concerns or queries they may have following an Operation Encompass call and in preparation for a child coming into school following a reported incident of domestic abuse. This aims to build ongoing capacity within school systems and to ensure staff members are confident and supported in how they respond and support children in what may often be unusual and unfamiliar circumstances.


"It has been really helpful to have immediate advice and to talk about how we can build on further contact and who is the right staff member to do this. This has helped me to feel more confident and I would definitely be using and recommending this helpline continue."

One head teacher fed back that the helpline is something they "really do need - for in-the-moment to phone someone - for advice and to slow down, check things through, talk through some guidance. So helpful".

"This has been so helpful… it has been great to talk to someone else and think about next steps to inform our response and help the family. It's great to get another opinion and some helpful guidance about how to progress." 

"Nice to hear from you that we're doing the right things and to get some further guidance and advice."

"Absolutely recommend this service continuing to be available as it is so hard to get services in school, referrals can take over a year so to have someone to ring and talk things through straight away for advice is great."

"It can be worrying for staff as we really care but don't know how best to support ...It has been really helpful to have immediate advice and to talk about how we can build on further contact and who is the right staff member to do this."

For more information, see www.operationencompass.org/teachers-helpline.

First published 26 August 2020