How is that child going to cope over the holidays? Who is there for them? Who will they talk to? What if their coping mechanisms aren’t working?
How to stop the summer safeguarding guilt
A Tes article written by safeguarding lead Ceri Stokes reveals the worries and pressures facing safeguarding practitioners, even during the school summer holidays.
“Have I missed the signs?”
“Did I ask the right questions?”
“Was that child really telling me the truth when they said they were fine?”
“Did we cover enough in PSHE?”
The piece highlights the ‘growing pressure on teachers to spot children with poor mental health,’ describes ‘those nagging worries about vulnerable students’ and highlights that issues facing the children and young people that they care for during the academic year don’t go away during the summer holiday, in fact many issues could worsen.
Director of Safeguarding Services for MyConcern Mike Glanville, comments:
Many children can feel both isolated and vulnerable during the school holidays. For most children, the summer break is an opportunity to spend quality time with friends and family and this should be a time for fun and relaxation. For other children this time of year can be incredibly stressful, and they can be exposed to an increased level of risk at home. Issues such as abuse, neglect and mental health do not take a break over the holidays.
Importantly, in this article Ceri suggests some useful tips for safeguarding leads in education. Enabling them to get the rest they need to come back into school to fully support students, as well as prepare and guide vulnerable people during the school holiday.
This helpful advice from Ceri provides safeguarding leads with practical tips on how to make the most of their downtime and helps them to plan ahead effectively. The role of the safeguarding lead now brings lots of additional responsibilities so it’s important they can take a break, knowing that their most vulnerable students have access to the support they need.
Written by Sam Franklin