Best Practice

Meeting the new counter-terrorism duties for schools

Recent laws on counter-terrorism and security bring with them new duties for schools. Amy Cook looks at what you need to know.

Last month, Parliament passed the Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015 (1), meaning that all schools will soon be required to help prevent young people from being drawn into terrorism.

Schools will be expected to follow the more specific and rigorous set of expectations that have been added to the current government guidance for Channel, an element of the Prevent strategy aimed at stopping vulnerable people being drawn into terrorism (2). They must also work to challenge the extremist ideas which are shared by terrorist groups and used to legitimise terrorism.

School leaders have already been asking question about how to effectively meet existing requirements for safeguarding pupils (3) and to promote “fundamental British values” (4). Headteachers and governors have been asking for examples of policies on preventing extremism and guidance on how to explain the associated risks to pupils of different ages.

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