Best Practice

Safeguarding: Six ways schools can identify and respond to physical abuse

Around 1 in 14 children in the UK have been physically abused and school safeguarding procedures must be able to spot these children and intervene. Elizabeth Rose advises
Image: Adobe Stock

Schools play a pivotal role in safeguarding children from all types of harm. Staff have the opportunity to build trusted relationships with children and families, educate them on what healthy relationships and effective parenting looks like and should have the expertise to identify any signs that a child may be being abused or neglected.

The starting point for staff training is often ensuring that there is a clear understanding of four key types of abuse – physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, and neglect. Sharing relevant data and statistics in an effective way in order to highlight the scale of the problem can support understanding of these issues.

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