Children face multiple risks at out of school settings

All children should be able to enjoy extracurricular activities with the same degree of safety they have in school or childcare settings. “Unfortunately, this report demonstrates a clear disconnect in terms of safeguarding between educational services and out-of-school settings,” said, Abigail Gill, the associate head of policy and public affairs at the NSPCC children’s charity.

A government report has identified multiple safeguarding risks at “out-of-school settings” (OOSS), which include sports clubs, tuition centres and uniformed youth groups attended by millions of children across England every week, prompting calls for better oversight of the sector.

The findings follow an 18-month pilot study in 16 council areas, commissioned and funded by the Department for Education (DfE), to look into safeguarding risks in the OOSS sector and the effectiveness of the powers available to local authorities to deal with them.

A DfE spokesperson said: “After-school clubs and other out-of-school settings provide a range of stimulating and enriching opportunities for children, and the vast majority take place in a safe environment. However, we recognise the seriousness of the research findings, which is why we are taking forward work to raise standards and help parents.”

A consultation will be launched later this year, guidance for parents will be refreshed, and councils will be supported to help them make full use of their existing legal powers.

Read the full article on The Guardian’s website – Children face multiple safeguarding risks at out-of-school settings in England | Education | The Guardian

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