A refreshed guidance for Inspecting safeguarding in early years has been issued along with a summary list of the changes.

What’s changed and why? Within the new document Inspecting safeguarding in early years there is the addition of a few phrases, some more far-reaching than others and for the summary list, I would say this guides you to ensure you are covering changes that have come about in other legislation such as FGM, Mental Health and SEND and even possibly the new EYFS. These groups are considered in various ways throughout the document which suggests settings need to consider them in their own policies as well.

Inspecting safeguarding in early years, education and skills settings

Main changes in the revised version August 2016

Paragraph references Changes made
5 New reference to the ‘Prevent’ duty guidance for schools and colleges
11, 18 New references to safeguarding children who have special educational needs and/or disabilities
13 References to 'safeguarding policies' have been replaced with 'child protection policies' to fit with statutory guidance. There is also a reference to the need for staff behaviour policies.
It is recommended that you rename your current policy if it is called “Safeguarding Policy” so that you are consistent with new guidance and statutory guidance
Do you have a ‘Staff Behaviours’ Policy – or policies even? Whilst your policy might not be called Staff Behaviours Policy – It could be called Professional Code of Conduct, and/or Conflict of Interest Policy that you support with Performance Descriptors and Expectations of Staff – The guidance doesn’t extend to tell you exactly what you need to cover within the new wording but it does state that the policy is ‘to keep all children and learners safe’.
18 New reference to including the risks of peer on peer abuse in the child protection policy
You must ensure this referenced in a way so that ‘the risk is covered adequately’.
18 Reference to the new requirement for all staff and leaders to receive regular updates on safeguarding at least annually
This requires settings to tighten up on responsibilities for staff, volunteers and safeguarding leads where reference is made throughout for everyone to have ‘their knowledge and skills refreshed at regular intervals, but at least annually’.
18 Clarification that designated members of staff for safeguarding need to have safeguarding training every two years and their knowledge and skills should be refreshed at least annually.
(The lead can achieve their knowledge and skills refresh by attending the termly LSCB half day briefing events)
18 Reference to the new requirement that there should be a designated member of staff for safeguarding available at all times that the school/college/setting is open for staff to discuss concerns
The document clarifies that there must be a Designated Safeguarding Lead or ‘an appropriately trained deputy’ available during all of opening hours – get appointing those deputies now! (The Academy delivers Safeguarding Lead Training so book a training place for a member of the team)
18 Reference to ensuring that teachers understand the mandatory duty to report known cases of female genital mutilation
18 Reference to the new requirement for schools and settings to have appropriate filters and monitoring systems in place to protect learners from harmful online material
This is to do with internet and online safety. There is a requirement to ‘ensure that children are taught about safeguarding risks, including online risks’ and that there are ‘appropriate filters and monitoring systems in place to protect learners from potentially harmful material online’ – have you all got your content control in hand?
32 Clarification that judgements about safeguarding should not be made solely on the evidence presented, but that inspectors should probe further and use additional evidence
There are some subtle changes in the wording about pre-inspection gathering of evidence The inclusion of wording like ‘inspectors should probe further’ when it comes to safeguarding, whilst this can be understood on the one hand, please be sure that you are able to provide clear evidence of actions and responses.

40 Clarification that the lead inspector should run an internet check for safeguarding issues related to the provider as part of pre-inspection planning
Internet checks – too much presence of the wrong kind on the internet and social media may not be beneficial to the setting future
46-47 Minor changes to the wording of sentences to be used in inspection reports about safeguarding incidents
Annex 1 References to boards of trustees and academy sponsors throughout
Annex 1 and Annex 2 References to the requirement to check that teachers are not prohibited from teaching and those managers of independent schools are not prohibited from management. Annex 2 explains that providers should do this using the Teacher Services System
Annex 2 New reference to the factual note published by the Department for Education about the scope of regulated activity
Annex 2 Reference to the strengthened requirement for checks on individuals who have lived or worked outside the UK
Annex 2 New reference to the need for enhanced DBS checks on governors
Annex 2 Additional requirement for section 128 prohibition checks to be recorded on the single central record
Annex 2 Clarification that any checks carried out on volunteers should be recorded on the single central record

The link below will take you to the updated document and summary of 2016 changes.