Role and duties of senior leaders and governing bodies

Schools have a vital role in safeguarding children. They are the only agency that has daily contact with all children . The DfE has issued statutory guidance for schools on their safeguarding duties. It is called “Keeping children safe in education".

The new guidance sets out how schools must manage safeguarding and also allocates specific duties to the governing board.

Working together to safeguard children (GOV.UK)
National guidance on the role of all agencies in keeping children safe from abuse.

Keeping children safe in education (GOV.UK)
Pages 16 to 18 concern governing board duties.

Summary of key changes to keeping children safe in education (NSPCC)
Changes to statutory child protection guidance for schools in England published by the Department for Education.

Proforma to guide safeguarding reports to the governing body (word) (Needs updating to incorporate changes since September 2018 new statutory guidance).
Proforma for designated teachers and headteachers to use when making safeguarding and child protection termly or annual reports to the governing board.

Governance handbook - section 6.7
Safeguarding and pupil welfare – overview of governance duties.


The DfE regulations require that governing boards are trained in child protection. Courses are available at the Ealing Education Centre, where governors can attend. Bookings can be made via Ealing CPD online.

Full details on safeguarding training - see link under related content:

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Last updated: 01 Sep 2023

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