Summary of changes: Keeping Children Safe in Education 2023

Summary of changes: Keeping Children Safe in Education 2023

The DfE has released their draft version of KCSiE 2023 – download a copy HERE.

The guidance is for information only, and you should continue to refer to the 2022 version until 1st September 2023.

Increased expectations and responsibilities around the school filtering and monitoring IT systems

  • The DSL should take lead responsibility for the above.
  • Staff Safeguarding and Child Protection training should include an understanding of the above.
  • Reiteration that schools should follow the recently published DfE publication of Filtering and monitoring standards and guidance.
  • Governing bodies/proprietors strategic training should include an understanding of the above and should review the above standards with IT staff and service providers.
  • Schools should consider meeting the Cyber security standards.
  • The Safeguarding and Child Protection Policy should reflect the individual schools’ approach to the above on school devices and networks.

Children who are absent from education

    • Where a child has an EHCP the local authority will need to review the plan whilst working closely with parents.

    Elective Home Education (EHE)

      • ‘Children missing from education’ replaced with ‘Children who are absent from education’.
      • Updated guidance on school attendance, and children being absent from education for prolonged periods and/or on repeat occasions see Working together to improve school attendance.
      • Updated information on how schools should work with local authority children’s services where school absence indicates safeguarding concerns. 

      Safer Recruitment

        • Schools should inform shortlisted candidates that online searches may be done as part of due diligence checks.
        • Copies of documents used to verify the successful candidate’s identity, right to work and required qualifications should be kept on their personnel file.

        Use of school premises for non-school activities 

        • Clarity around safeguarding arrangements that schools should expect providers [hirers] to have in place see Keeping children safe in out of school settings.
        • Schools may receive an allegation relating to an incident that happened when an individual or organisation was using their school premises for the purposes of running activities for children (for example community groups, sports associations or service providers that run extra-curricular activities). As with any safeguarding allegation, schools should follow their safeguarding policies and procedures, including informing the LADO. 

        Equality Act

        Confirmation that provisions within the Equality Act allow schools to take positive action, where it can be shown that it is proportionate, to deal with particular disadvantages affecting pupils or students with certain protected characteristics in order to meet their specific need. A school could, for example, consider taking positive action to support girls if there was evidence they were being disproportionately subjected to sexual violence or sexual harassment. There is also a duty to make reasonable adjustments for disabled children and young people.

        Changes in terminology

        • Updated throughout to include ‘pupils or students’.
        • Reference to teachers can ‘discipline’ have been replaced with teachers can ‘sanction’.
        • Replaced children may be ‘vulnerable’ with children may be ‘susceptible’.
        • Forced marriage to child marriage, highlighting the changes in law February 2023.

        Links to useful updated resources


        Please contact us if you’d like to talk to us about how we can support you with your Safeguarding needs.

        Call 01274 752299 or email

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        Rachel Priestley

        Rach has a background in Business Development and Administration, gaining much of her knowledge and experience through her 19 year career with the NHS working within the executive office, community services and public health. 

        Before moving on from the NHS, Rach supported the Chief Executive, the Chairman and the Trust Board of a local NHS Care Trust, which managed Children’s Services. Her responsibilities spanned across HR, Finance, Governance, Compliance, Risk, systems and processes, and internal training. Rach also supported the Children’s Safeguarding Lead with safeguarding investigations.

        In 2017, she left the NHS to pursue a successful self-employed career supporting business to grow, with flexible business development and administration support, which she continues to do on a part-time basis.

        Rach is in house trained, and is passionate about delivering outstanding services and enjoys working as part of the safeguarding team to achieve a common goal.

        In her own time, she loves spending time outside, and long walks with the two family dogs. 

        Shelley Armstrong

        Shelley joined Safeguarding Support in 2020 as an experienced AET-qualified freelance trainer, and now enjoys working across the business, keeping clients as up to date as possible with the ever changing challenges facing safeguarding children in education.

        Whilst we aim to simplify safeguarding, Shelley’s passion is to ensure engagement, pride and confidence through training and support. Shelley enjoys applying the competencies gained in different industries and environments to researching, designing, and developing materials for those with the responsibility to safeguard children, and in return has enormous respect for their commitment.

        Her experience across the private business sector brings commercial skills to training and her background in psychology and counselling ensure courses are designed and delivered with the learner in mind.

        Shelley lives in Yorkshire and enjoys walking her springer spaniels – come rain or shine!

        Abigail Havon

        Abigail is an experienced AET qualified trainer who began her safeguarding career in the charity sector.  There she was a regional manager and part of the safeguarding leadership team.  She was involved in writing policies and procedures, developing, and delivering training and supporting staff and volunteers to work 121 with children struggling with their literacy. 

        She has worked in a variety of business environments gaining experience in different sectors. She has always chosen roles that call for collaboration and communication to bring the best out in people and projects to completion.  Abigail passionately believes that empowering educators to work together as part of a safeguarding team will lead to better outcomes for children and young people. 

        As part of the SSL training team her role focuses mainly on delivering virtual training. 

        Abigail lives near the Jurassic Coast and enjoys long walks and caring for her jungle of houseplants.  

        Carol Stephenson

        Carol has spent her entire career teaching in Bradford primary schools. Most recently she was Head Teacher of a large, outstanding, multi-academy trust, inner-city
        school where she gained Local Leaders of Education (LLE) status.

        Carol is a highly experienced Designated Safeguarding Lead and safeguarding Governor, with an extensive range of expertise, skills and knowledge. It was through this depth of experience that she became a dedicated representative of Bradford Children’s Safeguarding Board. In June 2019, Carol was awarded a Bradford Safeguarding Champions lifetime achievement award 2019 for her continued work in safeguarding the children of Bradford.

        Carol is in-house trained and is NSPCC certified to deliver Child Protection and Safeguarding training.

        In her spare time, Carol enjoys working on her allotment.