Sefton Local Safeguarding Children Board

Policy and Guidance

Female Genital Mutilation (FGM)

WHAT IS Female Genital Mutilation (FGM)?

FGM, sometimes referred to as female circumcision, is when a girl's genitals (private parts) are altered or removed. It can cause long-lasting damage as well as on-going emotional distress. 

FGM can be extremely painful and dangerous. It can cause:

  • really bad pain
  • shock
  • bleeding
  • infections such as tetanus, HIV and hepatitis B and C
  • organ damage.

It can also cause problems later on. girls' may experience difficulties in childbirth, or may need to be cut again.  FGM can also cause emotional distress at the time and in the future, and it might lead to anxiety and depression.

5 Facts about FGM:
FGM is abuse, and it's illegal in the UK
there is no religious or medical reason for FGM
FGM can happen at any age before marriage
FGM can be dangerous if there is blood loss and infection
FGM can happen at any age before marriage

The Home Office co-ordinates efforts across government and offers outreach support to local areas. You can find out more about FGM through the e-learning package, Recognising and preventing FGM.

For additional documents and guidance on FGM from GOV.UK

Multi-Agency Self Harm Practice Guidance

Sefton have developed a Multi-Agency Self Harm Practice Guidance

This document has been developed as a reference guide for all agencies and practitioners who come into contact with children, young people and their families.  It is intended as a guide to supporting children/young people who have thoughts of, are about to, or have self harmed.

The guidance will support practitioners to keep children safe by outlining:

  • What self harm is;
  • The triggers for self harm; and
  • Guidance about what to do when working with young people and children who self-harm

Children Missing Education

Children Missing Education (CME) DFE Statutory Guidance for Local Authorities (September 2016)

What is meant by Children Missing Education (CME)?

A child of compulsory school age between the age of five and sixteen, who is not registered at any formally approved education activity and has been out of any education provision for a substantial period of time, usually more than four weeks is defined as a child missing education.

Children go missing from education for a number of reasons. Although not exhaustive, the list below presents some of the circumstances including:

  • Pupils at risk of harm/neglect
  • Missing children and runaways
  • Children and young people supervised by the Youth Justice System –
  • Children of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller (GRT) families
  • Children of Service Personnel
  • Missing children or runaways
  • Children of new migrant families
  • They do not start school at the appropriate time and so they do not enter the education system:
  • They are removed from school by their parents;
  • They fail to find a suitable school place after moving to a new area;
  • The family move home regularly;
  • Family breakdown;
  • Children who do not make the transition between key stages  (e.g. nursery to primary, primary to secondary);

What is the role of Children Missing Education (CME) Coordinator in Sefton?

These ‘missing’ children are amongst the most vulnerable children in Sefton. It is crucial that practitioners in all services work together to identify and re-engage these children back into appropriate educational provision as quickly as possible.

The CME Co-ordinator leads on the identification, referral, tracking and engagement of children missing education. Working to ensure all schools and agencies are aware of systems of referral for pupils who are missing or at risk of going missing from education.

If you are concerned about a child who you think may not be accessing Education you can contact Attendance and Welfare (CME Co-ordinator) on the email address below, or by ringing the Sefton Contact Centre on 0345 140 0845.




Modern Day Slavery

Duty to Notify Modern Slavery Materials for Partners

From 1 November 2015, specified public authorities have a duty to notify the Home Office of any individual encountered in England and Wales who they believe is a suspected victim of slavery or human trafficking.

It is estimated that there were between 10,000 and 13,000 potential victims of modern slavery in the UK in 2013. In 2015, 3,266 potential victims were identified and referred to the National Referral Mechanism (NRM). The Duty to Notify is intended to gather better data about modern slavery in England and Wales.

The ‘duty to notify’ provision is set out in the Modern Slavery Act 2015, and applies to all police forces and local authorities in England and Wales, the Gangmasters Licensing Authority and the National Crime Agency.

Download a factsheet and other materials.

Level of Need Guidance

Children, young people and their families have different levels of need and these may change over time.  This guidance has been compiled by the LSCB to meet requirements of the Government's statutory guidance 'Working Together to Safeguard Children' and replaces all previous threshold information.  It is designed to help identify when a level of need - or trigger - has been reached, indicating when a child, young person or family might need support and then to identify where best to get this support from. 


Click on the icon below to access and download a copy of the Level of Need Guidance

Joint Targeted Area Inspection (JTAI)

Joint Targeted Area Inspection (JTAI) is an inspection framework for evaluating the services for vulnerable children and young people.  It is conducted jointly by the following inspectorates: Ofsted, Care Quality Commission (CQC), Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) and Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Probation (HMIP).

Click here to view Sefton LSCB JTAI summary leaflet.


Working Together to Safeguard Children (DfE)

 Working Together to Safeguard Children 2018 (DfE)

This guidance covers:

• the legislative requirements placed on individual services

• a framework for the three local safeguarding partners (the local authority; a clinical commissioning group for an area, any part of which falls within the local authority; and the chief officer of police for a police area, any part of which falls within the local authority area) to make arrangements to work together to safeguard and promote the welfare of local children including identifying and responding to their needs

• the framework for the two child death review partners (the local authority and any clinical commissioning group for an area, any part of which falls within the local authority) to make arrangements to review all deaths of children normally resident in the local area, and if they consider it appropriate, for those not normally resident in the area

This document replaces Working Together to Safeguard Children (2015). Links to relevant supplementary guidance that practitioners should consider alongside this guidance can be found at Appendix B.

What is the status of this guidance?

This guidance applies to all organisations and agencies who have functions relating to children. Specifically, this guidance applies to all local authorities, clinical commissioning groups, police and all other organisations and agencies as set out in chapter 2.

  • It applies, in its entirety, to all schools.
  • It applies to all children up to the age of 18 years whether living with their families, in state care, or living independently.
  • This document should be complied with unless exceptional circumstances arise


Information for SCHOOLS

Model Policy Framework for Child Protection in Sefton Schools

Tracy McKeating, Locality Manager (Sefton MBC) has developed a model policy framework for child protection in schools. The framework is aligned with Keeping Children Safe in Education 2018 (DfE). 

As part of the OfSTED inspection process, schools are required to explain the process of making referrals to Children's Social Care and they have to evidence an example of a referral including the schools contributions to the process and the outcome of referrals.  There is also an emphasis on the learning from serious case reviews (SCRs) and children missing education (CME). The model policy framework is written with the local context for schools to utilise and adapt for their individual setting.

Click here to download the Model Policy Framework and adapt to your individual school setting.

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