Education Secretary, Gavin Williamson, has announced a new initiative to place Social Workers in schools to better support vulnerable children.
Announcing a package worth nearly £10 million for projects aimed at boosting the educational outcomes of vulnerable children, and to keep them safe from harm Mr Williamson said that £6.5 million would be allocated specifically to more than 150 schools in a project that will place social workers in schools to work with teaching staff, reflecting that the second largest source of referrals to children’s social services is schools.
Part of a series of measures unveiled at the Prime Minister’s recent virtual Hidden Harms, the funding package comes as early evidence from pilot studies shows placing social workers in schools helps keep children safe because they are able to work with teaching professionals to identify children in need of support.
Mr Williamson said “The stark reality is that too many children are growing up at risk of abuse, neglect and exploitation. These are the most vulnerable in society, and the ones that most need our help. For these children, schools offer a safe space to get support, develop resilience and fulfil their potential.
That is why, as schools begin opening more widely and we look to the future, we must take all the steps we can to protect these children. By bringing social workers into schools we can spot the warning signs more quickly”.