A Guide for Parents
What is the Prevent Strategy?
Prevent is a government strategy designed to stop people becoming terrorists or supporting terrorist or extremist causes. The Prevent strategy covers all types of terrorism and extremism, including the extreme right wing, violent Islamist groups and other causes.
How does the Prevent Strategy apply to schools?
From July 2015, all schools (as well as many other public organisations) have a duty to safeguard children from radicalisation and extremism under section 26 of the Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015.
Section 26 of this act states that schools must, in the exercise of their functions, have “due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism”. This duty is known as the Prevent Duty.
What does this mean in practice?
Much of the work we do in school, particularly in PSHE (Personal, Social and Health Education) lessons is aimed at helping children to become positive, purposeful members of society. Our RE curriculum – specifically learning about different religions – is another contributory area.
Much of what we already do supports the Prevent Strategy, as follows:
• Exploring other cultures and religions, recognising diversity with positivity
• Challenging prejudice and racist comments
• Developing critical thinking skills and a strong, positive self-identity
• Promoting the spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of pupils alongside promotion of British values.
How does Prevent relate to British Values?
Schools have been required to promote British values since 2014, and this will continue to form part of our response to the Prevent Strategy.
The key British values that we promote include the following:
• The rule of law
• Individual liberty and mutual respect
• Tolerance of different faiths and beliefs
Isn’t my child too young to learn about extremism?
The Prevent Strategy is not just about discussing extremism itself; indeed this may not be appropriate for primary age children. It is, however, about teaching children core values such as tolerance and mutual respect. Staff always ensure that all discussions are suitable for the age and maturity of the children involved.
Is extremism really a risk in our area?
Extremism can take many forms, including political and religious extremism. Some of these may be a bigger threat in areas other than that of our school. We aim to give children the skills to protect themselves from any extremist views they may encounter, now or later in their lives.
• Extremism: vocal or active opposition to fundamental British values such as democracy, the rule of law and tolerance of different faiths and beliefs.
• Radicalisation: the process by which a person comes to support extremism and terrorism