Safeguarding around the holidays: signs to spot and issues to be aware of

Consider the safeguarding risks as you prepare for the summer holidays and find out how to support pupils, parents and carers. Then, at the start of next term, learn the signs to look out for as pupils and staff return to school.

Updated
on 19 June 2024
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School types: AllSchool phases: AllRef: 46985
Contents
  1. Be aware of the safeguarding risks over the holidays
  2. Let pupils know where they can get help over the summer holidays
  3. Look out for changes in pupils as they return to school
  4. Check in with pupils at the start of term
  5. Support staff with training and information

Be aware of the safeguarding risks over the holidays

It's useful to be aware of potential problems before the holidays start, so you can point pupils, parents and carers in the direction of support and get staff ready for when pupils return.

What types of safeguarding issues could appear during the summer holidays?

Long-standing issues within families could be heightened over the holidays, and new safeguarding issues may take place.

Children might also be exposed to:

  • Domestic abuse
  • Lack of basic care, like heat, shelter or food
  • Eviction, moving around in temporary housing or homelessness
  • Parents or carers with depression or addiction
  • Criminal exploitation
  • Online scams 
  • A generally stressful home environment

Even if a child doesn't experience abuse in any way, these types of situations could have knock-on effects, such as worsening a pupil's mental health.

There could also be increased risks of both child sexual abuse and child-on-child sexual abuse over the holidays.

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