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Preventing Extremism & Radicalisation Guidance



Policy last reviewed: September 2023

Reviewed by: Matthew Ascroft

Agreed by governors:

Shared with staff: September 2023

Frequency of review: Annually

Date of next review: September 2024


Head Teacher: Matthew Ascroft

Designated Safeguarding Lead: Matthew Ascroft

Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead: Lucy Pater ( Deputy Head Teacher), Ellen Parker (Assistant Head Teacher) Sarah Morris (Assistant Head Teacher), Rebecca Fenlon, Michele Rowland

Named Governor for Safeguarding: Mr J Rabone

Chair of Governors: Mr Bill Gallagher


  1. Introduction

Since 2010, when the Government published the Prevent Strategy, there has been an awareness of the specific need to safeguard children, young people and families from violent extremism. There have been several occasions both locally and nationally in which extremist groups have attempted to radicalise vulnerable children and young people to hold extreme views including views justifying political, religious, sexist or racist violence, or to steer them into a rigid and narrow ideology that is intolerant of diversity and leaves them vulnerable to future radicalisation.


Stoke Primary values freedom of speech and the expression of beliefs / ideology as fundamental rights underpinning our society’s values. Both students and teachers have the right to speak freely and voice their opinions. However, freedom comes with responsibility and free speech that is designed to manipulate the vulnerable or that leads to violence and harm of others goes against the moral principles in which freedom of speech is valued. Free speech is not an unqualified privilege; it is subject to laws and policies governing equality, human rights, community safety and community cohesion.


Stoke Primary is committed to providing a secure environment for pupils, where children and young people feel safe and are kept safe. All adults at the school recognise that safeguarding is everyone’s responsibility irrespective of the role they undertake or whether their role has direct contact or responsibility for children or not.


This Preventing Extremism and Radicalisation Policy is one element within our overall school arrangements to safeguard and promote the welfare of all children in line with our statutory duties set out at S157/S175 of the Education Act 2002.


Our school’s Preventing Extremism and Radicalisation Policy also draws upon the guidance produced by the Walsall Local Safeguarding Children Board; DfE Guidance “Keeping Children Safe in Education, 2015”, HM government document “Prevent strategy: A guide for local partners in England” and the “Counter Terrorism and Security Act 2015”.


The Counter-Terrorism and Security Act 2015 contains a duty on specified authorities, which includes all schools including academies, free schools, maintained schools and studio schools to have due regard to the need to prevent people from being drawn into terrorism. The new legislation will be measured through various inspection frameworks, with schools and Children Services measured through OFSTED. The government will be producing guidance to help schools deliver the required standards (issued under section 29 of the Act).


Geoff Thomas is the Prevent Coordinator in Coventry and offers support and challenge in relation to the Prevent agenda. To contact Geoff please call 02476 831437 or email Geoff.Thomas@Coventry.gov.uk


The Department for Education has set up a helpline for teachers who have questions and/or concerns about extremism.


Teachers can call: 0207 340 7264 or email: counter.extremism@education.gsi.gov.uk


2. School Ethos and Practice

When operating this Policy, the school uses the following accepted Governmental definition of extremism which is:


‘Vocal or active opposition to fundamental British values, including democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of different faiths and beliefs; and/or calls for the death of members of our armed forces, whether in this country or overseas’.


There is no place for extremist views of any kind in our school, whether from internal sources (pupils, staff or governors) or external sources (school community, external agencies or individuals).

Our pupils see our school as a safe place where they can explore controversial issues safely and where our teachers encourage and facilitate this – we have a duty to ensure this happens.


As a school we recognise that extremism and exposure to extremist materials and influences can lead to poor outcomes for children and so should be addressed as a safeguarding concern as set out in this Policy. We also recognise that if we fail to challenge extremist views we are failing to protect our pupils.


Extremists of all persuasions aim to develop destructive relationships between different communities by promoting division, fear and mistrust of others based on ignorance or prejudice and thereby limiting the life chances of young people. Education is a powerful weapon against this; equipping young people with the knowledge, skills and critical thinking, to challenge and debate in an informed way.


Therefore, the school will provide a broad and balanced curriculum, delivered by skilled professionals, so that our pupils are enriched, understand and become tolerant of difference and diversity and also to ensure that they thrive, feel valued and not marginalized.


Please see notes on associated terminology at Appendix 3.


3. The Counter Terrorism and Security Act

The Counter Terrorism and Security Act 2015 was published on 12th March 2015. Section 26 of the Act places a duty on schools in England (and Wales) to prevent people being drawn into terrorism. This duty applies to all schools, whether publicly-funded or independent, and organisations covered by the Early Years Foundation Stage framework. The duty also applies to children’s homes. Statutory guidance has been published and comes into force on 1st July 2015.


Schools leaders (including governors) must:

  • establish or use existing mechanisms for understanding the risk of extremism
  • ensure staff understand the risk and build capabilities to deal with it
  • communicate and promote the importance of the duty
  • ensure staff implement the duty effectively


Other duties on schools include:

  • effective partnership working with other local agencies, e.g. LSCB, police, health, etc.
  • information sharing
  • maintaining appropriate records
  • assessing local risk of extremism (including Far Right extremism)
  • demonstrating they are protecting children
  • developing clear protocols for visiting speakers
  • safeguarding policies that take account of LSCB policies and procedures
  • training staff to give them knowledge and confidence
  • ensuring there is robust ICT protocols that filter out extremist materials
  • school buildings must not be used to give a platform to extremists


Ofsted are responsible for monitoring how well schools are implementing this duty. See Appendix 1 for optional schools audit.


4. Recognising the indicators of vulnerability to radicalisation

There is no such thing as a “typical extremist”: those who become involved in extremist actions come from a range of backgrounds and experiences, and most individuals, even those who hold radical views, do not become involved in violent extremist activity.


Pupils may become susceptible to radicalisation through a range of social, personal and environmental factors - it is known that violent extremists exploit vulnerabilities in individuals to drive a wedge between them and their families and communities. It is vital that school staff is able to recognise those vulnerabilities.


Indicators of vulnerability include:

  • Identity Crisis – the student / pupil is distanced from their cultural / religious heritage and experiences discomfort about their place in society;
  • Personal Crisis – the student / pupil may be experiencing family tensions; a sense of isolation; and low self-esteem; they may have dissociated from their existing friendship group and become involved with a new and different group of friends; they may be searching for answers to questions about identity, faith and belonging;
  • Personal Circumstances – migration; local community tensions; and events affecting the student / pupil’s country or region of origin may contribute to a sense of grievance that is triggered by personal experience of racism or discrimination or aspects of Government policy;
  • Unmet Aspirations – the student / pupil may have perceptions of injustice; a feeling of failure; rejection of civic life;
  • Experiences of Criminality – which may include involvement with criminal groups, imprisonment, and poor resettlement /reintegration;
  • Special Educational Need – students / pupils may experience difficulties with social interaction, empathy with others, understanding the consequences of their actions and awareness of the motivations of others.
  • More critical risk factors could include:
  • Being in contact with extremist recruiters;
  • Accessing violent extremist websites, especially those with a social networking element;
  • Possessing or accessing violent extremist literature;
  • Using extremist narratives and a global ideology to explain personal disadvantage;
  • Justifying the use of violence to solve societal issues;
  • Joining or seeking to join extremist organisations; and
  • Significant changes to appearance and / or behaviour;
  • Experiencing a high level of social isolation resulting in issues of identity crisis and/or personal crisis.


Any prejudice, discrimination or extremist views, including derogatory language, displayed by pupils or staff will always be challenged and where appropriate dealt with in line with our Behaviour Policy for pupils and the Code of Conduct/Staff Behaviour policy for staff.


We will ensure that all of our staff are equipped to recognise extremism and are skilled and confident enough to challenge it. All staff will receive WRAP training (Workshop to Raise Awareness of Prevent) and radicalisation and extremism will be an integral part of annual staff safeguarding training.


Our school is required to identify a Prevent Single Point of Contact (SPOC) who will be the lead within the organisation for safeguarding in relation to protecting individuals from radicalisation and involvement in terrorism. The SPOC for Stoke Primary is Matthew Ascroft, Headteacher.


When any member of staff has concerns that a pupil may be at risk of radicalisation or involvement in terrorism, they should speak with the SPOC or head/principal. We will help support pupils who may be vulnerable to such influences as part of our wider safeguarding responsibilities and where we believe a pupil is being directly affected by extremist materials or influences we will ensure that that pupil is offered assistance. Additionally in such instances our school will seek external support from the Local Authority and/or local partnership structures working to prevent extremism.


Our school will closely follow the locally agreed procedure as set out by the Local Safeguarding Children Board for safeguarding individuals vulnerable to extremism and radicalisation.


5. Teaching Approaches

We will all strive to eradicate the myths and assumptions that can lead to some young people becoming alienated and disempowered, especially where the narrow approaches children may experience elsewhere may make it harder for them to challenge or question these radical influences. In our school this will be achieved by good teaching, primarily via Citizenship and PSHE sessions; but also by adopting the methods outlined in the Government’s guidance ‘Teaching approaches that help build resilience to extremism among young people’ DfE 2011.

These approaches include setting targets for young people to build a sense of ownership; creating a safe space for dialogue between staff and pupils; building resilience in pupils; improving pupil skills for collaborative work; improving pupils’ ability to interact with each other and a peer mentoring scheme.


We will ensure that all of our teaching approaches help our pupils build resilience to extremism and give pupils a positive sense of identity through the development of critical thinking skills. The school will promote the values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty, mutual respect and tolerance for those with different faiths and beliefs. We will teach and encourage pupils to respect one another and to respect and tolerate difference, especially those of a different faith or no faith. It is indeed our most fundamental responsibility to keep our pupils safe and prepare them for life in modern multi-cultural Britain and globally.


We will also work with local partners, families and communities in our efforts to challenge extremist views and to assist in the broadening of our pupils’ experiences and horizons.


6. Use of External Agencies and Speakers

The school encourages the use of external agencies or speakers to enrich the experiences of our pupils; however we will positively vet those external agencies, individuals or speakers who we engage to provide such learning opportunities or experiences for our pupils. This includes checking the DBS of all external providers, viewing material that will be used beforehand and conducting a social media check on such agencies or individuals.


Such vetting is to ensure that we do not unwittingly use agencies that contradict each other with their messages or that are inconsistent with, or are in compete opposition to, the school’s values and ethos.


Our school will assess the suitability and effectiveness of input from external agencies or individuals to ensure that:

  • Any messages communicated to pupils are consistent with the ethos of the school and do not marginalise any communities, groups or individuals
  • Any messages do not seek to glorify criminal activity or violent extremism or seek to radicalise pupils through extreme or narrow views of faith, religion or culture or other ideologies
  • Activities are properly embedded in the curriculum and clearly mapped to schemes of work to avoid contradictory messages or duplication.
  • Activities are matched to the needs of pupils
  • Activities are carefully evaluated by the school to ensure that they are effective


Therefore by delivering a broad and balanced curriculum, augmented by the use of external sources where appropriate, we will strive to ensure our pupils recognise risk and build resilience to manage any such risk themselves where appropriate to their age and ability but also to help pupils develop the critical thinking skills needed to engage in informed debate.


7. Whistleblowing

Where there are concerns of extremism or radicalisation pupils and staff will be encouraged to make use of our internal systems to whistle blow or raise any issue in confidence.

Please refer to the separate Whistleblowing Policy.


8. Recruitment

The arrangements for recruiting all staff, permanent and volunteers, to our school will follow government guidance on safer recruitment best practice in education settings, including, but not limited to, ensuring that DBS checks are always made at the appropriate level, that references are always received and checked and that we complete and maintain a Single Central Record of such vetting checks.


We will apply safer recruitment best practice principles and sound employment practice in general and in doing so will deny opportunities for inappropriate recruitment or advancement. We will be alert to the possibility that persons may seek to gain positions within our school so as to unduly influence our schools character and ethos. We are aware that such persons seek to limit the opportunities for our pupils thereby rendering them vulnerable to extremist views and radicalisation as a consequence.


Therefore, by adhering to safer recruitment best practice techniques and by ensuring that there is an ongoing culture of vigilance within our school and staff team we will minimise the opportunities for extremist views to prevail.



9. Role of Governing Board

The Governing Board of our school will undertake annual training led by the Designated Safeguarding Lead to ensure that they are clear about their role and the parameters of their responsibilities as Governors, including their statutory safeguarding duties.


The Governing Board of our school will support the ethos and values of our school and will support the school in tackling extremism and radicalisation.


In line with the provisions set out in the DfE guidance ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education, July 2015’ the governing body will challenge the school’s senior management team on the delivery of this policy and monitor its effectiveness.


Governors will review this policy regularly prior to the start of a new academic year (on an annual basis) but may amend and adopt any amendments outside of this timeframe in accordance with any new legislation or guidance.


10. Standards for Teachers

The Standards for Teachers (part two) states:


A teacher is expected to demonstrate consistently high standards of personal and professional conduct. The following statements, define the behaviour and attitudes that set the required standard for conduct throughout a teacher’s career. Teachers uphold public trust in the profession and maintain high standards of ethics and behaviour, within and outside school by:

  • Treating pupils with dignity, building relationships rooted in mutual respect, and at all times observing proper boundaries appropriate to a teacher’s professional position
  • Having regard for the need to safeguard pupils’ well-being, in accordance with statutory provisions showing tolerance of and respect for the rights of others
  • Not undermining fundamental British values, including democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect, and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs
  • Ensuring that personal beliefs are not expressed in ways that exploit pupils’ vulnerability, or might lead them to break the law.


Teachers must have proper and professional regard for the ethos, policies and practices of the school in which they teach, and maintain high standards in their own attendance and punctuality. They must have an understanding of, and always act within, the statutory frameworks that set out their professional duties and responsibilities.


NB the phrase ‘fundamental British values’ refers to the definition of extremism as articulated in the Prevent Strategy, which was launched in June 2011 and updated recently. It includes the need for schools to explore with pupils and students ‘democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of different faiths and beliefs’.


11. Policy Adoption, Monitoring and Review

This Policy was considered and adopted by the Governing Board in line with their overall duty to safeguard and promote the welfare of children as set out in the DfE guidance ‘Keeping Children Safe in Education’  and duties as set out in the Counter Terrorism and Security Act 2015.


Parents/carers will be issued with a hard copy of this Policy on request. This Policy will also be made available to parents/carers via the school’s website.


Governors will review this policy annually prior to the start of a new academic year but may adopt any amendments outside this timeframe in accordance with any new legislation or guidance.


12. Supporting children who are travelling/have travelled abroad to specific locations

The Dangers of travelling for terrorism (or Forced Marriage or Female Genital Mutilation) are becoming increasingly apparent and concerning. While this guidance refers to children and young people returning; there is an absolute desire to stop them travelling wherever possible. School staff must also be alert and refer cases of potential concern if they become aware that a student/pupil is intending to travel during school holidays.


If you have concerns either post travel or pre travel and/or identify any concerns in relation to extremism as identified above please refer to the flow diagram at Appendix 4 which relies on your professional judgment with full support and guidance from your SPOC. If any of the indicators of concern are noted upon return/extremism risk identified then consideration needs to be given to making a referral, see Appendix 2, to the Channel panel who will suggest appropriate intervention. This will be from a safeguarding perspective around a number of issues that will encompass extremism vulnerabilities. If any responses/discussions give further indictors for concern around extremism then the Local Security and Partnership Officer will be contacted.



13. Links and supporting documents  


HO Foreign Travel Advice-



Prevent Tragedies



How social media is used to encourage travel to Syria and Iraq



Promoting British Values through SMSC



Tackling extremism in the UK - Task Force report (see pages 5 – 7)



Channel Guidance



Prevent Duty (new guidance and consultations doc)



Keeping Children Safe in Education

Keeping children safe in education - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk) 






Appendix 1 – Prevent audit for primary and secondary schools


An audit of this nature is a useful form of evidence for inspecting bodies such as Ofsted; it is also a useful self- assessment tool for leadership teams and staff to map what they are already doing well and what could be done to improve ‘good practice’ further. In the past, schools have used Community Cohesion audits in a similar way, with favourable comments from both leadership teams and Ofsted.


Appropriate members of the Senior Management Team, the Prevent Lead and a Governor who has responsibility for this area should carry out the audit; its findings should be shared with the whole staff. The audit must be reviewed at the very least bi – annually and a record of each audit filed and kept in school.



When assessing the school’s level of compliance use the following codes

Red (R): no evidence

Amber (A): partial evidence

Green (G): secure evidence


1. PREVENT OBJECTIVE 1: Clear leadership and accountable structures are in place and visible throughout the organisation




Colour code

Action, when and responsibility

There is an identified strategic Prevent Lead within the school



The strategic Prevent Lead understands the expectations and key priorities of PREVENT and these are embedded and explicit within safeguarding policies



The Senior Leadership Team have a clear understanding and commitment to the Prevent Strategy and its key objectives



The PREVENT agenda and its objectives are embedded within the appropriate safeguarding processes established and used in school



2. Staff and the Governing Body have been appropriately trained according to their role




Colour code

Action, when and responsibility

All staff and Governors know who the Prevent Lead is in school



They understand the risk of radicalisation and extremism and know how to recognise and refer children who may be at risk



There are appropriate policies, staff guidance and literature readily available to all staff on PREVENT



Staff are confident and able to provide appropriate challenge to students, parents or Governors if opinions are expressed that are contrary to fundamental British values and the promotion of community cohesion; they know who to go to and how to report concerns


Not all staff - more training

Regular, continuous CPD updating training on PREVENT is available to the Strategic Prevent Lead and safeguarding leads where appropriate


Part of DSL briefings


3. An appropriate reporting and referral process is in place and referrals are being managed effectively



Colour code

Action, when and responsibility

An appropriate internal PREVENT referral process has been developed


CPD in September. Additnal Prevent session in AUT2.  All staff to know what the process is to be confident in reporting.

Partner agency communication channels have been established – Local Authority Prevent Lead and the Police, are first port of call when outside agencies need to be consulted or for making a Channel referral


Print out contact info & referral form from DSL website

Evidence of notification reports and/or referrals exists in school



Evidence of advice being sought

Prevent notifications or referrals are managed or overseen by designated staff e.g. the Prevent Lead



None to date

A process is in place to identify, and develop ‘lessons learnt’; a reflective process that will inform future action



Review processes to be strengthened 


4. A broad and balanced curriculum that helps protect students against extremism and promotes community cohesion



Colour code

Action, when and responsibility

The school delivers a creative curriculum that helps develop critical thinking skills around the power of influence, particularly the persuasion of on-line sources and social media



Themes and curriculum content provides opportunities to explore and reinforce the benefits of community cohesion and the damaging effects of all extremism on the local, national and global community



A range of activities are planned and delivered in both lessons and the community, that explore the choices available to young people in the 21st century and the consequences of these


Not yet in the community

Resources, displays and literature provide balanced information, advice and alternative views for pupils and students



Pupils demonstrate in their work and relationships with others an ability to recognise diversity and the problems and possibilities inherent within this



The school provides opportunities to explore fundamental British values, equality, difference, faiths and beliefs., through the curriculum, collective worship and interaction with the wider community



Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural education is understood as a central strand in PREVENT (promoting equality, exploring difference and British values) by all staff and is addressed as suggested in the 2014 SMSC guidance (see links and supporting guidance)





Appendix 2.


Please complete the below details and send to BOTH emails:



This will be dealt with by individual Police Force Prevent Teams.

Please complete to the best of your knowledge. Leave blank if unknown.

Your details:







Relationship to individual


Contact no.




Professional role (if applicable)





Individuals details and summary of concerns:

Please include as much detail as possible.










Contact no.




Social Media Username






Religious Establishment


Place of Birth




Languages Spoken


English spoken?


School or Educational Establishment




Occupation Address



Has anyone been consulted about this referral (safeguarding agency etc.)?



Yes No


If yes please give details


Additional Info (e.g. Family details, Associates of concern)







Summary of Concerns





Appendix 3 – Associated terminology


Al-Qaeda - An international organization of loosely affiliated groups/cells that carry out attacks and bombings in the attempt to disrupt the economies and influence of Western nations and advance Islamic extremism

British- People who are the inhabitants of Britain (e.g. citizens of England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland, the Isle of Man or one of the Chanel Islands, collectively known as the United Kingdom) or an inhabitant of a British overseas territory

Channel – A key element of the Prevent Strategy; Channel is about safeguarding children and adults from being drawn into committing terrorist-related activity. It is about early intervention to protect and divert people away from the risk they face before illegality occurs

English Defence League (EDL) - The English Defence League is a far right, street protest movement, which opposes what it considers to be a ‘spread of Islamism’, and Islamic extremism in the United Kingdom

Ethnicity - This is linked to distinctive shared social, linguistics, physical (e.g. skin colour) cultural and geographical heritage and norms. Religious belonging may be part of these norms. Every person has an ethnicity. To belong to an ethnic group, an individual must see themselves as a member and be seen as others as being a member of the group

Extremism - One who advocates or resorts to ideologies and measures beyond the norm, in politics and religion often using violence and terror tactics to make their views known, or to gain power

Ideology- A set of ideas and beliefs of a group, religious or political party

Identity - An umbrella term used to describe an individual’s understanding of him or herself; identity is influenced by many factors, gender, ethnicity, religion, nationality, culture, family etc.

Media - The means of communication that reaches large numbers of people e.g. the television, newspapers, and the internet

Propaganda - Ideas or statements that are often false or exaggerated and that are spread in order to help a cause

Islamaphobia - A hatred or fear of Muslims, their religion and sometimes-related politics or culture.

Islamist - A western term used to describe an extreme Muslim usually politicised

Jihad- Personal struggle in everyday life; striving to achieve a goal; also used to mean taking up arms if necessary

Nationalism - a feeling that people have of being loyal to and proud of their country often with the belief that it is better and more important than other countries

Nationality - The status of belonging to a particular nation by origin, birth, or naturalization

Racism - This term refers to the deeply rooted but groundless belief that certain groups are inherently inferior to others. Racism is expressed through attitudes, behaviours and institutional policies and procedures. It disadvantages certain groups in terms of housing, job opportunities and education. Some White people experience racism (for example people from Irish, Jewish or Traveller backgrounds).

Radical - A word that describes a person who favours extreme or fundamental change in existing institutions or in political, social, or economic conditions

Resilience - The ability to recover quickly from change, or misfortune

Right wing - A conservative or reactionary element in a political party or other organization, often associated with fascism, nationalism and racism.

Social media - Forms of electronic communication (web sites, social networking and blogging) through which users create online communities to share information, ideas, personal messages, and other content e.g. videos.

Stereotypes - This involves making generalised assumptions about a person or group; applying these assumptions; expecting people to conform to them

Terrorism - The unlawful use or threatened use of force or violence by a person or an organised group against people or property with the intention of intimidating individuals, coercing societies or governments, often for ideological or political reasons.

Terrorist - One that engages in acts or an act of terrorism

Xenophobia - An unreasonable fear or hatred of foreigners or strangers, or of that, which is different, foreign or strange.


Appendix 4 - Flow Diagram