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Primary head named as first school safeguarding tsar

A primary headteacher of nearly 20 years has become the first schools safeguarding tsar, tasked with helping leaders communicate better with other agencies.

Over the next year, Jon Le Fevre will help the Department for Education to explore whether schools should become a fourth safeguarding partner and help roll out social care reforms.

He will gather evidence of where safeguarding communication is working well between schools and others, such as councils and police, and strengthen their voice. One example is where schools sit on local safeguarding boards.

“I’m going to visit as many councils as I can. I think the more we have education at these boards, the better the conversation will be and safeguarding improved,” Le Fevre told Schools Week.

“I’m in a supportive role – it’s not accountability, it’s not an inspectorate. I’m there to facilitate better working together.”

With 17-years of headship experience, Le Fevre most recently led Pilgrims’ Cross primary school, in Hampshire, where they had “really good arrangements” with social workers and other agencies.

“We have to do what’s best for children but I’m very conscious of the stresses and pressures within schools at the present time,” he added.

Last year, DfE said it would “explore” legislative changes to include schools as a statutory safeguarding partner, alongside councils, health services and police.

The MacAlister review of child social care warned leaving schools out meant the voice of education was “missing”.

Le Fevre has a £129,000 contract to do the work, which runs until March 2025. He is working alongside two other safeguarding tsars, Deborah McMillan who leads on councils and Lorraine Parker, who focuses on police.

Schools looking to work with Le Fevre can reach him on [email protected]

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