skip to Main Content

Why did I launch About Safeguarding?

I had been in the education profession for over 18 years, 8 years as a Senior Lead and just shy of 6 years as a Headteacher. University doesn’t quite prepare you for the real world of teaching. I remember one University Lecturer telling me that one day you will love the job and the next day it will be just a pay day. He wasn’t wrong!

I loved working in deprived areas. Being from one myself, I wanted to give children and families opportunities to educate themselves, to want more from their lives, and maybe to get out of the areas in which they grew up. My opinion changed slightly over the years, as many families and children were quite happy where they were and didn’t want to leave or change. So, it became more about helping where I could and giving all children the best education, so that opportunities could open up if they wanted to take them.

What I quickly discovered in my first headship was that, yes, curriculum education is important, but an education in life skills was a priority. I had to ensure that primary aged children were educated in first aid, cooking for themselves and family members, how to keep safe online and in the real world, and who to speak to when they or someone they knew where in danger.

I cannot speak highly enough of family support workers in schools! All of the family support workers I had in my schools were amazing and a lifeline to families and staff members. I had to ensure that ALL staff knew what to do in a safeguarding situation, because not ALL staff members do know what to do or feel comfortable in reporting. It wasn’t long before I wanted to do more than education. I had, and still do, work with foodbanks, and raise money for the NSPCC, but I felt this wasn’t enough.

The safeguarding and safer recruitment training I’d received wasn’t relatable and often came from people with no experience of real-life safeguarding situations. I also knew that if I felt like this, my staff did too. So, after listening to my husband nagging me for many years to join him in his ‘About…’ Consulting business, I took the leap. I joined the business and set up ‘About…Safeguarding’. I was an accredited training, so I could deliver safer recruitment training and safeguarding training but could also work with other trainers who have lived and breathed safeguarding – the highs and the lows.

I know that it just takes one staff member to be unaware of the processes, someone to turn a blind eye because they don’t want to be wrong, or for someone to say, ‘that’s just X, that’s how they have always been!’

I wanted to provide training that was personal, met the requirements but was grounded in real experience, so people can learn from mistakes and successes.

I am passionate about safeguarding everyone – from children through families and vulnerable adults. Abuse has to stop. I will play my part in the fight against abuse, and I hope that you find my training more relatable and worthwhile.