In this episode of HJ Talks about Abuse podcast, Alan Collins and Feleena Grosvenor discuss the NSPCC Report Abuse in Education helpline, which was launched in April 2021. It is dedicated to children and young people who have experienced sexual harassment or abuse at school. It is also for worried adults and professionals that need support and guidance.
The NSPCC worked with the Department for Education to set up the phone line after Everyone’s Invited published thousands of anonymous testimonials about sexual harassment in all types of schools, colleges and universities.
The helpline comes at a time of specific concern and research regarding sexual abuse in schools and colleges. The “CASPAR briefing” is considered a landmark report by Ofsted that was conducted in April 2021 regarding peer-on-peer sexual harassment, sexual violence and online sexual abuse. One of the findings were that sexual harassment was so “normal” in schools that children did not see any point of reporting it.
In August 2021, it has been recorded that over 600 people have called the helpline to repost sex abuse in schools (averaging 150 calls a month). Some of the calls have resulted in referrals to external agencies, such as the police and social services.
We hope that the spotlight will remain on the issue to encourage as many people as possible to report and recover from their experiences, as well as preventing it from happening to others.