Forcing teachers to report FGM ‘could stop children seeking help’

The Evening Standard is reporting claims that new rules forcing teachers to report cases of FGM to police will make it harder for children to seek help…

Teachers are now legally obliged to report cases of FGM to police, but this could undermine the trust children have in their teachers, the ATL conference heard.

Delegates at the meeting in Liverpool were today set to debate an emergency motion calling on the government to remove the “threat of criminalisation” from education professionals.

David Cameron announced at the Girl Summit in London last year that doctors, social workers and teachers would be legally obliged to report female genital mutilation if they see it…

But Helen Porter, a biology teacher from Newbury, said the move could cause children to lose their trust in teachers, and mean teachers drop out of the profession for fear of being disciplined.

She said teachers also fear being criminalised for failing to report sexual exploitation and radicalisation as well.

“All teachers want to stop these things and are absolutely horrified by the events in Rotherham.” But she said the current system, where teachers report concerns to a member of staff dedicated to child protection, already works well…

More at: Forcing teachers to report FGM ‘could stop children seeking help’


Do you agree with Helen Porter that the threat of criminalisation could be counter-productive or is it an important step in the fight against FGM?


Don’t forget you can sign up to receive our daily email bulletin every morning (around 7 am) with all the latest schools news stories. Your details will never be given to anyone else and you can unsubscribe at any stage. Just follow this link!

One in 10 children aged 12 to 13 have made or been in a sexually explicit video
Parents rarely spot child obesity
Categories: Safeguarding and Teaching.


  1. carol_ann_howe

    SchoolsImprove if teachers don’t report FGM then how can they help? Same as disclosure of abuse surely?

  2. Nor_edu

    SchoolsImprove this different to the current CP system then? Do they not still report to responsible internal person and *they* follow it?

Let us know what you think...