Tes is reporting that leaders of around 700 schools, further education colleges and pupil referral units in the capital will be asked how they safeguard pupils against the threat of knife crime on their premises, and how students are educated about the dangers of carrying a weapon.
Ofsted’s regional director for London Mike Sheridan said the responses would not be used to help form judgements on individual schools.
Schools can take part anonymously but can also choose to identify themselves and even have focused visits from Ofsted to help its research.
Mr Sheridan said: “In recent times, it seems like not a day goes by without heart-wrenching headlines telling of yet another young life, tragically taken too soon. I, like many others, simply cannot sit by without trying to help.”
“We are not looking to catch anyone out. We want to understand what teachers and leaders are doing to protect their young people from knife crime, so that we can learn from it and help other schools and colleges in developing their own strategies.”
Mayor of London Sadiq Khan had described an “epidemic” of knife crime and last June offered free metal detecting “wands” to all 498 secondary schools and 63 FE colleges in London.
The latest figures showed that 150 schools and colleges have taken up the offer. The mayor’s office said more schools were expected to do so.
Mr Sheridan said that knife crime was not just a London issue and he hoped the findings of their report would help school leaders in other parts of the country too.
What has your school done to safeguard your pupils? Should all schools be using metal detecting “wands”? Please tell us your thoughts in comments or via Twitter ~ Tamsin
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