We’re debunking the myths surrounding Early Years safeguarding training. Can you take an online course? Which level of training do you need? And why exactly do Early Years Practitioners need safeguarding training, anyway?
What level of safeguarding training do I need to work in the Early Years?
Safeguarding levels are no longer referred to when it comes to safeguarding training for the Early Years. While it is still vitally important that you have a current, verifiable safeguarding certificate at all times, your search for an Early Years safeguarding course will need to be adjusted to suit the new requirements.
Why do I need safeguarding training to work in the Early Years?
As an Early Years Practitioner, you come into contact with children and families every day at work, and therefore, you need to be aware of the signs and indicators of abuse and neglect, as well as knowing what to do should you encounter a child at risk, or suspect a safeguarding concern.
Whether you work as the Nursery Manager, or you volunteer with an Early Years group to run a Messy Play session occasionally, you have a duty to protect the children in your care and Ofsted (and equivalent inspecting bodies) will expect to see evidence that you have completed an Early Years safeguarding course.
What safeguarding training is available for Early Years Practitioners?
There are two main types of Early Years safeguarding course options: an Introductory course, which all staff in an Early Years setting should take; and a Further course, which is necessary for staff with a greater responsibility for child protection (for example, the Designated Safeguarding Lead Person in your setting, or management).
As well as these Early Years safeguarding course options, there will be additional training courses available to specialist staff, or staff who may need a greater knowledge of safeguarding policies and procedures. These courses are usually hosted by your local authority and will not typically be available to purchase online from a safeguarding training provider like Smart Horizons.
Remember: Safeguarding is everyone’s responsibility. If you are working directly with children, young adults, families, or vulnerable people, you need to be trained to handle safeguarding incidents professionally and in such a way that will ensure the highest level of safety for everyone involved—including yourself!
What will I learn in an Introductory Early Years safeguarding course?
An Introductory Early Years safeguarding course is something everyone working or volunteering in an Early Years setting should have as a minimum. An Introductory course will typically introduce you to the main types of abuse and neglect, such as emotional abuse, physical abuse, child sexual exploitation (CSE), online abuse (online safety), and many others. Introductory safeguarding courses should also include modules on the various signs and indicators of these different types of abuse, so that you have the knowledge you need to notice when there is cause for concern. An Introductory Early Years safeguarding course should also include a module on the Prevent Duty.
Our bestselling Safeguarding in Early Years online safeguarding course is a great choice for Early Years staff and volunteers who need a comprehensive Introductory safeguarding course that meets Ofsted’s requirements. It gives an overview of all the main types of abuse and neglect, as well as a full module on online safety (including the online risks that might be present to children and toddlers on the internet, smartphones, tablets, and games consoles), plus a module on the Prevent Duty.
The course takes between 1 to 2 hours to complete fully online, and can be paused and restarted as many times as you need to. On successful completion, you can download a fully verifiable Early Years safeguarding certificate immediately.
Please click here to learn more about our online Safeguarding in Early Years course.
What will I learn in a Further Early Years safeguarding course?
A Further Early Years safeguarding course should build upon the knowledge that you have already learned in your Introductory training. Suitable for managers, senior staff, and the Designated Safeguarding Lead Person in your setting, these courses should teach you how to handle safeguarding concerns in the workplace and beyond, including information about the necessary contacts in the event of a safeguarding incident, the required paperwork that you and staff in your workplace should be familiar with, plus advice for effective multi-agency working.
It is important to keep in mind that most Further safeguarding courses should not be taken alone. You will also need to have an Introductory Early Years safeguarding certificate (you can get one of these by taking our Safeguarding for Early Years course) to ensure that you have the full suite of safeguarding knowledge.
Our online Designated Safeguarding Lead Training course is a fantastic choice for those with a need for Further Early Years safeguarding training. The course takes around 1 to 2 hours to complete entirely online, and can be paused and restarted as many times as needed. On successful completion, you can download a fully verifiable Early Years safeguarding certificate immediately.
Designated Safeguarding Leads and their deputies should however always check with their local authority first as some authorities require these post holders to attend a multi-agency face-to-face course run by themselves.
Do I need to take a face-to-face Early Years safeguarding course?
There’s a common misconception that all safeguarding courses need to be taken in-person in a face-to-face environment in order to be accepted by Ofsted or equivalent inspecting bodies, but this is not true. It is perfectly acceptable to take online Early Years safeguarding training, especially if you do not require any training at a higher level than the standard Introductory or Further safeguarding courses.
However, if you have a need for training above this, it is likely that these courses will be taught in a face-to-face environment. It is also true that some local authorities will only accept their own locally-led safeguarding courses at the further level for designated leads and their deputies—but this is not the case in all counties in the United Kingdom, and you can check this with your local safeguarding board.
If you would like to speak to a member of our friendly customer support team about your Early Years safeguarding training needs, our offices are open from 9 a.m. to 5.30 p.m. Monday to Friday, and you can call us on 01327 552030, chat online or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.