Ofsted to quiz heads on efforts to stop female genital mutilation
School inspectors are to question headteachers on their efforts to combat female genital mutilation (FGM), as part of a government attempt to ensure public bodies live up to their responsibilities to protect children from the practice.
Ofsted officials will demand proof that schools have "safeguarding policies" which deal with FGM, including training their staff to identify "at risk" pupils and inform the police if they believe girls are in danger of being taken abroad to undergo the agonising procedure.
Proposals to introduce a specific question on FGM into the standard school inspection procedure were agreed at the Home Office last week, during a "round-table" debate about ways of stamping out the practice. The debate took place amid growing fears that thousands of British schoolgirls are taken back to their parents' home countries every year to be forcibly mutilated.
Prosecutors fear the fight against FGM is being hindered by the failure of many public authorities to maintain data on the practice, or to devise policies to identify and tackle it.
An IoS survey last week revealed that barely 50 out of more than 500 UK councils, hospitals and police forces could produce figures on the incidence of girls or women found to have suffered FGM, or deemed to be at risk of it.
An action plan spearheaded by the Director of Public Prosecutions, Keir Starmer, has set out the demand for the collection of "more robust data on allegations of FGM, so the scale of the problem can be gauged".
The Conservative MP Jane Ellison, chair of the all-party FGM group, said Ofsted inspections were a perfect opportunity to ensure schools were meeting their responsibilities.
"Ofsted are already training their own inspectors on FGM. Asking a specific question on the subject during their inspections will ensure that everyone is doing what is expected of them," she said.
"There is nothing that concentrates a school's mind more than the thought that a negative comment on any issue might appear in their inspection report."
Perez Hilton apologises for publishing Jennifer Lawrence naked photo leak
Jennifer Lawrence 'nude photo hacker' claims there are hundreds more celebrity images to come
Victoria Justice on naked photo leak: 'Let me nip this in the bud right now – pun intended'
Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb
Ariana Grande nude photos leak: Pictures are completely fake, say singer's representatives
Rotherham child sex abuse scandal: Labour Home Office to be probed over what Tony Blair's government knew - and when
What do immigrants really think of Britain? Polish immigrant's Reddit post goes viral
Ashya King: Parents of five-year-old boy refused permission to visit him in hospital and denied bail at Spanish court
With Douglas Carswell joining Ukip, my party has taken another giant step forward
When elitism grips the top of British society to this extent, there is only one answer: abolish private schools
Ashya King: 'Cruel NHS has not given us the treatment we need', says father of five-year-old with brain tumour who fled to Spain
- 1 Al Pacino on suffering from depression: 'It can last and it's terrifying'
- 2 Half of young women unable to ‘locate vagina’ and 65% find it difficult to say the word
- 3 Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb
- 4 A teacher speaks out: 'I'm effectively being forced out of a career that I wanted to love'
- 5 Mexican woman becomes world’s 'oldest person' at 127
£100 - £120 per day: Randstad Education Crawley: Year 6 larger then life teach...
Negotiable: Randstad Education Plymouth: SEN Jobs Available Devon
£100 - £120 per day: Randstad Education Crawley: Supply teachers needed for va...
Negotiable: Randstad Education Plymouth: Year 4 Primary Teachers needed Rand...