Safeguarding for School Business Leaders: How to Support your Governors to be Strategic and Drive Challenge

October 14, 2022

Governing bodies have a strategic leadership responsibility for their school’s safeguarding arrangements and must ensure that they comply with their duties under legislation.

Judicium reviewed Ofsted inspections that were judged safeguarding ‘Inadequate,’ and found leadership and/or governance were mentioned as a contributing factor in more than half the reports.

Difficulties arise when Governors have strategic responsibility for safeguarding but lack the proficiency to execute this strategic responsibility, hindering the compliance of safeguarding.

Essentially the SBLs and the Governing body need each other, and their working relationship is critical to ensuring that a whole-school approach to safeguarding exists.

Good questions for SBLs to ask themselves:

  1. What information does your school share with the safeguarding Governor? If they are going to be able to challenge and support you, then the quality and clarity of information shared is crucial.
  2. What training is in place for Governors and are you comfortable and confident in their knowledge?
  3. How often does your school meet with your safeguarding Governor? NB: Aim for termly
  4. Who attends these meetings and what happens in those meetings?
  5. Are your Governors hands-on?
  6. Are they supporting a whole-school approach to safeguarding?

The role of the Governor is strategic. It is not operational, so Governors do not:

  • Produce reports to the Governing body regarding safeguarding
  •  Deal with or have specific oversight of safeguarding incidents
  • Deliver training themselves
The Link/Safeguarding Governor should visit your school to:
  • Speak to students about their experience.
  • Speak to staff about their knowledge, school processes, and their view on safeguarding within the school.
  • Speak to leaders to get a sense of their view of safeguarding and when necessary seek an external audit.

Judicium Education’s Safeguarding Service assists schools in meeting the statutory requirements and guidance for schools and colleges on safeguarding children and safer recruitment.

We also provide CPD accredited live training and eLearning, including specific ’Safeguarding for Governors’ training along with training courses for SLT and all other staff.

Download the Safeguarding Governor Checklist here.

For more information or if you require any support for your school, please do not hesitate to call us on 0345 548 7000 or email

Find out more about becoming an ISBL member here