UK helps improve security of children in British schools in Spain

UK law enforcers have launched a new police check that will help British schools in Spain to identify and screen out people who are unsuitable to be working with children.

The new International Child Protection Certificate (ICPC) was presented to more than 200 delegates from 60 authorised British schools at the annual conference of the National Association of British Schools in Spain (NABSS) in Seville on 7 and 8 March.

The UK national law enforcement agency that is dedicated to protecting children from abuse – the Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre (CEOP) – launched the new certificate after finding that some international schools, charities and other agencies overseas lack access to the same level of police checks available to organisations in the UK, sometimes enabling sex offenders to gain positions of trust with children.

British Ambassador Giles Paxman attended the NABSS conference where he spoke to representatives of the Spanish authorities and several school delegates.

Mr Paxman said: "Schools have a critical role to play in guaranteeing the safety and wellbeing of children. The new International Child Protection Certificate is an effective tool designed to reduce the chances of sex offenders gaining access to children. I encourage all schools in Spain to include it as part of their staff recruitment."

The ICPC was first unveiled at the British Embassy Madrid at an event attended by Spanish government and law enforcement representatives. Spanish officers specialising in tackling child sexual abuse also shared their expertise and experience of combating this crime with staff from CEOP during a two-day law enforcement workshop at the Spanish Ministry of Interior..

Founded in 1978, NABSS is today a large group that defends the interests of British Schools in Spain.

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