What is Prevent?
In July 2015, all schools and childcare providers became bound by duty under section 26 of the Counter Terrorism and Security Act to protect children and young adults from harm through radicalisation. Amidst an ongoing threat of terrorism in the wider world, systemic interventions to protect those who are vulnerable have become a necessary part of education and care provision in the UK. This is why Prevent in schools is no of vital importance. The European Commission provides the following definition:
“Radicalisation can be understood as a phased and complex process in which an individual or a group embraces a radical ideology or belief that accepts, uses or condones violence, including acts of terrorism within the meaning of the Directive on combating terrorism, to reach a specific political or ideological purpose.”
Radicalisation can sit on a spectrum from extremist political to religious views; however, the outcome is antisocial, perpetuating hate and causing harm to others.
Encouraged by sensationalist stories in the media, the concept of radicalisation has become almost as sensitive a topic as the process itself, with the need to manage risk contested by the importance of preventing stigma and discrimination against minority groups. Understanding the threat of radicalisation whilst also maintaining a realistic and compassionate outlook is essential in the face of uncertainty.