Change needed to tackle sexual violence in schools

Responding to the Ofsted Review of sexual abuse in schools and colleges which details how sexual abuse in schools has become ‘normalised’, and the Panorama investigation on this subject, Devon Rape Crisis and Sexual Abuse Services Chief Executive, Caroline Voaden, commented:

“The findings of this review are deeply distressing. We need to see change throughout society to tackle the misogyny and sexual violence which is blighting the lives of too many women and girls.

“Change is needed in relationship, health and sex education; and training on consent as well as how to deal with disclosures of sexual violence must be made available to teachers and school support staff.

“We also need far more wide reaching reforms across society to truly protect women and girls, including making misogyny a hate crime and ensuring survivors are treated far better by our criminal justice system, so they feel confident and supported to come forward.

“Sexual violence is a traumatic experience that has a wide range of long-term, even lifelong, impacts on victims and survivors. As a form of violence against women and girls, sexual violence is both a cause and a consequence of gender inequality which needs societal change and government action.

“We need further funding for supporting survivors of sexual violence as well as prevention education in schools and colleges.”


The Ofsted Review of sexual abuse in schools and colleges, published today, can be found here.

The Panorama investigation can be found here.