Welcome to CEN
Two years ago, I advised our staff team to grab what they needed from the office and work from home – ‘but only for a short while…..’
That was March 2020.
We had no idea then how long we would be away from the office, that we wouldn’t be seeing some of our team again, and that we would actually never return to our little office by the Thames.
The uncertainty accompanying the past 2 years, sandwiched between Brexit and now a war has seen many changes. But one thing that hasn’t changed is how used we are to behaviours toward children at school which sink to ever lower depths.
No one could you have escaped hearing about Child Q - the state-sanctioned assault of a minor, enabled by a school which clearly abandoned its duty of care to that child.
For over two decades, CEN has been dealing with schools which apply excessively punitive measures in response to - often petty - misdemeanours to children of all ages who have become increasingly used to a heavy and intrusive policing of their communities.
But children have a right to expect schools to be different and to care for them.
And in Child Q’s case, her parents had a right to be informed that the school was involving police in the potential criminalisation of their child.
Schools are meant to work in partnership with parents in support of children’s learning and self-development - NOT in partnership with the police.
All appropriate measures should be taken to protect children from all forms of physical or mental violence, injury of abuse, while in the care of parent(s), legal guardian(s), or any other person who has the care of the child.
CEN stands in solidarity with Child Q, her family and every other child wrongly accused and unjustly treated whose life chances are ruined by schools every single week.
We pledge our support in their struggle for justice and their demands that schools end the criminalisation of young people. We ask that you support us and other organizations like CEN who represent children and parents in circumstances where they are voiceless.
Jenn Lewis and the CEN team