Midlothian pupils learn to stay safe

Schools Service volunteers Joe Alves and Karen Bennett alongside students of Lasswade Primary School.
Schools Service volunteers Joe Alves and Karen Bennett alongside students of Lasswade Primary School.

NSPCC Scotland’s ‘Speak Out Stay Safe’ (SOSS) service which helps children to learn how to recognise abuse, has now been delivered in all Midlothian primary schools.

Volunteers from the charity’s schools service recently delivered the SOSS assembly and workshop to the final Midlothian school, Lasswade Primary School, which means all local authority-run schools in the area have now received the assemblies and workshops.

Karin Walker, NSPCC Scotland schools service area co-ordinator for Edinburgh, the Lothians and Falkirk, said: “We’ve been working collaboratively with the local authority, and I am absolutely delighted that every mainstream primary school in Midlothian has now received the vitally important messages of ‘Speak Out Stay Safe’.

“With a team of volunteers, we work across the area helping to keep children safe and empowering them to understand that abuse and neglect is not ok. We highlight how important it is to speak out to a trusted adult, and tell the young people how Childline can help. I look forward to continuing our ongoing programme in partnership with all primary schools.”

Yvonne Gemmell, head teacher at Lasswade Primary School, said: “The presentation at our assembly provided pupils with the knowledge and understanding they need to stay safe, and encouraged them to think about who they can talk to if they are worried about anything. The children here are already empowered to use their voice and this message clearly demonstrated the importance of them using their voice effectively to ‘Speak Out and Stay Safe’.”

Midlothian Council’s cabinet member for education, Councillor Jim Muirhead (Lab) added: “Keeping children safe is a priority for us here in Midlothian. I’m delighted Lasswade Primary pupils had the opportunity to learn more about how to speak out to a trusted adult.

“Giving vulnerable children a voice is vital. The more children who can benefit from the Speak Out Stay Safe service, the better.”