At the end of May the Department for Education issued a consultation on the proposals for amending the 1960’s laws on children in performance aimed at bringing them up to date. As far as the Amateur Sector is concerned this is very good news, as the proposals attempt to clear some anomalies and prevent the current post code lottery, whereby children are disadvantaged from taking part in live arts because of where they live.
The proposals would require amateur theatres to apply for an Amateur Performance Registration that would be valid for two years, and issued by the Local authority. The theatre would be required to demonstrate that it has clear child safeguarding policies in place. The other good news is that chaperones in the amateur sector would no longer have to be licenced and approved by the local authorities. This will remove a significant burden to finding the necessary volunteers.
It is the intention of the LTG to work with NNCEE and NODA to agree on guidelines.
Child Safeguarding Adviser.