Serious incident reporting

All charities with an income over £25,000 must report serious incidents to the Charity Commission. Such a threshold is likely to contain all charitable independent schools. 

A serious incident is defined by the Charity Commission as any adverse event. This is likely to include any adverse set of circumstances even if they cannot be pinned to any particular event. The event or circumstance need not be actual or confirmed, merely an allegation
is enough.

Events or circumstances which trigger reporting are those which result in or risk significant:-

  • Harm to the school’s beneficiaries, staff, volunteers or others who come into contact with the school (this would obviously include pupils);
  • Loss of school money or assets;
  • Damage to school property; or
  • Harm to the school’s work or reputation.

The Commission recently noted that educational charities may be under-reporting serious incidents relating to safeguarding. It is important that your school is up to date with its reporting of serious incidents and that its processes and procedures for making reports is up to date and effective. 

The Charity Commission now has an online form which is the only accepted method of reporting an incident. The form must be used to give updates to any reports or submissions.

The contents of this article are intended for general information purposes only and shall not be deemed to be, or constitute legal advice. We cannot accept responsibility for any loss as a result of acts or omissions taken in respect of this article.