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Out of School Setting


What is an out of school setting?

Many children and young people attend a variety of out of schools settings and activities in Redbridge, often, without their parents’ or carers supervision. These settings provide an important service to children in our community with opportunities to gain useful skills, make new friendships and improve their physical, social and emotional wellbeing.  

They are generally run during evenings, weekends and school holidays, although some are part-time during school hours to meet the needs of those in-Home Education. Subjects are varied and range from sport, arts, language, learning a musical instrument, joining a youth organisation, such as scouts and guides, doing extra maths and English in a tuition centre and education in their own faith.

An out of school setting does not include schools or colleges registered by the Department for Education and are not required to be registered by any statutory organisation. There are no regulations governing many out of school activities unless it is an Ofsted registered childcare provision, in which case it must adhere to the statutory requirements of its Ofsted registration.  Therefore, Redbridge Local Authority does not currently endorse any setting in the borough other than those with an official and up to date registration.



Safety first/protecting children and young people 

We recognise the many exemplary providers who create positive and safe environments for children to flourish, engage in new activities, and interact with their peers, but we want to ensure that all out of school settings are a safe place for children to be, regardless of what activity they are participating in.

Coaches, tutors, religious leaders and all other providers involved in out of school settings have an over-riding responsibility to protect and safeguard children and young people from the risk of harmful practices.

Tuition centres and/or private tutors are increasingly being used to provide additional learning support in a variety of subjects, e.g. maths, English, reading, and languages. Tutors do not have to be a qualified teacher or have a disclosure and barring service check and are not required to be registered or approved by any statutory organisation. 

Read NSPCC useful resource, which gives both tutors and parents advise on how to ensure that children are safe during tutoring sessions. 

Some tutors work in association with schools, others work independently. If you are considering using a tutor, it is helpful to tell the school so that they are aware and can offer support with what areas your child may need extra help with or what would benefit your child most.

Thinking of using the services of a private tutor or tuition centre?  

Consideration for parents and carers

As a parent or carer, it is important when choosing an out of school settings (OOSS) that certain questions are asked of a provider, such as whether staff have undertaken DBS checks, how safe is the environment. A provider should be able to reassure you that your child/children will be safe in their setting and demonstrate the steps they are taking to ensure their safety and wellbeing. Out of School Setting (PDF 221.63 KB)

Here are some further questions to consider asking:

  • do all the staff/volunteers have a valid Disclosure Barring Service check (DBS)?
  • who has overall responsibility for safeguarding and may I/we have a copy of your safeguarding policy?
  • are the premises safe, for example, are fire notices displayed?
  • who is responsible for first aid?
  • is there a parental consent and emergency contact form that I/we need to complete?
  • are the necessary building insurances in place, in date and available on request?

You may wish to sit in on a session, to satisfy yourself that it is a safe environment before determining to send your child to a particular OOSS.

Responsibilities for out of school providers

All out of school setting providers have an obligation to ensure that children and young people in their care are offered a safe and comfortable environment in which to learn or have fun. They also have a responsibility towards the people who work for them whether they are employed or voluntary, in addition to offering clear guidance and protection against possible allegations or misconduct.

The Children’s Act 2004 places a duty on organisations to safeguard and promote the wellbeing of children as well as ensuring that all adults who work with children and young people are safe to do so.  Out of school settings includes a wide range of activities and ages the arrangements for keeping children and young people safe will vary. As a minimum standard out of school settings should have:

  • A safeguarding policy (including online and digital safety)
  • Health and safety procedures including insurances and fire safety
  • DBS checks for staff and volunteers
  • GDPR compliance
  • Complaints procedure

Are you thinking about setting up an activity out of school?

Our guide to setting up an activity out of school can help get you started.

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For further information please contact the Out of School Settings Team emailing us at  OOSS@redbridge.gov.uk or calling 07808861646.

Out of School Setting is any institution providing tuition, training, instruction or activities to children aged under 18 in England without their parents’ or carers’ supervision that is not a school, college, 16-19 academy, early years provider (for children under 8) or registered childcare provider; and otherwise regulated under education law.

Child protection

If you have a concern about a child and would like to seek advice regarding child abuse or neglect please contact the Child Protection Assessment Team (CPAT) and check our dedicated page.

Referrals can be made over the phone or via email:

Useful links

Online safety

Popular links

For further information please contact the Out of School Settings Team on: OOSS@redbridge.gov.uk 07808861646

Child abuse can be linked to faith and belief, such as accusations of witchcraft and spirit possession, which can result in considerable harm. This type of abuse is much harder to define due to its complex nature and is likely to have increased due to Covid.

Would you be able to define this abuse or be confident in recognising signs and indicators? Have you had any training on this topic, or are you a worried parent or carer looking for help?  

If you would like to know more information or register for one of our webinars, please contact OOSS@redbridge.gov.uk

For more information, visit Redbridge Safeguarding Children Partnership website 


Child abuse linked to faith or belief webinar 

This webinar will give you an overview and help you identify vulnerability and cases of abuse and the actions you can take

Date: Tuesday 22 June

Time: 10.30am to 12. 30pm

To book your space, register for free on Eventbrite