Estyn s policy on Disclosure and Barring Service checks for those who work for Estyn

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1 Estyn s policy on Disclosure and Barring Service checks for those who work for Estyn

2 Information sheet For further advice contact: People, planning and deployment team Date of publication: February 2013 Planned review date: February 2016 Version control Document version Author Date of issue Changes made 1.0 Dai Williams July 2011 First draft 2.0 Lisa Jordaan January 2013 Legislation update Any enquiries or comments regarding this policy should be addressed to: People, planning and deployment team Estyn Anchor Court Keen Road Cardiff CF24 5JW or by to This and other Estyn publications are available on our website: Equality Impact Assessment In accordance with Estyn s Equality Impact Assessment 2009, a full equality impact assessment has been carried out and this policy is not deemed to adversely impact on any people on the grounds of disability, gender or race.

3 Contents Page Introduction Aim of the policy What is the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS)? DBS checks To whom does the policy apply? Estyn employees and appointments (Secondees) Additional inspectors including registered, team and lay inspectors Peer inspectors (PI) Portability of DBS checks for peer inspectors Inspectors employed by other inspectorates or regulating bodies Attendance on initial and update training events DBS disclosures with content Assurance to schools and providers that all Estyn staff are appropriately checked DBS Update Service How to join the update service Appendix Policy agreement form

4 Introduction Aim of the policy The aim of the policy is to fully explain Estyn s system for checking criminal records via the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) and to provide guidance on the appropriate application of the DBS process. It establishes robust procedures to ensure that there is nothing in the history of individuals who work for Estyn that would prejudice their suitability for their role. Estyn takes seriously its responsibilities in safeguarding the welfare of children and vulnerable adults. We implement relevant statutory requirements and adopt the recommendations of key relevant Government reports such as the Bichard and Waterhouse inquiries. DBS checks (along with other checks) help provide assurance about individuals suitability to work in selected posts for Estyn. Estyn complies fully with the DBS Code of Practice regarding the correct handling, use, storage, retention and disposal of Disclosures and Disclosure information. It also complies fully with its obligations under the Data Protection Act 1998 and other relevant legislation pertaining to the safe handling, use, storage, retention and disposal of Disclosure information. Estyn is committed to upholding the safety and welfare of young people and vulnerable adults, therefore we are vigilant in all of our work. All inspectors and those who work for or on behalf of Estyn have a duty to report any disclosures or concern they may have. This duty is explained in Estyn s Policy and Procedures for Safeguarding, which is available on Estyn s website. What is the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS)? In December 2012, the work of the Criminal Records Bureau and of the Independent Safeguarding Authority merged into a single new non-departmental public body now known as the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS). This has resulted in changes to the current terminology: a standard CRB check has become a standard DBS check; an enhanced CRB check has become an enhanced DBS check; and an enhanced CRB check with Barred List check has become an enhanced check for regulated activity. A Regulated activity is an activity that a barred person must not do Categories in which office holders are deemed to be in regulated activity have been removed in both England and Wales. This includes school governors and local authority officers. However in Wales the office of Children s Commissioner for 1

5 Wales, the deputy Children's Commissioner for Wales, and inspectorates in Wales (including Estyn) remain within regulated activity. Estyn ensures that all inspectors and others outlined in this policy have an enhanced check for regulated activity. The full, legal definition of regulated activity is set out in Schedule 4 of the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006, as amended (in particular by the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012). Regulated activity still excludes family arrangements, and personal, non-commercial arrangements. The new definition of regulated activity relating to children comprises only of: (i) unsupervised activities: teach, train, instruct, care for or supervise children, or provide advice/guidance on wellbeing, or drive a vehicle only for children; (ii) work for a limited range of establishments: ( specified places ), with opportunity for contact: for example, schools, children s homes, childcare premises. Not work by supervised volunteers; Work under (i) or (ii) is regulated activity only if done regularly. Regular means carried out by the same person frequently (once a week or more often), or on three or more days in a 30-day period (or in some cases, overnight). The government has provided statutory guidance about supervision of activity, which would be regulated activity if it were unsupervised. (iii) relevant personal care, for example washing or dressing; or health care by or supervised by a professional; and (iv) registered child-minding; and foster-carers. What is no longer a regulated activity when working with children? Activity supervised at reasonable level; health care not by (or directed or supervised by) a health care professional; legal advice; treatment/therapy (instead health care ); occasional or temporary services, (not teaching etc.) e.g. maintenance at a school; and volunteers supervised at a reasonable level. 2

6 DBS checks There are four different levels of disclosure: basic, standard, enhanced and enhanced with barred list checks (also referred to as an enhanced check for regulated activity). Basic disclosure This disclosure can only be issued via Disclosure Scotland offers and offers a check of unspent criminal records through the Basic Disclosure service. These are requested for any role, and the basic disclosure contains details of convictions considered unspent under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act Standard disclosure Spent and unspent convictions, cautions, reprimands, final warnings. Enhanced disclosure Spent and unspent convictions, cautions, reprimands, final warnings plus any additional information held locally by police forces that is reasonably considered relevant to the post applied for. Enhanced with barred list checks As above plus a check of the appropriate DBS barred lists. All those who work for/on behalf of Estyn are required, if undertaking inspection related activity, to have an enhanced check with a check of the children s Barred list. There is one exception to the rule. Those inspectors who work only in the Welsh for Adults sector, are not required to have a check of the children s Barred List, as this work is exclusively for adult learners. They are however still required to have a current Enhanced DBS check. The DBS provides regulated information on criminal records, referred to as disclosures, to help organisations to identify candidates who may be unsuitable for certain kinds of work, and to make safer recruitment decisions, thereby minimising the risks to children and vulnerable adults. The DBS will inform the police if a request for a disclosure revealed that a barred person was seeking to work with children or vulnerable adults. A DBS check is a snapshot of the position at the time the check was processed and is valid only at the time the check was made. In line with recommended best practice, Estyn will update checks on a regular basis to ensure that nothing occurs after a check has been made that would prejudice anyone continuing to work for us. Estyn will carry out three yearly checks on individuals in the posts and roles covered by this policy. Estyn will facilitate the checks via our independent registered umbrella body, Due Diligence Checking (DDC), who manage all administration of DBS checks. DDC will commence the process three months prior to the third anniversary of the DBS issue date. 3

7 To whom does this policy apply? This policy applies to those who require enhanced disclosures to work for Estyn. Estyn employees and appointments Her Majesty s Chief Inspector (HMCI); senior managers including strategic directors and assistant directors (inspection-related) HMI and secondees; individuals who have been offered these roles provisionally, subject to pre-appointment checks; and those who attend inspector training provided by Estyn. Estyn's corporate staff who visit schools will no longer require enhanced checks. Inspection co-ordinators require basic disclosure only. Estyn has in place rigorous procedures to ensure that the individuals recruited by the organisation are fit and suitable for the posts to which they are appointed. During the recruitment process we undertake a number of routine checks. All offers of employment are conditional upon the satisfactory completion of pre-appointment checks, including an identification check, satisfactory references, eligibility to work in the EU, health and character declarations. For those roles identified above Estyn will carry out the necessary checks through an independent registered umbrella body and meet the full cost of these checks. Where any offence is disclosed by the DBS, we will investigate this fully, having consideration to the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act We may withdraw an offer of employment or appointment (secondee to Estyn / Peer Inspector / Additional Inspector) if, as a result of the pre-appointment checks, the individual does not meet the conditions of the offer. See paragraph regarding disclosures with content (pg 6). Additional inspectors including registered, team and lay inspectors Estyn maintains lists of registered, team and lay inspectors. The organisation expects this group to disclose any convictions and, in line with the recommendations given in the Bichard Inquiry Report, we ensure that they are subject to an enhanced DBS check on appointment, prior to inclusion on our lists. Estyn obtains permission from those wishing to undertake inspection work to pass their contact details to the registered umbrella body. Estyn will monitor the progress of checking throughout the application process and once completed we will update our records accordingly. A re-check is required every three years if the individual wishes to continue to be considered for inspection work on Estyn s behalf. If an inspector has signed up to the DBS update service, then Estyn will request permission from the inspector to run the appropriate checks online (see more about the update service on page 7). 4

8 All additional inspectors are responsible for the cost of their enhanced check for regulated activity. The fee for applying for an enhanced disclosure is 64.40, which includes an administration charge. Peer inspectors The arrangements for peer inspectors are different. Peer inspectors undertake inspection work with Estyn on the basis of terms and conditions agreed by individuals, their employers and Estyn. They are not employed by Estyn and remain in the employment of their current employers, who are responsible for having in place suitable safeguarding arrangements. The peer inspector terms and conditions sets out the explicit requirement that all peer inspectors attending an inspection will have received a DBS certificate, through their employer. This includes an appropriate and recent (within three years) enhanced DBS check for regulated activity (with the sole exception of peer inspectors who only undertake Welsh for Adult inspections, these will be required to undertake the enhanced check but without the child barred list check). Estyn will verify these checks with the employer. The peer inspector gives Estyn permission to undertake this verification. If however the Peer inspector has been issued a single certificate under the new DBS system then Estyn will request a copy of the certificate form directly from the inspector. If an inspector has signed up to the DBS update service, then Estyn will request permission from the inspector to run the appropriate checks online (see more about the update service on page 7). The employer is required to advise Estyn if they are aware of anything related to the individual s record which might cast doubt on their suitability to participate on inspection. No peer inspector will be deployed on an inspection without a current, valid enhanced disclosure. Portability of DBS checks for peer inspectors Portability refers to the re-use of a DBS disclosure, obtained for a position in one organisation and later used for another position in another organisation. Estyn has adopted this process for peer inspector training and deployment. Estyn will accept a copy of the peer inspector s disclosure in seeking assurance of their suitability. Estyn would, as a last resort, facilitate an enhanced disclosure check with children s Barred list check for a peer inspector if they had not previously been required to do so by their employer. Normally, the cost of the check is borne by the individual/employer and not by Estyn. 5

9 Inspectors employed by other inspectorates or regulating bodies As Estyn s work is considered to be a regulated activity, all inspectors employed by other inspectorates or regulating bodies who join an Estyn-led inspection will require an enhanced check for regulated activity. Attendance on initial and update training events An enhanced DBS check for regulated activity will be undertaken on every individual, during the application process and before attendance on Estyn initial training. In addition, an individual who has not renewed their enhanced DBS certificate or 12 months have elapsed since Estyn s umbrella body s invitation to renew, will not be invited for any update training. DBS disclosures with content If a disclosure shows content, Estyn will follow its internal procedure for dealing with the issue(s) and consider the individual s eligibility to work on behalf of Estyn. This will be considered carefully by a panel of internal managers, taking into consideration previous deliberations and any additional information provided by the individual. Estyn expects individuals working with us who have been subject to a DBS check to keep Estyn informed of any change in circumstance that may affect the status of their enhanced clearance from the DBS or their continued suitability to undertake their role. Assurance to schools and providers that all Estyn staff are appropriately checked Estyn does not release the personal DBS disclosure numbers of any of its employees, inspectors or additional inspectors. Estyn will provide on request confirmation to schools and providers that all those who carry out work considered to be regulated activity have the appropriate checks in place before being deployed on inspection or attend an inspection as part of the inspection function. Providers should check the identity of any visitors acting on behalf of Estyn. 6

10 DBS Update Service Individuals now have the option to sign up to the new Disclosure and Barring Update Service. The update service allows the individual to take their certificate from one job to the next providing the job is within the same workforce (ie.child/adult). It also allows employers, with permission, to check certificates online instead of applying for a brand new DBS certificate. Every three years Estyn will require all those involved in regulated activity to provide us with an up-to-date DBS certificate. If an individual has signed up to the update service Estyn will request permission from them to allow an on-line check that the certificate is up-to-date and free of content. If however the individual has not signed up to the update service, or if the individual refuses to give permission, they will be required to undergo a new DBS check. Only an individual can join the update service; employers cannot join on behalf of their workforce however, local employment terms and conditions may allow an employee to claim back such costs. For AIs and PIs this is a matter of local agreement and is not matter on which Estyn will be involved. At the three yearly check point, Estyn will ensure that the: disclosure certificate is original and authentic; certificate is an Enhanced DBS; child Barring list has been checked; workforce has been labelled correctly; volunteer status is correct; and the applicants identity is verified. How to join the update service The update service lets applicants keep their DBS certificates up-to-date online and allows employers to check certificates online. Applicants can register as soon as they have received an application form reference number or they can use the DBS certificate number once the DBS certificate has been issued. Applicants can only apply for the update service within 19 days of the certificate being issued. Registration lasts for one year and costs 13 per year. Applicants must record the ID number that is sent with the registration form. 7

11 APPENDIX Policy agreement form Policy on DBS checks for those who work for Estyn This policy and its associated procedures are agreed by Estyn s management and Trades Unions Signed on behalf of Estyn s management: Name: Simon Brown Strategic Director Date: 30 April 2013 Signed on behalf of Estyn s Trades Unions: Names: Glyn Bryan, PCS Branch Executive member Huw Collins FDA Section Convenor Date: 30 April May

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