Recruitment and Vetting Procedures


Introduction

The British Sikh School
The British Sikh School

The governors of The British Sikh School are committed to providing the best possible care
and education to its pupils and to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and
young people. The school is also committed to providing a supportive and flexible working
environment to all its members of staff. The Head and Governors recognise that, in order to
achieve these aims, it is of fundamental importance to attract, recruit and retain staff of the
highest calibre who share this commitment.

Aims:

  • To ensure that the best possible staff are recruited on the basis of their merits,
    abilities and suitability for the position;
  • To ensure that all job applicants are considered equitably and consistently;
  • To ensure that no job applicant is treated unfairly on any grounds including race,
    colour, nationality, ethnic or national origin, religion or religious belief, sex or sexual
    orientation, marital or civil partner status, disability or age;
  • To ensure compliance with all relevant recommendations and guidance including the
    statutory guidance published by the Department for Education (DFE) (formally the
    Department for Children, Schools and Families (DCSF)), Safeguarding Children and
    Safer Recruitment in Education (the Guidance) and the code of practice published by
    the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS, formerly CRB); and

To ensure the School meets its commitment to safeguarding and promoting the
welfare of children and young people by carrying out all necessary pre-employment
checks.

Implementation:

Employees involved in the recruitment and selection of staff are responsible for familiarising
themselves with and complying with the provisions of this policy. Governors and senior
members of staff responsible for the recruitment and selection of staff must undertake and
renew training in Safer Recruitment in line with current requirements.

Decision to Recruit:

Authorisation to recruit must be obtained from the Chair of governors and a relevant job
profile and person specification must be approved by the Head teacher and Chair of
Governors before an appointment can be made. The job description and person
specification will form part of the application pack provided to all applicants for the post.

A wide variety of sources should be considered to advertise a post. Where considered
appropriate, advertisements should be placed on the intranet/internet.

Employees involved in the recruitment and selection of staff should be aware that
appointment of non-EU applicants cannot be made unless the resident labour market test
(where appropriate) has been completed and the post has been advertised as set out in the UKBA Guidance for Sponsors.

Recruitment and Selection Procedure

All applicants for employment will be required to complete an application form containing
questions about their academic and employment history and their suitability for the role.
Incomplete application forms will be returned to the applicant where the deadline for
completed applications forms has not passed. Curriculum vitae will not be accepted in
place of the completed application form but should be provided as supporting
documentation.

Senior staff and representatives of the governing body will short list candidates with
reference to the agreed essential criteria in the person specification. Desirable criteria will be
used to further short list if necessary.

The applicant may then be invited to attend a formal interview at which his/her relevant skills
and experience will be discussed in more detail.

For teaching posts the School may require the applicant to undertake an assessment. The
applicant may be asked to teach a lesson or lessons which will be observed, or partake in
other selection exercises. If this is the case, the applicant will be informed in advance.

If it is decided to make an offer of employment following the formal interview, any such offer
will be conditional on the following:

  • The agreement of a mutually acceptable start date and the signing of a contract
    incorporating the School’s standard terms and conditions of employment;
  • The receipt of two references (one of which must be from the applicant’s current or
    most recent employer) which the School considers to be satisfactory;
  • The receipt of an enhanced disclosure from the DBS which the School considers to
    be satisfactory and permission to check for updated information through the DBS;
  • Verification of the applicant’s medical fitness for the role.
  • Confirmation that the applicant is not named on the Children’s Barred List or the
    Adults Barred List administered by the DBS.

The governing body must obtain an enhanced criminal records check for:

  • All staff who are employed to work at the school
  • Any volunteers that the school has recruited to work unsupervised regularly with
    children
  • People brought in to the school to provide regular additional teaching or instruction
    for pupils but who are not staff members; for example a specialist sports coach or
    music teacher
  • All governors

The school will ensure that the agency provides written notification that all checks required
by the DfE regulations have been conducted, for any supply or agency staff.

Pre-Employment Checks

In accordance with the DfE requirements the school carries out a number of pre-employment
checks in respect of all prospective employees:

Verification of identity and address

All applicants who are invited to interview will be required to bring the following evidence of
identity, right to work in the UK, address and qualifications:

  • Passport;
  • Two utility bills or bank statements (less than 3 months old) showing their name and
    home address;
  • Documentation confirming their National Insurance Number (P45, P60 or National
    Insurance Card); and
  • Original documents confirming any educational and professional qualifications
    referred to in their application form.

Original documentation must be seen; photocopies are not acceptable. Where an applicant
claims to have changed his/her name by deed poll or any other mechanism (eg marriage,
adoption, statutory declaration) he/she will be required to provide documentary evidence of
the change.

The school asks for the date of birth of all applicants (and proof of this) in accordance with
the Guidance. Proof of date of birth is necessary so that the school may verify the identity
of, and check for any unexplained discrepancies in the employment and education history of
all applicants. The school does not discriminate against applicants on the grounds of age.

It is the duty of the senior administrator to check the above and make copies of relevant
documents which must be signed as seen and dated.

References

All offers of employment will be subject to the receipt of a minimum of two references which
are considered satisfactory by the head teacher or chair of governors. One of the references
must be from the applicant’s current or most recent employer. If the current/most recent
employment does/did not involve work with children, then the second referee should be from
the employer with whom the applicant most recently worked with children. Neither referee
should be a relative or someone known to the applicant solely as a friend.

All referees will be asked whether they believe the applicant is suitable for the job for which
they have applied and whether they have any reason to believe that the applicant is
unsuitable to work with children. All referees will be sent details about the post applied for. If
the referee is a current or previous employer, they will also be asked to confirm the following:

  • The applicant’s dates of employment, salary, job title/duties, reason for leaving,
    performance, sickness* and disciplinary record;
  • Whether the applicant has ever been the subject of disciplinary procedures involving
    issues related to the safety and welfare of children (including any in which the
    disciplinary sanction has expired); and
  • Whether any allegations or concerns have been raised about the applicant that relate
    to the safety and welfare of children or young people or behaviour towards children
    or young people.

(* only to be included in reference requests sent out after the offer of employment has been
made.)

Only references obtained directly from the referee will be accepted and references or
testimonials provided by the applicant or open references or testimonials will not be
acceptable.

The school will compare all references with any information given on the application form.
Any discrepancies or inconsistencies in the information will be taken up with the applicant
and the relevant referee before any appointment is confirmed.

It is the duty of the senior administrator to obtain and check references.

Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) Check

Due to the nature of the work, the school applies for an enhanced disclosure from the
Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS, formerly CRB) in respect of all prospective staff
members, governors and volunteers (who undertake regulated activities). If the applicant has
a disclosure through the update service the school will seek permission and then use the
DBS service to check for updated information. An offer of employment will be subject to this
permission being given and the updated information being satisfactory.

An enhanced disclosure will contain details of all convictions on record (including those
which are defined as “spent” under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974) together with
details of any cautions, reprimands or warnings held on the Police National Computer. An
enhanced disclosure will also reveal whether an applicant is barred from working with
children or vulnerable adults by virtue of his/her inclusion on the lists of those considered
unsuitable to work with children or vulnerable adults maintained by the ISA/DBS. An
enhanced disclosure may also contain non-conviction information from local police records
which a chief police officer thinks may be relevant in connection with the matter in question.

If there is a delay in receiving a DBS certificate the Head has discretion to allow an individual
to begin work pending receipt of this providing appropriate supervision is put in place. This
will only be allowed if all other checks, including a check of the Children’s Barred List have
been completed. In the case of EYFS the person must be supervised at all times – ‘loose
supervision’ is not acceptable.

DBS checks will be requested for applicants with recent periods of overseas residence and
those with little or no previous UK residence. These applicants may also be asked to provide
further information, including the equivalent of a DBS disclosure, from the relevant
jurisdiction(s).

The DBS checking procedure is conducted by the senior administrator who should also
complete the Single Central Register. It is the duty of the Chair of Governors to ensure that
these checks are carried out and the prescribed procedures are followed.

Contractors and Agency Staff

Contractors engaged by the school must complete the same checks for their employees that
the school is required to complete for its staff. The school requires confirmation that these
checks have been completed before the Contractor can commence work at the School.

Agencies who supply staff to schools must also complete the pre-employment checks which
the school would otherwise complete for its staff. Again the school requires confirmation that
these checks have been completed before an individual can commence work at a school.

The school will independently verify the identity of staff supplied by such an agency.

It is the role of the senior administrator to conduct checks on the above.

Policy on Recruitment of ex-offenders

Background

The school will not unfairly discriminate against any applicant for employment on the basis of
conviction or other details revealed. The school makes appointment decisions on the basis
of merit and suitability. If an applicant has a criminal record, this will not automatically bar
him/her from employment within the school. Instead, each case will be decided on its merits
in accordance with the objective assessment criteria set out in paragraph 5.2 below.

In view of the fact that all positions within the school will amount to “regulated positions”
within the meaning of the Protection of Children Act 1999 (as amended by the Criminal and
Justice and Courts Services Act 2000), all applicants for employment must declare all
previous convictions (including those which would normally be considered “spent” under the
Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974). A failure to disclose a previous conviction may lead to
an application being rejected or, if the failure is discovered after employment has started,
may lead to summary dismissal on the grounds of gross misconduct. A failure to disclose a
previous conviction may also amount to a criminal offence.

It is unlawful for the school to employ anyone who is included on the lists maintained by the
DBS of individuals who are considered unsuitable to work with children or vulnerable adults.
In addition, it will also be unlawful for the school to employ anyone who is the subject of a
disqualifying order made on being convicted or charged with the following offences against
children: murder, manslaughter, rape, other serious sexual offences, grievous bodily harm or
other serious acts of violence.

It is a criminal offence for any person who is disqualified from working with children to
attempt to apply for a position within the school. If:

  • The school receives an application from a disqualified person;
  • Is provided with false information in, or in support of an applicant’s application; or
  • The school has serious concerns about an applicant’s suitability to work with
    children, it will report the matter to the Police, CRB and/or the DBS.

Assessment Criteria

In the event that relevant information (whether in relation to previous convictions or
otherwise) is volunteered by an applicant during the recruitment process or obtained through
a disclosure check, the school will consider the following factors before reaching a
recruitment decision:

  • Whether the conviction or other matter revealed is relevant to the position in
    question;
  • The seriousness of any offence or other matter revealed;
  • The length of time since the offence or other matter occurred;
  • Whether the applicant has a pattern of offending behaviour or other relevant matters;
  • Whether the applicant’s circumstances have changed since the offending behaviour
    or other relevant matters; and
  • The circumstances surrounding the offence and the explanation(s) offered by the
    convicted person.

If the post involves regular contact with children, it is the school’s normal policy to consider it
a high risk to employ anyone who has been convicted at any time of the following offences:

  • Murder, manslaughter, rape, other serious sexual offences, grievous bodily harm or
    other serious acts of violence; or
  • Serious class A drug related offences, robbery, burglary, theft, deception or fraud.
  • If the post involves access to money or budget responsibility, it is the school’s normal policy
    to consider it a high risk to employ anyone who has been convicted at any time of robbery,
    burglary, theft, deception or fraud.

If the post involves some driving responsibilities, it is the school’s normal policy to consider it
a high risk to employ anyone who has been convicted of drink driving within the last ten
years.

Assessment Procedure

In the event that relevant information (whether in relation to previous convictions or
otherwise) is volunteered by an applicant during the recruitment process or obtained through
a disclosure check, the school will carry out a risk assessment by reference to the criteria set
out above. The assessment form must be signed by the Chair of Governor and Head
teacher before deciding whether or not to confirm the appointment.

If an applicant wishes to dispute any information contained in a disclosure, he/she can do so
by contacting the DBS direct. In cases where an applicant has a job offer withdrawn because
of the disputed information, the school will, where practicable, defer a final decision about
the appointment until the applicant has had a reasonable opportunity to challenge the
disclosure information.

Retention and security of disclosure information

The school will keep an electronic record of the date of a disclosure, the name of the subject,
the type of disclosure, the position in question and the unique number issued by the DBS.
The school complies with the provisions of the DBS code of practice, a copy of which is
available on the DBS website.

Retention of Records

If an applicant is appointed, the school will retain any relevant information provided on their
application form (together with any attachments) on their personnel file. If the applicant is
unsuccessful, all documentation relating to the application will normally be confidentially
destroyed after six months.

It is the role of the senior administrator to ensure that all documentation is handled and
stored in an appropriate manner, maintaining confidentiality at all times as appropriate.

Single Centralised Register

The school will maintain a central register of all staff appointments in compliance with the
Education (Independent School Standards) (England) Regulations 2010 Part 4 section 22.
This will comprise information on every adult employed or coming in to contact with children
on a voluntary basis as follows:

  1. Name
  2. Address
  3. Enhanced criminal records check viewed; number only to be kept on record
  4. Address
  5. Details of qualifications – including date verification was made by the SCR
    administrator
  6. Record of references received
  7. Permission to work in the UK if not British

1&2 From a statutory photographed document, such as a passport
3 A record of the number only, the document must be retained by the individual
4 From an original official document such as a utility bill
5 original documents recorded and copies retained in the staff file
6 work permits, visas and or any other foreign nationals’ documents as necessary

Dates of Safer Recruitment and Child Protection Training may also be recorded.
Linked policies:

  • Child Welfare and Safeguarding;
  • Equal Opportunities

Legislation:

Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006

Protection of Freedoms Act 2012

Guidance:

Safeguarding Children and Safer Recruitment in Education 2006

Working Together to Safeguard Children 2013

It is the duty of the Head and Chairman of Governors to ensure this policy is adopted,
monitored and reviewed regularly.

Signed:
Chair of Governors
Date: 03/11/2014
Annual Review date