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Safeguarding: Safer Recruitment & Allegations

Safer Recruitment

"It is vital that governing bodies and proprietors create a culture that safeguards and promotes the welfare of children in their school or college. As part of this culture, it is important that they adopt robust recruitment procedures that deter and prevent people who are unsuitable to work with children from applying for or securing employment, or volunteering opportunities in schools and colleges."

 Keeping Children Safe in Education

Part three of KCSIE covers 'Safer recruitment' and has four sections providing schools and colleges with the legal requirements ‘must do’, what they should do, what is considered best practice and important information about:

i. the recruitment and selection process
ii. pre-appointment and vetting checks, regulated activity and recording of information
iii. other checks that may be necessary for staff, volunteers and others, including the responsibilities on schools and colleges for children in other settings
iv. how to ensure the ongoing safeguarding of children and the legal reporting duties on employers.

Guidance and further information:

Allegations Against Staff

KCSIE states that schools and colleges should have their own procedures for dealing with concerns and/or allegations against those working in or on behalf of schools and colleges in a paid or unpaid capacity, which should be consistent with local safeguarding procedures and practice guidance.

Part four of KCSIE has two sections covering the two levels of allegation/concern: 1) Allegations that may meet the harms threshold.
and 2) Allegation/concerns that do not meet the harms threshold – referred to as ‘low level concerns’. A low-level concern is any concern that an adult has acted in a way that is inconsistent with the staff code of conduct, including inappropriate conduct outside of work and/or does not meet the allegations threshold.

To help prevent allegations and low-level concerns, robust staff training, effective policies and procedures (including staff codes of conduct, behaviour policies and safeguarding policies) should be implemented effectively and appropriate action should be taken to deal with any concern. Education settings should create an environment where staff are encouraged and feel confident to self-refer to the headteacher/manager if they have found themselves in a situation which might be misinterpreted or they have behaved in a way that falls below professional standards.

For more information about managing and responding to allegations against staff, see 'Reporting Safeguarding Concerns and Making Referrals in Kent'. If education settings are unsure how to respond to allegations, or wish to discuss a low-level concern, they should contact the LADO Enquiries Officer.

Induction and Staff Training

“Governing bodies and proprietors should ensure that all staff undergo safeguarding and child protection training (including online safety) at induction... In addition, all staff should receive regular safeguarding and child protection updates, including online safety (for example, via email, e bulletins, staff meetings) as required, and at least annually, to provide them with relevant skills and knowledge to safeguard children effectively.

Governing bodies and proprietors should ensure... that safeguarding training for staff, including online safety training, is integrated, aligned and considered as part of the whole school or college safeguarding approach and wider staff training and curriculum planning.

Governing bodies and proprietors should ensure that all governors and trustees receive appropriate safeguarding and child protection (including online) training at induction. This training should equip them with the knowledge to provide strategic challenge to test and assure themselves that the safeguarding policies and procedures in place in schools and colleges are effective and support the delivery of a robust whole school approach to safeguarding. Their training should be regularly updated."

 Keeping Children Safe in Education

"Providers must train all staff to understand their safeguarding policy and procedures, and ensure that all staff have up to date knowledge of safeguarding issues. Training made available by the provider must enable staff to identify signs of possible abuse and neglect at the earliest opportunity, and to respond in a timely and appropriate way."

 Early Years Foundation Stage statutory framework

In order to ensure that robust and safe practice is embedded within education settings culture, safeguarding (including online safety)  policies, procedures and expectations need to be clearly and effectively communicated with all staff at induction and regularly updated throughout their employment through formal and informal training and engagement opportunities. 

To see a comprehensive list of the training we provide and resources available to support DSLs, please see our training and services menu.