Approved by Trustees: 22nd October 2019
Review Timetable: 3 years
Renewal Date: October 2022
1. WHAT SHOULD THIS POLICY ACHIEVE?
1.1 This policy sets out the procedures used by Trustees and School Governors when seeking to recruit high quality staff. It acknowledges that this is a serious responsibility and that there are important statutory requirements that must be followed for key elements of his process.
1.2 This policy demonstrates that Trustees and School Governors recognise the importance, (as highlighted in the recommendations set out in the Bichard Enquiry (2004) and the statutory guidance ‘Keeping children safe in education 2019’ (KCSiE 2019)), of putting in place safeguarding procedures, to “prevent people who pose a risk of harm from working with children” and ensure that only those suitable to work with young people are employed by the school.
1.3 This policy is part of South Bank Multi Academy Trust’s procedures to create a culture of safer recruitment, adopting practices that “help deter, reject or identify people who might abuse children” (KCSiE 2019).
2. WHAT ARE THE PRINCIPLES INVOLVED?
2.1 Each Trust School shall follow the guidance set out within this policy for each stage of the recruitment process.
2.2 The recruitment process has 9 steps that must be followed:
2.3 This policy acknowledges that each Trust School and the Trust Board are aware of their statutory responsibilities to check staff who work with children, “taking proportionate decisions on whether to ask for any checks beyond that which is required and ensuring that volunteers are appropriately supervised” (KCSiE 2019).
2.4 This document fulfils the statutory requirement for a written recruitment and selection policy to be in place (KCSiE 2019) setting out the agreed procedures across the Trust.
3. WHO MANAGES THIS POLICY?
3.1 In each Trust School, the Headteacher has overarching responsibility for ensuring that recruitment is carried out in line with the guidance set out in this policy.
3.2 In each Trust School, the Headteacher shall appoint a Recruitment Officer, who will support the Headteacher in carrying out the day-to-day tasks associated with all aspects of the recruitment process.
3.3 Following the appointment of each new member of staff, they will be allocated an appropriate Line Manager to oversee their induction, training and support.
4. WHAT ARE THE AIMS OF THIS POLICY?
5. GUIDELINES FOR ADVERTISING
5.1 When advertising, post details will be kept to a minimum to keep costs down, but full details – including safeguarding statements - will be provided in detailed job packs.
5.2 All vacant posts will be advertised at Trust, local or national levels, as appropriate.
6. AGREED CONTENTS OF JOB PACKS
6.1 A letter from the Headteacher outlining the procedure for application and emphasising that the school takes its safeguarding responsibilities extremely seriously.
6.2 Information about the post, including the start date, whether it is a fixed term or permanent post and whether it is part-time or full-time.
6.3 Information about the interview process.
6.4 A relevant Person Specification.
6.5 A relevant Job Description, which refers to safeguarding procedures.
6.6 A South Bank Multi Academy Trust teaching or non-teaching application form (which includes an Equal Opportunities section).
6.7 A criminal record self-disclosure form.
7. GUIDELINES FOR SHORTLISTING PROCEDURES
7.1 Short-listing is carried out with the involvement of a Senior Leader / the Headteacher. Where possible, this is done in partnership with the relevant Line Manager.
7.2 The short-listing panel must contain at least one person who has received the appropriate Safer Recruitment training.
7.3 When shortlisting for a senior leadership post, this is done in partnership with at least one governor. A senior leader from one of the other Trust Schools may also be invited.
7.4 Short-listing grids are used so that only those candidates meeting the required minimum criteria should be interviewed.
7.5 Short-listing grids are recommended, so that only those candidates whose application meets the following criteria will be interviewed.
7.6 Once applications have been received, they are kept locked away, for reasons of data protection.
7.7 The Equal Opportunities section and the criminal record self-disclosure form will be removed from applications as they arrive and prior to short-listing.
7.8 For Headship short-listing, the panel must contain at least one Trust School Headteacher in addition to at least two governors from the recruiting school.
7.9 Applications will be destroyed after 12 months.
7.10 To meet safeguarding recommendations, referees will be asked to provide a range of information, including whether or not they consider the candidate suitable to work with children.
8. GUIDELINES FOR INVITING CANDIDATES TO INTERVIEW
8.1 Letters inviting candidates for interview should provide an outline of the activities for the day.
8.2 If a task is involved, details of the task should be provided.
8.3 Letters should be sent in time for candidates to prepare for any given tasks and to make arrangements to attend.
8.4 The letter of invitation to interview should clarify whether there is a two-part selection process on the day.
8.5 If requests for references have not previously been issued, they should be sent out at the point of inviting candidates for interview to two relevant professional referees.
9. GUIDELINES FOR CARRYING OUT INTERVIEWS
9.1 Candidates will be asked to present their identification prior to being shown around the relevant section(s) of the individual school and introduced to the Interview Panel.
9.2 As per statutory requirements, all interview panels will always contain at least one member who has received Safer Recruitment training [Regulation 9 of the School Staffing (England) Regulations 2009].
9.3 For teaching posts, the Interview Panel will consist of a minimum of 2 people. At least one member of the Senior Leadership Team should be present and where possible, a governor should also be involved.
9.4 For non-teaching posts, the panel will consist of a minimum of 2 people and may include a governor, a senior leader or a relevant Line Manager.
9.5 In order to ensure that the recruitment process generates as wide a range of information as possible, there will normally be an additional task in addition to the requirement of responses to interview questions.
9.6 Where this has previously been made clear to candidates, the interview may take the form of a two-part selection process and candidates will only be asked to remain for the second part where performance in the first part has been at least good.
9.7 In addition to the standard questions drawn up in advance and used to interview all candidates, the Interview Panel may ask any additional individual question necessary to clarify any gap in employment history or clarify a point made in the letter of application. Any discrepancies between the information supplied by the candidate and that provided in the references will also be explored. This relates in particular to satisfying the panel about any matters relating to safeguarding.
9.8 All unsuccessful candidates will be offered feedback on their performance (verbally or by email).
9.9 The Interview Panel may record their notes relating to each candidate’s performance, to inform discussions at the end of the interviews and so that agreed strengths and weaknesses can be fed back to any candidate who desires feedback. These notes will be retained for 12 months.
10. GUIDELINES FOR MAKING AN OFFER OF EMPLOYMENT
10.1 Every attempt will be made to make a decision on the day of the interview.
10.2 Every attempt will be made to contact all candidates by telephone so that they know the outcome on the day of the interview.
10.3 Any verbal offer will state that it is made subject to certain checks and conditions being met (see below).
10.4 Following a verbal offer over the telephone, the successful candidate will receive a letter of confirmation. This letter will also state that the offer is made subject to certain conditions being met.
10.5 The conditional written offer of a job will be accompanied by DBS documentation and the appropriate Health Questionnaire, which the candidate will be required to complete promptly.
10.6 The conditional offer of a job will also make it clear that one of the required checks is the receipt of two professional written references.
10.7 Where applicable, successful candidates will be asked to bring with them proof of their qualifications when processing their DBS documentation (e.g. teachers, Business Managers etc.)
11. REQUIREMENTS FOR CARRYING OUT RECRUITMENT CHECKS ON NEW STAFF
11.1 A DBS certificate must be obtained from the candidate as soon as practicable after an offer of appointment has been made and prior to them taking up their new post.
11.2 DBS checks are carried out by an external provider, using an online service to speed up the process.
11.3 a) For all staff engaged in ‘regulated activity’ an enhanced DBS together with barred list information must be obtained.
b) For all teaching roles, an additional check against the prohibited from teaching list is required.
c) For all School Management posts (including Trustees), a further check against the ‘prohibited under section 128 provisions’ must also be carried out, where a DBS with barred list check has not already been undertaken.
11.4 For all other staff who have an opportunity for regular contact with children, but who are not engaging in regulated activity, an enhanced DBS certificate (without the barred list check) is sufficient. This would include contractors or other temporary staff working on site within the school day. This applies as they will be viewed by pupils/students as a ‘safe person’ if they are known as a member of the School staff.
11.5 DBS checks are not legally required if a new member of staff is moving from a school post in England within the last three months; however, normal procedure for the Trust will be to automatically carry out a check for all new members of staff appointed from employers outside the Trust.
11.6 DBS checks must be carried out (without the barred list information) for any volunteer, as all volunteers may be required to work outside the classroom with pupils e.g. hearing them read.
11.7 Two written references must be taken up on all new employees – referees shall be asked whether the candidate is judged by them as a suitable person to be working with children.This applies even where the postholder is not engaged in regulated activity, as they will be viewed by pupils/students as a ‘safe person’ if they are known as a member of the School staff.
11.8 For staff who provide any care for a child up to and including reception age (i.e. staff in nursery and reception classes, or any supervised activity such as lunchtime supervision and including those in senior management, such as Headteachers), or for staff who provide childcare for under eights (e.g. After School Club Playworkers, Breakfast Club statt etc.) checks also need to be carried out to ensure the individuals are not disqualified under the Childcare (Disqualification) Regulations 2009.
11.9 When appointing a new member of staff, some additional employment checks must also be carried out. These include:
12. DEFINITIONS OF REGULATED ACTIVITY
12.1 Regulated Activity includes teaching, training, instructing, caring for, supervising or providing guidance & advice to children if the person is unsupervised.
12.2 Regulated Activity also includes driving a vehicle that only provides passage for children.
12.3 Regulated Activity also includes work across a limited range of educational establishments with the opportunity for contact with children e.g. music tutors, sports specialists, educational psychologists etc.
13. SINGLE CENTRAL RECORD
13.1 Each individual School within the Trust must keep its own Single Central Record and provide a copy of the Single Central Record to the MAT central record store. This must cover all staff, including visiting staff and supply teachers.
13.2 The Clerk to the Trust Board will obtain the SCR information for all Trustees who hold non-executive posts. This information will be updated on a termly basis and passed on to individual schools where any changes have taken place, so that individual school records and the MAT website can be appropriately updated.
13.3 The Single Central Record must contain the following information:
14. GUIDELINES ABOUT INDUCTING NEW MEMBERS OF STAFF
14.1 Wherever possible, the successful candidate will be given the opportunity to visit the School prior to taking up their new post, in order to provide an appropriate initial induction session.
14.2 The induction process will include a session with a Senior Leader, who will take the new postholder personally through the safeguarding sections of the MAT’s Code of Conduct for staff.
14.3 Upon taking up a new post, the member of staff’s Line Manager will arrange for appropriate training and support – this may include shadowing existing experienced members of staff, attending in-house training or accessing training from external sources.
14.4 All new staff members shall undergo safeguarding and child protection training as part of their initial induction. This training should be in line with advice from the LSP and should be updated regularly (all staff should receive training annually) [See KCSiE 2019].
Agreed by the Headteacher Group Approved by Trustees