Summary of County Teachers Limited’s Policy on vetting:
In keeping with our responsibilities to the public as well as our statutory legal obligations, County Teachers limited thoroughly vet all its supply teachers by running background, medical, criminal and professional checks. Such checks are made before an initial appointment and repeated during service. Any circumvention of our strict procedures is taken seriously and may result in instant dismissal of all parties concerned.
Expansion of County Teachers limited policy on vetting:
All our procedures comply fully with the employment agencies act and EU guidance. Our pre-employment checks are rigorous and compliant with what is legally required. Teachers are not available for placement until all necessary pre-employment checks have been completed. Furthermore, we are committed to selecting and offering for placement employees who are suited to the placement stipulations given by the school. We are also committed to offering our teachers those placements that match the requirements they have of employers.
County Teachers has developed its own computer database, which accommodates for teacher selection, including pre-employment checks. We recognise that an employer and employee both need to feel ‘suited’ to each other and therefore we allow both parties a major part in the proceedings leading up to placement. We proactively seek and utilize evaluative information offered by schools and teachers and, where relevant, are committed to sharing this. All teachers are treated equally, regardless of age, disability, gender, nationality, race, religion and sexual orientation.
County Teachers take our responsibilities very seriously, as must all employers in this sector. If there is any question about a teacher’s suitability, then our response must be to not employ them. We operate rigorous quality control in all aspects of recruitment, vetting and registration to ensure that, whatever their background, all our supply staff more than match the exacting regulatory standards set by the Department for Education.
We also recognise the legal obligations placed on head teachers when utilising agency staff.
County Teachers vetting checks/registration process includes:
- In-depth face-to-face interviews
- Criminal backgrounds check including DBS Enhanced Disclosures
- Barred List checks
- Right to work in the UK
- Identity checks
- Health declaration
- 5-year reference checks
- Qualifications check
- Teach Regulation Authority Check
- Overseas Police checks
- Disqualification Declaration
The Disclosure and Barring Service
Enhanced DBS checks
- County Teachers (CT) undertake enhanced DBS checks on anybody wishing to work with us as an agency. We complete this check every year unless candidates place their DBS on the update service.
- CT always obtain references before undertaking a DBS check. This is to ensure that the candidate in question is suitable to work with the agency, and time and resources are not wasted on any candidates that we could not viably work with.
- In accordance with Section 124 of the Police Act 1997, DBS information is only privy to the Compliance Manager and the member of staff who would work on behalf of the compliance manager in the event of their absence. He/she will obtain a copy of each DBS and use this copy to input the information onto our database and an excel workbook, which is password protected. This is part of our obligation under the Data Protection Act 1998 and other relevant legislation about the safe storage, handling, use, retention and disposal of disclosures and disclosure information.
- This information is only used for the specific purpose for which it was requested and for which the applicant has given full consent.
- CT ensure that the information on each DBS is relevant to the position in which the candidate wishes to apply for.
- CT process each DBS through “Atlantic Data Ltd” as an umbrella body. The cost of this will either be deducted from the candidates first set of wages through the agency or alternatively, they can choose to pay upfront by BACS, cheques or cash. Should they wish to pay by cash, CT will provide a receipt.
- CT will only accept, carry out and do a status check on DBS certificates that are child workforce checks only.
- If there is a caution or conviction on a DBS, you are required to fax a copy to the school and CT adhere to this.
- Prior to 17thJune 2013, CT obtained portability from other agencies. This was providing that the DBS was dated within one year and it was requested within 15 days of seeing the DBS.
- Now, in the event of a candidate placing their DBS on the update service, CT will complete a 3-monthly certificate check on each candidate. This is recorded using our database, which creates a warning when the check needs to be done.
- Should CT be made aware that a candidate is no longer on the update service, the relevant candidate will be informed immediately. The candidate will be made aware that they will need to process a new DBS and be unable to work for CT until the new DBS has been processed.
Children’s Barred List checks
- CT have access to “List 99” checks and undertake this when a candidate initially registers. We ensure that if the candidate has had, or has, multiple surnames, these are also checked.
- CT then repeat this check every three months for each candidate that is active on the database. CT’s database informs the Compliance Manger when a list 99 is due.
- These checks are run even if the candidate in question is already being DBS checked.
- The evidence of these checks are printed and placed into each candidate’s registration pack. CT ensure that the original check is kept in each candidate’s folder, along with the newest check.
- If a candidate receives a match when this check is undertaken, it is the Compliance Manager’s responsibility to do the following:
- Email the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) with the following details to confirm identity: Full Name, Date of Birth, National Insurance Number and current address.
- State our legitimate interest in the candidate
- State how the individual is or would be engaged in regulated activity
- CT will then wait to receive an email from the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS)If the email states that the match does not exist on the candidate, our compliance manager will then print this and attach it to the “List 99” in the candidate’s registration pack.
- If the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) email CT and confirm there is a match, it is CT’s duty to follow the instructions provided by The Disclosure and Barring service. CT would not use this candidate until the matter was resolved.
Reporting and Referral
- CT adhere to The Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006 and therefore understand the legal duty placed on us as a personnel supplier to refer any person who has:
- Harmed or poses a risk of harm to a child or vulnerable adult;
- Satisfied the harm test; or
- Received a caution or conviction for a relevant offence
- If we believe a candidate poses a risk to children, CT will begin conducting an investigation, working with the school and candidate in question to determine whether the case will need to be referred to the Disclosure and Barring Service.
- Initially, we would obtain statements from both parties involved, attend meetings at the school if necessary and if things develop further, we would then be asked to attend a LADO meeting.
- In the event of this, the relevant consultant will attend on behalf of CT and will
report the outcome back to the Managing Director and employees of CT.
- The Compliance Manager and Managing Director will then have a meeting to discuss CT’S next steps in terms in either re-employing the teacher or referring them to the Disclosure and Barring Service.
- In the case of referring a candidate CT understand that a referral form must be completed and sent to the Disclosures and Barring Service. CT would not do this via email and would instead send all of the relevant documents by registered post.
- CT would refer a candidate regardless of whether a referral has been made by another body such as a local authority.
- CT would supply the following information as part of the legal requirement for the referral:
- Full name and title
- Any other name or names by which they are known, or a person may be known
- NI Number
- Last known address (including postcode
- Throughout this time, CT have a duty of care to its candidates to ensure that they are being supported. CT would ensure that support is given, and the likely course of action is always explained, unless there is an objection by the police or children’s social care services. CT would always advise the candidate to contact their trade union representative, if they have one. If required, they would also be given access to welfare counselling or medical advice. This would be put into place by each candidate’s consultant.
- In line with the Conduct of Employment Agencies and Employment Businesses Regulations 2003, CT implement the following procedures:
- In the event of information which gives reasonable grounds to believe that a work seekeris unsuitable that they have been supplied for, CT will inform the school of this and end the supply of that candidate without delay. This is on the same day ordinarily but if is this isn’t reasonably practicable, on the next business day.
- If CT receives or obtains information which indicates/suggests that a candidate that has been supplied may be unsuitablefor their position, but the information doesn’t give sufficient certainty to enable CT to rely on it without further investigation, then CT must inform the school that the candidate may be unsuitable and start investigating the matter further. CT must then keep the school informed of any enquiries made and any further information obtained on the matter. Should the original suggestion of the candidate possibly being unsuitable to work becomes a reasonable belief, CT must inform the hirer and terminate the assignment without delay.
- If CT receives/obtains information within 3 months of an introduction of a candidate to a school for direct employment and this information indicates that the work-seeker either is or may be unsuitable for the position they are now employed in, it must inform the school of this information.
- Although CT have no legal obligation to inform a school of this if the information comes to light after three months, there may be occasions in which CT would inform the school.
Qualifications and Training
Workers and their qualifications
- When employing a teacher, CT ensure that they possess the following:
- An undergraduate degree awarded by a UK higher education provider, or a recognised equivalent qualification – This is then followed by a PGCE course.
- Proof of qualified teacher status (QTS) This is gained in addition to the above undergraduate degree unless a Bachelor of Education (BEd) or a BSc/BA with QTS has been gained.
- As part of gaining QTS, candidates would need to ensure they pass the Professional Skills Tests in Literacy and Numeracy.
- When employing a teaching assistant, CT would ideally like the candidate to possess:
- Experience within a school environment and the age range they would like to work with.
- However,there are no nationally specified requirements for becoming a teaching assistant – some client schools may specify a minimum requirement to CT for any candidates they have in. CT would ensure these were met if this was the case.
- When employing an instructor, CT ensure that they possess:
- Any form of teaching degree.
- In the case of an instructor, the Professional Skills Tests will not yet have been completed. For this reason, the candidate cannot go into schools on the basis of being a “teacher” but to an extent, can teach a class, as long as the client school is aware.
- When employing a cover supervisor, CT would ideally like the candidate to possess:
- Relevant experience with the range they desire to work with and within a school environment.
- An honors degree
- CT will ensure that client schools are aware if a cover supervisor will be working with them and in most cases, this will only happen when a school requests it.
- CT ensure that cover supervisors do not plan or mark work, set targets or homework or anything required under the duty of a teacher.
- Agency staff are told before entering the role of a consultant how important it is to ensure their work-seekers are being engaged in the right matter.
- As a rule, new staff members begin working in admin before progressing onto the role of a consultant. This is to ensure they understand the different types of candidates CT have and the qualifications that defines each type of worker.
- Schools are always made aware of the type of worker they have working with them and that they meet the level of qualifications required to undertake that role.
Verification of qualifications
- CT ask all candidates coming in to register to bring original copies of their qualifications relevant to the role they are applying for. Copies will be made of all of these documents.
- These documents will then be verified with a dated stamp to evidence the date the originals were seen.
- Qualifications are also verified by the Compliance Manager using The Secure Access Portal
- This initial check is completed the day each candidate registered but to keep our records updated, this check is also completed on a yearly basis. The CT database lets the Compliance Manager know when the check is up for renewal each year
- Proof of this is documented in each candidate’s registration pack.
- In the event of a candidate possessing QTLS (Qualified Teacher Learning & Skills Status) the Compliance Manager will email The Society of Education and Training to obtain verification of the qualification provided
- If requested by a client, copies of these qualifications can be sent across as required by the conduct regulations
- In accordance with the conduct regulations, should CT not be able to obtain all the qualifications two references from an individual, CT would then inform the hirer of this. The hirer would be made aware that CT have tried all avenues possible in order to obtain this and they would then be asked if they are still comfortable for us to supply the worker.
- Copies of qualifications are available upon request.
Overseas (OTT) Qualifications
- Occasionally, CT employ overseas born/trained citizens for work.
- CT understand that if a teacher qualifies outside the EEA, they will need:
- A qualification comparable to a UK Bachelor degree
- To demonstrate they meet a standard equivalent to a GCSE grade C in Mathematics and English
- To demonstrate a standard equivalent to a GCSE if they intend to teach primary or Key Stage 2/3 (ages 7-14).
- CT understand UK NARIC may be able to confirm whether the candidate’s qualifications meet the first two of the above criteria, where appropriate qualifications (secondary qualifications and degrees) are presented.
- CT ask to see original UK NARIC forms from all OTT’s. These documents will then be verified with a dated stamp to evidence the date the originals were seen.
- In the event a OTT comes in to register with a CT, and they have not yet applied for UK NARIC, CT will advise them on the steps to do so. CT will then explain they need to have UK NARIC before CT can start offering the candidate work.
- CT understand that overseas trained teachers can qualify to teach in a maintained school or non-maintained special school in England as an OTT if they obtain Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) within four years of the first day they taught in England in a state maintained or non-maintained special school.
- If requested by a client, copies of these qualifications can be sent across as required by the conduct regulations
- CT endeavor to provide in house professional development. CT are committed to liaising with professional clients and colleagues to enhance our own awareness of the opportunities for in house training and we pledge to keep our work-seekers aware of such benefits and events.
- CT provide basic in house and online child protection training to our registered supply staff and anyone else looking to complete this.
- CT offer all registered candidates online CP training via ‘The Child Protection Training Company’. This is an online course that all candidates can undertake if they wish to. CT will ensure that this is a mandatory part of registration for all candidates being placed into a school, regardless of their role. Once completed, each candidate will be generated a certificate for their records and depending on the level of their qualification will last 1-3 years. CT will also hold a copy of this certificate on file.
- CT have a log of each supply teachers training records and the Compliance Manger reflects this information onto the database.
- CT will also seek out information on courses which will benefit candidates professionally. Candidates are asked which courses they would like to attend and where possible, arrangements are made accordingly.
- CT ask all candidates to bring any CPD certificates with them to their initial registration. These certificates are copied and then verified with a dated stamp to evidence the date the originals were seen.
- The CPD is then uploaded on the candidate’s ‘profile’ and the database alerts us so CT know when the candidate is next due Safeguarding Training.
- If requested by a client, copies of these qualifications can be sent across as required by the conduct regulations
CT’s reference policy
- County Teachers will accept a variety of references for a candidate but ultimately, CT need to ensure that all of these references support one another in providing a detailed history and account of the candidate applying to work.
- It is CT’s responsibility to not only take up professional references and weigh them thoroughly but to also ascertain the validity of their provenance, by ensuring that the referees themselves are reliable professionals. We ensure that this is the case by usually contacting them at their own workplace.
- We ensure that referees are able to comment with authority on the teacher’s professional abilities and have recent knowledge of that teacher’s performance.
- In the instance of a “nil return” from a referee, where this “nil return” is a contact failure as opposed to a poor reference, the candidate is contacted for an alternative reference.
- When an applicant is genuinely unable to provide two or more professional teaching referees, for a reason excepting a poor teaching record, CT will ordinarily accept other professional referees supported by character references and/or verifiable testimonials.
- References are subject to Data Protection Legislation. Copies are available upon request.
- CT require written references from all referees provided. It is vital to ensure these references are verified by the Compliance Manager and placed onto the online database, as well as a hard copy to be placed in the candidate’s registration pack.
- If the reference has come through via email, CT ensure that this email is also printed, verified and placed into the registration pack.
- CT ensure that each written reference has a picture of the work-seeker in question to confirm their identity as an extra precaution.
- To confirm authenticity CT, require a school/company stamp or a compliment slip attached.
- CT alter each written reference form for the referee it is being sent to. For example, we understand it would be unfeasible for another agency to comment on a work-seekers behavior inside a classroom, as they are not privy to this. We therefore ask them to comment on relevant aspects of the work-seekers ability. Please see all of these reference forms attached. Please also see attached, the standard letters/emails that is used to obtain these references.
- References may be taken over the telephone and a positive response can drive a candidate forward quickly, but CT is well aware that this reference needs to be followed up in writing. CT ensure that this is done within 3 working days of this verbal being obtained.
- Verbal references should be recorded in writing by the staff member who undertook the phone call. This form should be verified and placed into the work-seekers registration pack. It is then vital that this is also reflected on the database.
- Please see this reference form attached.
Open/Character references and Testimonials
- CT will accept open/character references and testimonials from work-seekers upon registration. However, these would never be relied upon solely to judge the candidate’s suitability for work. CT view these documents as helpful in gaining a better understanding of the work-seeker’s background.
- Occasionally, CT will take into account a reference such as this but only if this has been verified by the person themselves on a secure number or email address that is known to belong to the institution in question. This is not standard practice, as CT try to gain a full five-year reference history where possible and these references are secured by the written reference forms details above.
- CT keep record of all candidates’ relationships with agencies on file. This is recorded on their registration packs and using the online database.
- If a candidate works regularly with other agencies, CT keeps track of this in order to obtain up to date references from relevant sources.
- CT do not rely upon the references obtained throughout the initial registration process, as new references are being obtained constantly and consistently.
- This is managed by the online database that CT uses. The database will to provide a prompt to all users to make staff aware that a new reference needs to be obtained. It is policy that CT should attain a new reference for every active work-seeker every three months. CT do this in a number of ways.
- If CT have engaged a candidate in a placement, this will be recorded on the candidate’s profile. After this period of work has been completed, the school will be contacted to provide a written reference for this. If, in the unlikely event that the school in question refuse to comment on the candidates teaching ability, CT will ensure that they receive a confirmation of dates from HR, along with the assurance that there were no safeguarding concerns whilst the worker was engaged.
- Whilst candidates work elsewhere (through another agency or in a direct placement they have arranged) CT maintain constant contact to ensure that when this placement has finished, a reference can be obtained.
- Where possible, CT will not only contact the client school but also the agency that organised the appointment (if applicable) CT have a written reference form that is sent to agencies with specifically designed questions. On some occasions, agencies decline to complete the form due to their company policy.Should this occur, CT will repeat the above process and obtain a confirmation of dates and confirmation of no safeguarding concerns. If the agency then refuses to provide this, CT will note this on the candidate’s profile and then obtain a reference from a reliable source.
Anomalies in references
- CT take into consideration and investigate all anomalies in references.
- If permissible, the referee in question would be contacted by telephone to discuss what has been written and why this is inconsistent.
Overseas Work Seekers
- Upon registration, CT ask all candidates to complete a registration form in which, they must disclose whether they have spent a single period longer than 6 months abroad in the past five years. From this, CT can understand where and who from, an overseas police check can be obtained.
- This is also applicable for those who were born and lived overseas until adulthood.
- If a candidate answers yes to the question, CT will ensure that they provide proof of this for our records.
- If the candidate does not yet have proof, CT would advise them on how to obtain this and ensure that they are aware they will be unable to work with the agency until this has been acquired and been verified by CT.
- If an overseas police check is unavailable in addition to an enhanced DBS Disclosure, additional checks such as obtaining certificates of good conduct from relevant embassies, police forces or previous employer(s) are necessary.
- CT ask that this overseas check, or letter of good conduct is dated within one year.
- All agency staff are aware of this and consultants will approach this subject, along with guidance from the Compliance Manager in registrations where necessary.
- Should a candidate be unable to provide such a document, even after the guidance that CT give, they will be informed that they will be unable to work with CT and registration will be terminated with immediate effect.
- CT check overseas qualifications with UK NARIC. Please refer to the ‘Qualifications and Training’ section of our policies for more information.
CT takes every effort to give effective professional support to both newly qualified teachers and immigrant teachers for whom the UK’s National Curriculum is unfamiliar, making induction as smooth as possible and thereafter easing entry into the profession.
- NQTs and OQTs are identified at interview, and notes are made on their CVs (both hard copies which go into their personal files and electronic notes within the computerized system)
- NQTs and OQTs are, wherever possible, put into long-term placements (a little less stressful than daily supply).
- NQTs are treated as an important asset; they do, after all, have potentially the longest careers in front of them.
- NQTs are, to a great extent, protected from induction in underperforming schools.
- As part of the negotiating process schools are asked to provide mentoring.
- CT offers easy access to advice within its offices
- CT are aware that NQTs are required to complete an induction period of 3 school terms. There is no time limit that they must do this after reaching QTS. However, if somebody has not completed the induction period within 5 years, CT are aware that the individual can only be supplied in roles that would count towards them meeting induction.
- In England, NQTs need to do a full term at a time
- Although CT are aware that an NQT induction cannot be enforced, we would always ask the schools questions about NQT placements when booking an NQT for that time.
Medical Fitness to Work
Upon registration, CT ensure that all candidates seeking work complete a Health Declaration Form that is confidential to CT’s records.
- The purpose of this form is to satisfy agency staff that work-seekers have the physical and mental fitness to work with children in schools or other educational institutions.
- CT then ensure that this form is signed and dated by the candidate, please see the form attached.
- If further medical evidence in necessary from this, CT will be obliged to contact the candidates medical GP. In signing CT’s declaration form, all candidates give their written consent to this.
- Should an illness come to light that could, put the safety of others, children and the candidate themselves at risk, CT will contact relevant advisors for legal advice on how to move forward with this. In this sense, the legal advisor contacted would usually be the REC.
- Following on from this, the consultant will also consult with their manager about any concerns displayed on the form. It is then the manager’s decision to clear a candidate for work if appropriate.
- Under the Data Protection Act (1998), information about impairments is considered ‘sensitive information’, which means that it cannot be passed onto anyone else without explicit and informed consent. Candidates therefore have the right to ask that such information be treated as confidential when registering.
- Should a worker declare an illness that may suggest they are unfit for work, CT will require confirmation if the work seeker is fit to work from a GP or Occupational therapist.
- If a work seeker declares a medical condition CT may not advise the client of this prior to supply, unless we receive permission from the work seeker. The only time that this is permissible is if the work seeker is in a placement and CT find that they have become unsuitable for the role due to medical fitness. Even with permission, CT may not declare the condition but can withdraw the worker on medical grounds.
- CT are aware that if a teacher has been retired on medical grounds by the Department of Education after the 1STApril 1997 then this teacher will not be able to teach even part time as they have been deemed medically unfit.
- However, if the teacher was retired before 1stApril 1997 then they may be able to work if they can show that they have health and physical capacity to teach. This will be proven by obtaining a letter from their GP, confirming that they are fit to teach. However, even if they are confirmed as fit to teach they will only be able to work for 2.5 days per week.
Rehabilitation of the Offenders Act Statement
- On the 29 May 2013, legislation came into force that allows certain old and minor cautions and convictions to no longer be subject to disclosure.
- Because of this, CT cannot take an individual’s old and minor cautions and convictions into account when making decisions.
- All cautions and convictions for specified serious violent and sexual offences, and other specified offences of relevance for posts concerned with safeguarding children and vulnerable adults, do remain subject to disclosure. In addition, all convictions resulting in a custodial sentence, whether or not suspended, remain subject to disclosure, as do all convictions where an individual has more than one conviction recorded.
- When CT assess applicants’ suitability for positions which are included in the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exceptions) Order using criminal record checks processed through the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS), CT complies fully with the Code of Practice and undertakes to treat all applicants for positions fairly. CT undertakes not to discriminate unfairly against any subject of a criminal record check on the basis of a conviction or other information revealed.
- CT is committed to the fair treatment of its staff, potential staff or users of its services, regardless of race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, responsibilities for dependents, age, physical/mental disability or offending background.
- If, when a candidate comes into register, they have additional information on their DBS, County Teachers (CT) follow the below procedures:
- The Compliance Manager will discuss the additional information with the candidate.
- It is then the Compliance Manager’s duty to ensure we have this information noted down on an excel workbook. This document is locked by a secure password.
- The Compliance Manager will then input onto our database that the candidate has additional information on their DBS. The exact information is not inputted, as this is only privy to the Compliance Manager and Managing Director of the company. It is the Managing Director’s decision to deduce from the additional information whether the candidate will be suitable to work with the agency.
- If the candidate is deemed as suitable and then placed into a school, CT will always make the school aware that there is additional information on the candidates DBS before being placed.
- As well as providing us with a fully enhanced DBS check, each candidate must complete a declaration form as part of their registration form with us. Please see this attached. All questions must be answered, along with a section on “Disqualification by association”
- CT sometimes consider obtaining professional advice from the REC or LADO, to help establish whether staff with relevant cautions or convictions are disqualified from working in relevant childcare.
- In making such decisions, CT must ensure that they act proportionately and minimise wherever possible the intrusion into the private lives of their staff and members of their household. Accordingly, CT must ensure that data is handled fairly and lawfully and take care not to breach the Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA), the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (ROA) and the Human Rights Act 1998.
- CT inform all schools that staff are aware that they will be committing an offence if they are deployed to work in relevant childcare, or are directly concerned in the management of such provision, if they are disqualified under the 2009 Regulations. CT request that all work-seekers inform them if they consider that they could be disqualified under the legislation.
- Compliance related, CT ensure that the following checks are completed:
- CT have a policy to obtain an up to date reference every three months for each active work-seeker. The database notifies all agency staff of this and the Compliance Manager acts on this each time.
- The only exception to this rule is if a work-seeker is actively engaged in a placement. If this is the case, a note will be placed on each candidate’s profile to act as a reminder to obtain this reference when the placement has finished.
- These references are obtained to ensure that all teachers receive feedback on a regular basis as this helps CT to ascertain who are suitable candidates.
- CT ensure that every work-seeker who is on the update service have their check renewed on a 3-monthly basis (subject to any shorter period imposed by a client). The check is printed and placed into each candidate’s registration pack. Again, the CT database will notify agency staff when this check needs to be renewed.
- Should a candidate choose not to be a member of the DBS update service, CT ensure that they have a new enhanced DBS check processed every year. CT will always recommend that this is on the update service but understand if candidates do not wish to do so. The database will highlight this.
- CT process a Children’s Barred List Check, not only when a candidate initially registers, but every three months from this point. CT will keep the original check and the most recent check in the candidate’s registration pack. Checks prior to this are shredded securely. The database will notify agency staff when this check needs to be renewed. CT ensure that they check not only the work-seekers current surname, but all names prior to this.
- In addition to the completion of a prohibition check upon initial registration, CT also complete a further check on a yearly basis. This too is highlighted by the online database and placed in each candidate’s registration pack.
- In the event of a previous work-seeker, who has been dormant for a period longer than 6 months, wanting to work with CT again, the thorough registration process must be undertaken again. CT require the candidate to attend an appointment in the office, bringing all of their required documents to be copied and verified. The database will highlight this.
- CT require a CV documenting all relevant experience and this is to be updated each time a candidate undertakes a placement or broadens their educational experience in any way.
- The CT team ensure that registration packs are checked 3 times a year to ensure that all files are consistently up to date. For example, CT will look for identification that may have expired or obtain recent utility bills if the work-seeker has moved address.
- Feedback related, CT ensure that the following procedures are executed:
- Weekly, CT require all using schools to complete a timesheet to confirm the attendance of all work-seekers. These timesheets have the addition of a small feedback section, asking the school to tick from four options; “Very good, Good, Fair or Poor” By doing so, CT can keep track of the performance on longer-term teachers in a convenient way for schools.
- Furthermore, CT ensure that weekly phone calls are made to both active schools and candidates to find out if the position/teacher is suitable.
- From this feedback, CT can comply a list on each candidate’s profile, noting their strengths and weaknesses. Simultaneously, the same is created for each school, generating a clear indicator of who works well with them, and those who do not.
- CT will always pass feedback onto candidates, praising them for strengths that the clients highlight and when necessary, detailing constructive criticism provided to ensure that teacher can develop positively.
- When a candidate works on a daily supply basis, meaning they work sporadically in a number of different schools, it can be hard to provide physical feedback in the form of references that would be useful for future employers. Therefore, if a candidate works on a regular basis in schools and is known by name, CT will send a reference request to this client school and in most instances, will receive sufficient feedback.
- In the unlikely event of candidates being criticized for their work/performance in when working, CT will, when required, place the candidate on a course relevant to their needs and ensure that this develops their teaching practice in the future.
- CT regularly place candidates on safeguarding courses so their knowledge of this is continuously updated. CT ask that candidates have an up to date child protection certificate.
- Upon registration, CT provide each candidate with a safeguarding document for use of home research. CT strongly suggest that all candidates read this document through frequently to ensure their knowledge is as current as it can possibly be.
- When a candidate is booked into a long-term placement, the client school usually undertakes the responsibility of training the candidate they have placed since they are, in most instances, viewed as a permanent member of staff. CT will ensure that constant contact is made with the candidate to make note of all courses attended. This is reflected on the database used by agency staff.
- All CT consultants receive in-house training within their first few weeks of joining the agency. The managing director ensures that the consultant in training will observe interviews initially, listening carefully to the process and the type of questions asked.
- After each interview, the consultant is provided with the opportunity to ask any questions they may have regarding the process, in order for them to build their knowledge.
- The consultant in training will be provided with all questions that need to be covered in an interview before conducting their first. Not only that, but they will shadow a senior consultant in numerous interviews before independently interviewing.
- The shadowing process normally lasts for a few weeks but this is dependent on each individual consultant and how quickly they begin to feel comfortable interviewing and the senior consultant’s assessment of their progress.
- When a newly-trained consultant conducts their first independent interview, support is still there in the form of all other consultants. Feedback is given afterwards so all consultants can improve if necessary. This is practiced constantly as CT believe there is always room for development.
- As well as in-house training, CT do also send staff members on courses with the REC. This is throughout the early stages of each consultant’s career as CT predominantly rely on in-house training.
- Prior to interview taking place, the relevant consultant will read through the candidates CV. The consultant will then take the time to make notes of any gaps in employment, and this will be addressed during the interview.
- CT will ask standard questions during interview ranging from the work seekers history, reasons for registering and leaving their previous post.
Interview Details Sheet
- Whilst conducting an interview, CT consultants are required to ask specific questions regarding the candidate’s experience, teaching goals, teaching practice and their strengths/weaknesses.
- This is all to be recorded on an interview details sheet by the relevant consultant and this sheet it to be placed in each candidate’s registration pack. This is to be reviewed to deduce candidate’s suitability for long-term positions and daily supply work.
Health & Safety
- County Teachers obtain Health and Safety policies from all client schools, and these are stored on the CT server, which every staff member has access to.
- Clients are asked to provide their policies, alongside any risks known to the client and what steps the client has taken to prevent or control ant existing risks.
- If there is any relevant information to be padded on, this is provided to the work seeker in writing, within three days of the verbal indication.
- When work seekers are provided with confirmation of their long-term work, this is also supplemented with the written Health and Safety Policies, along with the point of contact of who the work seeker would need to speak to regarding Health and Safety and any impending risks. This advice is written on the booking form that work-seekers receive.
Disqualification under the Childcare Act 2006
- As part of the CT declaration form, where relevant, work seekers are required to complete a disqualification by association form.
- Job seekers are required to confirm if they have any spent/unspent convictions and that they are not disqualified on any of the grounds set out in the guidance.Job seekers must confirm to the best of their knowledge that no one who lives in or is employed in their household is disqualified on any of the grounds in line with the guidance. Job seekers must confirm the details of any order, determination, conviction, or other grounds disqualification from registration under Childcare regulations.
- CT ask all job seekers to confirm that they will notify us should any of the information provided change.
- All candidates are made aware that in completing the form, they are not required to provide information about any protected of filtered offences or disclose any information about spent convictions.
- Work seekers are made aware if they are disqualified, we will not be able to place them into a role that involves relevant childcare work. However, they may be able to apply to Ofsted for a waiver of disqualification. Ofsted can be contacted directly for advice on the application process.
- Upon registration candidates are asked for permission to forward CVs to clients.
- If clients ask for any further personal data, we always ensure that the work seeker’s permission is obtained before doing so.
- Due to our work seekers being supplied with children, we have additional procedures in place to accompany the appropriate suitability checks already carried out automatically. Client schools are offered references and qualifications for our work seekers if required.
- CT ensure that the DBS update service is adhered to. More information on this policy can be found under the Disclosure and Barring Service section.
Work seeker feedback
- In the unlikely event, the information regarding a work seeker’s unsuitability comes to light after a placement has started, CT will inform the client school that the work-seeker is engaged in, with immediate effect.
- If CT feel appropriate, the work-seeker would be removed from the placement and the client school would be informed of the reason why.
- Where relevant, the school would be consulted with regards to their view of the situation and may have the final decision with regards to working with the candidate.
Written assignment information
- When engaging a work-seeker in a placement, CT ensure that written confirmation of this assignment is sent across, within three business days after the verbal confirmation has been provided
- The written assignment includes the nature of the assignment. The nature of the client’s business, the duration, location, type of work and rate of pay.
- When working on a daily assignment, the confirmation varies to that of a long-term assignment.
- Client schools provide the relevant health & safety information to work-seekers and CT make all work-seekers aware of the appropriate person to speak to regarding this, when in a school.
- When initially contacting a client, CT will provide them with all relevant documents to give them a sufficient background on how CT operates. This includes:
- REC terms and conditions
- All relevant policies
- Information regarding the type of workers we engage
- Any relevant costings
- Any other information that the client requires in order to engage with County Teachers
- If a client approaches County Teachers with regards to a position/assignment, it will be ensured that the following information will be obtained
- The identity of the client and if applicable, the nature of the client’s business
- The date that work is to commence
- The duration/likely duration of the work
- The position the client is looking to fill, including the type of work, location, hours, health and safety risks known to the client and what steps the client has taken or prevent or control such risks
- The experience, training and qualifications that the work-seeker would need to possess, in order to undertake the position
- All relevant details regarding payment and if any expenses are payable
- This information is all recorded on the CT database and passed on accordingly to the relevant work-seekers
- When proposing work seekers to clients, CVs (with permission) are sent across detailing their experience, training and qualifications, so they can make an informed decision regarding the potential candidates.
- Booking credentials are sent across to further verify the identity of the work seeker
- By providing this written information to clients, CT ensure that they are in line with the conduct regulations. CT also ensure that work seekers are willing to undertake the position in question, before their details are sent across.
- In order to adhere to AWR, County Teachers ensure that client schools provide us with the relevant information with regards to equal treatment for work seekers, and this is then passed on accordingly to candidates, in their booking form when taking on a long-term assignment
- Booking Credentials
- Schools are provided with and have constant access to a booking credentials form. This form details all of the below checks:
- Confirmation of identity
- Children’s barred list check
- Enhanced DBS check
- Prohibition check
- Verification of qualifications
- Right-to-work check
- Where applicable, further checks for those who have lived/worked outside the UK
- The date that this check is completed with the booking credentials, alongside a photograph of the candidate in question.
These booking credentials are readily available via the “My.CT” portal that schools have a 24 hour access to. At their request, the booking credentials are sent across by the relevant consultant.