20 January 2016

New Safer Recruitment Checks

From 18 January 2016, schools will be able to check whether a teacher from the European Economic Area (‘EEA’) is subject to any EEA prohibitions/sanctions. This check will be in addition to the pre-employment checks (including the teacher prohibition pre-appointment checks and checks on individuals who have worked or lived overseas) as required by the statutory guidance, Keeping Children Safe in Education.

How can schools check whether a teacher is subject to an EEA prohibition/sanction?

This will be via Employer Access Online by checking the ‘teachers prohibited from the profession’ (although the Online service will only show those sanctions made after 18 January 2016).

It is anticipated that the Online Service will be modified towards the end of February to provide a separate EEA prohibition/sanction list, with the aim of making the service more ‘user friendly’.

Will the statutory guidance be updated in light of this?

Yes. The guidance will be updated to reflect the new safer recruitment checks in due course. As there is currently a consultation on the statutory guidance which will run until 16 February 2016, it is expected that the statutory guidance will be amended following the consultation.

Why are there additional safer recruitment checks?

These checks follow from an EU directive which introduced a new requirement on EEA authorities to share teacher prohibitions/sanctions with other EEA teacher regulators.

How will this affect the decision to recruit a teacher from the EEA?

Whilst restrictions imposed by another EEA authority do not prevent a school from offering a teaching position to an individual, schools should review the circumstances leading to the restriction when considering a candidate’s suitability for the role.

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About the Author
Kristine Scott, Partner, Head of Education Sector
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