Following the UK’s exit from the EU, there have been several updates made to KCSIE (2020), specifically on guidance for pre-employment checks of overseas applicants. As such, it’s imperative to ensure that any senior leaders, governors and individuals involved with recruitment or maintaining the single central record are aware of the changes in the revised copy (Keeping Children Safe in Education (2020) Update - Jan 21 (Post EU Exit)).
So, what do the changes involve?
As above, the main change within the document relates to the section under ‘European Economic Area (EEA) regulating authority teacher sanctions or restrictions’ which states:
“149. From 01 January 2021 the TRA Teacher Services system will no longer maintain a list of those teachers who have been sanctioned in EEA member states. Advice about how information about a teacher’s past conduct may be obtained can be found at paragraph 172.”
Paragraph 172 then goes on to advise that applicants who have lived/worked outside the UK must continue to provide an enhanced DBS certificate but, in addition, Schools ‘must make any further checks they think appropriate so that any relevant events that occurred outside the UK can be considered.’ Where available, these checks could include:
- criminal records checks for overseas applicants
- obtaining a letter of professional standing from the professional regulating authority in the country in which the applicant has worked – this should be available through NARIC’s website shortly
Note: The CPQ website is currently being reformulated to reflect the changes due to Brexit. You can find the existing website here. Any advice will be provided via email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or telephone - details of which can be found here.
Due to these changes, there is also an impact upon the information now required to be recorded through the single central record (SCR). With regards to employees, the SCR must record whether checks have been carried out or certificates obtained, as well as the date on which these were completed. According to Paragraph 165, the checks include:
- an identity check;
- a barred list check;
- an enhanced DBS check/certificate;
- a prohibition from teaching check;
- further checks on people who have lived or worked outside the UK (see paragraphs 172);
- a check of professional qualifications, where required; and
- a check to establish the person’s right to work in the United Kingdom.
- a section 128 check (for management positions as set out in paragraph 144-147 for Independent Schools (including Academies and Free Schools)).
We would recommend that EEA sanctions & restrictions remain on the SCR, as those employed at the time will have been subject to that statutory requirement. It should be noted that this ceased as of 31 December 2020 and is now replaced with a letter of professional standing from the professional regulating authority in the country in which the applicant has worked.