A Guide To DBS Checks For Childcare Workers
Childcare is a very important role for our hard working and productive society. Parents need good childcare workers who are dedicated to their jobs and provide safe care for children while they are at work.
Therefore, it is vital that child safeguarding principles are applied carefully in the role of childminder and at childcare facilities such as nurseries, crèches, and schools.
Each and every child should be looked after well when in a childcare setting and not exposed to unnecessary harm. That’s why child safeguarding policies always include criminal background checks known as DBS Checks to assess the suitability of individuals for these types of roles.
If you are a childcare worker or a parent or guardian who is looking to use childcare services for your child or children, then you will get all the information you need on DBS Checks for childcare workers in the article below.
Should all childcare workers get a DBS Check?
Most people who work in childcare will need to get a DBS Check, as they will fall under child safeguarding regulations. Here are a few factors that need to be considered when assessing whether a DBS Check is needed and what level is appropriate:
- Does the role involve a regulated activity (unsupervised direct care of children on a frequent basis – at least four times over a 30 day period)?
- Is the role taking place within a limited range of establishments (including nurseries, schools, childcare centres, or any other childcare facility)?
- Is personal care part of the role (e.g. dressing, feeding, cleaning, etc.)?
- Does the role involve tutoring, coaching, or mentoring a child directly?
- Is the role considered to be foster care?
If the answer is yes to any of the above, then a DBS Check will almost certainly be needed. Some other situations that are related to childcare that may or may not require a DBS Check are:
- Acting as a governor or trustee of a school, childcare facility, or children’s charity who is involved in recruitment of new employees that will be caring for children
- Working for a recruitment agency connected to childcare
- Working in an auxiliary role within a childcare setting.
Limited range of establishments
Individuals who work in roles that have no or little contact with children, but within a limited range of establishments, for example a builder or cleaner within a school, will still need a DBS Check.
Limited range of establishments refers to places where lots of children will be present and there will be circumstances where any adult individual may be left alone with a child or children.
The level of DBS Checks required for a role within a limited range of establishments would be decided by the type of role and the likelihood of unsupervised contact with children. It is unlikely that a Basic DBS Check would be enough for a job within a limited range of establishments such as a childcare setting.
For higher level DBS Checks such as Standard or Enhanced DBS Checks, the individual themself cannot apply directly. The employer or organisation will need to submit the application on their behalf.
A self-employed childcare worker will need to go through a third party, such as their local council or a regulatory body to apply for a higher level DBS Check on their behalf.
Private childminders or nannies
A person who works as a private childminder or nanny would come under the category of a domestic arrangement, which means they would only need a Basic DBS Check at most.
A Basic DBS Check can be requested by the individual themself and submitted using our online service. Our service is quick, reliable, and easy-to-use, with results coming through within 24 hours on average.
A Basic DBS Check only reveals unspent convictions and conditional cautions.
Many childcare roles will be classed as regulated activities. A regulated activity is one that involves working directly with children or vulnerable adults in an unsupervised capacity on a frequent basis.
Anybody engaged in a regulated activity must apply for an Enhanced DBS Check before starting the role, as well as getting a DBS barred list check carried out.
An Enhanced DBS Check reveals any spent or unspent convictions, cautions, warnings, and reprimands, as well as any relevant additional information that exists on police records.
Summary of DBS Checks for childcare workers
Childcare workers are involved in the care and supervision of children and therefore they are governed by child safeguarding regulations.
If the role is within a limited range of establishments, which most childcare settings are, then a DBS Check is almost certainly required.
If the role is a regulated activity, then an Enhanced DBS Check and children’s barred list check will be needed to assess their suitability for the role.
If you need any more information or guidance on DBS Checks for childcare workers then get in touch today to talk to an expert advisor or apply for a DBS Check now.