A Guide To DBS Checks For Nursery Staff
The primary purpose of DBS checks is to protect children and vulnerable adults. Nowhere is this needed more than in a nursery where very small children are in close contact with staff all day long.
If somebody with ill intentions gets placed in a role as a nursery worker, the damage to children’s lives could be terrible.
That’s why there are strict rules in place to check the background of nursery staff and make sure they are fit and safe to do the job.
What DBS Check Level Is Needed To Work In A Nursery?
There are three levels of DBS check – basic, standard, and enhanced.
It’s pretty obvious that the highest level of check will be needed to work in a nursery, due to the nature of the job. Therefore, all nursery staff, whether paid or volunteers, full-time or part-time, will need to complete an enhanced DBS check with barred list. The enhanced DBS check takes around four weeks to be processed and certificate posted, from the date of submission.
What Do We Mean By Nursery Staff?
Nursery staff are people that work in a nursery for children. Job roles may include:
- Nursery school teachers
- Au Pairs
- Playgroup assistants
- Childminding assistants
- Children’s home workers
- Directors of nursery businesses
What About Childminders Who Work At Home?
Private childminders who look after young children while their parents are at work, often do so in their own home and are self-employed. Anybody that looks after children in their own home in a childminding capacity needs to complete an enhanced DBS check with barred list.
Also, anybody else who lives in the house, or spends a significant amount of time there – e.g. husband, wife, partner, children aged between 16 or 17, or cleaners or gardeners, will also need to be DBS checked. This includes people that you may hire to help you out with the childminding, even if they are only volunteers.
What Shows Up On An Enhanced DBS Check with Barred List?
An enhanced DBS check with barred list highlights spent and unspent convictions, cautions, warnings and reprimands. It also details any other relevant information that the police hold on you and think is relevant to the role, which is usually provided by the chief police officer of the local force or forces.
How To Get DBS Checks For Nursery Workers
To get an enhanced DBS check, you need to submit the form through your employer or a registered body. This is because there are questions on the form that need to be answered by a third party.
To apply for the enhanced DBS check, with barred list, you can either apply by pen and paper and post it the form to the DBS. Alternatively, you can apply online using our service, as long as the application is submitted on your behalf by your employer or organisation.
Our online service helps you to eliminate mistakes by automatically checking your form and it also guarantees you faster results. You can often find out the results within 48 hours. However, you won’t usually receive your certificate in the post for another couple of weeks.
The whole process can take up to six weeks, or even longer if mistakes are made on the form. That’s why it’s usually quicker to apply online. This is especially true if you have a complex address history.
Using The DBS Update Service
If you work in a nursery, or similar role, you need to make sure that you get your DBS check regularly updated. DBS certificates go out of date as soon as they are issued, as there is no way of telling if someone commits a crime after that date. Therefore, nursery employers typically ask people to update their DBS check at regular intervals.
To save time and money, the DBS offer an update service, which costs £13 per year, and allows you to update your certificate when something changes – if you move into a new role for instance.
Using the DBS update service means that you don’t need to fill in the application form every time you need to update your certificate.
If you want to work in a nursery, as a childminder, or a similar occupation, you need to get an enhanced DBS check with barred list. You don’t apply for this on your own, however. Your employer will apply on your behalf.
If your employer uses a service like ours, you’ll be able to fill in the application form online, saving time and also making sure that there are no mistakes on the form. You may also sign up for the DBS update service to save time and money over the long term, especially if you are planning on changing roles.
For people that work in childcare or in a nursery, or own a childcare organisation, you can get in touch for more information on DBS requirements and how to get them online.