School Logo
  Home       Parents       News       Pupils' Work       Enrichment Programme
   

You are here Parents Vetting and Disclosure Policy

1. Background

The Board of Management aims to provide the highest possible level of care and protection for pupils, staff, and the whole school community. In particular, we recognise the need to provide a safe and secure environment for children. It is the policy of the school that all personnel who are engaged in either a paid or voluntary capacity in the school and have substantial access to children are assessed in terms of their suitability to work with children. In addition to existing recruitment procedures, the Board will adopt both vetting and disclosure procedures, as appropriate, to ensure the highest standards of child protection practice.

2. Scope

While the duty of care the school owes to pupils is of paramount importance, the Board acknowledges the context of the school environment, which requires the involvement of a diverse range of personnel including management, teachers, ancillary staff, parents and others who supply goods, services and supports to the school. In determining the need for vetting or disclosure the Board will consider the level of access that personnel will have with pupils. All personnel who are considered to have substantial access to pupils in the school must be assessed in terms of their suitability to work with children. In determining whether access to pupils is substantial the Board of Management will consider the following:

•  Will the person have one-to-one contact with pupils?

If the potential exists for the person to have one-to-one contact with a pupil or group of pupils, particularly in situations that are separate from other adults/children, then access will be regarded as substantial.

•  Will the person be supervised by a member of the teaching staff?

In situations where a person may be required to spend a considerable amount of time (more than 30 minutes) alone with a pupil or group of pupils, without the supervision of a member of the teaching staff, the Board will consider this access to be substantial.

•  Regularity of contact?

Where a person has regular contact with a pupil or group of pupils, even under the close supervision of a member of teaching staff, the Board recognises the potential for such relationships to be exploited outside the school context. Any person who has regular contact with pupils will be considered to have substantial access.

3. Vetting and Disclosure Policy

The school's Vetting and Disclosure Policy has been formulated in accordance with statutory requirements and on the basis of national guidelines regarding best practice for the protection of children.

It is the policy of the school that all newly qualified teachers and ancillary staff who have substantial access to pupils will be vetted by the Garda Central Vetting Unit (GCVU) in accordance with statutory provisions. All other personnel who have substantial access to pupils, and who are engaged in either a paid or voluntary capacity, whether on a temporary or permanent basis, are required by the Board to declare their suitability to work in this capacity. The vetting and disclosure procedures adopted by the Board for different categories of school personnel are outlined in Section 6 below.

All offers of employment, engagement of volunteers or decisions to facilitate access for extra-curricular activities, which involve substantial access to children, will be subject to a satisfactory vetting or disclosure outcome. Persons who fail to comply with this policy will not be appointed in any capacity.

4. Communication

All personnel applying for either paid or voluntary positions in the school will be made aware of the school's Vetting and Disclosure Policy. This policy will be communicated through the school's website and will be made available on request to any applicant.

5. Review

The Board of Management reserves the right to review and amend this policy in accordance with any changes to the statutory requirements or national guidelines regarding best practice.

6. Vetting and Disclosure Procedures

The following policies and arrangements apply to relevant categories of applicants/persons.

6.1 Recruitment of Newly Qualified Teachers

•  The School complies fully with the provisions of the Teaching Council Acts 2001 and 2006 and the Department of Education and Science's Circular 0094/2006 on the recruitment of newly qualified teachers and new teaching staff.

•  The School liaises with the Teaching Council in accordance with the provisions of the Teaching Council Acts 2001 and 2006 to ensure appropriate Garda vetting of newly qualified teaching staff.

• Any member of staff returning to teaching after an absence of 3 years or more who has been through the Teaching Council vetting process will be required to provide an original copy of the vetting letter which they received from the Teaching Council.

6.2 Recruitment of New Teaching Staff

•  Applicants for any teaching position who do not have an original copy of the vetting letter which they received from the Teaching Council must return a Declaration of Disclosure to the school Principal ( Appendix 1 ).

•  This applies to all permanent, temporary/fixed term, student and substitute teachers.

•  It is the policy of the Board to contact all referees to assess the applicant's suitability to work with children ( Appendix 2 ).

6. 3 Recruitment of New Ancillary Staff

•  In compliance with the Department of Education and Science's Circular 0094/2006 all applicants for any ancillary positions, including secretarial staff, caretaker staff, special needs assistants and bus escorts will be vetted through the GCVU.

•  The diocesan authorised signatory acts on behalf of the school as the conduit for vetting all ancillary staff through the GCVU.

6.4 Recruitment and vetting of New and Existing Contractors, Volunteers, Other Persons

•  The School complies fully with the Department of Health and Children's Our Duty to Care - The Principles of Good Practice for the Protection of Children and Young People (2002) on the arrangements for engaging contractors, volunteers and other persons who have substantial access to the children in the school. This category includes maintenance contractors, sports coaches, extra-curricular teachers, volunteers and other persons who have regular access to pupils (this list is not exhaustive).

•  Where the Board of Management considers that such access is substantial, it will require applicants/persons to return a Declaration of Disclosure to the school Principal ( Appendix 1 ).

•  It is the policy of the Board to contact all referees to assess the applicant's suitability to work with children ( Appendix 2 ).

7. Procedures After Disclosure

The Board of Management will ensure the security, confidentiality and integrity of all personal data disclosed. The Principal will act as the sole member of staff appointed to handle all vetting and disclosure information and data.

Where assessment of the vetting or disclosure declaration confirms the suitability of the person to work with children, the Principal will confirm the appointment/engagement of that person. The vetting or disclosure will be noted on file in a signed and sealed envelope in a secure location.

Where there is a disclosure of a conviction, non-conviction or a pending prosecution, the Principal will arrange a meeting with the applicant/person to discuss the nature of the disclosure. This meeting will be held in advance of any decision being made which may affect the applicant/person.

Upon confirmation of the disclosure with the applicant/person, the Principal will bring the matter to the attention of the Board of Management. The fact that a person has a conviction does not automatically render him/her unsuitable for work with or to have substantial access to children. The Board will consider an applicant/person's suitability in the light of all the information available, including the relevance of the nature of the offence and the evaluation of referees in the context of child protection. The failure of an applicant to make a full and accurate disclosure in the vetting or declaration form may also be of relevance.

If the Board decides, in the case of a person already engaged in an existing position, that the disclosure renders the applicant/person unsuitable, that person's position will be terminated. If the Board decides, in the case of a person not yet in a position in the school, that the disclosure renders the applicant unsuitable, the offer to that person will be withdrawn. In both of these instances the vetting or declaration disclosure form will be securely destroyed.

 

Appendix 1

DISCLOSURE DECLARATION

Please read carefully and complete all sections of this form.

Full Name: ______________________

Date of Birth: ______________________

Current Address: _____________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________

If you have not been resident at the above address for more than four years please state previous address:

_____________________________________________________________________________

Telephone Number: ____________________

Please list any academic qualifications of relevance to the position for which you are applying:

_____________________________________________________________________________

Please give details of any previous work or involvement with children or young people (any person under 18 years of age) either as a volunteer or in a paid capacity.

____________________________________________________________________

____________________________________________________________________

Referees

Please give the name, address and telephone number of two people (not relatives) who could supply you with a character reference. It is school policy to contact referees .

  1. 2.

Name: Name:

Telephone Number: Telephone Number:

Position: Position:

Address: Address:

The following information is required to conform to Child Care Legislation and recommended National Standards:

Have you ever been, or are you currently, the subject of any investigation, complaint, or disciplinary procedure, caution, or awaiting the outcome of any pending prosecution?

Yes ____ No ____

Have you ever been convicted of a criminal offence, or been subject to caution or bind over against an individual or individuals?

Yes ____ No ____

Has an order ever been made against you removing a child from your care or from the premises in which you live?

Yes ____ No ____

Has an order ever been made against you in respect of a child in your care, which has been found to be in need of care, protection or control?

Yes ____ No ____

Are you in good physical and mental health?

Yes ____ No ____

Please list any other information that you feel might be useful (e.g. special skills, talents, etc. )

____________________________________________________________________________

____________________________________________________________________________

____________________________________________________________________________

I hereby declare that the details on this form are correct at the date given below.

Signature: _____________________________________

Date: __________________________________________

  Please note that this form may be forwarded to your referees .

 

Appendix 2

Confidential Referee Contact Form

Dear

_______________________ has applied for a position with Our Lady of Lourdes National School and has given your name as a referee.

This position involves substantial access to children and as a school committed to the welfare and protection of children, we are anxious to know if you have any reason at all to be concerned about this applicant being in contact with children or young people.

YES ______ NO_____

If you have answered yes we will contact you in confidence.

If you are happy to complete this reference form, all information contained on the form will remain confidential. We would appreciate you being extremely candid in your evaluation of this person.

How long have you known this person? _________________________________

In what capacity?___________________________________________________

What attributes does this person have which you would consider makes them a suitable volunteer?

______________________________________________________________________________

How would you describe their personality?

______________________________________________________________________________

Signed:__________________________ Date:_______________________

 

I would like to thank you for taking the time to complete this form. If you have any queries you can contact me on 053 9377380

With kind regards,

 

________________________

Principal

Our Lady of Lourdes Primary School, Bunclody Co. Wexford. Telephone: 053 9377380

E-mail:.bunclodyns@gmail.com Web Page: www.bunclodyns.com

Children First - National Guidelines for the Protection and Welfare of Children (Department of Health and Children, 1999); Teaching Council Acts 2001 and 2006; Our Duty to Care - The Principles of Good Practice for the Protection of Children and Young People (Department of Health and Children, 2002); and Circular 0094/2006 - New Arrangements for the Vetting of Teaching and Non-Teaching Staff (Department of Education and Science, 2006) .