Teachers work in a position of significant trust. In constant contact with children throughout the day, with plenty of unsupervised interactions, UK teachers are subject to a robust statutory DBS check.
DBS checks are administered by the Disclosure and Barring Service on behalf of the Home Office. The DBS’ remit is to safeguard the general public, particularly children and vulnerable adults from those who are unsuitable for frontline work.
DBS checks for UK teachers
UK teachers are required to undergo a comprehensive criminal check. Under the 1974 Rehabilitation Act, DBS checks are necessary for all frontline roles in the UK. Those in the closest contact with children or vulnerable adults are subject to the most stringent checks.
All teachers in the UK must take an enhanced DBS check with barring lists to evidence their suitability to teach in any type of UK school.
An enhanced DBS check with barred lists for a teacher will require a search for any unspent or spent convictions, cautions, reprimands or warnings. The DBS will also check whether there is any other non-conviction information in existence with relevant police forces and if there are any entries in the children’s and/ or the vulnerable adults barred lists.
Enhanced DBS checks can only be requested by your employer. Under UK law, you will need to show your head teacher your DBS certificate before you can take up any teaching position in any school in the UK.
Your DBS certificate will display any results found during the DBS search. If no criminal records are found, the DBS certificate will be blank.
To find out more about an enhanced DBS check for a teacher and how it will affect you, visit Get Into Teaching