DBS decision tree - Children's

You will be taken through a series of questions about what the employee will be doing in their role. There are several definitions you may need to consider in order to do this

1

Will their work be carried out in a specified establishment? (See explanation text below)

Specified establishment

  • (a) Schools
  • (b) Pupil referral units (also known as Education Centres or Short Stay Schools)
  • (c) Nursery Schools
  • (d) Institutions for the detention of children
  • (e) Children's homes / residential units
  • (f) Children's centres
  • (g) Childcare premises (including nurseries)
  • (h) The manager / supervisor (see Supervision below) of an individual carrying out any of the above activities

Occasional/temporary work: Please note that occasional or temporary services provided to a children's establishment by a person contracted or volunteering, for example maintenance/repair workers (excluding teaching, training or supervision of children), do not come under Regulated Activity, although they may still be eligible for an Enhanced DBS check – in these instances, please answer ‘no’ to the question above.

Specified activity

  • (a) Driving a vehicle being used only for transporting children and carers/supervisors
  • (b) Teaching, training or instruction when unsupervised (see ‘Supervision’ below)
  • (c) Care or supervision of children when unsupervised (see ‘Supervision’ below)
  • (d) Advice or guidance relating to a child's physical, emotional or educational wellbeing (excluding Legal advice)
  • (e) Moderating a public electronic interactive communication service (e.g. internet chat-room) likely to be used mainly by children, except where an individual does not have access to the content of the matter, or contact with users
  • (f)  Day to day management or supervision (see ‘Supervision’ below) on a regular basis of a person providing the above activities which would be regulated if unsupervised

Supervision: For individuals who are supervised:

  • there must be supervision by a person who is in regulated activity
  • the supervision must be regular and day to day; and
  • the supervision must be “reasonable in all the circumstances to ensure the protection of children”

“Regular” in this context means that supervision must not, for example, be concentrated during the first few weeks of an activity and then tail off thereafter, becoming the exception not the rule. It must take place on an ongoing basis, whether the individual has just started or has been doing the activity for some time.

“Reasonable in the circumstances” means that the level of supervision may differ, depending on all the circumstances of a case. Managers should consider the following factors in deciding the specific level of supervision that is required in an individual case: 

  • ages of the children, including whether their ages differ widely;
  • number of children that the individual is working with;
  • whether or not other workers are helping to look after the children;
  • the nature of the individual’s work (or, in a specified place such as a school, the individual’s opportunity for contact with children);
  • how vulnerable the children are (the more they are, the more an organisation might opt for individuals to be in regulated activity);
  • how many individuals would be supervised by each supervisor

There is no entitlement to do a barred list check on an individual who, because they are supervised, is not in regulated activity. NB: employees working in a specific Establishment will be in Regulated Activity even if they are supervised by someone in Regulated Activity. Volunteers, if supervised by someone in Regulated Activity, will not themselves be in Regulated Activity.

Personal Care

‘Personal Care’ includes toileting, washing or dressing, or assistance with eating or drinking, or health care by or directed or supervised by a health care professional.

Please note that an individual providing personal care will not need to meet the frequency test and they will be in Regulated Activity regardless of whether they are supervised or not.

Not Regulated Activity

  • Individuals who carry out work which would have been regulated activity with children before changes were made to the definition in September 2012. This would include:
    • teaching, training or instruction of children (even where this is supervised by an individual who is in Regulated Activity);
    • care or supervision of children (even where this is supervised by an individual who is in Regulated Activity);
    • provision of legal advice to a child;
    • paid work or volunteering that is carried out in a specified place, which gives the worker the opportunity to have contact with children and which is of an occasional or temporary nature, e.g. work carried out in a school by maintenance or building contractors;
    • the work of office holders in various governance-related or senior management roles, e.g. a school governor, a local authority Director of Children’s Services, and the Children’s Commissioner for England
  • Individuals who carry out regulated activity with children where the work is done infrequently (but more than once). This would apply where the activity does not meet the frequency test for Regulated Activity
  • Individuals applying to register as prospective childminders or childcare providers, and anyone aged 16 and over who lives or works in the premises where the childminding or childcare takes place and has the opportunity for regular contact with the children
  • Individuals applying as part of registration as a childminder agency, managing a childminder agency or working for a childminder agency in a quality assurance role visiting day care or childminding premises
  • Individuals applying to be a foster carer and anyone aged 18 and over who lives in the fostering household
  • Individuals applying to be a private foster carer and anyone aged 16 and over who lives in the private fostering household
  • Individuals applying to be adoptive parents or special guardians and anyone aged 18 and over who lives in the adoptive or special guardian household
  • Individuals applying to register as a social care worker
  • Individuals applying to work in a Further Education college or 16-19 Academy where the work they do brings them into regular contact with students aged under 18
  • Individuals applying as part of registration to manage any type of agency or accommodation relating to the welfare of children
  • Individuals who are aged over 16 and living in a household where another person in the household has been or is being assessed to:
    • carry out regulated activity with children; or
    • carry out work which would have been regulated activity with children before changes were made to the definition in September 2012; or
    • work in a Further Education college or 16-19 Academy
    • and they both live on the premises where that work will take place

Access to 'sensitive or personal information about children who are fostered or adopted'

‘Sensitive or personal information about children who are fostered or adopted’ is defined within HCC as being ‘any information, including data, held by HCC about all or any children as a result of fostering or adoption, which includes the names and addresses of individual children, and/or details of their individual cases’.

Within HCC a member of staff or a volunteer who has access to sensitive or personal information about fostered or adopted children (as defined above) will be deemed to have that access

  • regardless of the method of accessibility (eg electronic, written, data, verbal communication)
  • regardless of whether the information is current or historic
  • whether or not the individual is aware that the information to which they have access contains sensitive or personal information about fostered or adopted children; or whether the information is presented in such a way as to make it clear that it is about fostered or adopted children. However, where information is encrypted and not comprehensible to the user, they will not be deemed to have access.
  • whether or not the information being accessed contains information about other subject matter/individuals, as well as sensitive or personal information about fostered or adopted children.
  • regardless of the purpose for which that access is provided
  • regardless of the level or type of access of the individual (eg: in the case of information, this means whether or not the individual has access to manipulate or just to view information, and whether or not the individual is being shadowed during their access)

Appendix E - Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975

See the Annex of DBS Guide to eligibility for DBS checks for the list of positions, professions, employment, offices and works included in the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975.