Volunteers / Governors / Visitors in School
Morpeth All Saints CE Aided First School welcomes visitors from the local community and external agencies to promote learning and well-being through their experience and expertise. As a school we aim to provide our parents and pupils with a broad, balanced and enriched programme. We see the inclusion of visitors’ input into the programme as one means of ensuring that we meet this aim. This enables our parents and pupils to question and learn from ‘experts’ from various walks of life and disciplines which allows our them to gain a wider view of the world and gain insight into the lives of other people.
The following vetting procedures are implemented to ensure the safety and security of all parents, pupils, staff and visitors. These procedures have been carefully designed to ensure the school forges effective partnerships with visitors who can contribute to the welfare, well-being and learning of the whole school community.
We actively support parents, guardians and other adults who wish to work as volunteers in our school. There are two main ways of helping: occasional support for school events, visits or trips: these are events where parents/volunteers commit to supporting an individual event. As this is classed as infrequent contact, Disclosure & Barring Service-DBS (formerly CRB) level 3 enhanced checks are not required and permission to undertake this role is at the discretion of the Headteacher. However, should such events and trips involve more frequent contact with pupils, a DBS check would be a
mandatory requirement. Regular support in the school. This is when parents/guardians or other adults
offer regular support to the school for a period of time. All regular volunteers who support the school in this way will have an induction briefing to ensure they are aware of our key policies and procedures. They will not have unsupervised contact with pupils and will be fully supported by suitably qualified members of staff.
Work Experience & Training Placements
In addition we offer work experience placements for adults in training as well as young people wishing to gain work experience in a school setting. In such cases the vetting is carried out by the applicant's host agency. Students on placements from universities or colleges will be vetted by their place of study and a formal statement of assurance, together with the student’s DBS clearance information, will be provided to the school prior to commencement of their placement. This information will be held on the school’s Single Central Record (SCR) which records all our vetting procedures. Where secondary
school students seek work experience, a statement of assurance as to their suitability will be obtained from their school. Whilst these measures are strictly adhered to we do not wish to deter volunteers and wish to assure all applicants of our commitment to supporting their learning experience and stress that we value their contribution.
Maintenance work is always done outside pupil access hours. Should this not be possible maintenance engineers and contractors may access and carry out routine and emergency work on the school site. These visitors are required to meet the school’s safeguarding requirements which consist of the following procedures. All contractors are required to sign in on school’s system. A school visitor badge will be issued and prominently worn. This is to assure all staff in school that contractors have completed the above procedures and are known and recorded to be on site. Where a contractor does not display their school visitor badge they can expect to be politely challenged by our staff, who are vigilant in ensuring the above procedures are adhered to. In such cases, school will not carry out DBS checks. However, before work commences the contractors will be required to supply their employees' DBS numbers and date of clearance. Such contractors are not required to present their employees’ DBS certificates due to the risk associated with its potential loss. This is in line with central
Staff from the Local Authority (LA), Children’s Services, Health agencies e.g., LIST, CYPS and private companies that have Service Level Agreements with school do not have to comply with the aforementioned vetting procedures if their organisations have issued a statement of assurance. These statements assure school that their host organisations have completed level 3 enhanced DBS checks on all staff who visit school. If these staff will be working directly with pupils for two or more days a week or four times within any one month their details will be recorded on the SCR. The only fields to be populated on the SCR will be the visiting staff’s name, DBS number and their organisation name in the address field.
Invited guest visitors
Visitors such as artists, authors and theatre companies are fully supervised at all times and will not be required to submit DBS verification. Again this is in line with central government guidelines. Staff should advise and check with the Headteacher before inviting any visitor into school.