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Sunningdale School

Safer Recruitment Policy

Sunningdale School

Safer Recruitment Policy

The safe recruitment of staff is the first step to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of our children. Sunningdale is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people and expects all staff and volunteers to share this commitment. This is to be achieved through effective recruitment and retention of competent, motivated staff members who are suited to, and competent in their roles. The School recognises the value of, and seeks to achieve a diverse workforce comprising different backgrounds, skills and abilities. As such it is committed to a recruitment and selection process which is systematic, efficient, effective and equal. In doing so, it upholds its obligations under law and national collective agreements to not discriminate against applicants on grounds of age, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, race, colour, nationality, ethnic origin, religion or creed.


The purpose of this policy is to ensure the practice of safe recruitment of staff appointed to the School. It also sets out the minimum requirements to:


The following procedures and practices are in place to ensure the safe recruitment of staff.

Stage 1: Advertising and Inviting Applications

All advertisements for all posts will clearly stipulate the stance adopted by the School by the inclusion of the following statement:

“The school is committed to safeguarding children and young people. All post-holders are subject to a satisfactory enhanced Criminal Records Bureau disclosure.”


Stage 2: Pre -Application Pack 

Prospective applicants are supplied with the following:

All applicants must complete the application form in full.

Stage 3: Applicant Selection/ Short-Listing

Candidates for the post and suited to the job description and person specification following analysis of their applications will be short-listed following consultation between the Headmaster and other staff involved in the interviews process.

Telephone interviews may be used at the short listing stage to establish suitability for interview but will not be a substitute for a face-to-face meeting as part of the final selection/interview process. Telephone interviews will only suffice for the purpose of employing GAP students.

Where possible, references are taken up before the short-listing stage. However should a candidate progress to selection and interview stage prior to their receipt, references will remain a matter of scrutiny and be probed during interview. All appointments are subject to satisfactory references.


Stage 4 Interview 

Prior to embarking on the interview process and on point of arrival, candidates selected for interview will have to provide:

The interview process will seek to assess each candidate in terms of fulfilling the requirements of the post and the questions will range to encompass subject knowledge, skills and competence, ability to fulfil the requirements of the tutor role, and to contribute to the extra and extended curriculum.

Significantly in terms of safer recruitment practices at least the Headmaster or Deputy Head will be involved in the interview process, and will meet personally with each applicant with the specific responsibility of exploring attitudes towards working with children. However, it is likely that other interviewers will probe such issues and also have training in safe recruitment procedures.


References are sought directly from the referee. References or testimonials provided by the candidate are never accepted. Open references “To whom it may concern” and so on will not be accepted if they fail to include date evidence or are without obvious organisation authorisation.

In all cases of applicants being invited to interview, referees will be contacted by telephone or e-mail in order to clarify any anomalies or discrepancies. A detailed written note will be kept of such exchanges and retained on the personal file of the individual appointed by the Headmaster's secretary.

In all cases of applicants being invited to interview, previous employers who have not been named as referees will be contacted in order to clarify any anomalies or discrepancies. A detailed written note of such exchanges by the Headmaster’s secretary and will be retained on the personal file of the individual appointed.

Stage 5 Successful Candidate: Pre Employment Checks

Further to those checks at the point of interview the candidate will be required to provide all of the following prior to taking up the post being undertaken:

In cases when the DBS check has not arrived prior to employment start date, a member of staff may be permitted to start work providing the following are in place:


The school will assess whether or not the candidate is suitable under the Prevent guidelines. This will form part of the interview process. Consideration will be given as to whether the application form should contain a section on this.

Stage 6 Induction

All staff who are new to Sunningdale are required to undertake induction training that will include the school's safeguarding policies and specific induction in Child Protection and Counter-Bullying.

Regular meetings will be held during the first twelve months of employment between the new staff and the Headmaster, Deputy Head or Headmaster's wife who is responsible for the recruitment of the Domestic Staff.

Stage 7 Leaving Employment of the School

Employees at a school who are dismissed, who resign in circumstances which may have led to dismissal or where a disciplinary transfer has occurred on grounds of misconduct which harmed or placed a child at risk of harm will be referred to the Children's Safeguarding Unit.


The School will:

Central Record of Pre-Employment Checks 

In addition to the various staff records kept in school and in individual personnel files, a single central record of recruitment and vetting checks is kept. This is kept up to date and retained on the personal file of the individual by the Headmaster's secretary.

This record contains details of checks:

Rehabilitation of Offenders Disclosure

All posts within Sunningdale School are exempt from the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974. Applicants will be required to declare spent and unspent convictions, cautions and bind-overs, including those regarded as spent and have an Enhanced Criminal Records Disclosure. A previously issued Criminal Records Disclosure Certificate will only be accepted in certain restricted circumstances. Such disclosures will not be considered as part of the short-listing process. They will become part of the interview process in order to allow the candidate the opportunity to discuss the matter. Such information will not necessarily bar a candidate from employment. If the candidate is not successful, then the information will not be retained and destroyed after six months.

 The Criminal Records Bureau has published a Code of Practice with accompanying explanatory guide for information. Sunningdale School is committed to ensuring that it meets the requirements of the Criminal Records Bureau in relation to the processing, handling and security of Disclosure information.

Data Protection Issues

Employees are entitled to see and receive, if requested, copies of their employment references. Further disclosed information will be treated in confidence and not used against applicants unfairly.

Supply Staff

For the purposes of creating the record of checks for supply staff provided through a supply Agency, the school will request written confirmation from the supply Agency that it has satisfactorily completed all relevant checks. A copy of the DBS disclosure certificate must be supplied. Information disclosed as part of a DBS Disclosure will be treated as confidential. Identity checks will be carried out by Sunningdale to confirm that the individual arriving at the school is the individual that the agency has referred.

Peripatetic Staff

For the purposes of creating the record of checks for peripatetic staff (for music, sports etc.) the school will require all necessary checks and DBS requirements are fulfilled.

This policy has been written with reference to the DfE Publication Safeguarding Children and Safer Recruitment in Education Safeguarding guidance.




Updated 01/09/2015 TACND