Early Years Practitioners and Nurseries

Ensure your nursery, care centre or kids club staff are vetted with a DBS check. Advice for early years practitioners and nurseries.

This page gives information on carrying out DBS checks on your staff and obtaining Disclosures. If your organisation requires criminal record checks on staff because you are undertaking childcare or supervising children, you can Register your organisation now to carry out checks straight away. 

Who needs a DBS Check within a Nursery?

You will need to decide what level of check is required on staff members and volunteers.

To assist with this process we have created some webpages relating to Regulated Activity. Many Local Education Authorities will also be able to provide further guidance on the subject so it is well worth contacting them directly (click here to find your local council). Included in this decision making process should be policies on supervision, the opportunity for contact with children and other measures in place to prevent harm.

Some common job roles that you may wish to run checks on include:

  • Nursery Teachers
  • Nursery Assistants
  • Carers
  • Lunch-time supervisors
  • Admin staff
  • Playworkers

OFSTED inspections.

OFSTED advise that they do not need to see the original Disclosure Certificate that was issued by the Disclosure and Barring Service, but need to see evidence that a check was carried out at the time of employment. The DDC Client Area provides sufficient evidence to confirm this through the ‘Manage Applications’ section.

Clients can print off a specifically designed “Preview Disclosure Notice” of the check that was carried out for a paper record, to be kept on personnel files. We can also tailor the account to match any recheck policies you have within your organisation to ensure your staff Disclosures are kept up to date.

Portability of Disclosures

OFSTED do not currently support the Portability of Disclosures where they are making the employment decision on a Registered Person. However, where the Nursery is checking other non-registered everyday staff this decision is entirely your own. For more information about this topic please read our page on Disclosure Validity.

The DBS have developed the Update Service designed to improve the portability of Certificates. Our FAQ includes a link to using the DBS Update Service which has been written to clarify the process and help you evaluate how to best introduce the service to your organisation.

Registration with OFSTED and further guidance

For initial registration to become a Childminder or Early Years Practitioner you should have carried out a check with OFSTED. If not, please go to the OFSTED homepage. There you will be provided with all the guidance required to obtain your initial DBS check that OFSTED will request as part of the Registration Process.

For most nurseries, they will need to decide for themselves who to run additional DBS checks on, as part of their Safeguarding Policy and using the legislative guidance on the legislation.gov website (The School Staffing Regulations and subsequent amendments will provide more information). You then run checks on your existing and new staff via an Umbrella Body organisation. To do this simply register with DDC and we will follow this through for your to start initiating checks immediately.