English Language Day at the UN: Do You Need a DBS Check to Teach Adults?

The UN’s English Language Day is nearly here. If you’re thinking of teaching English, you may be wondering: do you need a DBS Check to teach adults?

do you need a dbs check to teach adults

What is English Language Day?

 

The United Nations celebrates English Language Day every year on 23 April, which is the date traditionally observed as both the birthday and date of death of the bard himself, William Shakespeare.

English is one of the six official languages used at the UN, and English Language Day was launched in 2010 to celebrate multilingualism and cultural diversity, and to promote the use of English throughout the organisation.

The day aims to celebrate and raise awareness of the history, culture and achievements of the English language, offering inspiration for English Language teachers everywhere.

So, now to answer the question on every prospective English teacher’s lips: do you need a DBS Check to teach adults?

 

Do you need a DBS Check to teach adults?

 

As a teacher or prospective teacher, you’re probably aware of the importance of protecting the people you teach.

DBS Checks are a vital part of safeguarding in schools, and a requirement if you’re going to be teaching children – but do you need a DBS Check to teach adults?

The answer will depend on who you’ll be teaching.

 

Teaching vulnerable adults

 

If you’ll be teaching classes or sessions specifically aimed at vulnerable adults on a frequent basis, you’ll be eligible for an Enhanced DBS Check without a check of the adults’ barred list.

In this case, adults (people aged 18 or over) are considered vulnerable if they receive any of a specified list of services, including:

  • Health care
  • Relevant personal care
  • Social care work
  • Assistance in relation to general household matters by reason of age, illness or disability
  • Relevant assistance in the conduct of their own affairs

‘On a frequent basis’ means:

  • At any time on more than three days in any 30-day period
  • At any time between 2am and 6am
  • At least once a week on an ongoing basis

You’ll also be eligible for this level of check if you’ll be mentoring or advising vulnerable adults on their health or wellbeing. In particular, activities related to a vulnerable adult’s health are likely to require a Barred List Check.

For a full list of scenarios in which this type of check would apply, see the DBS Adult Workforce Guide.

An Enhanced DBS Check will show any spent or unspent convictions, cautions, reprimands or final warnings you have, as well as any relevant information held by your local police force.

Your employer needs to apply for an Enhanced Check on your behalf – individuals can’t apply for this type of check themselves.

 

Teaching the general public

 

If the circumstances above don’t apply and you’ll be teaching classes for the general public, you’ll be eligible for a Basic DBS Check.

This will be the case even if there are vulnerable adults in your classes. This is because, unless the classes are specifically aimed at vulnerable adults, their presence is seen as incidental.

A Basic DBS Check will show any unspent convictions you have. Your employer can apply for a Basic Check on your behalf, or you can apply for one directly yourself.

So, do you need a DBS Check to teach adults? We hope this blog has answered your questions. If you want any more information, feel free to drop us a line – we’re always happy to chat.