ALLEGATIONS/ MISCONDUCT POLICY
Valley Education Services Ltd (VES) follow stringent quality guidelines and take every reasonable precaution to ensure that all candidates deployed to its Client schools maintain the highest standards of professional and personal conduct. VES have stringent vetting procedures to ensure that any candidates found to have a history of unacceptable conduct or practice, will not be offered work with us. All candidates placed by VES are expected to take all reasonable steps to ensure they are alert to possible child abuse and neglect, and to familiarise themselves with arrangements for safeguarding children in the schools where they are placed. However, despite our stringent procedures, supply teaches can often find themselves in vulnerable situations where sensitive issues arise. Both client and candidate feedback is essential to us in order to ensure we continually work towards improving our services.
In the event of more serious allegations, for example:
VES have set out the following procedure to ensure the safety of children within a school setting. These procedures MUST be adopted by the employees of VES when dealing with incidents of this nature as well as the responsibilities of VES in regards to Child Protection/ Safeguarding issues. Candidates who have a complaint made against them are automatically suspended until the matter has been resolved.
VES has a Safeguarding Incident form which allows the employees to record the details of an allegation. VES employees must record the details or complaint against a candidate if a call is taken. Copies of statements and all correspondence are kept in a confidential file.
Inform the school that VES will conduct our own investigation of the incident by interviewing the candidate. The candidate will be asked for their version of events, prior to discussing any information that has been provided by the school.
The allegation will be recorded/ documented immediately using the Child Safeguarding Incident Report Form and then forwarding this to the DSO.
The candidate should be made aware that this is not to be regarded as a disciplinary procedure, merely an investigation of a formal allegation that has been received. A full statement should be provided by the candidate. They should be informed that this will be send to them for confirmation of accuracy and verification, following the meeting.
The candidate will be informed that they are presently on hold on the VES system and will not be permitted to work while the investigation is pending. They should not carry our work with another agency, if this is applicable.
The DSO will await information from the school with regards to the next steps. If a decision is made not to escalate, this may result in the school stating that they are not willing to accept the candidate for further bookings and recommend specific training. This will then be communicated to the candidate by the DSO and this will be followed up before the candidate can be made active.
If the school feel that the matter cannot be resolved, and that the seriousness of the allegation warrants further action, it will be escalated to the LEA and a professional strategy meeting will be required.
During the proceedings, the DSO will be available to attend any meetings to share information and cooperate fully with the LEA, pending a final decision. All internal paperwork will also be made available.
Following the outcome of any such investigation, VES are guided by the decision of the LEA and this may involve providing extra training or advice to the candidate or recommendations that the Education Workforce Council (EWC) are contacted to manage the case going forward. Candidates will remain on hold in VES systems under the conclusion of the case and decision regarding future work.
Candidate Suitability (Post-Registration)
If VES receives information following registration of a candidate which may be relevant to his/her suitability for a post within a school, the following procedures will apply.
For clarification, unsuitability will depend on the circumstances but may be a safeguarding issue, a relevant criminal conviction that should have been disclosed, qualifications found to be false or a medical condition that means that the candidate may be ask risk or placing others at risk.
If there are reasonable grounds to believe the candidate is unsuitable, VES will remove the candidate from the placement straight away and inform the client. A replacement will be offered.
If information is received by VES that indicates that the candidate may be unsuitable, but it does not provide reasonable grounds, VES will strive to establish the facts. Account Managers should endeavour to make further enquiries as to the suitability and keep the Client updated with any relevant information received.
If the enquiries lead VES to have reasonable grounds to believe that the candidate is unsuitable for the position they will contact the candidate and inform them that they need to leave the placement with immediate effect and inform the Client. A replacement will be offered.
Allocate will be updated to document any information and the candidate will be placed on hold, pending investigation, which means that they will not be able to be used by VES.
Should this be a misconduct or safeguarding issue, the DSO at VES should be informed in the first instance and standard procedures will be followed.
The DSO will make referrals with any relevant bodies that need to be informed EWC, DBS and LEA, if necessary.
VES will not use any candidate while an investigation is ongoing. Once closed, VES will review all information and follow any advice provided by the relevant body. Candidates will be informed of the outcome and decision will be made by VES about continuing contract for services.
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