Certain jobs in the UK, especially those involving working with children and/or vulnerable adults, require an applicant to have a DBS (previously known as a CRB  – Criminal Records Bureau).

When an organisation asks for a DBS, a person’s details are checked against criminal records and various sources including the Police National Computer. The check reveals if they have a criminal record and any convictions, cautions, reprimands and warnings. It may also show if an applicant has been barred from working with vulnerable groups. An employer and the applicant will see the details of the DBS  but it is up to an employer whether or not they give someone a job after a DBS.

Tutoring is a bit of grey area when it comes to DBS checks as there is no legal requirement for a self-employed tutor (such as those registered with 121 Home Tutors) to have a DBS  – tuition usually takes place in the home and so tutoring is classed as a ‘domestic’ arrangement.  As a private individual, self-employed tutors aren’t able to apply directly for a DBS  and must apply through an umbrella organisation. Even then, as an individual,  only a basic DBS can be obtained – enhanced disclosures are only available via  ’employers’ or service providers, such as ourselves.

At 121 Home Tutors we now request that all our tutors have at the very least a basic DBS, though many have an enhanced DBS. Increasingly parents ask if a tutor has a dBS but we feel there are more effective ways of checking a person’s suitability as a tutor:

  • Are they suitably qualified?
  • Do past parents, students, employers etc offer recommendations and references?
  • Are they willing to meet for a trail session? A trial session and/or assessment is a good opportunityto assess the suitability of a tutor without a longer term committment – though the session will not normally be free. At a trial session try to find out if the tutor is approachable. Do you and/or the student feel comfortable with the tutor and feel able to work together? Equally it is important that the tutor feels they can work with the student!

At 121 Home Tutors these are the steps we go through to check out our tutors:

–          Check their qualifications and assess their suitability for private tuition – our tutors include current teachers, ex-teachers, retired teachers, professional tutors, college teachers, trainers, lecturers and expert professionals from specific fields.

–          We check at least two references; one academic and one from a current/former employer.

–          We check for proof of identity and address. We check passports, driving licence and utility bills.

–          Word of mouth – personal recommendations and feedback are very important and so we carry out ongoing monitoring and feedback with both the tutor and parents.

One of the advantages of using an agency rather than an individual is that we can carry out all the checks you need to keep your child safe.

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