"Children are the world's most valuable resource and its best hope for the future." -John F. Kennedy

Tutoring is a personal service, providing students – often children, with face to face support from instructors, that either conduct classes at home or online via a videoconferencing app. Subjects available through private tutoring include everything from dance to rock climbing and Chinese to physics; there is a tutor for all your necessities!

And, mainly due to the contributing factors of COVID-19 and the rapid growth in the field of technology, in the past few months, there have been more people seeking the advice of personal instructors than ever before.

Also, it's important to state that tutoring sessions are not only for adults but are mostly used by young children who need remedial help to ace exams and reach the top of their class. However, most well-intentioned parents pose the question, is my child safe alone with the random stranger that is their tutor?

Therefore, in today article, to put parents minds at ease, we shall examine DBS checks and how most tutoring services, including Superprof the leading provider of tutors in the UK, approve their instructors to ensure safety and professionalism for all parties involved. Let's get started!

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What is DBS?

To start things off on the right foot, we thought that it would be appropriate to discuss the DBS. What is that? If you haven't heard of the DBS before, don't feel embarrassed, you're not alone!

Anyway, the DBS is defined as the Disclosure and Barring Service that began in the UK in December 2012, replacing the former Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) checking service after much debate from politicians and involved individuals that had a lot of huffing and puffing.

While not familiar to a lot of people working in distinct sectors, anyone working in education will recognise the importance of DBS checks to make sure that everyone is safe and that there is no potential harm in the classroom or other educational settings. For instance, DBS checks have been deemed essential by educational authorities and independent schools across the UK.

However, in recent years there has been a lot of controversy surrounding DBS checks. They are considered a significant privacy intrusion by some human rights campaigners. The most severe complication is that too much information is provided and it follows you your entire life, even if you aren't that 18-year-old punk who steals cigarettes from local shops anymore. There have been calls to limit the amount of information available to prospective employers.

Every independent country has its version of DBS checks for workers desiring to labour in the public domain. Nonetheless, what is the exact purpose of a DBS check? Keep on reading to find out more!

Get our "do it yourself" guide to online tutoring here.

Additional Information About DBS Checks in the United Kingdom

based in England
The Disclosure and Barring Service was established and is run in the UK to prevent controversial issues in the workplace. (Source: Unsplash)

While the purpose of DBS checks can be understood by most as a safety measure, few questions may arise:

  • Who has to take a DBS check?
  • For what type of job must one take a DBS check?
  • Who conducts a DBS check?

Let's get started and consider the answer to the questions mentioned above!

Who has to take a DBS check?

First off, let's examine who may need to take a DBS check. Well, for instance, DBS checks or investigations are carried out by the local authorities on behalf of employers who require additional information regarding the legal status of their staff. Therefore, anyone who wishes to work in the public domain might need to take a DBS check to corroborate that a future employee does not have a criminal record or previous antecedents that make them unfit for the job in question.

For what type of job must one take a DBS check?

That brings us to answer our second question about what type of job requires DBS checks. For example, while I am not a citizen of the United Kingdom, in my home nation of Canada I had two undergo two background checks to work in public areas such as a police station and two day-care centres. Why? To ensure that I would not be responsible for any suspicious behaviour that would put police officers and minors at risk.

Therefore, mostly areas that are case sensitive may and are in the public eye require DBS checks. Nonetheless, you shouldn't be surprised if an employer in the private sector mandates a DBS check.

Who conducts DBS checks?

Now to respond to the third question, since the DBS is a government entity, background checks are solely conducted by them to ensure accuracy and credibility to the employer about the person in question.

Nevertheless, in this corrupt world that we live in, there have been instances of inaccurate DBS findings over the last few years. And, another cause for complaint is that DBS certificates are only valid up to their date of issue which means that employers have had to carry out regular checks to ensure that their records are up to date.

However, the DBS introduced a new update service in 2013. The new service has given employers or employees the option of paying an annual fee for the continued use of a certificate which can be updated on request. It is incredibly helpful for educational workers given the level of concern over child safeguarding.

Also, worth mentioning is the fact that employers have the option to request standard checks, including details of spent and unspent convictions, cautions, reprimands and final warnings. However, the more expensive, enhanced checks include additional information pertinent to specific types of employment.

All in all, DBS checks are to protect the employers and current staff members from new employees that could pose a threat to safety in the workplace.

Are you about to select an online tutoring technique? You may want to find out the best practices for tutors before doing so.

You could check for tutoring jobs here.

Importance of Child Safety

let kids be kids
Children need to learn in a safe environment without any imminent danger. (Source: Unsplash)

So, why have we spent so much time discussing the DBS checks and their overall importance? Well, to be brief, a person working closely with children should be vetted by a qualified board to ensure child safety and the prevention of problems.

Sadly in the wicked world that we live in, poor, innocent, and defenceless children are frequently taken advantage of at a young age and left with baggage that lasts a lifetime. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that when choosing an online tutor to educate their child, parents want to select someone who is trustworthy and does not possess any questionable antecedents from their past.

Also, it is essential to state that self-employed freelance tutors are currently unable to make individual applications for DBS checks and they are not legally required to be checked by governmental authorities. However, there are several umbrella companies and the UK based The Tutors Association that offer DBS checking services.

We highly recommend freelance tutors to undergo checking services to heighten parental trust and to take seriously the importance of child safety since it cannot be stressed enough. A safe environment between the child and the tutor that the parents can trust is essential because some who need a lot of remedial support spend many hours a week with an online instructor and develop a strong rapport that is entirely normal when under the right circumstances and with the best intentions.

There is one online tutoring service that makes it their priority to ensure child safety during classes. Which one is that? Superprof! Read the following subheading to find out more.

Another article you may want to read is the research findings on online tutoring.

Private Tutoring Sessions With Superprof

comfort and safety
Parents should feel comfortable with their tutors as they would be with their parents. (Source: Unsplash)

Superprof is king for many reasons such as affordable lessons, qualified tutors, and outstanding customer service. However, there is another advantage of hiring a Superprof. Which is? Safety between the tutor and the child.

While private tutors who work on a self-employed basis aren’t legally required to provide DBS certificates at present, Superprof has a layered vetting system and expects tutors to have a DBS check. We also encourage all our tutors to register with the update service in preparation for ongoing educational work.

Our child safety policy is clear: we want our young learners to thrive in a secure environment with one of our passionate and prudent tutors. And, since the vast majority of parents would like assurances regarding the legal histories of adults working in this capacity, this puts mum and dad at ease knowing that their youngster is in the best hands.

To ensure online safety, it is essential to conduct some form of vetting process before us. For instance, you should consider the risks of using Skype for online tutoring before utilising the platform.

Online tutoring is, of course, very safe and effective. Apart from DBS checked tutors, we at Superprof record all lessons – for playback by students and tutors. In the event of a complaint, we follow our best practice Child Safety Policy and can playback lessons, and pass them onto the relevant authorities, if appropriate.

Nonetheless, in conclusion, As with all risks in life, it’s important to remain balanced yet cautious. Remember to sleep with peace of mind knowing that the vast majority of tutors are highly professional, conscientious and concerned for the wellbeing of their students. At Superprof we assure all that our website is the safest place to learn on the internet!

Want to become a better tutor? Here are some tips to become an effective online tutor.

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Brentyn

Avid movie-goer, reader, skier and language learner. Passionate about life, food and travelling.