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DBS Checks for Governors in Schools

DBS Checks for Governors in Schools

All governors, in whatever kind of school, maintained, independent, academy or free school, must have an Enhanced DBS Certificate following amended legislation which came into force on the 18th March 2016 to make Enhanced DBS checks mandatory for governors in maintained schools.

LA Maintained Schools need to undertake “section 128 checks” for all governors. Section 128 of the Education and Skills Act 2008 prohibits unsuitable staff and proprietors from “taking part in the management of an Independent School.”  This legislation included Academies and Free Schools and has now been extended further (as set out in “Keeping Children Safe in Education (September 2018)”) to include governors of LA Maintained Schools. 

DBS checks for Governors: guidance notes

Section 128 checks

The easiest way to obtain a section 128 check for all governors and relevant staff is to undertake a section 128 check through the Teacher Services website. This is due to the following:

  • A section 128 check is only included in an Enhanced DBS Check that also includes a “Barred List Check;”
  • A “Barred List Check” can only be included as part of an Enhanced DBS Check where a person is undertaking “regulated activity;”
  • A governor is not in “regulated activity” purely as a governor so a governor is not eligible for an Enhanced DBS Check that includes a Barred List Check;
  • Consequently, where a section 128 check is required for a governor, a school needs to access the Teacher Services website and confirm there that a governor is not on the section 128 barring direction list.

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