A new quality standard for recruitment of teaching and non-teaching staff has been launched following the government’s decision to scrap existing safeguards.
The Department for Education (DfE) axed the existing Quality Mark earlier this year. The scheme, which was set up in 2002, awarded recruiters with a certification mark if they met high standards. It was held by 135 companies.
The decision prompted fears that it would become easier for recruitment and supply agencies to relax their procedures – or not carry some of them out at all – leading to staff not being properly vetted.
However, schools minister David Laws said at the time: “I believe the time is now right for the recruitment industry to make its own independent arrangements to ensure the continuing high standards of teacher recruitment and compliance with legislation.”
The Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC), which has managed the Quality Mark since it began, has now launched a new standard with backing from the Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL).
REC Audited Education is a new audit scheme for recruitment agencies that supply teaching and non-teaching staff to schools, academies and education providers across England and Wales.
REC chief executive Kevin Green said: “When a school turns to a recruitment agency to help them find staff to work with children and young people, they have to be confident that all the appropriate checks have taken place. The aim of our scheme is to give headteachers peace of mind that they are working with an accredited supplier who adheres to the very highest standards.”
To achieve REC Audited Education status, agencies will have to prove they are compliant with all necessary legislation and regulations, and that they “operate the very best practice”.
For more information, visit www.rec.uk.com/audited