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IICSA published its final Report in October 2022. This website was last updated in January 2023.

IICSA Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse

The residential schools investigation report


I.1: Introduction

1. Adults who come into contact with children in schools are subject to a system of checks to prevent those who have been identified as a risk to children from working in schools.

2. There are duties on schools to comply with safer recruitment practices to identify unsuitable candidates and to make referrals to the relevant authorities in appropriate circumstances. Schools must provide sufficient information to teacher misconduct or barring authorities to enable them to make sound assessments of risk.

3. There are limitations in any system of vetting and barring. For example, pre-employment checks can only identify those who have already been assessed as posing a risk to children.

4. This Part considers the current system of safer recruitment in schools in England and Wales and the processes by which teachers and other adults may be barred from working with children if they are assessed as posing a risk. The teacher misconduct regime in England is also examined (teaching staff in Wales are regulated differently and this is considered in Part J).

5. The Inquiry heard evidence of ongoing problems, including poor compliance with safer recruitment and referral responsibilities, as well as barring decisions which lacked the necessary rigour.

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