Parent helpers must get CRB checks every 3 months

One county council is advising schools to CRB check parent volunteers every three months, as this email below explains. This shows the extraordinary level of bureaucracy faced by parents seeking to help out at their children’s school. It also shows very strange reasoning by this county council – whereby those helping out only occasionally are required to be CRB checked the most frequently.

‘My children are at the local primary school and I help out there occasionally, usually by helping out on school trips. I know other mums also attend the school regularly about once a week to help with reading.

I have been advised that unless I help out at least every 3 months I would need another CRB check. That is, for parents that have been CRB checked, but have not been in contact with children in school time during the previous 3 months, then the school are asking for another CRB check. For example, for parents that come in to listen to children read then they can only do this if they have been in contact with the children in school time in the previous 3 months.

I already have 3 enhanced CRB checks in my professional role in the local hospital, in primary care and as a volunteer. The head teacher took advice from our county council, who said that as long as the helper was not alone with the child then this was sometimes acceptable but that they would not advise it.

I help out on school trips which occur 2-3 times a year and I understand that I would require a new CRB check each time as the period between trips is usually longer than 3 months. Saying that, the Head Teacher did allow me on the trip this time as long as I did not accompany any children into the toilets.’