Teacher Vetting Report

The Department for Education recently published Keeping Children Safe in Education 2022. The updated Safer Recruitment Guidance recommends that employers carry out an online and social media search in respect of candidates shortlisted for interview. This follows a number of recent cases where teachers have been banned because of predatory behavior on social media.

The DfE document states: 

 …as part of the shortlisting process schools and colleges should consider carrying out an online search (including social media) as part of their due diligence on the shortlisted candidates. This may help identify any incidents or issues that have happened, and are publicly available online, which the school or college might want to explore with the applicant at interview.


These new checks will need to be conducted in line with GDPR regulations, in particular the guidance that Employers should only view social media profiles when the information found on them is “relevant to the performance of the job which is being applied for.”


Social media vetting raises a number of considerations for employers; perhaps the key risk is that the employer obtains information about protected characteristics and an applicant subsequently claims the decision not to hire them was based on those characteristics and thus discriminatory.


Utilising a third-party company to undertake these searches can increase the likelihood of uncovering information, ensure GDPR compliance and reduce the potential for legal action.


Reports4 investigators have extensive experience in searching open source and deep web data as well as social media. We can review online profiles and information against candidate applications, removing the potential for allegation of discrimination against protected characteristics whilst providing reputational protection for the school.


All reports are conducted following a full Data Protection Impact Assessment in accordance with GDPR and recorded on single linked pdf documents which can be added to the Single Central Register.


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