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How to renew your DBS check

07/01/2021 Anthony

The Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) was established in 2012 to help employers make safer recruitment decisions. Formed after the merger between the Criminal Records Bureau and Independent Safeguarding Authority, the DBS checks six million people every year. Of these, teachers make up a significant number, as they’re one of the many professions (along with social workers, foster carers and medical professionals) where DBS checks are mandatory.

When you first start teaching, you’ll undergo an initial DBS check via an employer or licensing body, who will apply for an enhanced check on your behalf. From then, you’ll need to ensure your DBS is up to date and viewable online by employers. The DBS Update Service is the easiest way to do this.

Teacher renewing DBS check

What is the DBS Update Service?

Available for standard and enhanced checks, the Update Service is an annual online subscription that allows anyone with a DBS check to keep their certificates up to date, as well as allowing employers to check if certificates are valid.

While DBS checks have no official expiration date, many employers will request regular DBS checks and the DBS itself suggests individuals renew their certificates when they change jobs. The Update Service ensures safeguarding standards are maintained and the recruitment process runs as smoothly - and as quickly – as possible.

Why should you sign up for the DBS Update Service?

Many education employers conduct fresh DBS checks with each new staff member they take on. Whether you’re a full-time teacher, supply teacher, teaching assistant or online tutor, if you’re working with children you’ll need a DBS certificate. The online Update Service allows employers to log on and check your certificate, saving everyone both time and money. The service benefits employers because they can see if there have been any changes since the candidate last had a certificate issued, and if so, request a new DBS check to investigate further.

For teaching staff who have no changes to their criminal record from one job to the next, the Update Service can mean you no longer have to complete further DBS Disclosure checks – which currently cost £44 for an enhanced application. Candidates can use the service to add and remove certificates, grant employers permission to view details and check any changes to certificates.

The subscription service costs £13 per year and can be renewed automatically or manually.

How to sign up to the DBS Update Service

If you’ve already applied for your DBS check, you will need your certificate number to register for the service. This must be done within 30 days of the certificate being issued. If you’ve not yet applied for a DBS check, you will need the application reference number (‘form ref’ on your application form or E-number if you’re applying online) to sign up for the Update Service. You must then apply for your DBS check within 28 days of registering for the service. You’ll then receive login details so you can manage your account, update payment details and personal information and view your certificate details. Your subscription will last for one year. When you apply, you can select the ‘automatic renewal’ option, which will see £13 deducted from your credit or debit card automatically every year.

If you choose not to have your subscription automatically renewed, you can update it yourself up to 30 days before it is due to end. You will receive email reminders from the DBS to do this. If you do not renew your subscription before it ends, you will have to apply for a new DBS check and register again for the Update Service. This can cost you time and money, so it’s best to keep on top of things.

If you’ve had a break from the classroom, don’t worry. Get started with these steps to get your DBS certificate and then check out our returning to teaching blog to get all the information you’ll need.

Working with Teaching Personnel

At Teaching Personnel, it’s our policy that teachers and teaching assistants who register with us are on the DBS Update Service. This makes life easier for you and our education clients, saving time, money and ensuring all teaching candidates are suitable to work with children. If you need help accessing the service, our team are on hand – this is one of the many reasons why teachers work with Teaching Personnel.

If you’re looking for your next teaching role, we have a range of positions all over the country that may suit you. See our primary teacher jobs and secondary teacher jobs, or view special needs teacher jobs.

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