I’m not writing about the rights and wrongs of the new procedure for being vetted before visiting schools, but I thought (because I didn’t know) it might help to actually set out what the exact details are and how to go about registering, since like many authors, whatever one’s thoughts about it, there’s just the pragmatic question of how to get on with it…
I couldn’t find the guidelines this morning from the DCSF and so rang the ISA helpline and I think have it clarified – see below:
In basic language, yes you do need to register – and it is open from next July, a one-off fee, for life with automatic updates fully in place by 2011!
The definition of needing to be part of the scheme is such:
In a specified place: ie school or juvenile detention or other place over the course of ‘frequently’: defined as once a month, or 3 or more occasions in 30 days
This means that for author tours and authors holding regular school events, even if not at the same school (can be different places of the same type, ie different schools), authors and those accompanying them, ie publicists will also need to register
This is not immediate, registration is from July 2010, with all ‘new starters’ registered by Nov 2010, and full scheme integration by 2011. It is a one off fee and is for life with no renewal required – it automatically updates. As far as I can make out authors can simply apply themselves through the website.
I have signed up to the e-newsletters for any news or progress on the scheme. A helpline, which actually helped is on 0300 123 1111.
And a useful presentation, is here:http://bit.ly/X7xx2
CRB checks can still be requested by schools in addition to this.