Early learning and childcare – national induction resource - latest version: January 2023

The early learning and childcare (ELC) national induction resource has been developed to support individuals in their induction to delivering ELC – whether that is funded ELC or ELC that families purchase themselves - setting out how individuals can expect employers to support them in their new role.

Professional Regulation Of The Workforce

Protecting Vulnerable Groups Scheme

As part of your recruitment process for your role in ELC, you will undergo a Disclosure Scotland criminal record check and will have to be a registered member of the Protecting Vulnerable Groups (PVG) Scheme. When someoneapplies to join the PVG Scheme, Disclosure Scotland carries out criminal record checks and shares the results with individuals and their employers.

The checks will highlight:

  • whether you are barred from regulated work in the role you have applied for
  • whether you are underconsideration for listingfor that type of regulated work
  • unspent convictions
  • spent convictions for certain offences
  • unspent cautions
  • if you are on the sex offenders register
  • relevant information from the police
  • prescribed civil orders

A PVG scheme membership lasts forever and is continuously checked unless you decide to leave the scheme (for example, if you stop doing "regulated work"). You should keep your record up to date if for example, you change jobs or move house. This means that Disclosure Scotland can contact you quickly if needed and information is sent to the right place. You can find out how to manage your PVG membership details on the Disclosure Scotland website.

If Disclosure Scotland are advised of new information which means you might have become unsuitable to work with children or protected adults, they will tell your employer. More information on the PVG scheme can be found here.

Registering with the Scottish Social Services Council

The Scottish Social Services Council(SSSC) is the regulatory body for social service workers, this includes those working in the ELC profession in day care of children service settings (other than teachers). Those working in childminding services are not required to register by SSSC but are regulated by the Care Inspectorate. Teachers are registered and regulated by the General Teaching Council for Scotland (GTCS).

You must register with the SSSC, however, only after you have started in your ELC role. Your registration category will reflect the position (role and responsibilities) to which you have been appointed. You will register in one of the following SSSC categories:

  • Support worker in a day care of children service
  • Practitioner in a day care of children service
  • Lead Practitioner/ manager in a day care of children service

The term 'day care of children service' is the collective name for services where support is provided to children during the day. It includes out of school care but does not include residential care.

To apply for registration you need to complete an application online through MySSSC. In most cases, once you start a role, you have up to 6 months to register. If your application isn't approved within the time limit it could affect your ability to work. There is an annual fee for registering with the SSSC and registration lasts for five years. Before your period of registration expires the SSSC will contact you with information on how to renew your registration. It is important that you renew your registration in order to remain registered.

It can take up to 3 months for SSSC to process and approve your application and to add your name to the Register. The annual fees for registering with the SSSC can be accessed online.

As part of the registration process, the SSSC check that applicants are of 'good character' by assessing the information you provide within your application for registration and the PVG scheme. When establishing 'good character' the SSSC take into account a range of matters including any current or previous convictions or police charges as well as disciplinary processes, dismissals, resignations etc. More information about the conditions for registration are available on the SSSC website.

SSSC Codes of Practice

The SSSC have developed the 'Codes of Practice for Social Service Workers and Employers' (the Codes of Practice) which set out clear standards for professional conduct and practice that social service workers, including early years workers, must meet in their everyday work.

When you register with the SSSC you must agree to follow the SSSC Codes of Practice for Workers. You are responsible for making sure that your professional practice meets all of the required standards. This includes your practice within work as well as your conduct outside of your work. You should familiarise yourself with the Codes of Practice as soon as possible. SSSC may take action against registered workers if they fail to meet the standards of character, conduct and competence necessary for them to do their job safely and effectively as set out in the Codes of Practice.

The Codes of Practice are part of the wider package of legislation, practice standards and employers' policies and procedures that social service workers must meet.


Email: Haylay.Forbes@gov.scot

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