Emphasis will be placed on safer recruitment as an all-encompassing process rather than a separate or stand-alone set of procedures. Examination will be made of some likely recruitment issues for International Schools, and of lessons learned from incidents where it has gone wrong.
Chris will outline the main features of effective recruitment processes, and touch briefly on how schools can shape their policies, procedures and practices in ways that enable them to more consistently make the right recruitment decisions. Finally, there will be a discussion of the more strategic considerations associated with the practice of obtaining appropriate criminal background checks on employees, as well as of their potential benefits and value overall.
Chris was the founder and Honorary Vice President of Child-Safe International Ltd (registered charity) based in the UK from 2004 - 2013.
He completed 32 years of police service in 2007, retiring from the Avon and Somerset Constabulary, UK as a Detective Chief Superintendent. During his extensive service he built a wide and varied police background, predominantly within the Criminal Investigation Department (CID). For a number of years, he was a Detective Superintendent heading the Child Protection Group for the force, coupled with responsibilities as a senior investigating officer. He was also the Head of the Criminal Justice Department for the force for over 6 years.
After seeking research funding whilst still in the police, he received finance from the Home Office and later the European Commission to examine the issue of child abuse on international, cultural, educational and language trips abroad. This work resulted in Chris receiving a Police Research Award for Innovation from the Home Secretary in April 1999.
Chris has also worked with both the British and Australian Governments on the introduction of methods to stop unsuitable people working with children and in more recent years has collaborated with the Home Office and the Department for Education regarding aspects of the new Disclosure & Barring Service (UK) and more recently with the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) on the introduction of the International Child Protection Certificate (ICPC).
Chris has a BA (Hons) degree and a Diploma in Social Policy & Criminology and was the recipient of a Children’s Champion Award from the Children’s Charity “Kidscape”. His work and specific knowledge linked to a criminal behavior and child protection has led to him lecturing and working worldwide.
It was in 2004 that he founded the International “Child-Safe” charity, endorsed by the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) and others, to promote his research and safeguarding work of children and young people, specifically within the youth travel sector. The aim of the charity is to ‘safeguard and prevent the abuse of children and young people away from home’.
In late 2013 Chris migrated to Australia, where in April 2014 he set up his own company: Travel Safe (Youth Travel Consultancy), based on the Sunshine Coast Queensland. Since that time he has worked as an Independent Child Protection Consultant directly with International Schools in the UK, Switzerland, Indonesia, Singapore, Oman and Thailand as well as given advice to others in places such as Jordan, China, Vietnam and elsewhere. His work has included criminal investigations, expert witness work, safeguarding audits and reviews, training, consultancy, disciplinary investigations, research, case reviews, media work, crisis management consultancy and more.