Government scraps Bichard’s recommendation for registration scheme

The government has confirmed it has scrapped plans to introduce
a registration scheme for all those working with children because
it would be “prohibitively costly and impractical to implement”,
writes Sally Gillen.

The database, one of 31 recommendations made by Sir Michael
Bichard in his report into the failures that allowed Ian Huntley to
get a job as a school caretaker, was initially accepted by the

But in a progress report published this week, the government
admits that, following a feasibility study, a model building on
existing lists barring unsuitable people will be used instead.

The Protection of Children Act List 1999 and List 99 will be
brought together under an overarching registration scheme to be run
by a central body.

It is estimated the database will cost £10 million to set
up and between 8 million and 10 million to run annually in England
and Wales. A full study to refine costs will be carried out by

The government is likely to legislate on the scheme next year
and the body will be operational by 2007.

The progress report also reveals that online child protection
training for teachers will be introduced in April, and new guidance
for schools on recruitment and selection will be issued in

Report from

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