Maynooth University  Procedure for Garda Vetting
(Under Review) 
 

Maynooth University offers a number of educational programmes that require students to undertake placements, with external agencies, which will bring them into contact with the public and in which they will assume positions of trust. To ensure the protection of the public, and justify public trust and confidence, the University is committed to ensuring that only suitable candidates are allowed to undertake these programmes. 
Maynooth University uses the Garda Central Vetting Unit (GCVU) vetting service to assess the suitability of such applicants, and may also require applicants to provide an Enhanced Disclosure by the completion of an affidavit at the time of registration. 
For other relevant programmes, Maynooth University requires students to be Garda Vetted before they fully complete their registration as a student of the University. Garda vetting is required for students on the following Maynooth University programmes (this list is subject to review as deemed necessary):
Undergraduate Programmes
MH116 Community and Youth Work (full-time) 
MH117 Community and Youth Work (part-time) 
MH212 Science / Mathematics (with Education) 
MH001 Bachelor of Education 
MH002 Bachelor of Education (Gaeltacht Option) 
MH801 Early Childhood - Teaching and Learning

Postgraduate Programmes
Higher Diploma in Further Education
Professional Master of Education (PME)
MA Community and Youth Work
MA Dramatherapy
Ph.D. or other research programme (where Garda Vetting is relevant)
 

Garda Vetting Process

The following sections describe the details of the various stages that are involved in the Garda Vetting process.
Stage 1:
Completion of student section of form Applicants who have been provisionally offered, and have accepted, a place on the programme are sent a Garda Vetting Form and the instructions for completion of the form. This documentation highlights for students the importance of full disclosure. 
Where an applicant is under 18 years of age, they must arrange the completion of an 
additional form ‘Garda Vetting Parent/Guardian Consent Form’. 

Stage 2: 
Students complete provisional registration during first year registration process. They 
acknowledge at registration that their registration process is not complete until they 
have satisfied Garda Vetting requirements for the programme. 

Stage 3:
Completion of Admissions Office section of form Students return their completed confidential form to the relevant academic department co-ordinator for checking. The Department completes a batch summary sheet is which is then forwarded to the Admissions Office with the application form(s). Once the Authorised Signatory is satisfied that all sections of the form are duly completed,the form is signed. Then, in line with the requirements of the GCVU, the batch summary form and the forms are forwarded to the GCVU in Thurles.

Stage 4:
Completion of Garda Central Vetting Unit section of the form The GCVU responds to the vetting request by ticking and signing one of the relevant sections of the form: 
The form and any attached documentation are returned in confidence to the Authorised Signatory.

Stage 5:
Confirmation of GCVU response by Authorised Signatory Where the information supplied by the GCVU is inconsistent with the response from the student the Authorised Signatory will meet with the student to clarify if the information supplied by the GCVU is correct. If the student does not agree that the information supplied by the GCVU is correct, the Authorised Signatory will request the GCVU to review their information and confirm or change their initial response.

Stage 6:
Evaluation of information Once the information has been confirmed, it is then reviewed by the relevant Head of Department, Programme Coordinator and Authorised Signatory and classified as follows: · No previous convictions recorded · Minor Offence · Serious Offence · Very Serious Offence Thereafter the information will be dealt with by the University as outlined in Stage 7.

Stage 7:
University Response to information provided by GCVU
(a) No previous convictions recorded 
The names of all students where no previous convictions have been recorded are indicated to the relevant Programme Coordinator or Head of Department. Then the Head of Department sends a copy of this information to the student and to the placement agency if a request is received from them. 
If a conviction is recorded, or is pending, the Authorised Signatory meets with the Head of Department/Programme Co-ordinator to consider the convictions.
(b) Minor Offence 
With regard to minor offences, i.e. offences which, within the absolute discretion of the University, are not considered to pose any risk to children or vulnerable adults, the University response is different depending on whether or not the student openly disclosed the offence: 
 
(i) If the offence has been disclosed, the Programme Coordinator or Head of Department will notify the student, and the placement agency if a request is received from them. The full information will be provided to the placement agency if a request is received from them.
(ii) If the offence has not been disclosed the Authorised Signatory will meet with the student to seek an explanation for the non-disclosure. 

. If a satisfactory explanation is received the information will be provided to the placement agency by the Programme Coordinator or Head of Department, and to the student. If a satisfactory explanation is not received the offence will be deemed to be a serious offence and will be dealt with as for section (c) (ii) below.
(c) Serious Offence 
With regard to serious offences, i.e. offences, the nature of which could potentially indicate a risk to children or vulnerable adults, the university response will be different depending on whether or not the student openly disclosed the offence 
(iii) If the offence has been disclosed the Authorised Signatory, Programme Coordinator and Head of Department will meet with the student to discuss the circumstances of the offence: 
If there has been evidence of significant rehabilitation and/or evidence of appropriate behaviour modification by the student since the event took place, then the student will be advised that he/she will be allowed to continue in the programme and that all placement agencies, whether or not they request the information, will be advised of the offence 
. If there is no evidence of significant rehabilitation and/or evidence of appropriate behaviour modification by the student, the student will be advised that their offence is being treated as a very serious offence and the procedure outlined in section (d) below will be followed. 
(iv) If the offence has not been disclosed the Programme Coordinator and the Authorised Signatory will meet with the student. Other than in very exceptional circumstances, the student will be advised that their offence is being treated as a very serious offence and the procedure outlined in section (d) below will be followed.
(d) Very Serious Offence 
With regard to very serious offences, i.e. offences, the nature of which could 
potentially indicate a serious risk to children and vulnerable adults or other members 
of the public, the student will be required to meet with the Authorised Signatory, 
Programme Coordinator and Head of Department and advised that owing to the nature 
of their conviction(s) they cannot continue in that programme of study. 

Following the meeting the student will be advised in writing of the University’s 
decision. The student may, within two weeks of the date of the letter, make an appeal 
to the Registrar to have his/her case reviewed by an Appeal Committee on Garda 
Vetting comprising of the Registrar and two members of Academic Council dult 
appointed at Academic Council. 

Stage 8: 
Students who have satisfactorily completed Garda Vetting (and any other 
requirements of the registration process) will be deemed to be fully registered as 
students of Maynooth University. 

Additional Documentation Requirements 

An applicant who has resided outside of Ireland, including Northern Ireland, for three years or more, after the age of 18, is required to provide the following supporting documentation when submitting their Garda Vetting Application Form: 
. A recent (less than one year old) original police clearance from the jurisdiction(s) of previous residence*. 
* Maynooth University reserves the right to seek a sworn declaration where a satisfactory police/criminal records disclosure is not available