Pre-employment medical questionnaires for teachers


You might be in the process of joining a new school and have been asked to complete a pre-employment medical questionnaire. 

You may be apprehensive in completing a medical questionnaire and worried that your offer of employment could be withdrawn if you divulge certain medical information.

If you are an Edapt subscriber and are concerned with completing a pre-employment medical questionnaire you can contact us for further advice and support.

In this support article, we refer to information included in Keeping Children Safe in Education on safer recruitment and link to examples of pre-employment medical questionnaires for teachers. 

Pre-employment medical checks for teachers

Statutory safeguarding guidance for schools in England (Keeping Children Safe in Education) includes information on safer recruitment. This is outlined on pages 52 to 53.

It explains, all offers of appointment should be conditional until satisfactory completion of the mandatory pre-employment checks. 

All schools and colleges must:

  • Verify the candidate’s mental and physical fitness to carry out their work responsibilities. A job applicant can be asked relevant questions about disability and health in order to establish whether they have the physical and mental capacity for the specific role

Examples of pre-employment questionnaires for teachers

Ealing Grid for Learning explains that all prospective employees should complete a pre-employment medical questionnaire, which includes permission for the Occupational Health Unit (OHU) to contact their general practitioner or hospital consultant if necessary. 

We have written another support article which provides an overview of occupational health

Medical questionnaires are filed in the OHU and are confidential. Medical information can only be given out with the written permission of the employee.

Advice given will be regarding:

  • The candidates fitness for the post
  • Any restrictions in the proposed duties/hours
  • Adjustments necessary in the case of a disability
  • Any review appointments required in the OHU

Oxfordshire Schools explains pre-employment medical and health checks must not be completed for each applicant.  To comply with the Equality Act this must only be completed for a candidate once a conditional offer has been made.

Oxfordshire Schools explains It is unlawful for employers to ask health-related questions of applicants before a conditional job offer, unless the questions are specifically related to an intrinsic function of the work. It is also unlawful to ask health related questions of referees prior to a conditional job offer.

Once a conditional offer has been made, the school can then contact the candidate’s referees for health information. This can be provided in writing by the referee or it can be taken verbally over the phone from the referees. A record must be kept on the Personnel file.

If the health references raises any concerns or provides information that contradicts that obtained from the Health Declaration, this should immediately be brought to the attention of Occupational Health.

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The information contained within this article is not a complete or final statement of the law.
While Edapt has sought to ensure that the information is accurate and up-to-date, it is not responsible and will not be held liable for any inaccuracies and their consequences, including any loss arising from relying on this information. This article may contain information sourced from public sector bodies and licensed under the Open Government Licence. If you are an Edapt subscriber with an employment-related issue, please contact us and we will be able to refer you to one of our caseworkers.