Northern Ireland Performance Legislation
Apply for Child Employment, Children in Entertainment and Chaperone Applications in Northern Ireland
Education Authority (EA) is responsible for ensuring that safeguarding responsibilities placed upon us and other parties are met in respect of children who are involved in entertainment and employment in Northern Ireland.
Children in Entertainment and Employment Team (CEET)
The Children in Entertainment and Employment Team (CEET) is part of the Education Authority’s Child Protection Support Service for Schools (CPSS). It is responsible for ensuring that safeguarding responsibilities placed upon EA and other parties are met in respect of children who are involved in entertainment and employment in Northern Ireland. The team is based at;
40 Academy Street
Phone number: 028 95985591
Email Address: Ceet@eani.org.uk
Child Performance Licences
The Education Authority issues performance licences in respect of children (babies up to children of compulsory school leaving age) who live in Northern Ireland and propose to engage in public performances in Northern Ireland. This is in accordance with the provisions of the Children (Northern Ireland) Order 1995, Part X11, articles 137 – 145 & the Children (Public Performances) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1996.
This legislation applies to children who are involved in broadcast performances including those on televisions, film, radio or by way of internet streaming. It also includes non-broadcast performances such as stage performances including those taking place in venues such as theatres, sports clubs, hotels and church halls. Such performances may be produced by amateur or professional groups/companies and involve children in drama, music, song or dance.
There are performances where some or indeed all of the children may not require individual licences such as where a child has not taken part in other performances on more than three days in the six months preceding the performance in question. In such cases an “exemption” letter will be issued. Performances arranged by schools irrespective of where the performance takes place are exempt from the requirements of the legislation. However where a school takes part in a performance organised by a third party the performance will be required to meet the requirements of the legislation and it is the responsibility of the third party to make an application to EA for either licences or an exemption.
Production companies should submit applications to CEET for a licence for each child at least 30 days before the first performance is due to take place. This is to ensure that all applications are fully considered and licences are issued with appropriate safeguards in place. Late applications may result in licences not being issued and any performance that proceeds in the absence of a licence will be deemed unlawful. EA will consider legal action against any production company which proceeds with an unlawful performance.
The Designated Officer for CEET will advise applicants if a licence and/or an exemption from a licence applies in respect of the performance.
Applications for performance licences must be accompanied by:
- Written consent from the parent/carer
- Written consent from the Principal of the school attended by the child if the performance/s necessitate absence from school
- 1 photograph of the child with the child’s name written on the back
- Proof of age of the child (either passport or birth certificate)
If the CEET Designated Officer is satisfied that all legal and regulatory conditions are met, one or more performance licences will be issued. Any performance which proceeds in the absence of either performance licences and/or an exemption letter is unlawful.
Application forms, regulations and guidance are available from CEET at the contact number above or from the downloads section of this page.
The Education Authority approves, registers and trains chaperones to safeguard children who have been licensed to perform.
As required by law [Children (Public Performances) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1996 Regulation 14], all licensed children who perform, if not accompanied by a parent/carer, must be accompanied by a licensed chaperone, who “shall have the care and control of the child with a view to securing his health, kind treatment and moral welfare” (Reg 14). The chaperone can care for a maximum of 12 children and is engaged / employed by the production company.
The CEET team maintains the register of all licensed chaperones in Northern Ireland on behalf of the Education Authority.
Application forms for chaperone licensing and registration are available from the CEET team or in the downloads section of this page.