Our School - Child Protection and Mandatory Reporting Policy




South Yarra Primary School


Child Protection and Mandatory Reporting Policy


Child Safe Standard 5




Rationale

Mandatory reporting arises from the requirements of the Children, Youth and Families Act 2005 (Vic.) and the Ministerial Order No. 870 (2016) for the protection of children from harm due to physical injury and sexual abuse. School personnel mandated under this Act who, in the course of carrying out their duties, form a reasonable belief that a child is in need of protection from physical or sexual abuse, must report that belief and the grounds for it as soon as possible.

 

Purpose

All teachers, other staff and volunteers (staff) within South Yarra Primary School are bound by legal and professional obligations to implement

child protection and child safety policies, protocols and practices and to ensure the requirements of the duty of care are satisfied.

 

This policy defines the roles and responsibilities of staff in protecting the safety and wellbeing of children and young people at risk.

It complements the guidelines Protecting the safety and wellbeing of children and young people which is a joint protocol of the Department of Health

Human Services (DHHS) Child Protection, the Department of Education and Training (DET), Licensed Children's Services and Victorian schools

(the Protocols).  All staff members are provided annual training and resources to provide assistance and respond appropriately if such an

incident were to arise. Please refer here for full Department of Education and Training (DET) policy documents.

 

This policy is designed to assist staff to: 

-        identify the indicators of a child or young person who may be in need of protection 

-         make a report of a child or young person who may be in need of protection

-        comply with mandatory reporting obligations under child protection law and criminal law.

 

Implementation

 

  • All members of the Teaching Service are mandated by law to report signs of physical and/or sexual abuse, and neglect.

  • New staff will be informed of mandatory reporting responsibilities and procedures as part of their induction procedure.

 

  • Staff will complete annual Mandatory Reporting P.D. Modules online.

 

  • All concerns must be reported immediately to the Principal, or in his/her absence, the Assistant Principal.

 

  • The Principal will keep a record of all discussions about a student with whom there is a concern.

     

  • If a belief has been formed by a staff member that sexual or physical abuse has taken place a 'Mandatory Reporting Information Sheet' obtained from the Principal must be filed in the Principal's office.

     

  • The teacher and/or the Principal class officer will contact the Department of Human Services by telephone as soon as possible to make an official notification on:

     

                         (03) 8765 5444 or After School Hours Crisis Line 131 278

 

  • Members of the Department of Human Services, or associated support or intervention services that visit the school following a notification, will interview staff and children only in the presence of a Principal class member of his/her nominee.

     

  • All 'Mandatory Reporting Information Sheets' remain filed in the Principal's office.

     

  • All reports, information sheets and subsequent discussions and information are to be recorded and remain strictly confidential.

     

  • Students who have been subject to Mandatory Reporting will be monitored, and any subsequent signs or indications of abuse are also to be reported.

     

  • While only mandated by law to report incidents of physical and sexual  abuse, and neglect; teachers are also encouraged to report incidents of emotional abuse or neglect.

     

Students, who disclose to staff a desire to harm themselves or others, must be reported by staff to the Principal.

Guidelines

References

Children, Youth and Families Act, 2005

  • Ministerial Order No. 870, 2015 - Child Wellbeing and Safety Amendment Bill
  • Crimes Act 1958
  • Education and Training Reform Act, 2006
  • Victorian Institute of Teaching Act 2001
  • SYPS 2016 Child Safety Code of Conduct Policy
  • 2016 Student Engagement Policy
  • SYPS 2016 Filming and Photography Policy
  • SYPS 2016 Duty of Care Policy
  • SYPS 2016 South Yarra Primary School Student Code of Conduct


Reporting Obligations


Child Safe Standards

Evaluation


This policy will be reviewed as part of the school's three-year review cycle.


THIS POLICY WAS RATIFIED BY SCHOOL COUNCIL in September, 2016


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