Steps to compliance
1. Develop or review
In the physical environment, schools and school boarding premises supervise students and children.
A school’s duty of care does not stop once a child or student is offsite at another physical location for their schooling. Make sure contracts with third-party suppliers have clear requirements for the safety of children and students. Be clear about what you will do if the supplier fails to meet the requirements.
Schools are also responsible for upholding safety and wellbeing in the school’s online environments. Under the guidelines for school registration, schools must already have internet use policies and procedures. Schools may review and revise these documents to comply with this Standard. Alternatively, schools may:
- develop a standalone policy
- include online environments as part of the Child Safety and Wellbeing Policy or the Child Safety Code of Conduct.
The school governing authority must endorse the statement or policy on online safety and online conduct.
- have child safety and wellbeing policies, procedures and practices that enable staff and volunteers to identify and mitigate risks in school environments.
- have a policy or statement on online conduct and online safety
- ensure contracts with third-party suppliers include requirements for the safety of children and students. Note: for government schools, the school council is responsible for this requirement.
Examples of common non-compliance
- No policy or statement on online conduct and online safety.
- A school boarding premise relies on the policies and procedures adopted at the school, without considering the specific child safety risks of a boarding premise environment.
- No contract or written agreement with third parties.
- A third-party agreement without requirements for the safety and wellbeing of children.
- Policies, procedures and practices do not enable school staff and volunteers to identify and mitigate risks in the physical school environment.
- Policies, procedures and practices do not identify and mitigate risks in all school environments. For example:
- sporting events
- home stays
- courses provided in non-school settings.
Clause 13 of Ministerial Order 1359 aligns to Child Safe Standard 9 and states:
13.1 Schools and school boarding premises must ensure that physical and online environments promote safety and wellbeing while minimising the opportunity for children, young people and students to be harmed.
13.2 In complying with clause 13.1, the school governing authority or school boarding premises governing authority must, at a minimum:
- ensure that the child safety and wellbeing policies, procedures and practices of the school or provider of school boarding services enable school staff, school boarding premises staff, and volunteers to identify and mitigate risks in school environments and school boarding premises environments without compromising a child or student’s right to privacy, access to information, social connections and learning opportunities
- develop and endorse a policy or statement on online conduct and online safety that is consistent with the child safety and wellbeing policy and practices and child safety code of conduct of the school or provider of school boarding services
- ensure the procurement policies of the school or provider of school boarding services for facilities and services from third parties ensure the safety of children and students.
Schools and school boarding premises procure a wide range of goods and services, some of which may be obtained at no cost. Child safe procurement policies apply regardless of the value of the product or service.
Schools can use the Child Safety and Wellbeing Policy template to get them started in promoting safety and wellbeing across their policies, procedures and practices. For more information, see:
Reviewed 24 June 2022