Schools (volume 13)

The Victorian Government continues to implement initiatives to prevent child sexual abuse from occurring in schools and, where it does occur, to help ensure effective responses. Victorian schools must meet Victoria’s Child Safe Standards. The Victorian Government continues to support schools to comply with their obligations under these Child Safe Standards, including by updating the Protect website, and providing further templates and guidance.

As discussed in volume 6, the Child Safe Standards review is complete and work is underway to amend the Standards to align with the National Principles.

As discussed in volume 8, the Victorian Government is currently considering changes to implement the recommendations of the National Review of Teacher Registration.

Boarding schools

The Victorian Parliament passed the Education and Training Reform Amendment (Regulation of Student Accommodation) Act 2020 in November 2020. This expands the powers of the Victorian Registration and Qualifications Authority (VRQA) to regulate school boarding premises and ensure they are child safe environments. The changes will also:

  • enable regulations to be made that prescribe minimum standards for the registration of a school boarding premises with the VRQA
  • set out the processes for reviewing compliance with the minimum standards, including with Victoria's Child Safe Standards, and
  • provide the VRQA with the necessary compliance and enforcement powers to ensure school boarding premises satisfy the minimum standards.

Draft amendment regulations and a regulatory impact statement are now being prepared for public consultation. The new regulatory scheme is scheduled to commence on 18 June 2021.