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Safe and supportive environment - child protection

A registered non-government school must have in place policies and procedures to ensure that it meets its legislative obligations in relation to child protection.

A number of Acts relate to child protection in New South Wales:

  • the Ombudsman Amendment Act (Child Protection and Community Services) Act 1998 which added Part 3A to the Ombudsman Act 1974 www.ombo.nsw.gov.au
  • Child Protection (Working with Children) Act 2012 www.kids.nsw.gov.au
  • the Children and Young Persons (Care and Protection) Act 1998 which sets out the responsibilities of Community Services with regard to child protection. www.community.nsw.gov.au

A registered non-government school is responsible for knowing and complying with its obligations under each of these Acts.

Evidence of compliance

A registered non-government school must have in place and implement policies and procedures to:

  • ensure that staff who have direct contact with students are informed annually of their legal responsibilities related to child protection, mandatory reporting and other relevant school expectations
  • ensure that requirements to notify and investigate allegations of reportable conduct in compliance with the Ombudsman Act 1974 are made known to staff
  • ensure that all persons engaged in child-related work at the school, as defined by the Child Protection (Working with Children) Act 2012 have a working with children check clearance from the Office of the Children's Guardian, as required
  • ensure that evidence of working with children check clearances is maintained by the school for all persons in child-related work at the school as required under the Child Protection (Working with Children) Act 2012
  • respond to reportable matters in accordance with legislative requirements
  • ensure that all staff who are mandatory reporters under the Children and Young Persons (Care and Protection) Act 1998 are informed annually of their obligations and the process that the school has in place in relation to mandatory reporting.
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