Kamaruka takes a zero-tolerance approach to child abuse and is fully committed to ensuring that its strategies, policies, procedures and practices meet all Child Safety Standards as specified in Ministerial Order No. 1359 (2022)
The school governing authority is required to inform the school community of the school’s Commitment to Child Safety as well as the Code of Conduct which applies to all members of the Kamaruka community.
Kamaruka’s procedures for responding to and reporting allegations of suspected child abuse must be made available to the school community.
The school community includes members of the school governing authority, the principal, staff, students, parents and families, volunteers, consultants and all visitors to the school.
KEY MESSAGES TO COMMUNICATE
- Kamaruka takes a zero-tolerance approach to child abuse
- Keeping children safe is the responsibility of everyone in the school community and the Child Safety Standards apply to us all
- Policies and processes which comply with the Child Safety Standards are in place at Kamaruka to protect the care, safety and welfare of children
- There are clear guidelines in place about how adults in our school community may interact with children
- Matters which all members of the school community need to be informed of are what ‘zero tolerance’ means to us, the roles and responsibilities which adults have for child safety, and Kamaruka’s procedures to respond to and report complaints relating to any form of child abuse
- Staff and volunteers at Kamaruka receive ongoing training and support in order to properly carry out their responsibilities under the Child Safety Standards
- Consultants who may be working here at school with children will be advised of policies and processes which must be followed
- School governing authorities which consult with staff about strategies, policies, procedures and practices for the Child Safety Standards will generally have better child safety outcomes and better-informed teams
- Child safety will be a standing agenda item at staff/team meetings to consult on and to reinforce the school’s commitment to child safety, to identify any potential risks, and to clarify continuing roles and responsibilities for staff members
- Posting child safety information on notice boards and on school websites will help to reinforce the commitment of all staff members to protect children
- Reflective practices among staff in relation to child safety matters and communicating these to the wider school community is of the utmost importance
VOLUNTEERS, CONSULTANTS AND VISITORS TO THE SCHOOL
- Information on the school website and/or in written agreements about the requirement to adhere to Kamaruka’s Commitment to Child Safety and Code of Conduct policies will be provided
- A paragraph relating to volunteer, consultant and visitor responsibilities will be placed at the top of sign-in sheets and displayed prominently by the visitor book in the school office
- A summary of the school’s commitment to Child Safety Standards will be added to printed visitor tags or a business card-sized handout of information given to volunteers, consultants and all visitors to the school
- Relevant child safety information will be included in enrolment and other information packs and volunteer induction kits
- School staff in regular contact with volunteers, consultants and visitors to the school will be expected to brief them about their child safety responsibilities
- Clear and friendly notices about Child Safety will be displayed around the school
All schools are now expected to have measures in place to communicate Child Safety Standards information with families including information on the school website, newsletter, and email databases for individual and class group messages.
Making communications as relevant as possible to families’ own children and using a range of communication methods will maximise the chance of families receiving and responding this important information. This may be achieved by:
- Sending a personal email from the Principal to each family including the child’s name (Dear… I am writing to you about some important changes to Child Safety Standards that help to protect all our students, including your son David)
- Requesting that families acknowledge that they have received information sent to them with either a simple reply email or a tear-and-return slip on a printed letter
- Hosting a meeting with the school’s parents to give families the opportunity to hear first-hand about the Child Safety Standards and to ask questions
- Consult with appropriate community members on whether the Child Safety strategies, policies, procedures and practices are inclusive of families of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, children with disabilities, children from culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds, and vulnerable children
Victorian Registration and Qualifications Authority
Child safe standards website (all schools): www.vrqa.vic.gov.au/childsafe
Independent Schools who are members of Independent Schools Victoria
Telephone: (03) 9825 7200
The Victorian Institute of Teaching
For Victorian Teaching Profession Codes of Conduct and Ethics and information about employer responsibilities to report action taken against registered teachers in response to allegations and concerns about registered teachers.
This policy will be reviewed as per our three-year review cycle or more often if necessary due to changes in regulations or circumstances.