Standard 3: Child Safe Code of Conduct
Barnawartha Primary School is committed to the safety and well being of children and young people. Our school community recognises the importance of, and a responsibility for, ensuring our school is a safe, supportive and enriching environment. Our school respects and fosters the dignity and self-esteem of children and young people, and enables them to thrive in their learning and development.
This Code of Conduct aims to protect children and reduce any opportunities for child abuse or harm to occur. It also assists in understanding how to avoid or better manage risky behaviours and situations. It is intended to complement child protection legislation, Department policy, school policies and procedures and professional standards, codes or ethics as these apply to staff and other personnel.
The Principal will support implementation and monitoring of the Code of Conduct, and will plan, implement and monitor arrangements to provide inclusive, safe and orderly schools and other learning environments. The Principal will also provide information and support to enable the Code of Conduct to operate effectively.
All staff, contractors, volunteers (including but not limited to family and relatives) and any other member of the school community involved in child-related work are required to hold a current and approved Working With Children Check Card and comply with the Code of Conduct by observing expectations for appropriate behaviour below. The Code of Conduct applies in all school situations, including school camps, incursions, excursions and in the use of digital technology and social media.
As staff, volunteers, contractors, family members, relatives and any other members of the school community involved in child-related work individually, we are responsible for supporting and promoting the safety of children by:
- upholding the school’s statement of commitment to child safety at all times and adhering to the school’s child safe policy.
- A zero tolerance of discrimination and abuse. Promote the safety, participation and empowerment of all children.
- treating students and families in the school community with respect both within the school environment and outside the school environment as part of our normal social and community activities.
- listening and responding to the views and concerns of students, particularly if they are telling you that they or another child has been abused or that they are worried about their safety or the safety of another child .
- promoting the cultural safety, participation and empowerment of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students, students with culturally and/or linguistically diverse backgrounds and students with a disability.
- reporting any allegations of child abuse or other child safety concerns to the school’s Principal or Child Safe Coordinator (Sharnee Effting).
- understanding and complying with all reporting or disclosure obligations (including mandatory reporting) as they relate to protecting children from harm or abuse.
- if child abuse is suspected, ensuring as quickly as possible that the student(s) are safe and protected from harm.
As staff, volunteers, contractors, family members, relatives and any other member of the school community involved in child-related work we must not:
- ignore or disregard any concerns, suspicions or disclosures of child abuse.
- treat a child unfavourably because of their disability, age, gender, race, culture, vulnerability, sexuality or ethnicity.
- develop a relationship with any student that could be seen as favouritism or amount to ‘grooming’ behaviour (for example, offering gifts, engaging in child/peer banter/slang, sexual innuendos, or gestures, private conversations of a social/personal nature not considered professional between a child and teacher relationship, offering to ‘babysit’ or look after or socialise with a student out of school hours.
- exhibit behaviours or engage in activities with students which may be interpreted as abusive and not justified by the educational, therapeutic, or service delivery context
- ignore behaviours by other adults towards students when they appear to be overly familiar or inappropriate.
- discuss content of an intimate nature, except where it occurs relevantly in the context of parental guidance, or delivering the education curriculum (for example Catching on Early Curriculum Program, Preparation for Puberty, My Underpants Rule (book), I Spy With My Tricky Eye (Book).
- communicate directly with a student through personal or private contact channels (including by social media, eg and not limited to Facebook, Instagram, snapchat, twitter, email, instant messaging, texting etc) any matters related to school work or extra-curricular activities or where there is a safety concern or other urgent matter must be communicated through an adult or police.
- photograph or video a child in a school environment except in accordance with school policy permissions or where required for duty of care purposes. For example do not photograph or video if the photo or video is not intended for sharing of education, achievement, marketing and promotion within the schools media –School’s Facebook page, uEducateUs, Grapevine, marketing.
- consume alcohol or take illicit drugs under any circumstances, in the school environment or at other school events where students are present.
- be alone with a child where you are not in a clear full view, or presence, of another adult or child.
- put children at risk of abuse (for example by locking doors).
- do things of a personal nature that a child can do for themselves, such as toileting, showering/bathing, drying or changing clothes.
- engage in open discussions of a mature or adult nature in the presence of children (for example, your own personal social life and activities).
- Use inappropriate language and gestures in the presence of, or towards, children.
- Express personal views on cultures, race or sexuality in the presence of children.
This Code of Conduct was endorsed/approved by the Barnawartha Primary School Council. To be reviewed in December 2019.
Ministerial Order No.870 requirements
Clause 9 The school governing authority must develop, endorse, and make publicly available a code of conduct that: has the objective of promoting child safety in the school environment; sets standards about the ways in which school staff are expected to behave with children; takes into account the interests of school staff(including other professional or occupational codes of conduct that regulate particular school staff), and the needs of all children; and is consistent with the school’s child safety strategies, policies and procedures as revised from time to time.
By observing these standards you acknowledge your responsibility to abide by our code of conduct and immediately report any breach of this code to Barnawartha Primary School Child Safety Officer, Sharnee Effting and the Principal.
If you believe a child is at immediate risk of abuse phone 000.