School Policies

Purpose

Frankston Special Developmental’ s (Frankston SDS) Child Safety Policy sets out the school’s commitment and approach to creating and maintaining a child safe organisation where children and young people are safe and feel safe, and provides the policy framework for the school’s approach to the Child Safe Standards.

Scope

This policy applies to all staff, volunteers, and contractors in the school environment, whether or not they work in direct contact with children or young people. This policy also applies to school council members where indicated.

The policy will apply to the school environment (see Definitions section). The policy covers both school hours and outside of school hours.

Definitions

Child abuse

Child abuse includes:

  • any act committed against a child involving:
    • a sexual offence; or
    • grooming; and
  • the infliction, on a child, of:
    • physical violence; or
    • serious emotional or psychological harm; and
  • serious neglect of a child.

Child-connected work

Child-connected work means work authorised by the school, school council, or Secretary of the Department of Education and Training and performed by an adult in a school environment while children are present or reasonably expected to be present.

Child safety

Child safety encompasses matters related to protecting all children from child abuse, managing the risk of child abuse, providing support to a child at risk of child abuse, and responding to incidents or allegations of child abuse.

School environment

School environment means any physical or virtual place made available or authorised by the school for use by a child during or outside school hours, including:

  • a campus of the school;
  • online school environments (including email and intranet systems); and
  • other locations provided by the school for a child’s use (including, without limitation, locations used for school camps, sporting events, excursions, competitions, homestays, and other school activities or events)

School staff

School staff means an individual working in a school environment who is:

  • employed by the Department of Education and Training;
  • directly engaged or employed by a school council; or
  • a volunteer or a contracted service provider (whether or not a body corporate or any other person is an intermediary).

STATEMENT OF COMMITMENT TO CHILD SAFETY AND CHILD SAFETY PRINCIPLES

Frankston SDS is committed to the safety and wellbeing of all children and young people. This will be the primary focus of our care and decision-making.

Frankston SDS is committed to the safety and wellbeing of children and young people. Our school community recognises the importance of, and responsibility for ensuring our school is a safe, supportive and enriching environment which respects and fosters the dignity and self-esteem of children and young people and enables them to thrive in their learning and development.

At Frankston SDS our vision is ‘to create a passionate learning community that inspires, challenges and supports all students to achieve their personal best and make a positive transition into the world in which they live.’ We know children can struggle to achieve their personal best if they are not safe from abuse.

At Frankston SDS our values guide the decisions and behaviours of all members of our school community, including in relation to child safety:

  • Respect – for ourselves and others – Caring for, understanding, accepting and appreciating ourselves and others.
  • Responsibility – Demonstrating ownership of our actions and words. Being accountable for our actions.
  • Integrity – being honest, sincere and trustworthy
  • Resilience – Bouncing back from difficulties and disappointments. Accepting challenges, trying hard and not giving up easily.

Frankston SDS has zero tolerance for child abuse.

We are committed to providing a child safe environment where children and young people are safe and feel safe, and their voices and actions are heard about decisions that affect their lives. Our child safe policies, procedures, strategies and practices will be inclusive of the needs of all children, particularly Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, children from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, children with disabilities, and children who are vulnerable.

Every person involved in Frankston SDS has a responsibility to understand the important and specific role they play individually and collectively to ensure that the wellbeing and safety of all children and young people is at the forefront of all they do and every decision they make.

Child safety principles

In its planning, decision-making and operations, Frankston SDS will:

  1. Take a preventative, proactive and participatory approach to child safety;
  2. Value and empower children to participate in decisions which affect their lives;
  3. Foster a culture of openness that supports all persons to safely disclose risks of harm to children;
  4. Respect diversity in cultures and child rearing practices while keeping child safety paramount;
  5. Provide written guidance on appropriate conduct and behaviour towards children;
  6. Engage only the most suitable people to work with children and have high quality staff and volunteer supervision and professional development;
  7. Ensure children know who to talk with if they are worried or are feeling unsafe, and that they are comfortable and encouraged to raise such concerns;
  8. Report suspected abuse, neglect or mistreatment promptly to the appropriate authorities;
  9. Share information appropriately and lawfully with other organisations where the safety and wellbeing of children is at risk; and
  10. Value the input of and communicate regularly with families and carers
  11. Explicitly teach protective behaviours skills that enable students to have as much independence over their bodies as possible.

POLICY

Strategies to embed a child safe culture

Frankston SDS’ culture encourages staff, students, parents and the school community to raise, discuss and scrutinise child safety concerns. This makes it more difficult for abuse to occur and remain hidden.

All child safety documents, including this policy, the Child Safety Code of Conduct, the school’s Child Safety Responding and Reporting Obligations (including Mandatory Reporting) Policy and Procedures Identifying and Responding to All Forms of Abuse in Victorian Schools and the Four Critical Actions for Schools are readily available online and in hard copy on the school website and within the policy section on the school system for all staff and students to read at any time.

Child safety is everyone’s responsibility. All school staff are required to:

  • Act in accordance with the school’s Child Safety Code of Conduct, which clearly sets out the difference between appropriate and inappropriate behaviour
  • Act in accordance with the Child Safety Responding and Reporting Obligations (including Mandatory Reporting) Policy and Procedures at all times, including following the Four Critical Actions for Schools where necessary
  • Undertake annual guidance and training on child safety
  • Act in accordance with their legal obligations, including:
    • Failure to disclose offence (applies to all adults)
    • Duty of care (applies to all school staff)
    • Mandatory reporting obligations (applies to all mandatory reporters, including teachers, principals, registered psychologists, and registered doctors and nurses)
    • Failure to protect offence (applies to a person in a position of authority within the school)
    • Reportable conduct obligations (applies to all school staff in reporting conduct to the principal, and applies to the principal in reporting to Employee Conduct Branch)
    • Organisational duty of care (applies to the school as an organisation)
    • For more information on these obligations, see Identifying and Responding to All Forms of Abuse in Victorian Schools.

As part of Frankston SDS’ child safe culture, school leadership (including the principal and assistant principal will:

  • Consider the diversity of all children, including (but not limited to) the needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, children from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, children with disabilities, and children who are vulnerable, when implementing the Child Safe Standards
  • Ensure that child safety is a regular agenda item at school leadership meetings and staff meetings
  • Encourage and enable staff professional learning and training to build deeper understandings of child safety and prevention of abuse
  • Ensure that no one is prohibited or discouraged from reporting an allegation of child abuse to a person external to the school or from making records of any allegation.

As part of Frankston SDS’ child safe culture, school mandatory reporting staff are required to:

  • Complete the Protecting Children – Mandatory reporting and other obligations online module every year
  • Read the school’s Child Safety Code of Conduct on induction, and maintain familiarity with that document
  • Read the school’s Child Safety Responding and Reporting Obligations (including Mandatory Reporting) Policy and Procedures on induction, and maintain familiarity with that document
  • Read the school’s Child Safety Policy (this document) on induction, and maintain familiarity with that document.

As part of Frankston SDS’ child safe culture, in performing the functions and powers given to them under the Education and Training Reform Act 2006, school councils and school council members will:

  • Ensure that child safety is a regular agenda item at school council meetings (not mandatory to discuss at every meeting but on the agenda
  • Consider the diversity of all children, including (but not limited to) the needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, children from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, children with disabilities, and children who are vulnerable, when making decisions regarding the Child Safe Standards
  • Undertake annual guidance and training on child safety, such as the Child Safe Standards School Council Training PowerPoint.
  • Approve the Child Safety Code of Conduct to the extent that it applies to school council employees and members, and if updated, note the new document in its school council meeting minutes

School leadership will maintain records of the above processes.

Roles and responsibilities

School leaders will ensure that each person understands their role, responsibilities and behaviour expected in protecting children and young people from abuse and neglect. Staff will comply with the school’s Child Safety Code of Conduct, which sets out clearly the difference between appropriate and inappropriate behaviour.

Specific child safety responsibilities:

  • The assistant principal along with the school council policy committee is responsible for reviewing and updating the Child Safety Policy every 3 years.
  • The assistant principal is responsible for monitoring the school’s compliance with the Child Safety Policy. The school community should approach the assistant principal if they have any concerns about the school’s compliance with the Child Safety Policy.
  • The assistant principal is responsible for informing the school community about this policy, and making it publicly available.
  • Other specific roles and responsibilities are named in Frankston SDS’ other child safety policies and procedures, including the Frankston SDS Welfare Manual, the Child Safety Code of Conduct, Child Safety Responding and Reporting Obligations (including Mandatory Reporting) Policy and Procedures, and risk assessment register.

Recruitment

Frankston SDS follows the Department’s Recruitment in Schools guide to ensure child safe recruitment practices, available on the Department’s website.

All prospective volunteers are required to comply with our school’s Volunteers Policy. The induction includes the school’s Child Safe Code of Conduct. All volunteers, regardless of whether they are parents of students or not are required to have a valid Working with Children Check.

Training and Supervision

Our school culture aims for all staff and volunteers (in addition to parents/carers and children) to feel confident and comfortable in coming forward with any allegations or suspicions of child abuse or child safety concerns. We train our staff and volunteers to identify, assess, and minimise risks of child abuse and to detect potential signs of child abuse. This training occurs at the start of each school year as well as throughout the year in staff meetings.

We also support our staff and volunteers through ongoing supervision to develop their skills to protect children from abuse, to promote the cultural safety of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and children from linguistically and/or diverse backgrounds, and the safety of children with a disability and vulnerable children.

New employees and volunteers will be inducted into the school. All visitors to the school must acknowledge that they have read and understood the Child Safe Code of Conduct. A hard copy of the Code of Conduct is available at reception. Staff and volunteers are supervised regularly to ensure they understand our school’s commitment to child safety, and that their behaviour towards children is safe and appropriate. All employees of our school will be monitored and assessed via regular performance review to ensure their continuing suitability for child-connected work. Any inappropriate behaviour will be reported by school staff to the Principal or Assistant Principal and will be managed in accordance with Frankston SDS’ Child Safety Responding and Reporting Obligations (including Mandatory Reporting) Policy and Procedures where required.

Reporting a child safety concern or complaint

The school has clear expectations for all staff and volunteers in making a report about a child or young person who may be in need of protection. All staff (including school council employees) must follow the school’s Child Safety Responding and Reporting Obligations (including Mandatory Reporting) Policy and Procedures, including following the Four Critical Actions for Schools if there is an incident, disclosure or suspicion of child abuse. Immediate actions should include reporting their concerns to DHHS Child Protection, Victoria Police and/or another appropriate agency and notifying the principal or a member of the school leadership team of their concerns and the reasons for those concerns.

Frankston SDS will never prohibit or discourage school staff from reporting an allegation of child abuse. The school will always take action to respond to a complaint in accordance with the school’s Child Safety Responding and Reporting Obligations (including Mandatory Reporting) Policy and Procedures. In accordance with Action 4 of the Four Critical Actions for Schools, Frankston SDS will provide ongoing support for students affected by child abuse.

The Child Safety Responding and Reporting Obligations (including Mandatory Reporting) Policy and Procedures can be found on the school’s website and on the school server under policies.

Risk reduction and management

Frankston SDS believes the wellbeing of children and young people is paramount, and is vigilant in ensuring proper risk management processes, found in the school’s Welfare Manual. The school recognises there are potential risks to children and young people and will take a risk management approach by undertaking preventative measures.

We will identify and mitigate the risks of child abuse in school environments by taking into account the nature of each school environment, the activities expected to be conducted in that environment and the characteristics and needs of all children expected to be present in that environment.

Frankston SDS monitors and evaluates the effectiveness of the actions it takes to reduce or remove risks to child safety, more information can be found in the school’s Welfare Manual.

Listening to, communicating with and empowering children

Frankston SDS has developed a safe, inclusive and supportive environment that involves and communicates with children, young people and their families. We encourage child and family involvement and engagement that informs safe school operations and builds the capability of children and families to understand their rights and their responsibilities. Our school is committed to supporting and encouraging students to use their voice to raise and share their concerns with a trusted adult at any time of need.

When the school is gathering information in relation to a complaint about alleged misconduct with or abuse of a child, the school will listen to the complainant’s account and take them seriously, check understanding and keep the child (and/or their parents/carers, as appropriate) informed about progress.

The school will promote the Child Safe Standards in ways that are readily accessible, easy to understand, and user-friendly to children, including:

  • All of our child safety policies and procedures will be available for families at Frankston SDS to read on the school’s website
  • PROTECT Child Safety posters will be displayed across the school
  • School newsletters will inform the school community about the school’s commitment to child safety, and strategies or initiatives that the school is taking to ensure student safety
  • The school’s welfare and therapy teams support students and families to access services; assist students to engage with and access the curriculum and provide counselling to students and their families

The school will use targeted specific teaching and learning programs to deliver appropriate education to students about:

  • standards of behaviour whilst at school, at home and in the community;
  • healthy and respectful relationships (including sexuality);
  • independence over daily personal care routines
  • an understanding of what is appropriate and inappropriate behaviour in themselves and others
  • how to say no when feeling at risk and how to access the appropriate help if required

SCHOOL-BASED PROGRAMS: I CAN BE SAFE: this is a mandated teaching and learning program developed to empower students with disabilities to have independence over their bodies; to develop the means to understand what constitutes inappropriate behaviour and how to access help when needed

Communications

This school is committed to communicating our child safety strategies to the school community through:

  • Ensuring that the Child Safety Policy (this document), Code of Conduct, and the Child Safety Responding and Reporting Obligations (including Mandatory Reporting) Policy and Procedure are available on the school website
  • Once per term reminders in the school newsletter of our school’s commitment to child safety
  • Ensuring that child safety is a regular agenda item at school leadership meetings and staff meetings for discussion

Confidentially and Privacy

  • This school collects, uses and discloses information about particular children and their families in accordance with Victorian privacy law. The principles regulating the collection, use and storage of information is included in the Department of Education and Training’s Schools’ Privacy Policy.

Related policies and documents

Related policies and documents include:

Links - School Policy and Advisory Guide: Duty of Care, Child Protection Reporting Obligations - Four Critical Actions for Schools: Responding to Student Sexual Offending - Recording your Actions: Responding to suspected child abuse – A template for Victorian Schools - Frankston SDS Welfare Manual - Frankston SDS Code of Conduct (See Appendix Standard 3)
Author Assistant Principal
Reviewed November 19
School Council Approval November 19
Next review date November 22
References DET

 

 

Appendix 1: Implementing the Standards

Standard 1:

The Principal and Assistant Principal will lead the implementation of the Child Safety Policy at Frankston Special Developmental School. Within their scope of practice, they will:

  • Provide authoritative advice, leading the development of the school’s child safety culture.
  • Raise awareness, ensuring the school’s policies are known and used appropriately and that families are aware of the fact that referrals about suspected abuse or neglect may be made and the role of the school in this.
  • Encourage a culture of vigilance and proactivity with regard to identifying key risk indicators.
  • Keep skills up to date with appropriate training, including the annual completion of the online module for Mandatory Reporting.
  • Have an awareness of and participate in (when necessary) processes and procedures with regards to outside agencies such as Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS).
  • Ensure detailed, accurate records are kept secure.
  • Ensure staff are aware of training opportunities and the latest DHHS and Department Education and Training (DET) guidelines.

Standard 2:

Frankston Special Developmental School is committed to child safety:

  • We are committed to ensuring our students are safe, happy and empowered. We support and respect all children.

  • We have zero tolerance of child abuse and neglect, and all allegations and safety concerns are treated with seriousness in alignment with our policy and procedures.

  • We have legal and moral obligations to contact authorities when we are worried about a child’s safety which we follow diligently.

  • All mandatory reporters must make a report to Victoria Police and/or DHHS Child Protection as soon as practicable if, they form the belief on reasonable grounds that a child has suffered or is likely to suffer significant harm as a result of physical abuse and/or sexual abuse and the child’s parents have not protected the child from harm. It is a criminal offence not to report based on those grounds.

  • Our school has robust human resources and recruitment practices for all staff and volunteers.

  • Our school is committed to the safety of children from culturally diverse backgrounds including those children from indigenous backgrounds.

  • We have specific policies, procedures and training in place that support our leadership team, staff and volunteers to achieve these commitments.

  • Students at Frankston SDS are taught to be as independent as they can with regards to their own personal care routine in order to minimise the amount of physical contact they need from others (See I Can Be Safe protective behaviours program).

  • Staff at Frankston SDS, including casual relief staff, are trained in how to assist with personal care routines in order to minimise the amount of physical contact they have with students.

  • Staff at Frankston SDS, including casual relief staff, are instructed in ways of giving students as much privacy as possible during personal care routines.

Standard 3:

The following Child Safety Code of Conduct clearly spells out professional boundaries and acceptable and unacceptable adult/child relationships and behaviours. All staff members at our school are expected to read and to adhere to the Child Safety Code of Conduct at all times.

FRANKSTON SPECIAL DEVELOPMENTAL SCHOOL
CHILD SAFETY CODE OF CONDUCT

Frankston Special Developmental School is committed to the safety and wellbeing of children and young people. Our school community recognises the importance of, and responsibility for, ensuring our school is a safe, supportive and enriching environment which 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, DET policy, school policies and procedures and professional standards, codes or ethics as these apply to staff and other personnel.

The Principal and school leaders of Frankston Special Developmental School 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 and school leaders of Frankston Special Developmental School will also provide information and support to enable the Code of Conduct to operate effectively.

All staff, contractors, volunteers and any other member of the school community involved in child-related work are required to 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, community access and social events as well as the use of digital technology and social media.

Acceptable behaviours

As staff, volunteers, contractors, and any other member 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

  • treating students and families in the school community with respect both within the school environment and outside the school environment as part of 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/the safety of another child

  • promoting the cultural safety, participation and empowerment of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students

  • promoting the cultural safety, participation and empowerment of students with culturally and/or linguistically diverse backgrounds

  • promoting the safety, participation and empowerment of students with a disability

  • reporting any allegations of child abuse or other child safety concerns to the school’s leadership and/or the school’s welfare staff, police, Child First, Child Protection as mandated by law

  • 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

Unacceptable behaviours

As staff, volunteers, contractors, 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 (see Mandatory Reporting Policy)

  • develop a relationship with any student that could be seen as favouritism or amount to ‘grooming’ behaviour (for example, offering gifts)
  • 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 or use sexual innuendo with students, except where it occurs relevantly in the context of parental/carer guidance, delivering the education curriculum or a therapeutic setting

  • treat a child unfavourably because of their disability, age, gender, race, culture, vulnerability, sexuality or ethnicity

  • communicate directly with a student through personal or private contact channels, including by social media, email, instant messaging, texting etc., except where that communication is reasonable in all the circumstances, related to school work or extra-curricular activities or where there is a safety concern or other urgent matter

  • photograph or video a child in a school environment except in accordance with school policy or where required for duty of care purposes

  • consume alcohol contrary to school policy or take illicit drugs under any circumstances in the school environment, or at other school events where students are present

Standard 4:

Frankston SDS acknowledges that training and education is important to ensure that everyone in our organisation understands that child safety is the responsibility of everyone.

  • All staff engaged in child-related work, including volunteers are required to hold a current Working With Children Check or hold Victorian Institute of Teaching (VIT) registration.

  • All future position descriptions will include the Child safe environments clause as provided in the Recruitment in School’s Guide and applicants will be informed of their role in implementing the school’s child safety policy.

  • Every effort will be made to establish the identity, credentials and history of applicants when recruiting and selecting staff.

  • Frankston SDS supports its staff and volunteers through ongoing supervision, to develop their skills to protect children from abuse.

  • New employees and volunteers are supervised regularly to ensure they understand Frankston SDS’ commitment to child safety and that everyone has a role to play in protecting children from abuse, as well as checking that their behaviour towards children is safe and appropriate.

  • Any inappropriate behaviour will be reported through the appropriate channels, including the Department of Health and Human Services, and Victoria Police in accordance with Mandatory Reporting guidelines.

  • When recruiting, assessing incidents and undertaking disciplinary action we will strive to be thorough, transparent and rely on evidence.

Standard 5

Frankston SDS takes all allegations and reports of abuse seriously and has practices in place to investigate thoroughly and quickly. Our staff and volunteers are trained to align their practice with DET Mandatory Reporting guidelines (see FSDS Mandatory Reporting Policy).

FSDS staff will respond to any reasonable suspicion that a child has been, or is at risk of being abused by following the Four Critical Actions for Schools: Responding to Incidents, Disclosures or Suspicions of Child Abuse as detailed by DET.

http://www.education.vic.gov.au/Documents/about/programs/health/protect/FourCriticalActions ChildAbuse.pdf

Where a belief has been formed that, while a child is not subject to abuse but there are significant concerns for his/her well-being, a report will be made to Child First.

Clear and comprehensive notes will be recorded on the Responding to Suspected Child Abuse template of all reports made to Child First or Child Protection. http://www.education.vic.gov.au/about/programs/health/protect/Pages/schcritical.aspx

All students for whom welfare concerns are raised will have a well-being/safety plan, (developed by the welfare team in consultation with leadership and the student’s teacher) and accurate records kept of its implementation.

Please note that reporting internally does not mean that mandatory reporting obligations have been met. The staff member who has formed a reasonable belief regarding child abuse or neglect must also report to DHHS Child Protection or Victoria Police if the child is in immediate risk of harm. Referrals will be made to other supporting agencies where appropriate.

Standard 6

FSDS takes a risk management approach to all school activities. In addition to general occupational health and safety risks, we will proactively identify and manage risks of abuse to our students, including Aboriginal and Torres Straight Islanders. We will continue to implement programs empowering them to recognise and avoid potential unsafe situations; use a school-wide approach to positive behaviour; and undertake risk assessments of activities and environments to identify risks to child safety. These risk assessments will include identification of safety issues relating to:

  • The differing age-range and abilities of students at FSDS.

  • The disproportionate number of adults involved in the lives of students with a disability compared to the rest of the community, and the potential opportunities for abuse this creates.

  • The ability of our students to make judgements about the safety/dangers of activities; the risks of their own and others’ behaviours; the environments they are in and the appropriateness of their social interactions with both familiar and unfamiliar people.

  • Specific risks associated with the FSDS environment, (for example, recreation areas, personal care facilities, sheds), school activities (excursions, camps, transport) personnel (staff, visitors, volunteers, contractors).

  • The safety of students who use social media, YouTube, videos/photography.

In addition:

  • All Risk Assessments will be communicated to staff, documented and recorded.

  • Strategies that mitigate the risk of abuse (for example, increase the likelihood of detection, remove triggers for inappropriate behaviour, reduce the permissibility of inappropriate behaviour) will be communicated to, and implemented by staff.

  • The effectiveness of the strategies will be monitored as part of the annual cycle of Risk Management assessment and communicated to School Council.

  • Where a risk assessment is rated as more than low, further risk mitigation strategies will be identified and implemented.
  • Training in FSDS child safety processes will be provided to all new, temporary and volunteer staff as part of their induction.

  • Awareness of child safety processes and procedures will be embedded in role descriptions and performance review processes.

At no time will staff:

  • Prohibit or discourage school staff from reporting an allegation of child abuse to an appropriate person external to the school.

  • State or imply that it is the victim’s responsibility to inform the police or other authorities of the allegation.

  • Require staff to make a judgement about the truth of the allegation of child abuse.

  • Prohibit staff from making records in relation to an allegation or disclosure of child abuse.

Standard 7

Frankston SDS acknowledges that empowering students to have a voice encourages engagement and supports the development of resilience and positive self-esteem. The school will continue to implement practices that develop trusting relationships and value students’ participation in decision-making.

  • The FSDS Policies and Procedures Welfare Manual outlines how the school community develops a positive school climate, and teaches students to manage their own behaviour in a respectful and positive way. It describes:
    • The mission and values of the school
    • The student engagement policy
    • The School-Wide Positive Behaviour program, including the FSDS rules and expectations of behaviour for all members of the school community
    • Consistent consequences for inappropriate behaviour
    • Processes for managing challenging behaviour
    • Processes for students and staff impacted by challenging behaviour
    • Processes for managing absenteeism
    • Guidelines for managing suspension and expulsion
    • Guidelines for supporting students whose welfare is at risk

  • The FSDS I Can Be Safe protective behaviours program incorporates:
    • Public and Private
    • Body awareness including personal hygiene
    • Managing emotions
    • Sexuality and respectful relationships

  • The Cyber Safety program teaches students safe use of digital technology and social media and outlines consequences for misuse:
    • Cyber Bullying Policy
    • Social Networking Policy
    • Inappropriate Content/Sexting Policy

  • The Welfare and Therapy teams support students and families to access services*; assist students to engage with and access the curriculum and provide counselling to students, parents and carers.

  • Student voice is encouraged through the FSDS house activities, encouraging team spirit and participation across age-groups.

  • The Student Representative Council encourages student leadership and participation in decision-making.

*Respite services, private therapists, funding applications for specific areas of need such as nappies, Department Health and Human Services, city councils and community centres, Child Protection, Child First, SECASA.

Appendix 2: Informing the School Community of the Standards

FSDS school leadership is required to inform the school community about their arrangements to meet the following safety standards set out in Ministerial Order No. 870. The school community is defined as:

  • The School Council
  • Staff
  • Parents/carers and families
  • Volunteers
  • Contractors
  • Visitors

Standard 1: Strategies to embed an organisational culture of child safety

  The school community will be informed of the strategies to embed a culture of safety at FSDS, the roles and responsibilities for achieving the strategies and how the strategies are being put into practice via:

  • The FSDS website
  • The fortnightly Newsletter
  • A standing item on meeting agendas as appropriate
  • Via involving community members in policy review of policy
  • The FSDS Information Manuals for staff, families and casual replacement staff

Standard 2&3: A Child Safety Policy of Commitment to Child Safety and a Code of Conduct that establishes clear expectations for appropriate behaviour with children

  FSDS school leadership will publish the school’s child safety policy and code of conduct on the school’s website and ensure the community is aware that:

  • Child safety is the responsibility of the whole school community.
  • FSDS has zero tolerance of any abuse of children.
  • Staff will receive training and support to carry out their responsibilities under the standards.
  • Volunteers will receive information about the school’s child safety policy and a copy of the code of conduct as part of their induction.
  • The FSDS Code of Conduct for Child Safety will be incorporated into the induction manual for staff, parents/carers and contractors working at the school.
  • A sign will be posted at the entrance to the school advertising FSDS as a child safe school, with zero tolerance of child abuse.

Standard 5: Processes for responding to and reporting suspected child abuse

  • The FSDS Mandatory Reporting Policy will be published on the school’s website and copies made available on request at the office.
How to enroll your child at Frankston SDS

How to enroll your child at Frankston SDS

Enrolment at Frankston SDS is based on specific eligibility criteria. Should you wish to discuss eligibility please feel free to contact the school. We look forward to your call.