Federal Government Responds to the Royal Commission’s Recommendations and Offers National Apology

On 13 June the Federal Government announced its response to the recommendations of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse (Royal Commission) and also announced a national apology the survivors, victims and families of institutional child sexual abuse to be delivered on 22 October to coincide with National Children’s Week (19-28 October). In a press conference Prime Minister Turnbull announced: the creation of a national office for child safety commencing on 1 July, the development of a Commonwealth child safety framework and the nationalisation of child safety checks. This significant response from the Federal Government comes as all states and territories except Western Australia have signed up to the national redress scheme for survivors, allowing the provision of compensation, counselling and personal apologies to abuse survivors.

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Effective Permission Slips: Part Two

Every school probably has a room somewhere where boxes of permission slips are stored. Mostly the slips contain the signature of a parent agreeing to allow the child to attend an excursion or activity. Unfortunately in most instances the box probably doesn’t contain the information that was on the rest of the note that went home which set out what the activity was and what the parent had agreed to.

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Significant New Child Protection Legal Reform Proposed in NSW: Schools Must Reduce or Remove the Risk of Child Abuse

The introduction of a new Bill in NSW Parliament proposing to significantly amend the Crimes Act 1900 NSW signals that the NSW Government is finally catching up to Victoria and other states in getting serious on child protection legal reform. Amongst other proposed changes are the creation of an offence of failing to reduce or remove the risk of child abuse and new grooming offences. If passed, these reforms will require organisations engaging in child related work to, at a minimum, update their child protection policies and procedures to comply with the new laws and, in further steps of good governance, provide serious motivation to adopt the NSW Principles for Child-Safe Organisations and the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse (the Royal Commission),10 Child Safe Standards. The introduction of the Bill before the Federal Government’s response to the Royal Commission is also timely.

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June 13: School Governance Weekly Wrap

AUSTRALIA Bank details, TFNs, personal details of job applicants potentially compromised in major National PageUp data breach According to the ABC News, PageUp, which boasts 2 million active users across 190 countries, posted a statement from chief executive Karen Cariss on its website, saying it had noticed “unusual activity” in its IT infrastructure on May 23. […]

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Effective Permission Slips: Part One

Every school probably has a room somewhere where boxes of permission slips are stored. Mostly the slips contain the signature of a parent agreeing to allow the child to attend an excursion or activity. Unfortunately in most instances the box probably doesn’t contain the information that was on the rest of the note that went home which set out what the activity was and what the parent had agreed to.

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Family Law and Shared Parental Responsibility: The Impact on Schools

The Australian Institute of Family Studies estimates that one third of marriages end in divorce and one in three children are born outside of traditional marriage. With education a long-term shared parental responsibility between separated parents, it is important for schools to understand and navigate the basic principles of family law when interacting with these families.

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Overseas Students: Extortion Attempts and What They Mean for Schools

With recent kidnaps and extortions of overseas students recently in the news, it is important for schools to understand how to manage critical incidents involving overseas students. Schools must take account of their special vulnerability in terms of trauma, especially the school’s responsibility for missing students, and have policies and procedures in place to protect them.

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June 6: School Governance Weekly Wrap

AUSTRALIA Catholic Church signs up for national redress scheme for victims of child sexual abuse, Salvation Army, Scouts, YMCA, Anglican Church also sign on to redress scheme ABC News reported on the Catholic Church announcing that it would sign up for the national redress scheme proposed by the Commonwealth Government for victims of child sexual abuse. […]

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