Victoria amends Crimes Act sexual offence laws: What schools should know

On 1 July 2017, the Crimes Amendment (Sexual Offences) Act 2016 (Vic) (the Amending Act) takes effect to strengthen existing sexual offence laws to better protect children from abuse. The Act was passed in the Victorian Parliament in September 2016 and reforms more than 50 sexual offences in the Crimes Act 1958 (Vic) (Crimes Act). […]

Read More...

UK school student dies after anaphylactic shock: Staff only looked at care plans for excursions

A recent media report has revealed that a 14-year-old boy died after suffering from anaphylactic shock in reaction to the milk in his tandoori chicken lunch, provided by his London school while he was in detention. The inquest into his death heard that the teenager had a history of severe asthma and food allergies. The […]

Read More...

Two major privacy breaches in Victorian schools: PAW messages more relevant than ever

Just two weeks ago School Governance published three articles for Privacy Awareness Week (PAW) on the topic of trust, transparency and data security. Our most read article was New Mandatory Notification of Data Breaches – What does the scheme mean for schools? Australian Privacy Principle (APP) 11 (security of information) is the most relevant consideration […]

Read More...

Changes to the National Education Act: Simplified objectives and a focus on evidence-based results

The recent passing of the Australian Education Amendment Bill 2017 (the Bill) by the House of Representatives in Federal Parliament represents the culmination of the reforms to education funding, recently announced by Prime Minister Turnbull as part of the Budget 2017-18. Although the Bill must still pass the Senate to become law, it is interesting […]

Read More...

School discovers inappropriate material on former teacher’s computer: What’s on a hard drive?

Two Victorian non-government schools have been praised for their responses to the recent discovery of inappropriate material involving children on a teacher’s hard drive. The teacher in question has been charged and proceedings are due to commence in August.  The potential criminal actions by the teacher are fairly clear on the facts but his liability […]

Read More...

Report shows 46 NSW teachers dismissed due to misconduct offences

In 2016, 46 NSW teachers faced allegations of misconduct.  Last week, the NSW Department of Education (DET) published the Teacher Conduct and Performance report (the Report).  The Report details the number of government school teachers who have undertaken improvement plans, undergone disciplinary action or have been convicted due to misconduct allegations or criminal offences.   […]

Read More...

New Mandatory Notification of Data Breaches – What does the scheme mean for schools?

On 22 February 2018, changes to the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) (the Act) will take effect and a new Notifiable Data Breach (NDB) Scheme will be in force. This reform will affect the Privacy Programs of almost all non-government schools, and it is one of the most important reforms since the introduction of the 13 […]

Read More...

Can your school be trustworthy while also being transparent?

The theme of this year’s Privacy Awareness Week is ‘Trust and Transparency.’ Timothy Pilgrim, Commissioner of the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) stated that trust and transparency “speaks to the consumer and community trust that flows to organisations who handle personal information transparently, and with care, throughout the information life cycle. Privacy is rarely about secrecy, […]

Read More...

Whistleblowing Protection: Report shows schools need to improve

The release of a significant report Strength of Organisational Whistleblowing Process – Analysis From Australia (the Report) based on research by Griffith University’s Professor A J Brown is a reminder to schools of the importance of having a whistleblower policy and how it can enhance a school’s culture once implemented.  Nathan Luker, General Manager of  Your […]

Read More...

Boarding in schools: Emerging trends for 2017

School boarding houses and boarding facilities have changed dramatically for the better since I first did boarding house duty in the 1980s as a young teacher. I recall that although the meals were average, they were basically ‘hot and brown and plenty of it’, with limited choice available for students who had specific dietary requirements. […]

Read More...