New WWCC Scheme in SA gets closer to taking effect

The release of the draft Child Safety (Prohibited Persons) Regulations 2018 indicates that a new SA Working with Children Checks scheme is close to being finalised. The Draft Regulations outline exclusions for prohibited persons, prescribed positions, child related work and employer obligations in regards to the new scheme.

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New laws on bullying: Schools under increased pressure to do more

Even if you subscribe to the controversial school of thought that bullying is an ‘inevitable’ interaction, that it is ‘part of growing up’ and ‘builds character’, it is uncontested that being bullied, particularly at a young age, can have very serious consequences for a child’s wellbeing, development and overall mental health. It is hence little wonder that bullying and harassment are taken very seriously by schools.

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Tragic student death prompts Senate inquiry into the adequacy of cyber bullying laws

The Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs References Committee (the Committee) is holding a public inquiry into the effectiveness of existing cyber bullying laws. The Committee is currently accepting submissions from the public on its terms of reference until 13 October 2017 and will report its findings by 29 November 2017.

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South Australia’s revolutionary approach to child abuse and forced marriage

As reported in the news, a Melbourne man is set to be the first person convicted under Federal forced marriage laws despite the practice being criminalised in 2013. Because the laws make it extremely difficult to get a conviction (as they generally rely on victims testifying), South Australia has taken an unprecedented step of introducing a child marriage offence as part of its new raft of child protection changes.

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SA Registration Standards come into effect: What will this mean for schools?

The first half of 2017 has been marked by multiple ongoing overhauls to school registration systems. So far this year, the Western Australian Standards for Non-Government Schools took effect, key changes to the NSW School Registration Manuals and TAA Guidelines were introduced, and on 25 June the Education and Training Reform Regulations 2017 (Vic) took effect, amending the minimum standards which Victorian schools must satisfy to be registered.  The new Education Act 2016 (Tas) commenced on 10 July and changes will affect the registration of Tasmanian system and individual schools.

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Child Protection Overhaul: another piece of SA’s new child protection framework finalised 

A few months ago, School Governance reported on the introduction of the Children and Young People (Safety) Bill 2017 (the Bill) into the South Australian Parliament. After nearly four months of intense debate in both the House of Assembly and the Legislative Council, the oft-criticised Bill passed the Legislative Assembly in the early hours of 6 July.  According to Attorney-General John Rau: “These laws mean greater protection for children, a stronger voice for foster carers and a clear direction on how government agencies must act when a child is at risk.”

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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 Australian Privacy Principles (APPs) in 2014.

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South Australia finalises its Registration Standards: Key issues for schools

In a previous School Governance article, we reported on the introduction of draft Standards for Registration and Review of Registration of Schools in South Australia (the Standards) by the Education and Early Childhood Services Registration and Standards Board of SA (the Board). The Standards were finalised on 5 April, and all new or existing schools will be assessed against them from 1 July.

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South Australia to replace Child Protection Act: which jurisdiction will be next?

In the final reporting year of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse (the Commission), South Australia (SA) has tabled a Bill to completely replace its current Child Protection legislation (the Child Protection Act 1993 (SA) (the Act) will be repealed) and potentially overhaul its system for child development and welfare.

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