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Independent Schools Queensland Child Protection – Recent Changes November 2014.

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Presentation on theme: "Independent Schools Queensland Child Protection – Recent Changes November 2014."— Presentation transcript:

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2 Independent Schools Queensland Child Protection – Recent Changes November 2014

3 Why have things changed? The Taking Responsibility: A Roadmap for Queensland Child Protection report (known as the Carmody Report) of June 2013 Amendment of the Child Protection Act 1999 (“the CPA”)Child Protection Act 1999 Amendment of the Education (Accreditation of Non-State Schools) Regulations 2001 (the “Accreditation Regulations”)Education (Accreditation of Non-State Schools) Regulations 2001

4 What are the key changes? Key changes to the CPA: 1.Teachers now named as mandatory reporters of “reportable suspicions” to Child Safety 2.New Community-Based Intake and Referral service called “Family and Child Connect” Key changes to the Accreditation Regulations: 3.Makes reporting obligations more consistent Note: see the Fact Sheet provided by ISQ for more information on the changes

5 What’s staying the same? The requirements under the Education (General Provisions) Act 2006 (“the EGPA”) are not changingEducation (General Provisions) Act 2006 –Protection from liability still exists –Reporters’ confidentiality is still protected

6 Mandatory Reporting - what is a reportable suspicion? As mandatory reporters, teachers must report “reportable suspicions” of physical and sexual abuse to Child Safety What is a “reportable suspicion”?

7 Mandatory Reporting – breaking it down Breaking down the definition of a reportable suspicion: Formed in the course of the teacher’s employment Relates to significant harm –The significant harm must be caused by sexual and physical abuse only The child may not have a parent willing and able to protect them from the harm Reported via the Principal to Child Safety Note: see the Fact Sheet provided by ISQ for more definitions

8 Accreditation Regulations – what to report? Previously – all staff report all types of harm (other than sexual) via the Principal to Police or Child Safety Now – all staff report all types of harm (other than sexual), that are significant and where the child may not have a parent willing and able to protect them, via the Principal to Child Safety

9 Family and Child Connect - what is it and when to use it? Family and Child Connect is a Community-Based Intake and Referral service. It aims to link vulnerable children and their families with appropriate local support services. Use when – You have concerns that are not of a level requiring a report to Child Safety; or You believe that a student is likely to become in need of protection if no preventative support is provided Refer to Family and Child Connect with the family’s consent Note: see the related Fact Sheet provided by ISQ

10 So what does all this mean for me at my school? Summary of reporting harm: WhoWhat abuseTestReport toLegislationStatus All staffSexual Awareness or a reasonable suspicion Sexually abused or likely to be sexually abused Principal, through to Police EGPAUnchanged Teacher Sexual and physical Significant harm Parent willing and able Principal, through to Child Safety CPANew All staff Physical, psychological, emotional, neglect, exploitation Significant harm Parent willing and able Principal, through to Child Safety Accreditation Regulations Amended All staffAny Not of a level that is otherwise reportable to Child Safety, refer with consent Principal, through to CBIR CPANew PrincipalAny Not of a level that is otherwise reportable to Child Safety, refer without consent CBIRCPANew Any member of the public AnySignificant harm Parent willing and able Child SafetyCPAUnchanged

11 Child Protection Guide Resource Child Safety has developed a Queensland Child Protection Guide, known as the CPGQueensland Child Protection Guide The CPG is an online decision support tool that has been designed for professionals who hold concerns about children

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13 ISQ Resources ISQ has developed: Child Protection Policy Child Protection Procedure Fact Sheet Fact Sheets Decision trees Table summarising the reporting of harm Scenario activities Template forms Child Protection – Reporting Sexual Abuse under the EGPA presentation See:

14 Scenario 1 Evan hasn’t brought food or money for lunch on 11 days in the last 5 weeks. Evan isn’t thin and doesn’t talk about being hungry. The school has contacted Evan’s mother who said she thought she had given Evan his lunch every day but sometimes she must forget. Evan’s mother tries hard and Evan’s father is supportive but not always able to assist due to work. The family isn’t currently getting any support. Evan’s mother has said that she would like some help. Question – how would your decision regarding what action to take change if the parents were not concerned about the situation and were not receptive to support or advice?

15 Scenario 2 Mia has come to school complaining of a sore arm and is holding her arm in an odd position. There is some bruising on Mia’s arm around her wrist and Mia flinched when she bumped the arm. Mia didn’t provide a reason for her sore arm. A staff member overheard Mia telling her friends that she got into a fight with her father. Mia lives with her mother and father. The school has tried to contact the parents but were not able to speak with them. Question – would your decision regarding what action to take differ under the old reporting requirements compared to now?

16 Questions? Comments? School Services Independent Schools Queensland P: E:


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