Policy last updated
1 July 2022
- School councils
This policy supports schools to create and maintain a child safe organisation and protect students from all forms of abuse.
- outlines how the Victorian Child Safe Standards apply in schools.
- Schools can visit the for templates, guidance and checklists to support schools to create and maintain a child safe organisation where children and young people are protected from abuse and feel safe.
- If a school staff member holds a reasonable belief that a child has been abused or is at risk of being abused, please refer to and the .
The Child Safe Standards
The Child Safe Standards (the Standards) are compulsory minimum standards for all Victorian schools to ensure they are well prepared to keep children and young people safe and protect them from abuse. provides the framework for child safety in schools.
Victorian schools can continue to build on their existing child safety strategies, policies and practices to strengthen their culture of child safety and protect children and young people from abuse.
The Child Safe Standards include requirements to keep children, young people and students safe, including:
- involvement of families and students in child safety
- schools’ focus on safety for Aboriginal students
- better management of child abuse risks in online environments
- governance, systems and processes for keeping students safe.
The Victorian Registration and Qualifications Authority is responsible for regulating the compliance of schools with the Standards. Schools are required to comply with the Standards as part of the prescribed minimum standards for registration.
There are 11 Child Safe Standards:
- – Establish a culturally safe environment in which the diverse and unique identities and experiences of Aboriginal children and young people are respected and valued.
- – Ensure that child safety and wellbeing are embedded in school leadership, governance and culture.
- – Children and young people are empowered about their rights, participate in decisions affecting them and are taken seriously.
- – Families and communities are informed and involved in promoting child safety and wellbeing.
- – Equity is upheld and diverse needs are respected in policy and practice.
- – People working with children and young people are suitable and supported to reflect child safety and wellbeing values in practice.
- – Ensure that processes for complaints and concerns are child focused.
- – Staff and volunteers are equipped with the knowledge, skills and awareness to keep children and young people safe through ongoing education and training.
- – Physical and online environments promote safety and wellbeing while minimising the opportunity for children and young people to be harmed.
- - Implementation of the Child Safe Standards is regularly reviewed and improved.
- – Policies and procedures that document how schools are safe for children, young people and students.
What help is available?
Schools can visit:
- the for templates, guidance and checklists to support compliance with each Standard.
- the (staff login required) for templates policies to support compliance with the Standards.
Guidance, policies and templates
Other updated policy templates for schools are available through the (staff login required) – including bullying prevention, child safety responding and reporting obligations, complaints, digital learning, student wellbeing and engagement, supervision, visitors and volunteers.
Steps to implementation
Government schools can use this action list to implement the Standards:
To meet the Standards, schools should consult with families, students and the local community when developing policies and practices to address the Standards.
Schools must review their child safety and wellbeing policies:
- after any significant child safety incident
- at least once every 2 years.
Resources to support schools implement the Child Safe Standards.
Template policies and school documents
- (staff login required) — additional templates that schools can use to help them comply with the Child Safe Standards
Guidance for Child Safety Champions
School training resources
Reviewed 04 August 2020