School operations

Personal Hygiene

Including hand hygiene, menstrual hygiene, and period products in schools

1. Information on the Free Period Products in all Government Schools Initiative

The Victorian Government began providing free period products in every government school in Term 3, 2019 because access to period products shouldn’t be a barrier to students getting the most out of their education.

The government’s commitment to providing free pads and tampons in all government primary, secondary and specialist schools:

  • provides students with the confidence that there will always be period products available at school
  • relieves students of the stigma, anxiety and discomfort that can be associated with menstruation and its management so they can focus on their studies
  • eases the cost of living for families.

Period products are a necessity, not a luxury, and the Free Period Products in all Government Schools Initiative will support tens of thousands of students across the state.

Lack of easy access to pads and tampons can negatively impact on students' participation in sport and everyday school activities. Students may not be able to concentrate in class, feel comfortable or feel confident doing physical activity, or they may miss school altogether.

Using inappropriate products, or using products for too long, carries health risks as practices related to poor menstrual hygiene can lead to toxic shock syndrome and reproductive tract infections.

By making period products freely available at school, we are one step closer to educational equality.

Schools may request replenishment of their period product dispensers outside their usual schedule, additional dispensers, replacement of dispensers, and other services by filling out this online formExternal Link . Essity Australasia, the department’s supplier of period products and dispensers, will respond to these requests.

Guidance chapter with information on the Free Period Products in all Government Schools Initiative

Reviewed 26 April 2023

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