Child Safety

The Victorian Government recently announced that the new Child Safe Standards came into effect on 1st July 2022, with 11 standards to replace the previous 7. These were introduced to further strengthen child safety across organisations, including schools. State schools have a moral and legal responsibility to create nurturing school environments where children and young people are respected, their voices heard, where they feel and that they are safe. The new standards recognise the critical importance of families and the broader school community in maintaining and promoting child safety and wellbeing.

Essendon PS is a child safe organisation which welcomes all children, young people and their families. We are committed to providing an environment where our students are safe, feel safe and where their participation is valued, their views respected, and their voices are heard about decisions that affect their lives.  The well-being of children in our care will always be our first priority and we have no tolerance for child abuse and take proactive steps to identify and manage any risks of harm to students in our school environments. 

A significant change to the new requirements is to ensure that all school community members are actively involved in protecting children and in keeping them safe. We promote positive relationships between students and adults and between students and their peers. These relationships are based on trust and respect.  There is particular attention given to the child safety needs of Aboriginal students, those from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, international students, students with disabilities, those unable to live at home, children and young people who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and gender diverse, intersex and queer (LGBTIQ+) and other students experiencing risk or vulnerability. Inappropriate or harmful behaviour targeting students based on these or other characteristics, such as racism or homophobia, are not tolerated at our school, and any instances identified will be addressed with appropriate consequences.

In light of the new standards Essendon Primary School has reviewed and updated our Child Safety and Well-being Policy and the Child Safety Code of Conduct and procedures to ensure they meet the requirements of the new standards. Our child safety and well-being policies outline the measures and strategies we have in place to support, promote and maintain the safety and well-being of our students:

Child safety is a shared responsibility. Every person involved in our school has an important role in promoting child safety and well-being and promptly raising any issues or concerns about a child’s safety. We are committed to regularly reviewing our child safe practices, and seeking input from our students, families, staff, and volunteers to inform our ongoing strategies. We intend the Essendon Primary School Child Safety and Wellbeing Policy to be a dynamic document that will be regularly reviewed to ensure it is working in practice and updated to accommodate changes in legislation or circumstance.  This policy applies to all staff, all students and all volunteers at all times.  It is intended to be reviewed each year to ensure all staff are familiar with the requirements.

Essendon Primary School is committed to continuous improvement of our child safety systems and practices. We intend the Essendon Primary School Child Safety Policy to be a dynamic document that will be regularly reviewed to ensure it is working in practice and updated to accommodate changes in legislation or circumstance.  As valuable partners in promoting and maintaining child safety and well-being at Essendon Primary School we welcome and encourage your feedback.  If you have any suggestions, comments or questions in relation to our child safe policies and practices, please contact Mary Fazzari (Acting Assistant Principal Well-being) or Christine Nash (Principal) by phone or the school email address .

The Essendon Primary School Child Safety Code of Conduct
The protection of children and young persons is the responsibility of all adult members of the Essendon Primary School community including staff, School Council members, parents, volunteers, contractors and visitors. We all share responsibility for promoting the well-being and safety of children and must behave appropriately towards them when they are in our actual or virtual presence. Our Child Safety Code of Conduct sets the boundaries and expectations for appropriate behaviours between adults and students. It also clarifies behaviours that are not acceptable in our physical and online environments and includes processes to report inappropriate behaviour.