Child Protection

The Catholic Schools Office promotes an absolute commitment to the safety, welfare and wellbeing of all children, particularly those attending the Catholic schools of the Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle.

Diocesan schools comply with a range of state legislation designed to protect children, including:

  • The Children and Young Persons (Care and Protection) Act 1998
  • The Ombudsman Act 1974 (Part 3A)
  • The Commission for Children and Young People Act 1998 and the Child Protection (Working with Children) Act 2012

The Office of Safeguarding is the Diocesan Child Protection Unit, which oversees child protection practices in all Catholic schools in the Diocese and provides a range of preventative services and responds to allegations of abuse.

 

Prevention in Diocesan Schools

Any person who is the preferred candidate for employment in CSO schools is required to undertake a pre-employment screening process known as the Working with Children Background Check.

Any volunteer who is engaging in an activity with children in school, during which the volunteer may be unsupervised at any time, is required to make a statutory declaration known as the Student/Volunteer Declaration.

For further information relating to Child Protection, you can contact the Office of Safeguarding on 02 4979 1390.

All students have the right to be safe at school.  If a student has received or observed inappropriate behaviour displayed toward them or others, they may report this to their Wellbeing and Engagement leader, Assistant Principal, Head of Campus or Principal.

All complaints are treated very seriously and will be evaluated and investigated.  Complaints may be made verbally or in writing.

 

Corporal Punishment

The College does not use or support the use of corporal punishment.

 

Rights of the Child

As with all peoples, children have human rights across the full spectrum of civil, cultural, economic, political and social rights.

Because children are recognised as having particular inherent needs and dependencies, they also have particular rights. 

Both the Commonwealth of Australia and the Vatican (Holy See) ratified the Convention on the Rights of the Child in November 1990, this is the central international instrument that underpins both Australia’s and the Church’s approach to safeguarding children.

The Australian Human Rights Commission’s child friendly summary of children’s rights state that children have the right to:

  • be treated fairly no matter what
  • have a say about decisions affecting them
  • live and grow up healthy
  • have people do what is best for them
  • know who they are and where they come from
  • believe what they want
  • privacy
  • find out information and express themselves
  • be safe
  • be cared for and have a home
  • education, play and cultural activities
  • help and protection if they need it.

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