At OLSH, we acknowledge and understand that student wellbeing is the responsibility of every person and is an integral aspect of student wellbeing. We aim to work collaboratively with parents, students and other community members to ensure a safe school environment, guided by Brisbane Catholic Education’s Student Protection policy and processes.
Please encourage your child to come and talk with the Principal, or the Leadership Team, class teacher or the designated Student Protection contacts if they are feeling unsafe at school. It is important that we develop in our children skills of awareness and empowerment so that they feel safe and secure.
Children might not always communicate how they are feeling therefore as a parent it is important to notice if they are not sleeping well, becoming extra nervous or withdrawn or become agitated easily. Your child’s safety is very important to us and we want to work in partnership to ensure that parents are aware of our policies and processes for student protection.
Outlined below is the process in place for OLSH as a school under the governance of Brisbane Catholic Education.
The first strategy to ensure students are safe in Catholic schools and Brisbane Catholic Education has mandated training all school staff must attend and revisit every year. This is conducted at the beginning of the year and all staff are informed of any changes in the law and relevant Act under which Student Protection falls. Staff members are made aware of their mandatory obligation and responsibility with regards to “reporting any reasonable suspicion that a student under 18 years attending the school is likely to be sexually abused by another person. This is regardless of who that person might be. Mandatory means “required by law”.
Once a report has been received by the school Principal the documentation is immediately reported in written form to the police and other relevant agencies. After the report is made to the relevant external agencies the involvement of the principal is reduced to a monitoring role and ensuring support for the student and family is available. It is not the job of the school or the principal to undertake an investigation or questioning. Our primary task is to report the matter to the authorities to have the matter attended to swiftly by the professionals.
Students know they can go to one of our school’s Student Protection Contacts with any concern about something happening at school or away from school. These staff members are: Petrea Rawlinson, Principal; Libby Banks, Assistant Principal; Trish Chandra, Guidance Counsellor; Sr Sue Walpole, Student Welfare Worker.
For further information about Brisbane Catholic Education’s Student Protection Policies and Processes, please see the following links:
BCE Student Protection
BCE Child and Youth Risk Management Strategy
OLSH Child and Youth Risk Management Strategy updated Aug 2018.pdf