Child Safety Code of Conduct

A Child Safety Code of Conduct lists behaviours that are acceptable and those that are unacceptable. It provides a high-level statement of professional boundaries, ethical behaviour and acceptable and unacceptable relationships. For more detailed guidance refer to the College's Staff and Student Professional Boundaries policy.

When individuals are clear about behavioural expectations, they are much more likely to act appropriately with each other and with children. When everyone is educated about the Code of Conduct and the reasons it is so important to uphold, the College environment becomes much more transparent and people are accountable for their behaviour. Above all, a Child Safety Code of Conduct helps to protect children from harm. 

The Child Protection Code of Conduct applies to:

  • all staff members, including non-teaching staff and temporary or casual staff;
  • Volunteers;
  • students;
  • parents and carers;
  • Third Party Contractors and service providers (including External Education Providers);
  • members of the College Board;
  • teaching students on placement at the College; and
  • visitors.

The Code is made available to all staff, volunteers, families and students via our public website and staff intranet. A PDF version of our Child Safety Code of Conduct is available here.

The following is a Child Protection and Safety Policy that meets the guidelines set out in Standard 3 of the Victorian Child Safe Standards.

Our Child Safety Code Of Conduct

These Guidelines need to be read in conjunction with the Victorian Teaching Profession Code of Conduct. This can be accessed at: http://www.vit.vic.edu.au/professional-responsibilities/conduct-and-ethics

This Child Safety Code of Conduct outlines appropriate standards of behaviour for all adults towards students. The Code serves to protect students, reduce any opportunities for abuse or harm to occur, and promote child safety in the College environment. It provides guidance on how to best support students and how to avoid or better manage difficult situations. Where a staff member breaches the Code, Xavier College may take disciplinary action, including in the case of serious breaches, summary dismissal. The College revises the Code annually.

Xavier College has the following expectations of behaviours and boundaries for all adults interacting with students within our College community. This includes all teaching staff, general staff, Board members, volunteers (direct and indirect), third party contractors, external education providers and parents/carers.

The College Board has endorsed this Child Safety Code of Conduct. 

DO:

  • Behave as a positive role model to students.
  • Promote the safety, welfare and wellbeing of students.
  • Be vigilant and proactive with regard to student safety and child protection issues. 
  • Provide age appropriate supervision for students.
  • Comply with guidelines published by the College with respect to child protection.
  • Treat all students with respect.
  • Promote the safety, participation and empowerment of students with a disability.
  • Promote the cultural safety, participation and empowerment of linguistically and culturally diverse students.
  • Use positive and affirming language towards students.
  • Encourage students to ‘have a say’ and then listen to them with respect. 
  • Respect cultural, religious and political differences.
  • Help provide an open, safe and supportive environment for all students to interact, and socialise.
  • Intervene when students are engaging in inappropriate bullying behaviour towards others or acting in a humiliating or vilifying way.
  • Report any breaches of this Child Safety Code of Conduct.
  • Report concerns about child safety to one of the College’s Child Safety Leads and ensure that your legal obligations to report allegations externally are met.
  • Where an allegation of child abuse is made, ensure as quickly as possible that the student involved is safe.
  • Call the Police on 000 if you have immediate concerns for a student's safety. 
  • Respect the privacy of students and their families and only disclose information to people who have a need to know.

DO NOT:

  • Engage in any form of inappropriate behaviour towards students or expose students to such behaviour.
  • Use prejudice, oppressive behaviour or inappropriate language with students.
  • Engage in inappropriate open discussions of an adult nature in the presence of students.
  • Engage in any form of sexual conduct with a student including making sexually suggestive comments and sharing sexually suggestive material.
  • Engage in inappropriate or unnecessary physical conduct or behaviours including doing things of a personal nature that a student can do for themselves, such as toileting or changing clothes.
  • Engage in any form of physical violence towards a student including inappropriately rough physical play.
  • Use physical means or corporal punishment to discipline or control a student.
  • Engage in any form of inappropriate behaviour that has the potential to cause a student serious emotional or psychological harm.
  • Develop ‘special’ relationships with students that could be seen as favouritism (for example, the offering of gifts or special treatment for specific students).
  • Engage in undisclosed private meetings with a student that is not your own child. 
  • Engage in meetings with a child that is not your own, outside of school hours and without permission from the College and the child’s parent.
  • Engage in inappropriate personal communications with a student through any medium, including any online contact or interactions with a student.
  • Take or publish (including online) photos, movies or recordings of a student without parental/carer consent.
  • Post online any information, without parent / carer consent, about a student that may identify them such as their: full name; age; e-mail address; telephone number; residence; school; or details of a club or group they may attend.
  • Ignore or disregard any suspected or disclosed child abuse.

Our Child Protection Program includes a Staff and Student Professional Boundaries Policy that provides detailed guidance for all staff and Volunteers on how to maintain professional boundaries between students and adults at Xavier College. 

Report Any Concerns

The Program also includes information for members of the College Board, staff and Direct Contact Volunteers as to how to identify key risk indicators of child abuse and how to report child abuse concerns to one of our College's nominated Child Safety Leads. 

It also contains detailed procedures with respect to the reporting of child abuse incidents to relevant authorities. 

Third Party Contractors, External Education Providers, Indirect Contact Volunteers, students, parents or other community members who have concerns that a child may be subject to abuse are asked to contact one of the College's Child Safety Leads.

Communications will be treated confidentially on a ‘need to know basis’. 

Whenever there are concerns that a child is in immediate danger, the Police should be contacted on 000.