Book a Tour Book a Tour Enrol Online Enrol Online Prospectus Prospectus

Prevention of Child Abuse Policy

Updated May 2023

Schools and their communities have a vital role in supporting children and their families and in protecting students who may be at risk of harm due to neglect or child abuse, especially sexual abuse. This policy, which supports the 2014 and 2015 amendments to the Crimes Act 1958 (Vic) as well as Ministerial Order 1359, is designed to ensure reasonable steps are taken so that students are safe from sexual and other forms of child abuse. 

Every child and young person studying at Ivanhoe Girls’ Grammar School (“the School”) has a right to be safe. As such, the School also recognises its pastoral, moral and legal responsibility to create a nurturing school environment where children and young people are respected, valued and safe. Consequently, the School will strive for continual improvement that is responsive to emerging thinking, evidence and practice, so as to reduce the possibility of inappropriate behaviour that may compromise child safety or student wellbeing from occurring in the first place.

Additionally, the School recognises its legal responsibilities with regard to responding to child abuse. 

This Policy seeks to outline many of the ways in which the processes, procedures and activities at the School aim to empower our students and work to prevent the risk of child abuse.


In order to fulfil its obligations regarding child safety and student wellbeing, the School makes the following commitments consistent with the above statement.


Every person associated with Ivanhoe Girls’ has a responsibility to understand and to ensure that the wellbeing and safety of all children and young people is of paramount concern. In order to create a school environment that promotes child safety and wellbeing, Ivanhoe Girls’ will engage actively with the School Community, including families and volunteers. The process associated with connecting with all members of the School Community will be marked by collaboration, vigilance and proactive approaches across policies, procedures, curriculum and practices. 

To support the combined effort to reduce the risk of child abuse, this Prevention of Child Abuse Policy is available to staff, parents, students and the School Community via the School’s intranet, hive. Additionally, relevant aspects of this Policy will be raised at staff and student meetings and highlighted in some communications with the School community, such as in Newsletters. 


The School will ensure children and young people are engaged and are active participants in child safety and student wellbeing processes, particularly those that have an impact on their personal safety and wellbeing. This means that the views of children and young people are taken seriously, and their concerns are addressed in a just and timely manner. Children and young people will also be empowered with the necessary education, including skills and knowledge, to understand and maintain their personal safety and wellbeing.

Implementing effective risk-management

The School will systematically identify and assess risks to child safety and student wellbeing and will eliminate, where practicable, or otherwise, reduce the potential risk of all sources of harm. This effective risk management will be embedded in school life through policies, procedures and practices.

Employment decisions

The School will fervently strive to use best practice standards in the recruitment of highly competent and professional staff who are committed to maintaining the safety of all students. 

Safe recruitment practices will be assisted by ensuring all staff and volunteers have active Victorian Institute of Teaching registration and/or a Working with Children Check. All other recruitment practices will also be in line with current legislation. 

The high-quality of staff appointments will continually be upheld through employment and staff review processes and practices. 

Policies and Procedure

The School will have policies and procedures in place to demonstrate its commitment to child safety. These policies and procedures will:

  • ensure Ivanhoe Girls’ staff and other school personnel, including volunteers, behave in a manner consistent with the Policy Statement of this Policy; 
  • enable Ivanhoe Girls’ parents and students to understand, identify, discuss and report child safety and reportable conduct concerns;
  • enable Ivanhoe Girls’ staff to respond to and report child abuse and reportable conduct concerns in accordance with their legal obligations and the School’s policies and procedures, as outlined in the Responding to Child Abuse Policy; 
  • ensure support or assistance is provided to children who disclose child abuse or reportable conduct concerns, or who are otherwise linked to suspected child abuse or reportable conduct; and
  • ensure conflicts of interest are appropriately managed when concerns or complaints are made against Ivanhoe Girls’ staff or other personnel.

The School will ensure that staff and other personnel receive appropriate induction and ongoing professional learning in relation to child safety and student wellbeing matters, including compliance with their legal obligations and the School’s policies and procedures


Appropriate confidentiality will be maintained at all times when dealing with child safety and student wellbeing matters, with information only being provided to those who have a right or need to know. 

To support the appropriate confidentiality of all members of the School Community, all documentation regarding allegations of child abuse, including:

  • the initial incident report;
  • the reporting to relevant authorities;
  • reports of investigations by the School; and
  • any other relevant documentation

will be stored confidentially and securely by the School’s ROC system at a Level 3 or above file for the student/staff member. As such records are reasonably likely to be required for current or future legal proceedings, they will be retained permanently and will not be disposed or destroyed as per the Public Record Office Victoria’s Creating, Managing & Retaining Records for Current or Future Child Sexual Abuse Allegations.

Compliance and Monitoring

The School will stay up to date on legislation relating to child safety matters and will meet its legislative obligations. 

The members of the School’s Executive Team will continually monitor the School’s adherence to relevant legislation and to this Prevention of Child Abuse Policy.


The School will communicate its policies and procedures regarding child safety and student wellbeing matters to staff, students, parents and the wider school community. Communication of its policies and procedures will be conducted during the recruitment process, induction process and throughout ongoing professional development opportunities for staff. Families and the wider School Community will also receive information via the School’s website, hive and notifications, Newsletters and other published communications.

Child Safety Officers

The School has appointed the following Child Safety Officers to assist all members of the School Community, including students, staff, Board Members, contractors and volunteers with any child safety concerns. Ivanhoe Girls’ Child Safety Officers are:

  • Director of the ELC
  • Head of Junior School
  • Director of Curriculum, Learning and Innovation (JS)
  • Deputy Principal / Head of Senior School
  • Director of Student Wellbeing
  • School Counsellors (Registered psychologists) 

CSOs are available to listen, appropriately discuss and clarify issues concerning individual staff, students or families in relation to child safety and student wellbeing matters. All CSOs may be contacted through the School’s telephone 9490 6222 or email