North-Eastern Montessori School is committed to promoting and protecting at all times the best interests of children involved in its programs.
All children, regardless of their gender, race, religious beliefs, age, disability, sexual orientation, or family or social background, have equal rights to protection from abuse.
North-Eastern has zero tolerance for child abuse. All staff and volunteers working at North-Eastern are responsible for the care and protection of the children within our care and reporting information about suspected child abuse.
Child safety is a shared responsibility between North-Eastern’s employees, workers, contractors, associates, and members of the School community.
North-Eastern will consider the opinions of children and use their opinions to develop child safety policies.
North-Eastern supports and respects all children, staff and volunteers. The School is committed to the cultural safety of Aboriginal children, and those from culturally and/or linguistically diverse backgrounds, and to providing a safe environment for children living with a disability. We support children who disclose child abuse or are affected by suspected child abuse.
Every person at North-Eastern has a responsibility to understand the important and specific role he/she plays individually and collectively to ensure that the wellbeing and safety of all children and young people is at the forefront of all they do and every decision they make.
“Every child has the right to live a full and productive life. It is up to all of us to ensure our children grow up in environments that build confidence, friendship, security and happiness, irrespective of a person’s family circumstances and background” (Protecting the safety and wellbeing of children and young people – refer to Sources). The protection of children, one of the most vulnerable groups in society, is a shared community responsibility and involves ensuring that all children are safe, their needs are met and the possibility of child abuse is minimised.
In its planning, decision-making and operations North-Eastern will:
- Take a preventative, proactive and participatory approach to child safety;
- Value and empower children to participate in decisions which affect their lives;
- Foster a culture of openness that supports all persons to safely disclose risks of harm to children;
- Respect diversity in cultures and child rearing practices while keeping child safety paramount;
- Provide written guidance on appropriate conduct and behaviour towards children (see Interactions with Children Policy);
- Engage only the most suitable people to work with children and have high quality staff and volunteer supervision and professional development;
- Ensure children know who to talk with if they are worried or are feeling unsafe, and that they are comfortable and encouraged to raise such issues;
- Report suspected abuse, neglect or mistreatment promptly to the appropriate authorities;
- Share information appropriately and lawfully with other organisations where the safety and wellbeing of children is at risk; and
- Value the input of and communicate regularly with families and carers.