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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: Week 5 Hansard (25 May) . . Page.. 2246..


Students-suspension and expulsion

(Question No 1467)

Mr Pratt asked the Minister for Education, Youth and Family Services, upon notice, on 1 April 2004:

(1) In the (a) 2003, (b) 2002 and (c) 2001 calendar years, how many ACT government school students were (i) suspended and (ii) expelled;

(2) How many ACT government school students have been (a) suspended and (b) expelled to date in 2004;

(3) What are some of the reasons that students have been (a) suspended and (b) expelled;

(4) What guidelines or rules are followed by teachers and principals in making a decision to (a) suspend and (b) expel a student;

(5) When a student is suspended or expelled is there a requirement of the Department to ensure that student returns to some form of education when they have not reached the age of 16;

(6) Have these guidelines been changed or reviewed in recent times;

(7) Is there a need to review or change the guidelines;

(8) What is being done in Government schools to avoid suspending or expelling a school student and ensuring they achieve good educational outcomes.

Ms Gallagher: The answer to Mr Pratt's question is:

(1)

The number of ACT government school students suspended in:

(a)

2003 was 1125

(b)

2002 was 1009

(c)

2001 was 986

No students have been expelled from ACT government schools during this period.

(2) The number of ACT government school students suspended to 31 March 2004 is 346. No students have been expelled this year.

(3)

Suspension and/or recommended transfer will be for behaviour where:

(a)

the student shows persistent and wilful non-compliance;

(b)

the student has acted in a way which threatens the good order of the school or the safety or well-being of a student or member of staff or exhibits behaviour that is disruptive to the student's own learning and/or other students' learning;

(c)

the student has threatened or perpetrated violence;

(d)

the school has sound reason to believe that the student may have committed offences against Commonwealth or ACT laws.

(4) DEYFS provides guidelines and mandatory procedures which are followed by teachers and principals in making decisions to suspend students. This information is available on the DEYFS website.


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