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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 11 Hansard (Thursday, 11 November 2021) . . Page.. 3309 ..


The ACT government continues to actively participate in the establishment and implementation of the national child protection information-sharing system, Connect 4 Safety. Five jurisdictions, including the ACT, are already providing data on a regular basis. Work is also progressing in partnership with all states and territories and the commonwealth government to consider next steps to develop a national child safety and wellbeing information-sharing scheme.

In relation to education matters, the ACT government recognises that school is a protective factor for at-risk children. The ACT government supports national initiatives to improve information sharing across jurisdictions which, once adopted, will better protect students from being at risk of “disappearing” from education systems across Australia.

The ACT government has responded to the Glanfield report by making changes to the Education Act 2004. The Education Directorate, ACT public schools and non-government education providers work closely to support continued improvements to practices that relate to enrolment and attendance of students. The Education Directorate is reviewing the policy and procedures that apply to the management and monitoring of student enrolments and attendance. This information will be shared with all school sectors so that we can continue to build on our collaborative efforts to support student wellbeing, engagement and enrolment in approved forms of education.

A student attendance team has been established to support management of student engagement in approved forms of education. This team supports ACT public schools in monitoring and managing enrolment and attendance at school, as well as case management support to other cross-sector education providers where required.

ACT public schools continue to provide a range of supports to students to assist with their wellbeing and interventions which contribute to better understanding of student circumstances. These include access to school psychologists, social workers and youth workers.

ACT public colleges recently engaged in a pilot where legal liaison officers attended school sites to provide advice and referral support to students and families. Legal liaison officers are now funded for ACT public colleges on a recurring basis. Teachers are trained to identify students experiencing complex home lives and identify ways for them to seek and receive support. All ACT public school teachers participate in mandatory reporting training and are reminded of their obligations to report suspected circumstances of child abuse and neglect, and the Education Directorate continues to work closely with CYPS and with their liaison officer.

In relation to theme 4, increased funding to meet demand and enhance partnerships, the ACT government commits to undertake further design work to determine the best approach to deliver improved responses and practice to the ACT community. This design work will consider the child protection system holistically and the resources and capability required to deliver these outcomes.

The ACT government acknowledges the considerable workload of CYPS staff due to the increasing demand and complexity of families being reported to CYPS. As


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