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Police Checks and Working with Children Checks for Students Policy and Procedures

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Section 1 - Summary

(1) To articulate the responsibility of the University to inform prospective and enrolled students of the requirement for satisfactory police checks and/or working with children checks

  1. for industry experience in courses where industry experience is a requisite for the award and;
  2. for other non-academic university-sponsored activities that they may participate in.

(2) To outline the support the University provides students who require satisfactory police checks and/or working with children checks.

(3) To outline the limits of the University's responsibility vis a vis the police check and working with children check requirements.

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Section 2 - Accountability

Accountable / Responsible Officer

Role

Accountable Officer Pro Vice-Chancellor, Students
Responsible Officer Pro Vice-Chancellor, Students

Key Decision-making powers under the Policy (if applicable)

Delegated) Power

Role

n/a  
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Section 3 - Scope

(4) The Policy will apply to enrolled and prospective students:

  1. in courses that include, as part of the requirements for the awarding of a Victoria University award, industry placements in agencies or workplaces that require satisfactory police checks and/or working with children checks or
  2. Participate in university-sponsored activities that may require a police check and/or a working with children check.

(5) The Policy will also apply to staff who teach and administer these courses.

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Section 4 - Definitions

(6) Industry Experience

(7) Police Check

(8) Working with Children Check

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Section 5 - Policy Statement/Regulation

Background

(9) Federal and State government legislation has made it mandatory for organisations:

  1. providing services such as childcare, aged care, disability care, nursing, teaching and paramedic support, or where there is access to dangerous materials, such as drugs of addiction, to require remunerated and non-remunerated employees to provide satisfactory police record checks to the employer; and 
  2. providing services to persons under 18 years of age to provide satisfactory working with children checks to the employer.

(10) Many of the employer organisations and agencies that provide industry experience for Victoria University students have these requirements.

(11) The requirement for a satisfactory police check and/or working with children check for industry experience is not a University requirement, but is in many cases essential for industry experience, which in turn may be a core requisite for a Victoria University award.

(12) Students undertaking university sponsored non-academic activities that may involve contact with the persons who are elderly, have a disability or are under 18 years of age may be required to provide a satisfactory police check and/or working with children check.

Principles

(13) The requirement for police checks and/or working with children checks for industry experience is not a University requirement and the University carries no responsibility to the student or industry experience employer to provide a satisfactory police check and/or working with children check for any student.

(14) The University carries no responsibility for the fairness of the Police process or the working with children check process for the potential risk that any employer takes by engaging a Victoria University student.

(15) It is the responsibility of the student to determine general industry requirements for a police check and/or working with children check and the specific requirements of the enterprise in which the industry experience is sought and all associated arrangements.

(16) The staff of the University may facilitate the administrative arrangements pertaining to the lodging of a request for a police check and/or working with children check for industry experience. This does not transfer responsibility for securing a satisfactory police check record and/or working with children from the student to the University.

(17) The University has a responsibility to inform prospective students and enrolled students:

  1. of the requirement for satisfactory police check and/or working with children check in any University course that has such a requirement;
  2. that failure to obtain a satisfactory police check and/or working with children check will impact on the likelihood of gaining the award in the first instance;
  3. that failure to obtain a satisfactory police check and/or working with children check will impact on the likelihood of gaining employment in the industry in the longer term.

(18) The requirement for satisfactory police checks and/or working with children checks for industry experience is not a University requirement and therefore shall not be utilised as an entry criterion for any Victoria University course.

(19) Business units sponsoring non-academic activities have a responsibility to inform students intending to participate, University requirements for providing a satisfactory police check and/or working with children check.

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Section 6 - Procedures

(20) These procedures are to be applied according to the principles of this Policy.

(21) The responsibility for managing the police check and/or working with children check process and ensuring that a satisfactory police check record and/or working with children check is made available to an employer providing industry experience to a Victoria University student lies with the student. This includes:

  1. the responsibility to become acquainted with the specific industry requirements for experience in industry;
  2. the responsibility to ascertain the period for which an individual Police check record and/or working with children check is valid;
  3. the responsibility for initiating the request to the Police or the Department of Justice and Community Safety;
  4. the responsibility for any associated fees;
  5. the responsibility to make sure the police check record and/or working with children check is forwarded to the student's address.

(22) The University takes no responsibility for a student's police record and/or working with children check in regard to the employer who offers work experience, particularly as the University does not know the content of any of the student's police record and/or working with children check.

(23) Individual teaching areas may assist students and employer institutions with some of the administration associated with police checks and/or working with children checks; for example, where this facilitates the processing of a large number of students and/or where students may receive fee discounts by being identified as students to the Police.

(24) Teaching areas will disseminate information to prospective students about the requirement for satisfactory police checks and/or working with children checks related to any award that has a mandatory industry experience component. The information will be available on the web, in hard copy information documents and in briefings to schools.

(25) Teaching areas will inform enrolling students at the time of enrolment about the requirement for satisfactory police checks and/or working with children checks related to any University award that has a mandatory industry experience component.

(26) Teaching areas will inform prospective, enrolling and enrolled students in courses that have a mandatory industry experience component that failure to obtain a satisfactory police check and/or working with children checks will impact negatively on the likelihood of gaining the Victoria University award in the first instance and gaining employment in the industry in the longer term.

(27) In cases where an enrolled student of the University fails to secure a satisfactory police check and/or working with children check and consequently is unlikely to gain the University award for which the student is studying, the teaching area will refer the student to available career counselling.

(28) Particular care should be taken with the provision of information to prospective International onshore students who may face difficulties with the police checks requirement. Some Australian employers may not accept overseas police check records.

(29) It is the responsibility of the individual student participating in university-sponsored non-academic activities to provide the required satisfactory police and/or working with children check record to the relevant operational area.

(30) It is the responsibility of operational areas sponsoring non-academic activities to inform students of any requirements for satisfactory police and/or working with children check for participating in such activities. 

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Section 7 - Supporting Documents and Information

(31) The following document support this policy:

  1. Working with Children Act 2005 (Vic)
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Section 8 - Guidelines

(32) Nil.