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SA introduces tougher penalties for offensive behaviour in schools

There will be tougher penalties to anyone who behaves in an offensive or abusive manner on school grounds, under proposed changes in the Education and Children’s Services Bill 2017.

New penalties – up to $2,500 – will apply to those who behave in an offensive manner or use abusive, threatening or insulting language towards principals, teachers and other staff at government and non-government schools, or through other communication channels. Other reforms in the Bill include:

  • Providing a range of new and strengthened measures to address non-attendance at school such as an increase in the maximum penalties from $500 to $5000 and new family conferences
  • Making it easier for schools to work with allied health professionals and other support staff to ensure students are connected with the local services they need
  • Updating the way schools share information about student progress and development
  • Making it easier for schools to keep good staff so they can focus on great teaching and learning.

Following public consultation between 19 December 2016 and 10 March 2017, the new legislation will replace the Education Act 1972 and the Children’s Services Act 1985 and modernises arrangements for both teachers and early childhood workers under a single Act.


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