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Support for safe schools

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March 08, 2018

Victorian schools will get the support they need to create a safe environment for students and teachers as part of a concerted response to tackle aggressive and violent behaviour in our schools.

Victorian schools will get the support they need to create a safe environment for students and teachers as part of a concerted response to tackle aggressive and violent behaviour in our schools.

Education Minister James Merlino recently announced the Protective Schools Package, a new initiative to support schools to better respond to incidents as they occur and address underlying issues to prevent future violence and aggression.

While violence and aggressive behaviour remain relatively rare in the more than 1500 government schools in Victoria, the package will address an increase in the number of reports of such behaviour.

The Protective Schools Package will deliver an $8.9million funding boost for security and support. This includes:

●establishing a new operations centre, where principals making reports will get additional immediate expert advice and support on how to respond to any incidents and fast-tracked access to additional social workers, behavioural experts and psychologists;

●creating a new intelligence system using past reports to inform the deployment of regional response teams into schools when incidents occur;

●training for dozens of support staff in specialised behavioural assessment and practice so they can help schools across Victoria manage students displaying particularly challenging behaviours;

●training for principals and teachers on how to respond to violent and aggressive incidents, as well as additional support to manage long-term and complex student cases to help address the risk of future violence and aggression; and

●creating a 12-month task force to provide expert advice on the implementation of the package, bringing together educators, psychologists and child health experts.

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