To give clear guidelines as to rights and responsibilities of staff, students and contractors regarding bringing children onto the College property.
This policy applies to all staff, students and other users of College facilities.
|Child(ren)||Any person under the age of 16 years who is not a staff member or student.|
|Caregiver||A person (employee, student, contractor or visitor) who has been provided authorisation to bring child(ren) to the College or fieldwork activity|
|Supervisor||The Supervisor who is directly responsible for a place of work, teaching and/or study, or fieldwork activity including line managers, lecturers, teachers, activity coordinators.|
|Fieldwork activity||Any activity under the control Eastern College Australia, but outside of the College's property. Students on “practicum” (or other workplace-based training) will be subject to the rules of those workplaces.|
The College recognises that there may be, on occasion such as unforeseen childcare changes or childcare difficulties, may require staff and students to bring children into Eastern College Australia's classrooms, lecture theatres or offices. The College also acknowledges that they have a legal and moral obligation to ensure the health and safety of all persons, including children who may be on College premises. The information below applies to staff and students bringing dependent children onto campus whilst engaging in work or study related activities and is designed to support the existing OH&S practices within the College.
The College provides a flexible working environment, which includes personal/carer’s leave amongst other forms of leave, which can be utilised to care for a child.
Caregivers who need a private space for breastfeeding, expressing milk or changing nappies, or any other reason requiring privacy, can have access to reasonably accessible facilities for this purpose on College property.
The College has no obligation to allow children to accompany parents and it should be the exception rather than the rule.
Responsibilities of Caregivers
- Requests to bring a child to a lecture should be made (preferably in advance) to the relevant lecturer and should be reasonable in the circumstances.
- A staff member wishing to bring a child to their place of work for a period of more than one hour must first seek permission from their Supervisor.
- Caregivers should be sensitive to the needs of colleagues and should not expect others to care for their children. When bringing children into the College the needs of other students should be recognised and respected.
- In the interests of public health, sick/ill/infectious children should not be brought onto campus.
- Children will not be permitted in areas where there are health or safety hazards including:
- food preparation areas
- areas where chemicals are stored
- areas where machinery is used and;
- any other areas designated as hazardous by the College.
- Children brought into the College must be under the direct supervision, ie in the direct line of sight, of the accompanying caregiver at all times. Responsibility for all aspects of the child’s behaviour should rest solely with the caregiver.
- Children are permitted to accompany their caregivers to the Library, or other non-teaching areas subject to particular regulations relating to the hazardous areas mentioned above. Caregivers must ensure that other users of these facilities are not unreasonably inconvenienced by the child(ren)’s presence.
Responsibilities of Supervisors
- Requests by caregivers to bring children to a classroom or lecture theatre shall be treated sympathetically and no reasonable request refused.
- Factors to be considered when granting permission to bring children on campus may include:
- the age of the child(ren) and their vaccination status
- the nature and location of the class/workplace
- the activities being conducted in the space where the child(ren) might be located
- the degree of possible interference and disruption to other staff/students
- occupational health and safety issues e.g. areas with machinery or hazardous material
- emergency management e.g. when lifts are not available in an evacuation
- other responsibilities of the caregiver i.e. warden, first aider.
- To avoid children being injured:
- remind all staff and students that they have a legal responsibility, under the Occupational Health & Safety Act, to ensure the safety of all persons, including children, on College premises;
- when evaluating equipment prior to purchase, give consideration to the potential hazards it may pose to children, as well as adults.
- remind all staff that children brought into the College must be under the direct supervision of an accompanying caregiver at all times;
- A lecturer may request a student to remove a child if his or her presence is disruptive to other students in the classroom or study areas.
Resolution of Problems or Disputes
Monitoring, intervention and resolution of any problems or disputes rests with the relevant staff member concerned and their supervisor.
In the instance that a child is found to be unsupervised, contact reception.
Permission to bring children on College property can be revoked by the supervisor with immediate effect, if supervision requirements, mitigation of risk, or due consideration for others’ ability to work or study are not met.