At Providence Christian College we believe that positive relationships are really important! We believe that it is important for every student to be able to trust their teachers and we believe that our teachers should be able to trust their students.
Taking Jesus Christ as our example, we recognise the importance of modelling Christian behaviour in every area of our lives, particularly in our relationships. In fact, one of our Core Values is to ‘Live in Relationship’ – first to love God and then to love one another.
When issues arise that jeopardise our unity we should endeavour to resolve them in ways that maintain relationship, bring about restoration, and bring glory to God.
At Providence Christian College we adopt a Biblical approach for attending to concerns, resolving conflicts and addressing divisive issues which is aimed at bringing about resolution and restoring the relationship. While we would hope that such issues will not arise, it is important that when they do, there is a procedure to guide us through these matters.
If we can all accept that there will always be times when we do not agree with one another, we can all contribute towards a positive culture of openly discussing and resolving concerns.
The College has a Protective Behaviours Curriculum that assists students to learn how to deal with difficult situations, and our staff and volunteers are provided with appropriate training and support to assist students through times of challenge.
You need to know that all complaints will be taken seriously, and responded to in a timely and thorough manner.
You may have a complaint against:
- Something that is happening in class that prevents you from learning effectively
- Something or someone who makes you feel unsafe.
- Something that is happening to someone else and you feel the need to report it.
- Something that we are teaching you in a class that you are uncomfortable with
- A teacher or member of staff is making you feel uncomfortable or unsafe
Our Staff have a Staff Code of Conduct that helps us know how we should conduct ourselves at College.
Following a Biblical model we believe that, if you have a problem, it is best to go to the person concerned and speak with them first.
In other words, if you have a problem with another student or even a teacher, and you feel safe to do so, it is always best to speak with them first.
However, if you don’t feel safe to do so, then you should speak to someone who you trust – perhaps your Class Teacher or the Chaplain, or another staff member at the College, or even your parents – and they can tell us.
You can tell us about your issue in any way that you feel comfortable and safe to do so. Some options are:
- Via email – to a teacher or other staff member
- Call us between the hours of 8am and 4pm
- The Report Bullying email
- A handwritten note
- You can even let us know anonymously, but keep in mind that we will not be able to update you on details of how the issue is resolved if we don’t know who reported it.
We will keep your concerns private unless we believe that something you are telling us puts you, or someone else, at risk. In such a case we will have to disclose some, or all, of what you have told us to ensure your safety. We will always discuss this with you first.
Gossiping with other people about an issue, either personally or through social media is inappropriate and unhelpful and usually causes even more harm.
At Providence Christian College, you have a right to be heard:
- We care about you and we will always endeavour to protect you against victimisation or adverse consequences if you make a complaint.
- We ask that you make your complaint in an appropriate manner so that we can respond in an appropriate manner.
- We will listen to everyone involved in an incident.
- We will collect as much evidence as possible.
- We will always try to resolve an issue in a manner that is fair to all concerned.
- We will keep a record of the facts and the decision taken.
- We will keep you informed of progress and the final outcome.
- We will support you and, if needed, connect you with outside agencies who can provide specialist support.
- We will always aim to restore relationships between all concerned.
If you are not happy with the outcome or decision, we encourage you to tell us. We can go to the next person in charge to review the case.
Teachers: For most issues you will report your concerns to a teacher – usually your Class or Form Teacher – or if it is outside of class, the Duty Teacher.
Middle School Year Coordinators (Yr 7-9): If you are a student in the Middle School, for more serious issues, you may wish to speak to your Year Coordinator.
Head of School: The next level would be to take your complaint to your Head of School.
Principal: If all else fails, your Head of School will support you in bringing your complaint to the Principal. The Principal usually has the final say.
We will respond to your concern at our earliest convenience, and no more than 5 days from your telling us. It may take longer to resolve the issue but we will always try to do this as speedily as possible.
Note: If you believe that your complaint is not being addressed, or is taking more than 5 days, you can send a friendly reminder to the Staff member concerned, asking for an update.
We keep a record of all complaints to ensure that:
- issues are followed up
- there is transparency in the process
- we are able to reach a resolution
- we can facilitate restoration whenever possible
- and so that we can analyse the data collected to look for causes and/or trends that we can address.
When we pick up concerning trends or issues we will communicate with our whole community, if necessary, to address these issues.
At Providence Christian College we care for all our students and are committed to the prevention of child abuse, in any form:
- If you are feeling unsafe in the presence of a specific teacher, you should report your concern to your Head of School
- If you are feeling unsafe in the presence of your Head of School, you should report this to the Principal
- If you are feeling unsafe in the presence of the Principal, you should report this to the Board Chair
At no time and in no instance will the College endorse or enforce corporal punishment or any other form of degrading punishment.
Any punishment that is incompatible with respect for human dignity, including non-physical punishment which belittles, humiliates, denigrates, scapegoats, threatens, scares or ridicules a child (UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, General Comment No. 8 ) is not acceptable at Providence Christian College.
Student Procedure (diagram)
The Director General of the Department of Education is responsible for ensuring that the school observes the registration standards, including the standard about its complaints handling system. Any student, parent or community member is entitled to contact the Director General with concerns about how the College has dealt with a complaint. Information is available on the Department of Education website. (While the Director General may consider whether the school has breached the registration standards, she does not have power to intervene in a complaint or override the school’s decision.)
The College has adopted the following process as suggested by the National Office of Child Safety: