School Policy on Visiting Speakers

DET School Policy on Visiting Speakers

Schools should:

  • ensure the content of presentations and addresses contributes to the development of students’ knowledge and understanding
  • extend the invitation to external speakers to support its educational program, rather than allowing groups to use the school as a forum to advance their causes, particularly if speaking on a controversial matter
  • brief presenters about the nature of the school and its community
  • respect the range of views held by students and their families.

Selecting Teaching and Learning Resources – Guidelines

Teachers and principals in liaison with school councils need to ensure that the selection of teaching and learning resources:

  • considers the expected student learning outcomes and standards described in the VCAA curriculum frameworks
  • considers the particular needs of its students
  • does not expose students to highly offensive or obscene materials or themes
  • ensures that curriculum resources are suitable for the age group using them
  • considers the words, behaviour, images or themes of the resources in terms of the:
  • context
  • impact on the audience age group
  • literary, artistic or educational merit of the material
  • intention of the author and general character of the material
  • how parents might react to their children being exposed to this content
  • standards of morality, decency, and propriety generally accepted by adults
  • impact on persons from different ethnic, religious, social and cultural backgrounds.

Sexuality education in Victorian schools

In Victoria, it is compulsory for government schools to provide sexuality education within the Health and Physical Education domain, including assessment and reporting against the Victorian Essential Learning Standards. The most effective sexuality education programs also take a whole-school learning approach.

The goal of sexuality education

The goal of sexuality education in Victorian schools is to build on knowledge, skills, and behaviours, thus enabling young people to make responsible and safe choices.

Good sexuality education focuses on love, safer sex, abstinence, respect for others and oneself, diversity, personal rights and responsibilities, relationships and friendships, effective communication, decision-making and risk behaviours.

School-based sexuality education is one of the core learning and teaching responsibilities a school undertakes to equip its students for a healthy and fulfilling adult life.Good school-based sexuality education is:

  • driven by the school leader
  • comprehensive
  • inclusive
  • supported by the latest research
  • ongoing and integrated into a student’s cross-curriculum learning
  • assessed and reported against student achievement in the Victorian Essential Learning Standards
  • part of a student’s whole-school learning experience.

Schools must support and respect a student’s choice to identify as their desired gender when this does not align with their designated sex at birth.

Principals must respect privacy and confidentiality in relation to gender identity and intersex status.

Building Respectful Relationships: Stepping Out Against Gender-Based Violence

Following the release of the Respectful Relationships Education: Violence prevention and respectful relationships education in Victorian secondary schools report, the Department engaged CASA House and Deakin University to develop and trial a range of the teaching and learning materials which address the key issues related to violence prevention and gender-based violence.

The resulting resource, Building Respectful Relationships: Stepping Out Against Gender-Based Violence, takes into account the key findings around effective violence-prevention strategies in schools proposed in the above report. It provides teaching and learning activities planned around key themes of gender, power, violence and respect as well as advice around a whole-school approach to violence prevention.

 

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