News and Views

Violence policy at work in WA public schools

student in trouble stock image

Since the WA Government introduced tough new measures to address intentional violence in Western Australian public schools, seven students have been excluded with another three recommended for exclusion and 919 students have been suspended for physical aggression.

Exclusions are current as of March 12 2019 and suspensions are in the first four weeks of the school year.

At the same time in 2018, no students had been excluded and 799 students had been suspended for physical aggression. In 2017, only one student had been excluded and in 2016 there were no students expelled in the first five weeks of the school year.

When the policy was announced last year there was a spike in the number of students excluded, showing the violence policy had an immediate effect. 17 students were excluded compared with four at the same time the previous year.

Facilities for the alternative learning settings pilot have been secured – one in the north metropolitan area, one in the south metropolitan area and one in regional WA.

Workshops for school principals on how to implement the new action plan are being rolled out this term across all education regions. Graduate teacher training to de-escalate violence is in place.

Online resources for schools to support the implementation of the actions, including protocols for suspensions and guidelines for implementing Good Standing into the Student Behaviour Policy are available on the Department of Education’s website.

The policy changes will be implemented in a way that does not discriminate against students with disability who either cannot manage their behaviour or do not intend to harm others.

Source: WA Government

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