Child protection training requirements - Government protocol
In NSW, nominated supervisors, persons in day-to-day charge and family day care co-ordinators must complete a child protection course required by a Government protocol applying to the approved provider in accordance with section 162A of the Children (Education and Care Services) National Law. In-house training is not sufficient.
The following are the approved Child Protection training courses required by Government protocol:
- CHCPRT002 - Support the rights and safety of children and young people
- CHCPRT025 - Identify and report children and young people at risk
- CHCPRT026 - Support the rights and safety of children and young people
- NSW Department of Education’s Child Protection Awareness Training *
- complements the department's policies and procedures which staff must adhere
- is designed for the context of department-run preschools located within primary schools.
* NSW Department of Education staff can complete this course instead of CHCPRT002. This is an approved course for department staff only as it:
- CHCPRT001 - Identify and respond to children and young people at risk
- CHCCHILD401A - Identify and respond to children and young people at risk.
- CHCCHILD401B - Identify and respond to children and young people at risk.
- CHCCHILD404A- Support the rights and safety of children and young people.
- CHCCHILD404B- Support the rights and safety of children and young people.
- CHCCHILD1B or CHCCHILD1 C - Identify and respond to children and young people at risk of harm - delivered by a TAFE or other RTO
- CHCCHILD2 Support the rights and safety of children within duty of care requirements (TAFE NSW only)
- CHCCHILD2A Support the rights and safety of children within duty of care requirements- delivered by a TAFE or other RTO
- Identify and respond to children and young people at risk (3294G identify and respond to risk of harm)- delivered by TAFE NSW only
- Identify and respond to children and young people at risk (combination of 3290K legislative and ethical requirements and 3292P child protection) delivered by TAFE NSW only
Changes to the National Law and Regulations from 1 October 2023
Following the most recent review of the National Quality Framework, regulation 84 was extended to apply the requirements for approved providers to ensure that volunteers and students are also advised of the existence and application of current child protection law and any obligations they may have under that law. This is in addition to the existing requirements for nominated supervisors and other staff members at the service.
Under section 162A, each family day care co-ordinator is also required to have completed child protection training.
Ongoing requirement to maintain awareness of child protection responsibilities
Approved providers have ongoing responsibilities to ensure that the nominated supervisor, staff members, volunteers and students at the service who work with children maintain up-to-date knowledge of child protection law (Reg 84).
While section 162A does not mandate an expiry period on child protection training courses or issued certificates, Reg 84 specifies that the approved provider must ensure that nominated supervisors and staff members (including educators) working with children are advised of the existence and application of the current child protection law; and any obligations that they may have under that law.
To ensure child protection awareness is current and up-to-date, approved providers should consider:
- assessing the currency of child protection awareness of every staff member working with children at the start of their employment and during staff appraisals;
- staff undertaking child protection ‘refresher’ training every 12 – 24 months, and whenever significant changes are made to the child protection law or reporting requirements;
- regularly generating staff discussions and revising practices within the service.
The term “refresher course” is an industry term referring to training designed to assist the participant in demonstrating up-to-date knowledge of a previously studied topic. A refresher training course does not necessarily have a course code or provide any formal accreditation, such as a certificate.
Refresher training is relevant to demonstrate compliance with Reg 84 and Quality Area 2.
Compliance with section 162A requires completion of one of these approved courses delivered by an accredited course provider. Section 162A does not require “refresher training”.
Summary of child protection training and awareness requirements
The approved provider should:
(1) Ensure that every nominated supervisor, every person in day-to-day charge and every family day care co-ordinator has:
- successfully completed approved child protection training (S162A);
- has evidence of the successful completion of approved child protection training;
- is aware of current child protection law (R84);
- understands how to apply child protection law within their service (R84);
- is aware of their obligations under that Law, such as the responsibilities of a mandatory reporter. (R84)
(2) Ensure that all staff members, volunteers and students who work with children have been advised of:
- the existence and application of the current child protection law (R84);
- any obligations that they may have under the law (R84);
(3) Ensure that the service has:
- policies and procedures in place relating to the provision of a child safe environment (R168(2)(h);
- in the case of a family day care service, policies and procedures in place to provide information, assistance and training to educators (R169(2)(g)).
National Quality Standard
Compliance with s162A and Reg 84, is essential for regulatory compliance, and meeting the National Quality Standard.
Quality Area 2, Element 2.2.3: Child protection requires management, educators and staff to be aware of their roles and responsibilities to identify and respond to every child at risk of abuse or neglect.
Considerations for service providers
- Does the service’s Quality Improvement Plan (QIP) provide a focus point for high quality child protection practice within the service?
- Does the service have a child protection policy and ensure all policies and procedures are active and regularly reviewed?
- Do all staff members feel confident to follow the child protection policy and procedure?
- Is child protection a standard agenda item at staff meetings?
- Do educators participate in child protection learning activities, discussions, and webinars?
- Is child protection information readily available to staff members and families?
- Are families aware that staff members are mandatory reporters of suspected child abuse and neglect to government authorities?
- Does the service have a Code of Conduct, and ensure all educators practice appropriate interactions with children (R155)?
Resources and related links
NSW Communities and Justice
In NSW, the responsible agency for child protection is NSW Communities and Justice. For further information about child protection responsibilities, contact the
NSW Child Protection Helpline (24/7) - PH: 132 111, or visit http://www.community.nsw.gov.au/
Office of the Children’s Guardian
Office of the Children’s Guardian is an independent government agency which works to protect children by promoting and regulating quality, child safe organisations and services. Information about creating child safe environments is available on their website. Visit the Office of the Children's Guardian website for more information.
The approved provider of an education and care service must ensure that each of the following persons have completed the child protection training (if any) required by or under the law of this jurisdiction, by government protocol applying to the approved provider in this jurisdiction or as otherwise required in this jurisdiction
- each nominated supervisor for the service
- each person in day-to-day charge of the service
- each family day care co-ordinator employed or engaged by the service.
- The approved provider of an education and care service must ensure that a person specified in subregulation 2 who works with children is advised of:
- the existence and application of the current child protection law
- any obligations that the person may have under that law.
- The following persons are specified:
- a nominated supervisor of the service
- a staff member of the service
- a volunteer at the service
- a student who participates in the service.
A compliance direction may be issued for failure to comply with subregulation 1.
An approved provider must take reasonable steps to ensure that the education and care service provides education and care to children in a way that:
- encourages the children to express themselves and their opinions
- allows the children to undertake experiences that develop self-reliance and self-esteem
- maintains at all times the dignity and rights of each child
- gives each child positive guidance and encouragement toward acceptable behaviour
- has regard to the family and cultural values, age, and physical and intellectual development and abilities of each child being educated and cared for by the service.
- The approved provider of an education and care service must ensure that the service has in place policies and procedures in relation to the matters set out in subregulation 2.
These may include policies and procedures prepared by the approved provider in accordance with an education law of the participating jurisdiction. A compliance direction may be issued for failure to comply with subregulation 1.
- Policies and procedures are required in relation to the following:
- providing a child safe environment, including matters relating to:
- the promotion of a culture of child safety and wellbeing within the service
- the safe use of online environments at the service
- staffing, including:
- a code of conduct for staff members
- determining the responsible person present at the service
- the participation of volunteers and students on practicum placements
- interactions with children, including the matters set out in regulations 155 and 156
- governance and management of the service, including confidentiality of records
- dealing with complaints, including matters relating to:
- the provision of a complaint handling system at the service that is child focused
- the management of a complaint that alleges a child is exhibiting harmful sexual behaviours.