child safeguarding and wellbeing
One of the PMSA’s key roles is to support our schools to ensure the safety and wellbeing of students, staff and volunteers are always first priority. The PMSA is genuinely committed to contemporary practice and culture, extending beyond compliance requirements and works with schools to manage risks.
Our commitment to child wellbeing
In 2018, the PMSA proudly commemorated 100 years in education. We take pride in this long history and the ability to leverage the successes and learnings of our past.
Our history also shows a dedication of past students and aspirational leaders to continue to achieve the PMSA vision to ‘build caring school communities, by providing world-class teaching and learning environments of excellence, permeated by Christian faith and actions.’
Our schools today provide outstanding academic and pastoral care programs that underpin student wellbeing programs, shape effective relationship development skills and support the development of life skills.
The PMSA fully supports the significant work initiated through the Royal Commission in giving a voice to those who have experienced abuse, identifying systemic shortcomings, causes of such abuse and recommending remedial action now and into the future.
The knowledge gained from regulatory systems such as the Royal Commission has underpinned the PMSA’s improved frameworks, supports and programs that we now provide to our past and present students. The PMSA and our schools have transitioned from historical ‘protection’ programs to integrated contemporary frameworks central to student voice and value, wellbeing and safeguarding.
In addition to our participation in the National Redress Scheme, the PMSA has established the Risk, Child Safeguarding and Assurance Committee which works to support the PMSA Board in overseeing Child Protection and Royal Commission response frameworks, manage related risk and promote our genuine commitment to contemporary practice and culture, extending beyond compliance requirements.
We believe that the care for the children and young people in our schools is an outward expression and evidence of our Christian faith and our commitment to achieving a vision of collected and committed action, of intolerance to any threat of harm towards children and young people and which actively seeks to prevent the occurrence of any such threat.
The care and protection of the children and young people in PMSA schools is of paramount importance and involves:
- Working together to make our schools and workplaces places of safety for children and young people.
- Not tolerating any threat of harm towards children and actively seeking to prevent the occurrence of any such threat.
- Reporting any suspicion you have that a child or student has been harmed or may be at risk of harm.
- Sharing the responsibility among all people who work in our community – staff, volunteers, contractors and visitors – to care for and protect all children and young people from any threat or perceived threat of harm.
To read our Child Protection Policy, Historical Abuse Redress Policy, Child Safeguarding Processes, and other related policies and frameworks, please visit our Policies page.
Reporting concerns and the PMSA Redress Office
The PMSA understands that survivors who experienced abuse may not wish to deal directly with the school. Similarly, community members may want to disclose concerns outside of the related school.
In response, the PMSA Group has established a Redress Office to respond to enquiries, assist with disclosures or direct claims and facilitate the delivery of redress matters.
The Redress Office coordinator can be reached directly on 0437 281 505 and will be available during business hours. You may also leave a message and your call will be returned as soon as possible. Alternatively, please contact the Redress Office via email firstname.lastname@example.org.
National Redress Scheme
The PMSA Group including our schools Brisbane Boys’ College, Clayfield College, Somerville House and Sunshine Coast Grammar School are participants under the National Redress Scheme. Those who have experienced institutional child sexual abuse in the care of any of our PMSA schools can now seek redress through the Scheme.
The Scheme helps people who have experienced institutional child sexual abuse gain access to counselling, a direct personal response, and a monetary payment. The Scheme started on 1 July 2018 and people who have experienced abuse can apply for redress until 30 June 2028.
For more information on the National Redress Scheme, visit nationalredress.gov.au or call the National Redress Scheme line on 1800 737 377 (Monday to Friday 8am to 5pm).
Coronavirus (COVID-19) is an infectious disease which was declared a pandemic across the world in March 2020 and has significantly impacted Australia’s society and economy.
The PMSA Group Office and our PMSA schools are proactively managing the health and safety of students, families and our staff by leveraging a number of COVID-19 safe strategies. These include increased hygiene practices across the day and boarding schools and social distancing practices that are in line with government requirements.
School opening and management
To manage the continuation of students’ learning during this time, each of our schools has developed their own learning from home platforms which have been highly successful.
Our schools have been following the government advice to have provided learning from home programs for all students when required and have remained open for children of emergency workers and vulnerable children. We will continue to monitor and follow advice from the Federal and State governments regarding school opening and learning delivery.
The PMSA Board is extremely grateful for the exceptional work that our Principals, school staff and Group Office staff are doing to respond to these unprecedented challenges, as teachers and school staff remain on the front line for the good of the community.
To manage any cases of COVID-19 within our schools, each school will follow the advice and directions of health authorities. If a school is directed to close temporarily due to an outbreak, the school will follow their emergency management school closure plans specific to the site, students and location of that individual school and communicate this clearly with the community. When the school is deemed able to re-open, the school will communicate through standard methods including email and social media.
PMSA staff information
Looking after the health and safety of our school staff is the PMSA’s top priority. To support staff during this time, the PMSA has developed information for staff about how to stay healthy and prevent illness. We have also developed new policies about leave and work arrangements.
To find out more information, please log onto the PMSA staff portal and see the information under risk. You can also contact your school or PMSA Group Office on (07) 3371 0709.