Changes to the volunteering process at Glenelg Primary School – this letter was sent to all families in 2019
2nd May 2019
Dear parents, families and caregivers of GPS students,
We really value all the wonderful ways volunteers assist in all sorts of ways at GPS. Volunteers help in the canteen, as sports coaches and managers, assist in classrooms, on camps and excursions, in P&F and help out in so many other ways too.
The Department for Education have changed their volunteer policy and Glenelg Primary School, like all public schools, must comply with the changes. There are certainly some advantages to the new Department for Education policy, but some extra requirements for volunteers too. There are new steps to be completed by every volunteer and we very much hope that the extra requirements will not result in a reduction of volunteers at our school.
The new policy introduced by the Department for Education will need to be implemented by the first day of Term 3, Monday 22nd July, 2019. Additionally, we have been told that legislation may again be changing on July 1st; we don’t expect that we will need to make any additional changes after July 1st, but we can’t know for sure.
If you are either a current or prospective volunteer, these new requirements apply to you. Unfortunately, even a person currently volunteering in any capacity will need to cease his/her volunteering at Glenelg Primary School from Monday 22nd July, 2019 if any of the 9 steps listed below have not been completed.
The 9 steps to be completed by Monday 22nd July, 2019 regarding each volunteer are:-
- Volunteer completes a GPS volunteer application form; please first speak to any current GPS staff member about your wish to (continue to) volunteer and then list them as one of your referees
- Volunteer gives the application form to Trea, at the front office, with photo ID and has a brief discussion
- A GPS staff member contacts a referee
- The volunteer starts the DCSI clearance process (if the volunteer has no current DCSI clearance) This step can often take 3 to 5 weeks; the volunteer can continue with the steps below while waiting for the DCSI process to be completed *
- The volunteer completes a Responding to Abuse and Neglect Education and Care
(RAN-EC) course for volunteers, either online or at GPS *
- The volunteer reads relevant role description(s); available at the Front Office or on the GPS website
- The volunteer does a general induction course, either online or at GPS *
- GPS Site-specific induction, including work health and safety and role-specific training is done at GPS (or via a form downloadable from this web page) *
- The volunteer signs a volunteer agreement
Along the way, GPS staff must record/document completion of each step. After step 9, each volunteer will be issued with a badge. Volunteers will need to sign in/out at the Front Office each time they attend and wear their badge to work in the school as a volunteer in any capacity. Classroom teachers will be required to ask you to leave at 9.05am if you are not wearing a badge and only approved volunteers will be able to assist or attend any excursion or camp.
We look forward to working through these new steps with you to maintain and build the excellent support we have from volunteers at Glenelg Primary.
The Glenelg Primary Leadership Team
More information about the 9 steps from the above letter (with 2020 updates):
Step 1: Application forms to be a volunteer at GPS are available from the Downloads section below. There are also paper copies available at the Front Office.
When listing 2 referees on the application form, please list at least 1 of the 2 referees on your volunteer application as any current staff member of GPS. If there is a special reason why this is not possible, please speak with Trea in the Front Office.
Step 2: In 2020, please give your completed application form to Trea Schache. Trea works in the Front Office at the finance window.
Step 3: GPS staff speak to 1 or more of the referees you have provided in your application.
Step 4: If you do not currently have a Working With Children Check (WWCC), Trea Schache can start the process for you by e-mail or in person. (Update: it was known as the DCSI process when this was written in 2019; it’s now called WWCC – Working With Children Check). Or you can start the process yourself at this link: Apply for a Check.
You will need to provide 6 pieces of information:-
- Your first name – this must be your full official first name, for example Peter, not Pete
- Your surname
- An e-mail address – the WWCC unit will send further instructions to you via this e-mail address
- Your date of birth
- The name and room number(s) of any child(ren) you have at GPS in 2020
- A brief reason for the WWCC clearance, i.e. sports coaching, assisting on excursions, helping in the canteen, helping with children in the classroom etc. One or two brief reasons are sufficient, even if you intend to volunteer in more than 1 or 2 ways.
Please e-mail Trea at:- Trea.HentySmith767@schools.sa.edu.au
Once Trea enters those 6 pieces of information for you, you’ll get an e-mail asking you to continue the process yourself online. Once you complete your sections and submit the WWCC application, most applications take 3 to 5 weeks, although occasionally they can take less or more time than that. There is no cost to volunteers for a Volunteer WWCC clearance check.
Step 5: If you would prefer to complete the Responding to Abuse and Neglect Education and Care
(RAN-EC) course for volunteers online, please go to the Department of Education website at https://www.education.sa.gov.au/working-us/responding-abuse-and-neglect-training/ran-ec-courses-volunteers
If you would prefer to complete the Responding to Abuse and Neglect Education and Care
(RAN-EC) course for volunteers in person at GPS, details about the next course are in the Courses at GPS section, below.
Step 6: Various role descriptions for volunteers are available below, at the Downloads section. There is also a display on a display board in the corridor of the main building and paper copies are also available at the Front Office.
Step 7: If you would prefer to complete the Volunteer General induction course online, please go to the Department of Education website at www.plink.sa.edu.au/pages/signup.jsf
If you would prefer to complete the Volunteer General induction course in person at GPS, details about course times are in the Courses at GPS section, below.
Step 8: GPS Site-specific induction, including work health and safety and information about role-specific training will be available at GPS; these aspects cannot be completed online. Details about the course times are in the Courses at GPS section, below. Update: There may now be an option for some people to complete this section without needing to attend a course in person; please seek details from Trea in the Front Office.
Step 9: You sign a volunteer agreement. These agreement forms are available at the courses run at GPS and also below, at the Downloads section. There are also paper copies available at the Front Office.
Courses at GPS
GPS staff will conduct Courses at school for GPS volunteers that covers a number of aspects for GPS volunteers. At the end of Part A, Part B and Part C of each course, volunteers will be able to sign a Volunteer Agreement and give it directly to Trea:-
Part A (all volunteers need to do Part A at GPS); approximately 15 minutes
- GPS Site-specific induction
- Work health and safety information
- information about role-specific training
Part B (only volunteers who haven’t done Part B/Part C sections online need to stay for this section); approximately 15 minutes
- Volunteer General induction course
Part C (only volunteers who haven’t done RAN-EC online need to stay for this final section); approximately 30 minutes
- Responding to Abuse and Neglect Education and Care (RAN-EC) course for volunteers
Upcoming sessions at GPS; all sessions cover Part A, then Part B, then Part C. Please choose whichever session is convenient for you. You do not need to book; simply turn up and ensure that you add your name to a sign-on sheet.
Next 2020 training sessions
Wednesday 8th April, 2020 at 4:15pm (during Junior disco) in the GPS staffroom postponed due to COVID-19; hopefully new details for Term 2 can be announced when the situation becomes clearer. Wednesday 8th April, 2020 at 6:15pm (during Senior disco) in the GPS staffroom postponed due to COVID-19; hopefully new details for Term 2 can be announced when the situation becomes clearer. Monday 10th Feb, 2020 at 2pm in the GPS staffroom This course now completed. Monday 10th Feb, 2020 at 5.30pm in the GPS staffroom This course now completed.
2019 training sessions
Monday 27th May at 2pm in the GPS staffroom This course now completed. Monday 27th May at 6pm in the GPS staffroom This course now completed. Tuesday 18th June at 2pm in the GPS staffroom This course now completed. Tuesday 18th June at 6pm in the GPS staffroom This course now completed. Wednesday 28th August at 2pm in the GPS staffroom This course now completed. Wednesday 28th August at 6pm in the GPS staffroom This course now completed.
Role descriptions for volunteers:
We will try to keep this section updated when we see patterns of the same/similar questions being asked.
Question: I am a registered teacher, do I still need to do this new process?
Answer: Yes. Your current registration is proof of DCSI and RAN, but you still need to do all the other steps.
Question: Does my RAN-EC expire after a certain period of time?
Answer: No. Unless there is a major overhaul of the training, your RAN-EC training does not expire.
Question: I’ve now done the whole process above, from Step 1 to Step 9. Is that all I need to do?
Answer: Yes. Apart from making sure you re-do your DCSI (soon to be called WWCC – see below) that’s all you need to do. Thank you so much for assisting the school and our students.
Question: Do I have to do a WWCC even though I have a valid DCSI?
Answer: No. The WWCC – Working With Children Check – is the new type of clearance check that starts on July 1st, 2019. If you have a current DCSI, that DCSI remains valid until your DCSI expires. Prior to your DCSI expiring, you will need to do a WWCC, which replaces the DCSI. Your DCSI certificate will indicate when your current DCSI expires.