Appointment and Functions of Authorised Persons Policy

  1. What is this policy about?
    1. This policy supports proper exercise of statutory powers on behalf of the Education and Training Directorate (the Directorate) by authorised persons in relation to functions including government and non-government schools and home education.
  2. Policy Statement
    1. The Director-General, Education and Training will appoint authorised persons (government) and authorised persons (non-government) to exercise statutory powers under the Education Act 2004 (the Act).
    2. The Director-General will determine under what provisions of the Act the person is appointed and therefore what powers can be exercised.
    3. An authorised person may be both an authorised person (government) and an authorised person (non-government).
    4. As set out in the Act, appointees will:
      • be an Australian citizen or permanent resident of Australia; and
      • be considered by the Director-General as a suitable person having regard in particular to criminal convictions and the person’s employment record; and
      • satisfactorily complete adequate training relevant to their appointment.
    5. Authorised persons will carry identity cards stating that the person is an authorised person (government) or authorised person (non-government) for the stated provisions in the Act. The identity card will show a recent photograph of the person, their name, the date of issue of the card and the expiry date of their appointment.
    6. Authorised persons will show their identity card to the school principal before entering the school or exercising any powers. The person must not remain in a school if they fail to show their identity card when asked by the school principal.
    7. The Act provides that after showing their identity card, an authorised person (government) may:
      • enter a government school at any time
      • inspect the school or anything in it
      • copy part of all of the register of enrolment and attendance
      • meet with a student not attending school regularly and their parents
      • inspect programs, materials or other records used for home education of children of compulsory education age in order to decide whether conditions for registration are met.
    8. The Act provides that after showing their identity card, an authorised person (non government) may:
      • enter a non-government school at any time when it is being used as a school to find out if the Act is being complied with
      • enter a non-government school at any other time if the principal consents. Consent is not required to enter the school to ask for consent to enter under s123(1)
      • inspect the school or anything in it when they enter a school with consent, or for inspection purpose
      • copy part or all of the register of enrolment and attendance
      • meet with a student not attending school regularly and their parents
    9. An authorised person may inspect anything that can reasonably be considered as part of the school’s property or as required for the operation of the school and the education of its students. This does not include students’ lockers or bags, or personal property of staff.
    10. Where an authorised person has requested to view documents that would mean accessing either a student’s or teacher’s personal property (for example, bag/locker or vehicle), the principal must endeavour to have the student or teacher provide the documents within a reasonable timeframe set by the authorised person or seek the permission of that student or teacher to search the stated location.
    11. The principal of a school has an obligation under the Act to give the authorised person information that has been requested and will take reasonable steps to assist the authorised person in exercising their functions under the Act. Failure to do either of these things is a strict liability offence and may incur a fine.
    12. An authorised person (non-government) will, if intending to ask a principal for consent to enter a non-government school, inform the principal the reason for the entry and that the principal is not required to consent. If the principal signs an acknowledgement of consent, the authorised person (non-government) will immediately give a copy to the principal.
  3. Who does this policy apply to?
    1. This policy applies to all ACT public and non-government schools and Directorate staff.
  4. Context
    1. The appointment of authorised persons enables the Directorate to carry out certain responsibilities and functions under the Act in relation to government and non-government schools and home education.
  5. Responsibilities
    1. The Director-General  or delegate is responsible for compliance with appointment and related provisions.
    2. Authorised persons are responsible for compliance with the Education Act 2004 provisions relating to the exercise of their powers.
    3. Principal are responsible for compliance with the inspection powers in the Act.
    4. Policy Owner: The Director, Governance and Assurance is responsible for this policy.
  6. Monitoring and Review
    1. The Policy Owner monitors the policy. This includes an annual scan of operation and review. A full review of the policy will be conducted within a three year period.
  7. Contact
    1. For support contact the Governance and Assurance Branch on (02) 6205 4379 or email det.legal.liaison@act.gov.au.
  8. Complaints
    1. Any concerns about the application of this policy or the policy itself, should be raised with:
  9. References
    1. Definitions
      • Authorised person (government): a person who is an authorised person (government) appointed by the Director-General under section 67 of the Act.
      • Authorised person (non-government): is a person who is an authorised person (non-government) appointed by the Director-General under section 119 of the Act.
    2. Legislation
      • The Education Act 2004 provides for the operation and governance of public schools and the registration of non-government schools and home education.
    3. Implementation Documents
      • Attendance at ACT Public Schools
      • Attendance at Non-Government Schools
      • Education Participation (Enrolment and Attendance) Policy
      • Registration of Home Education in the ACT

Appointment and Functions of Authorised Persons Policy: AFAP201002 is the unique identifier of this document. It is the responsibility of the user to verify that this is the current and complete version of the document, available on the Directorate’s website at http://www.education.act.gov.au/publications_and_policies/school_and_corporate_policies/A-Z.

Policy Identifier: AFAP201002

Published: January 2016

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