Dogs at School Policy

August 2021


Purpose

To explain to our school community the rules and procedures we have in place in relation to dogs attending our school grounds.

Policy

Assistance dogs

Maryborough Education Centre (MEC) understands its obligations under the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (Cth) and the Equal Opportunity Act 2010 (Vic) and will make reasonable adjustments for members of our school community with a disability who require an ‘assistance animal’ to help alleviate the effects of their disability.  Assistance animals are permitted to attend our school with their handler. Our school principal can lawfully ask a person to produce evidence that an animal:

  • is trained specifically to assist a person alleviate the effects of a disability (e.g., seeing eye dogs)
  • meets standards of hygiene and behaviour appropriate for a school environment.

We understand that in some circumstances, students may require an assistance animal to attend school to help them to participate in their educational program. MEC will consider a request by a student with a disability to allow an assistance animal to attend school with them on a case-by-case basis. If you would like to discuss this further, please contact the principal.

Pet dogs

MEC is not a public place, and our principal has the authority to permit or decline entry to school grounds and impose conditions of entry.

Whilst MEC understands that many families in our school community keep dogs as pets, to ensure that our school remains a safe and inclusive place for everyone, pet dogs are not permitted on school grounds without written approval from the principal.

Our school community is diverse and may include people that are allergic or uncomfortable around dogs. We are also conscious of the health hazards that may be posed by dogs. We ask that families please leave their pet dogs at home or safely tether them outside school grounds when attending our school or school events.

Stray dogs

Unaccompanied or stray dogs sighted at our school should be reported immediately to the general office. School staff will contact municipal authorities and/or Victoria police for assistance in managing and removing a stray dog from school grounds, and ensure staff and students remain safe at school.

Related policies AND RESOURCES

Duty of Care

Visitors’ policy

Animals in School

Dogs on site at MEC Risk Assessment

Dogs Working in Education Policy

Dogs Working in Education Agreed Practice

POLICY REVIEW AND APPROVAL

Policy last reviewed 25th August 2021
Consultation 09/08/2021- Principal

August Meeting- Education Policy Sub-Committee.

Approved by Anita Ford School Council President
Next scheduled review date This policy was last updated on 25th August 2021 and is scheduled for review as part of the school’s 3-year review cycle.