Important changes under Vulnerable Children Act 2014
July 1 marked an important milestone in implementing regulatory and other changes that will have a considerable impact on schools, teachers and anyone who works with children.
The Ministry of Education has asked NZEI Te Riu Roa to spread the word on the changes resulting from the Children’s Action Plan and the Vulnerable Children Act 2014 (VCA).
From now on, all new core workers appointed into children’s worker roles must be safety checked to the VCA standards.
Over the next four years all core and non-core government funded children’s workers will need to be VCA safety checked by 1 July 2019.
The new workforce restriction also now applies. Any person convicted of a specified offence
cannot be employed or engaged as a core children’s worker, unless they have an exemption
. This workforce restriction will apply to all existing core children’s workers from 1 July 2016.
The Education Amendment Act 2015 requires the Education Council to cancel a teacher’s registration if they have been convicted of a specified offence under the Vulnerable Children Act 2014 and have not been granted an exemption. This is because they no longer satisfy the requirements for registration.
Teachers who are affected by the restriction will need to seek an exemption as soon as possible. The process
will be administered by the Ministry of Social Development on behalf of the other government agencies responsible for the Vulnerable Children Act (Ministries of Health, Education and Justice).
There is specific information for teachers about changes to registration on the Education Council website