Actual risk
The quantifiable, evidence-based determination of risk that includes documentation of the likelihood, impact and severity of risk.

Approved form
An approved form for a school disciplinary absence is the departmental proforma located in OneSchool, which has been gazetted in the Queensland Government Gazette, as prescribed in Part 12 of the Acts Interpretation Act 1954 (Qld).


Behavioural risk
Means serious and immediate risk to the student, staff or other people because of behaviour that will cause or is highly likely to cause harm.

Behavioural risk assessment
Means an assessment of the risk associated with specific student behaviour(s) that balances the risk of the specific behaviour(s) and the potential or known adverse outcomes.

Bullying is an ongoing and deliberate misuse of power in relationships through repeated verbal, physical and/or social behaviour that intends to cause physical, social and/or psychological harm. It can involve an individual or a group misusing their power, or perceived power over one or more persons who feel unable to stop it from happening. Bullying can happen in person or online, via various digital platforms and devices and it can be obvious (overt) or hidden (covert). Bullying behaviour is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time (for example, through sharing of digital records).


Charge-related ground
As outlined in s. 282 of the Education (General Provisions) Act 2006 (Qld), a charge related ground is where the student is either charged with a serious offence or the student is charged with an offence other than a serious offence and the principal is reasonably satisfied it would not be in the best interests of other students or of staff for the student to attend the school while the charge is pending.

Chill out time
Means the self-directed but supervised opportunity for a student to take some time away from a situation that is causing them stress or anxiety, with the aim of enabling the student to manage their own anxiety and reduce behavioural risk.

Compulsory participation phase
A young person's compulsory participation phase starts when the person stops being of compulsory school age; and ends when the person:

  • gains a certificate of achievement, senior statement, certificate III or certificate IV, or
  • has participated in eligible options for 2 years after the person stopped being of compulsory school age, or
  • turns 17 years.

Compulsory school age
A child is of compulsory school age if the child is at least 6 years and 6 months and less than 16 years of age. However a child is no longer of compulsory school age if the child has completed Year 10.

Conduct refers to the behaviour of a student specifically described in s. 282(c)(d) and s. 283(3) of the Education (General Provisions) Act 2006. Conduct of a student also includes that which does not happen on school premises, or during school hours. Conduct of a student includes an omission to perform an act by the student.

Cyberbullying refers to bullying that is carried out through information and communication technologies.


Dealt with
Dealt with in relation to a charge against a student for an offence means any of the following:

  • the student is acquitted or convicted of the charge
  • the student is convicted of another offence arising out of substantially the same acts or omissions as those constituting the charge
  • the charge is withdrawn or dismissed or a nolle prosequi (a prosecutor's decision to voluntarily discontinue criminal charges either before trial or before a verdict is rendered) or no true bill (the prosecution decides not to present an indictment against an accused person after the accused person has been committed by a Magistrates Court to stand trial in a superior court, thereby ending the prosecution) is presented in relation to the charge.

Disciplinary Consequences
Disciplinary consequences may include suspension or exclusion of a student. They can also include other strategies such as detention and discipline improvement plans.

Detentions and discipline improvement plans are optional disciplinary strategies able to be implemented by a principal provided these strategies have been discussed and supported by the community during the consultation phase of the Student Code of Conduct.

Disciplinary decisions
Decisions to suspend or exclude a state school student. It may also include detentions or other actions as determined by the principal of the school and outlined in the Student Code of Conduct.


Emergency circumstances
Emergency circumstances may include where the life, health, safety or welfare of a student, staff member or other members of the school community or public are at immediate risk.

Environmental restraint
Environmental restraint means a state school employee intentionally restricting a student's free access to some or all parts of their environment, including items and activities. More formally, environmental restraint involves restricting a student's free access to all parts of their environment (including items and activities) for the primary purpose of responding to immediate behavioural risk. It can be used as an unplanned response to situations of imminent risk or can be planned in response to known risk.


Functional Behaviour Assessment
A process for collecting information to help determine why problem behavior occurs. A functional behaviour assessment aims to:

  • define behaviour in specific, observable, measurable terms
  • determine what aspects of the environment or situation contribute towards the behaviour
  • identify the consequences which maintain the behaviour.

Functionally informed
Thinking about the reason that a specific behaviour occurs, identified through specific, observable, measurable behaviour data such as is that which is collected in a functional behaviour assessment. Schools may implement functionally-informed thinking, functionally-informed decision making or functionally-informed behaviour planning.


Harm to a person

  1. physical harm to a person, or
  2. a serious and immediate risk of physical harm to a person, or
  3. damage to property that involves a serious and immediate risk of physical harm to a person.

A condition where a student's joints stretch further than most others.


Independent student
A student who is identified in OneSchool as 'Independent' is deemed to be responsible for their own education. In OneSchool this means that no parents need to be recorded for the student, the student will receive all correspondence, and from a financial perspective, the student will be the debtor (i.e. all invoices will be addressed to the student).


Known risk
A risk which the school knows about and can quantify from data.


Last resort
Means that staff have implemented all evidence based positive and proactive approaches for reducing behavioural risk and they have failed to reduce that risk or the risk is increasing due to behavioural escalation. Last resort responses of suspension or exclusion are a final course of action when no other alternative is available and likely to reduce risk.

Least restrictive environment
Means that the student's learning environment represents the least departure from the typical patterns of education and social interaction that is possible while still keeping actual risk within acceptable thresholds.

Least restrictive response
The smallest amount of direct physical contact or environmental limitation possible by an employee to prevent a student from harming themselves or others.


Mature aged student
An adult enrolled at a state school as a student in accordance with the mature age enrolment provisions in the Education (General Provisions) Act 2006.


Oral appeals
An independent person may be employed by the department to transcribe the oral appeal of a parent or student. This is a transcription provision only, not intended to prepare or guide the content of the appeal. The submission of the appeal remains the responsibility of the parent or student.

Osteogenesis imperfecta
A condition where bones break easily and often.


A child's mother, a child's father, a person who exercises parental responsibility and a person standing in the place of a parent of a child on a temporary basis. This may include the Office of the Public Guardian or a Child Safety Officer.

Perceived risk
A subjective judgement of risk which incorporates emotion, contextual factors and personal experiences.

Procedural fairness
Procedural fairness comprises 2 elements:

  • the right to be told the allegations against you, a reasonable opportunity to see and consider the evidence relied upon by the decision maker, and a reasonable opportunity to present your case and be given a fair hearing before the decision is made
  • the right to have a decision made by an unbiased decision maker.


Reasonable time
This is determined based on the nature of the item temporarily removed from the student, the risk to wellbeing to student and others, and the involvement of external agencies such as the Queensland Police Service. Factors that will inform a decision about what constitutes reasonable time will be:

  • the condition, nature or value of the property
  • the circumstances in which the property was removed
  • the safety of the student from whom the property was removed, other students or staff members
  • good management, administration and control of the school.


Serious offence
A serious offence as defined by s. 167 of the Working with Children (Risk Management and Screening) Act 2000 (Qld).

Sickle cell anemia
A condition where red blood cells are shaped like crescents, causing them to get caught in small blood vessels and which can cause pain, infections and/or organ damage.

State school staff
A state school staff member employed by the chief executive at the school. This includes, but is not limited to:

  • principals
  • deputy principals
  • teaching staff
  • non-teaching staff.

The following positions are not considered state school staff members for the purposes of this procedure, and do not have the authority under this procedure to temporarily remove student property as they are not departmental employees:

  • chaplains
  • pre-service teachers
  • school based police officers
  • school based youth health nurses
  • volunteers.

Supported decision making
Helping someone take steps to make more of their own decisions and remain in control of their own life. Supported decision making helps people with disability remain at the centre of their own decisions through providing them with the support and adjustments they need and want. Supported decision making involves building the skills and knowledge of people with disability, their friends, families, carers, peers and professionals.

Last updated 14 November 2023