Do I need a Working with Children Check (WWC Check)?

Registered teachers will continue to be exempt from requiring a WWC Check, but will be required to notify Working with Children Check Victoria (WWCCV) if they engage in any paid or voluntary child-related work (other than their teaching).

If you are undertaking child related work and your employer wants to know more about your exemption, further information can be found here.

What is child related work?

Child related work is work that usually involves direct contact with a child / children in particular services, places, bodies or activities. It does not include occasional direct contact with children that is incidental to the work.

Direct contact with children means any contact between the person and the child that involves:

  • physical contact;
  • face to face contact;
  • contact by post or other written communication;
  • contact by telephone or other oral communication; and
  • contact by email or other electronic communication.

The particular services, places, bodies or activities include (but are not limited to the following):

  • child care services;
  • children’ services and education and care services;
  • educational institutions;
  • accommodation services specifically provided for students in connection with student exchange programs;
  • cultural, recreational or sporting clubs, associations or movements;
  • religious organisations;
  • babysitting or child minding services;
  • fostering children;
  • coaching or tuition services; and
  • business providing:
    • entertainment or party services for children;
    • gym or play facilities for children;
    • photography services specifically for children; and
    • talent and beauty competitions held for children.

Child related work can be paid, unpaid or voluntary work.

Further information about child related work can be found here.

What is a Working with Children Check?

The Working with Children Check is a screening processing for assessing and re-assessing people who work with or care for children in Victoria.

The WWC Check is administered by WWCCV and is governed by the Working with Children Act 2005.

The WWC Check includes considering the person’s criminal history and relevant professional conduct findings.

What is Working with Children Check Victoria (WWCCV)?

WWCCV administer the working with children scheme on behalf of the Department of Justice and Community Safety Victoria.

Their powers and functions are outlined in the Working with Children Act 2005.

The working with children scheme requires people who engage in child related work to obtain a working with children assessment notice unless they are exempt from doing so.

Further information about WWCCV can be found here.

I perform child related work (other than teaching) for an organisation. Even though I am a registered teacher, they require me to have a WWC Check. Do I have to get one?

Even though you are a registered teacher and are exempt from requiring a WWC Check, many organisations may still require you to get a WWC Check. This may be a policy decision made by the organisation. It may also be the organisation’s way of complying with the Child Safe Standards, and trying to ensure that all children are safe.

If you would like to engage in child related work (other than teaching), you will need to check the organisation’s policies regarding the need for a WWC Check.

If you are undertaking child related work and your employer wants to know more about your exemption, further information can be found here.

As a registered teacher, what are my current reporting obligations to VIT?

Registered teachers must continue to notify VIT of the following information:

  • change of their name;
  • change of their contact details (email, phone and address); and
  • when they commence and cease employment at a school or early childhood service.

From 1 September 2019, registered teachers must also notify VIT if they:

  • are committed for trial; or
  • have been convicted or found guilty of
    • a category A or category B offence;
    • an indictable offence;
    • a common assault; or
    • aggravated assault.

As a registered teacher, what is my obligation to WWCCV?

A registered teacher who engages in any paid or voluntary child related work (other than teaching in a school or an early childhood service) must notify WWCCV of the following information:

  • the person or organisation that employs them to engage in child related work; and
  • any agency which they are listed as available to engage in child related work.

For further information about how to discharge these obligations, please contact WWCCV.

Why do registered teachers have to provide information to WWCCV?

Registered teachers are exempt from obtaining a WWC Check in order to engage in child related work (other than their teaching).

If the registration of a teacher is suspended or cancelled, they are no longer able to engage in child related work unless they have obtained a WWC Check.

From 1 September 2019, organisations who engage registered teachers in any paid or voluntary child related work (other than teaching) can be informed when a teacher’s registration is suspended or cancelled. This will help ensure that the person has obtained WWC Check before continuing to engage in the child related work.

This will occur through the following process:

  • registered teachers will be required to notify WWCCV of the child related work (other than teaching) that they undertake.
  • VIT will be required to advise WWCCV when a teacher’s registration is suspended or cancelled.
  • WWCCV will then be able to notify the organisations that engage the teacher in child related work (other than their teaching) that the teacher’s registration has been suspended or cancelled and that they will be required to obtain a WWC Check before they continue to engage in child related work.

I have received a negative notice from Working with Children Check Victoria (WWCCV). What should I do now?

If you have made an application for registration / renewal of registration, you should declare this information in your application to the VIT.

If you have already submitted your application for registration / renewal of registration, you should notify the VIT as soon as possible.

If you have been given a negative notice, VIT must refuse your application for registration / renewal of registration. Prior to making this decision, VIT will provide you with an opportunity to provide further information and documentation relating to the negative notice.

If you are a registered teacher, you should contact the VIT as soon as possible.

If you have been given a negative notice, VIT must cancel your registration. Prior to making this decision, VIT will provide you with an opportunity to provide further information and documentation relating to the negative notice.

I have received an interim negative notice from WWCCV. What should I do now?

If you have made an application for registration / renewal of registration, you should declare this information in your application to the VIT.

If you have already submitted your application for registration / renewal of registration, you should notify the VIT as soon as possible.

This information will be taken into account in assessing your application for registration / renewal of registration.

If you are a registered teacher, you should contact the VIT as soon as possible. If you have been given an interim negative notice, VIT must suspend your registration. Prior to making this decision, VIT will provide the person with an opportunity to provide further information and documentation relating to the interim negative notice.

I have been charged, convicted or found guilty of a criminal offence in Victoria. What should I do now?

If you have made an application for registration / renewal of registration, you should declare this information in your application to the VIT. 

If you have already submitted your application for registration / renewal of registration, you should notify the VIT as soon as possible.

This information will be taken into account in assessing your application for registration / renewal of registration.

In the case of being charged, convicted or found guilty of a category A offence, VIT must refuse your application for registration / renewal of registration. Prior to making this decision, VIT will provide you with an opportunity to provide further information and documentation about the category A offence.

In the case of being charged, convicted or found guilty of a category B offence, VIT must refuse your application for registration / renewal of registration if it considers that you pose an unjustifiable risk to children. Prior to making this decision, VIT will provide you with an opportunity to provide further information and documentation about the category B offence.

In the case of engaging in category C conduct, VIT may refuse your application for registration / renewal of registration if VIT believes that you meet one of the following criteria:

  • your ability to teach in a school / early childhood service is likely to be affected because of the conduct that you engaged in; and
  • it is not in the public interest to allow you to teach in a school / early childhood service because of the conduct you engaged in.

Prior to making this decision, VIT will provide you with an opportunity to provide further information and documentation about the category C conduct.

If you are a registered teacher, you have obligations to notify VIT of certain convictions or findings of guilt. However, in all cases, it is recommended that you advise VIT as soon as possible.

If you have been charged with a category A offence, VIT must suspend your registration. If you have convicted or found guilty of a category A offence, VIT must cancel your registration. Prior to making these decisions, VIT will provide you with an opportunity to provide further information and documentation about the category A offence.

If you have been charged with a category B offence, VIT may suspend your registration. Prior to making this decision, VIT will provide you with an opportunity to provide further information and documentation about the category B offence.

This information will be taken into account in assessing / re-assessing your suitability to remain registered as a teacher.

I have been charged, convicted or found guilty of a criminal offence elsewhere in Australia or overseas. What should I do now?

If you have made an application for registration / renewal of registration, you should declare this information in your application to the VIT. 

If you have already submitted your application for registration / renewal of registration, you should notify the VIT as soon as possible.

This information will be taken into account in assessing your application for registration / renewal of registration and whether you are suitable to be registered as a teacher. 

VIT will also determine whether the criminal offence amounts to a category A offence, category B offence, or category C conduct and if so, consider whether it must refuse / may refuse your application for registration / renewal of registration.

If you are already registered as a teacher, you have obligations to notify VIT of certain convictions or findings of guilt. However, in all cases, it is recommended that you advise VIT as soon as possible.

This information will be taken into account in assessing whether you remain suitable to be registered as a teacher.

VIT will also determine whether the criminal offence amounts to a category A offence, category B offence, or category C conduct and if so, consider whether it must / may suspend or cancel your registration.

I have been the subject of a reportable allegation. What should I do now?

If you have made an application for registration / renewal of registration, you should declare this information in your application to the VIT. 

If you have already submitted your application for registration / renewal of registration, you should notify the VIT as soon as possible.

This information will be taken into account in assessing your application for registration / renewal of registration and whether you are suitable to be registered as a teacher. 

If you are already registered as a teacher, you should advise VIT as soon as possible. This information will be taken into account in assessing whether you remain suitable to be registered as a teacher.