The Andrews Labor Government will significantly strengthen the delivery of a respectful relationships program across Victorian schools and early years services with a $21.8 million investment in the 2016/17 Budget.
The program promotes positive attitudes and behaviours among children and young people and is aimed at preventing family violence.
The Labor Government introduced respectful relationships into the school curriculum in 2016, and with the investment announced today is expanding the program to focus on teaching practices, culture, and partnerships with the community.
The $21.8 million investment is part of the $572 million initial response to the Family Violence Royal Commission in the 2016/17 Victorian Budget. This key prevention initiative was called for in recommendation 189 by the Royal Commission.
In the first two years, the funding will deliver:
- Training and support for around 120 selected mentor ‘lighthouse’ schools to champion the program and drive positive change in their own and other schools.
- Professional learning for thousands of primary and secondary teachers to help them teach the respectful relationships program.
- Dedicated health officers in each of the Department of Education’s local areas to support schools in responding to family violence and making connections with relevant services in the community.
- Professional learning for up to 4000 early childhood professionals around respectful relationships and family violence prevention.
Quote attributable to Minister for Education James Merlino
“The funding boost announced today will help us deliver on the Royal Commission’s recommendation to take a ‘whole-of-school’ approach to supporting respectful relationships.”
“By having this program in Victorian schools and kindergartens our students will learn from a very young age that the best relationships are respectful ones.”
Quote attributable to Minister for Women and the Prevention of Family Violence Fiona Richardson
“The Royal Commission has made it clear that early intervention is vital to preventing family violence and this program is part of the solution.”