Other issues

What should happen when the police wish to interview a student at school?

The Police can take a student into custody immediately and interview them at the Police station. (Likewise CYFS can exercise emergency powers to take a child into care. You should be able to sight official documentation proving this).

However in most cases request for access to students are not made under a legal provision requiring the school to co-operate immediately.

In general it is the Board of Trustees call (practically likely to be handled by you - the Principal) and any response should be delayed to enable you to take appropriate advice. You may also need to consider if and when parents or caregivers are informed.

When a request is received call NZSTA for advice. The Police should be able to provide the reasons they have for the request in writing. NZSTA or lawyer (approved by your school insurer) can help assess the validity of the reasons given by the Police, the risks of releasing any personal information and the factors you may wish to consider when deciding how you will respond.

Youth Law provides information for students regarding their rights and responsibilities when interacting with the Police.

Updated: June 2012

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