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Gympie children at risk after IT system update fails

SCHOOL staff in the region sent 78 reports through the OneSchool Student Protection Module during that period.

The program enables confidential reporting about physical, emotional and sexual abuse or potential abuse to the Education and Training Department; the Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services Department and Queensland Police Service.

But the nine sexual abuse reports sent only to police did not make it through because of a failed IT update.

Statewide, 644 reports did not reach police.

After the IT error was discovered, police began investigating the reports that had failed to come through the first time.

A police spokeswoman said privacy and investigative reasons prevented police from discussing whether charges had been laid or students removed from their parent or carer's custody.

"The Child Safety and Sexual Crimes Group finalised the assessment process and sent the matters to the relevant specialist investigators within the regions for investigation," she said.

"These matters remain ongoing."

The government hired independent auditors Deloitte to investigate the IT failure and make recommendations on preventing similar problems in future.

An Education and Training Department representative said all of Deloitte's OneSchool- Technology Review report's recommendations had now been followed or were on track to being implemented.

The representative said the department had hired two testing officers, one business analyst, one IT support officer and two technical project managers.

"In addition, the department has allocated existing staff with specific skill sets to assist with delivery of the recommendations from the Deloitte report," the representative said.

The group representing state school parents and citizens' associations, P&Cs Queensland, said the error was extremely unfortunate, but that the department and police had acted quickly.

P&Cs Queensland chief Kevan Goodworth said they did not receive a flood of inquiries from concerned parents when the error was discovered.

- APN NEWSDESK