Catholic Education South Australia
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Animal Ethics

Non Government Schools Animal Ethics Committee

Catholic Education South Australia (CESA) and the Association of Independent Schools of South Australia (AISSA) manages the Non Government Schools Animal Ethics Committee (NGSAEC) on a two year rotational basis.

New Applications, Adverse Events and Requests for Dissection for 2023/24 should be emailed to


Please find below recently updated forms which may be downloaded for use:

The following are examples of well written and detailed Applications for:

Please see an example of a well written and detailed Adverse Event Report.

Please see an example of Animal Feed Care and Health Records. There are two different styles within the same document.  These can be adapted to the school’s needs and are a necessary part of animal keeping.

Click on the subject category below to view more information.

The NGSAEC procedures, are the result of a combined effort between the Department for Education AEC and the NGSAEC. These will be a continual work in progress and input from schools is welcomed by our committee. Any feedback or suggestions, changes to the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) or new SOPs can be tabled for consideration by our committee.  The intent is to keep the SOPs across all three sectors the same. Updates will filter through to schools on a regular basis with updates available here as soon as approved.

All schools have received copies of the Procedures Manual.  Where schools have an Agricultural program an additional copy was sent for the use of the Head of Agricultural Studies (or similar).  The NGSAEC Procedures Manual for animals kept in schools provides schools with the guidelines to seek approval to keep animals in schools.

The approval process is as follows:

Category 1
Must be approved by the Principal/Director.

Category 2
Can be approved by the Principal/Director or delegated Animal Ethics Focus Person or Teacher provided that the Standard Operating Procedure for the care of the animal as per the guidelines is followed.

Category 3
Requires approval by the Principal/Director provided that the Standard Operating Procedure for the care of the animal as per the guidelines is followed.

Categories 4 & 5
Requires approval by the NGSAEC.

Category 6
Prohibited activities.

Application to Keep Animals in Schools for Science and Teaching Purposes

This form must be completed for applications for animals to kept at schools that fall into Category 4 or 5 or Non Listed Activities for the period 1 January to 31 December each year. The form should be returned to the Committee by 31 December in year to the address shown above. Emailed copies are preferred. Where Category 2 or 3 activities are performed in conjunction with Category 4 or 5 activities these activities must be included. Where an activity is not listed in the procedure manual this application form must be completed and sent to the AEC for approval. Animals kept at schools that fall into Category 2 or 3 must be approved, as per the manual, by the Principal or delegated officer. These animals must be cared for as described in the SOP contained in the manual. If an animal is not cared for in line with the SOP a full application to the NGSAEC must be made.


Notification from Veterinary Practice re School as Client

This form is to be completed by the Veterinary Practice where the school is a client. This is to give the Committee some assurance that the Practice is ready to service the school’s animals when required.


Request for Approval to Use Animals for Dissections

This form is to be completed where schools are performing dissections and must be submitted to the NGSAEC for approval. These forms should be sent to the address shown above. Emailed copies are preferred. All requests for approval to dissect animals must be submitted and approved prior to the activity being carried out.


Adverse Events form

Where an animal becomes ill, injured, dies or other unexpected incident directly affecting the health and wellbeing of an animal this must be reported to the NGSAEC within 7 days of the event occurring. This applies to any animal cared for at the school. These forms should be sent to the address shown above. Emailed copies are preferred.


Applications for Category 2 and 3 Animals

Applications for Category 2 & 3 activities require the approval of the School Principal/Director. Please refer to the Standard Operating Procedures for more detailed information.

Research into the effects of therapy or support dogs in schools shows a range of benefits, including:

  • Reduction in stress and anxiety
  • Increased school attendance
  • Improvements in confident and self esteem
  • Improvements in learning outcomes
  • Enhanced relationships with peers and teachers.

Consideration must also be given to the welfare of the dog and the school has a responsibility for maintaining the dog’s health and wellbeing.

We encourage you to read the attached example Wellbeing Dog Policy which may assist you and your school before using a therapy dog at your school.

Other useful links:

The following site offers invaluable information in regard to the incubation and hatching of eggs for lifecycle projects.  It is recommended that a school who wishes to facilitate this type of program use the Living Eggs Program which provides very good procedures, collects the chicks for re-homing and provides guides for different levels of schooling.

The following links offer invaluable information regarding Scabby Mouth in Sheep.