Pregnancy - potential risks and requirements

Pregnancy has potential risks during placement, from physically demanding activities, to exposure to diseases that can cause harm to unborn babies. Students who are planning to become pregnant or who are pregnant at the time they are due to go on their professional experience placement must consult their health professional and inform them that they will be in regular contact with children to understand how they can minimise the risks of injury or infections while on placement. Students who are planning to become pregnant or who are pregnant at the time they are due to go on their professional experience placement have the following options:

  • undertake the professional experience placement while pregnant; or
  • postpone the professional experience placement until an agreed time after the birth

Students who choose to complete the professional experience placement while pregnant are required to provide a medical certificate stating their fitness to undertake the placement at the scheduled date to the Course Coordinator.

Students who become pregnant whilst completing their placement can choose to withdraw from the placement without penalty, and arrange to complete the placement at an agreed later time. Alternatively they can choose continue with the placement.

Students who choose to defer their placement due to pregnancy should be aware that this may delay the student's progress in the program. Such Students should discuss their program with the Program Convenor.

Risks for pregnant Students on placement

Employees who are in contact with children in schools and early childhood centres can be at greater risk of contracting infections that can be potentially harmful to unborn babies. These infections include:

  • Rubella (German measles
  • Cytomegalovirus
  • Chicken Pox
  • Erythema Infectiosum
  • Toxoplasmosis

Pregnant Students must also take extra care during manual handling of objects and children and ask for assistance. Other potential physical risks include workstation ergonomics, standing or sitting for long periods of time, and physically demanding or strenuous activities.

The University of Newcastle acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands within our footprint areas: Awabakal, Darkinjung, Biripai, Worimi, Wonnarua, and Eora Nations. We also pay respect to the wisdom of our Elders past and present.