​​Guideline review date: 28 October 2021​​​

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​This guideline is provided to support schools in implementing the managing risks in school curriculum activities procedure.

The CARA planner (DOCX, 600KB) must be used for the specific school context in conjunction with this guideline considering additional risks, hazards and controls and including environmental, facility, equipment and student considerations.

For activities beyond the scope of this guideline, complete a CARA record using the CARA generic template (DOCX, 488KB).

Activity scope

This guideline relates to student participation in volleyball (including beach volleyball, mini volleyball, Newcomb ball) as an activity to support curriculum delivery.

For activities conducted at a non-Department of Education venue, and/or when engaging external expertise, request written risk assessment advice and attach it to this CARA record.

For activities conducted off-site, schools must comply with the school excursions procedure.

For activities conducted as part of representative school sport programs, schools should consult with Queensland School Sport​.​

Medium risk
Volleyball activities involving regulation equipment.

Activity requirements

If any requirement cannot be met, the activity must not occur.

If any other safety recommendation cannot be met, modify the activity (or elements of it) and/or identify and use the hierarchy of controls​ to implement alternative control measures to meet or exceed the minimum safety standard.

Competition rules and procedures with additional or more stringent safety requirements must take precedence (e.g. FIVB rules, beach volleyball rules​).



Principals make final supervision decisions for the activity. Sufficient adult supervision must be provided to manage the activity safely (including emergency situations).

The number of adult supervisors required to fulfil emergency and supervision roles must consider the nature of the activity, students’ ages, abilities and specialised learning, access and/or health needs.

Before the activity, all adult supervisors:

  • must be familiar with the contents of the CARA record
  • must assess weather conditions prior to undertaking the activity, inspecting the intended location in order to identify variable risks, hazards and potential dangers, if participating outside.

During the activity, all adult supervisors:

  • must be readily identifiable
  • must closely monitor students with health support needs
  • must closely supervise set up and take down of equipment
  • must closely supervise net play
  • must comply with control measures from the CARA record and adapt as hazards arise
  • must suspend the activity if the conditions become unfavourable (e.g. extreme temperatures, thunderstorms).

Supervisor qualifications

Principals make final decisions in determining supervisor capability (competence, relevance and currency) and are responsible for encouraging and enabling school-based activity supervisors to raise their qualifications to improve safety standards.

All adult supervisors must comply with the working with children authority—blue cards procedure and be able to identify, and respond to, risks or hazards that may emerge during the activity.

A registered teacher must be appointed to maintain overall responsibility for the activity.

At least 1 adult supervisor is required to be:

  • a registered teacher with competence (knowledge and skills) in teaching volleyball; or
  • an adult supervisor, working under the direct supervision of a registered teacher, with current Level 1 coaching accreditation from Volleyball Australia or similar.

Facilities and equipment

The qualified adult supervisor of the activity, in consultation with the principal, determines the requirements for facilities and equipment appropriate to the local context.

Location must be suitable for the activity being undertaken, including sufficient space, adequate lighting and ventilation to ensure safe participation and that safety rules and procedures can be followed.

Compliance with the department’s guide to managing electrical equipment in departmental schools and workplaces for safety switches if using extension or power cords.

Participants must wear personal protective equipment appropriate to the activity (e.g. enclosed footwear, knee-pads).

Fit-for-purpose padding, on posts and referee stands, made from impact absorbing foam.

 Common hazards and controls

Further to those listed, include any additional hazards and control measures considering the local context of the activity.

Environmental hazards Control measures

Biological hazards
Body fluids (e.g. blood, saliva, sweat)

Manage bodily substances (e.g. blood) and open wounds before, during and after the activity. Consult infection control guidelines and Queensland Health's exclusion periods for infectious conditions poster (PDF, 1.5MB) for hygienic practices and first aid.

Follow appropriate cleaning and hygiene management practices when using shared equipment (departmental staff search 'practical subjects cleaning equipment' in OnePortal).

Environmental conditions
Weather, sun, humidity

The school's sun safety strategy must be followed if participating outside.

Follow the managing excessive heat in schools guidelines when participating in very hot or extreme heat conditions.

Ensure drink breaks occur regularly. Make water available for individual participants between drink breaks.

Facilities and equipment hazards Control measures

Secure the antenna to the top and bottom of the net and ensure it does not extend below the bottom tape of the net.

If the antenna dislodges, immediately suspend the activity and reattach.

Boundary clearance

Establish a 2 metre safety zone around the playing area. If this cannot be achieved, consider ways of reducing risks (e.g. reducing the field size, padding the obstacle). Consider player safety when positioning referee stands, linespeople and table/chairs for scorers.

Locate player benches at least 3 metres from the side line behind the attack zone.

Ensure there are no sharp or rough edges (e.g. portable signage) facing the field of play.

Avoid using guy wires to support posts. If used, they must be made visible to players and covered with protective pads.


If power is required, ensure electrical or extension leads do not pose a tripping hazard.

Faulty or dangerous equipment

Use markers made from non-injurious material (e.g. cardboard, foam).

Check equipment for damage before and during the activity.

Check footwear before each match to ensure they provide sufficient protection for the feet. Look for non-slip soles, no buckles or zips and no sharp-edged soles.

Hazardous substances

Lines are marked in accordance with the line marking of sports fields fact sheet, if playing outside.

Playing surface

Conduct a field check to identify and manage surface hazards. Clear the playing surface from loose items or debris. Do not participate on a surface that is slippery, unduly rough or chopped up.

Cover/fill playing surface hazards (e.g. sprinkler heads, post holes) to be level with the surrounds.

Use designated towels for wiping floor spills (e.g. water, sweat).

For beach volleyball:

  • ensure lines are made from flexible material (i.e. cords or webbing)
  • ensure sand depth is at least 30cm and extends beyond the court by at least 2 metres
  • rake sand before use.

For beach volleyball, cover the base of portable posts with sand.

Securely fit the pin of adjustable posts when setting up, taking down or adjusting the height. Consult manufacturer’s instructions for support.

Stray balls

Implement protocols to manage stray balls e.g. pause gameplay, wait for break in play for retrieval.

Violation cards

Secure violation cards to the outside of the post nearest the referee using hook and loop fasteners.


If using a ratchet winch net system, ensure care is taken when adjusting/releasing the high tension system. Refer to the hazard alert—volleyball post ratchet hand winch for further information.

Remove winch handles from posts before the activity. If non-removable, pad the winch handles.

Student considerations Control measures

Physical contact
Breaks/sprains, cuts/abrasions/grazes, concussion, accidental ‘bumping’

Enforce rules to prevent rough play. Consult Play by the Rules (conduct and behaviour resources).

Manage injuries according to established procedures. If in doubt, do not allow students to return to play after injury until medically cleared.

Physical exertion
Exhaustion and fatigue

Conduct warm-up/cool-down activities.

Continually monitor participants for signs of fatigue and exhaustion.

Student issues

Remove accessories (e.g. jewellery, lanyards) before participating.

Ensure fingernails, hair and clothing (e.g. pockets) do not interfere with the activity.


This information is developed and distributed on this website by the State of Queensland for use by Queensland state schools only.

Use or adaptation of, or reliance on, this information by persons or organisations other than the State of Queensland is at their sole risk. All users who use, adapt or rely on this information are responsible for ensuring by independent verification its accuracy, currency and appropriateness to their particular circumstances. The State of Queensland makes no representations, either express or implied, as to the suitability of this information to a user's particular circumstances.

To the full extent permitted by law, the State of Queensland disclaims all responsibility and liability (including without limitation, liability in negligence) for all expenses, losses, damages and costs arising from the use or adaptation of, or reliance on, this information.

Links to external websites are for convenience only and the State of Queensland has not independently verified the information on the linked websites. It is the responsibility of users to make their own decisions about the accuracy, currency, reliability and correctness of the information at these external websites.

Last updated 06 September 2023