Prom Information for Parents & Schools
Prom Night Events are insured for Public Liability by Lloyds of London.
Recent studies have demonstrated that 86% of all Proms denied permission by the school will go ahead regardless, and be booked in the school's name by the organising committees.
At Prom Night Events, we encourage cooperation and participation from schools to help guide young people in the right direction.
We know that the process of planning and putting together events like these is a valuable earning tool in such things as team-building, business skills, organisation skills, leadership & delegation, basic money management and responsibility. Of course there are many social skills that can be honed along the way.
We constantly survey schools, students and parents throughout the year to determine what concerns them most about Proms so we can find answers to their most often asked questions.
For the information of Principals, Deputies, Year Advisors, Board Members and Parents, we've created a Frequently Asked Questions section, and a Myths & Truths section. These are the questions you have most often asked, and the answers you most often seek.
We remain vigilant and transparent on all matters relating to the safety and security of young adults, and on all matters relating to Proper Business Practices and the adherence to pertinent legislation.
We acknowledge (below) the schools for whom we have successfully conducted Proms in recent years. Please note that although the names of the schools may appear here, not all of them were officially school-sanctioned events. If you see your school's name listed here and the event was unsanctioned, don't worry because it was not only 100% legally compliant and a great success but your school enjoyed up to $60M worth of insurance cover at no cost, even if you didn't know about it.
Elliot Kleiner - CEO of Prom Night Events explains why Schools are afraid of endorsing Proms and why their fears are based largely on myth.
This section is dedicated to the myths and truths about what's going on in the Prom industry. There are also links to relevant videos and blogs you should see in certain issues.
Rumour: That a Directive from the NSW Department of Education & Training states that schools are forbidden to take any active role in conducting school Proms.
This is a myth! We have had lengthy consultations with the Policy Section of the N.S.W. Department of Education & Training on this matter and what we were told is that there is not, and never was, any such directive or advice issued.
According to the Department, is that under ALL circumstances, the decision as to whether a school, or any member of it's staff, becomes involved in a Prom is totally at the discretion of the Principal. A High School Principal is considered a senior and respected officer in the education system and is charged with the authority to decide what is, and is not, of benefit to their own attending students.
In some cases, the District Superintendent for the Department may consult with any or all of the Principals within their designated region and it may be the collective decision that they will or will not become involved but any Principal who decides that participation in a Prom would be a good thing cannot have that decision overridden by either the Superintendent or the Department according to current policy.
If any Principal wishes to verify or clarify this, they need only get in touch with their regional Superintendent. They possess all of the documents and resources issued by the Department on these matters.
Rumour: Students attending a Prom outside of school premises are not covered by insurance in case of any incident.
This is also a myth! Our events are all held in major high-profile establishments and not only are the venues covered by insurances on the highest levels, but we also carry public liability insurance for security on top of that. As of September 2005 all of our events are also covered by a new insurance product that provides personal injury cover and property damage cover. The school's policy is not pertinent or necessary when we conduct your Prom .
Of course there is a small measure of truth to the myth - and that is that when student's are attending a Prom off school premises, they are not covered by the School's insurance, but as explained above, they are covered by other insurances far more comprehensively than any school insurance policy.
Rumour: High School Proms are always fraught with misbehaviour and drunkenness.
Truth and Myth: This may be true of some Proms in years gone by but the truth is that there are some very tough legislative measures in place that are designed to prevent this sort of occurrence.
We consulted heavily with the State Government departments on matters of the law, legal responsibility, duty of care, security, liquor licensing and other associated issues.
What we learned is that there are various types of licenses available to various types of venues. They all have restrictions designed to keep young people safe from the affects of alcohol.
Although this area of the law is rather complex, we decided that it would be far more effective if we wrote a single set of procedures and policies that would cover all pertinent legislation by banning the service of alcohol completely at almost all venues. In these venues even adults, parents and teachers are forbidden alcohol at our Proms because all liquor, quite simply, is either removed from the function area completely, or placed under lock and key - literally.
At a very small number of other venues where the law clearly allows the responsible service of alcohol to adults, we have a very specific additional set of procedures and equipment that limits the service of alcohol far beyond anything that is recommended by RSA legislation. We simply will not place ourselves, or you in a position of risk.
Our policies regarding alcohol can be viewed in greater detail on the Security & Legal Compliance page of this site.
Rumour: There has to be a guaranteed minimum number of Teachers or Parents present at every Prom.
Another myth! There is a minimum mandatory requirement imposed by the State for "responsible supervising adults" but that doesn't have to be parents and teachers don't qualify under the law. We not only cover this as part of every event with our own staff but our minimum is higher than the State's requirement.
It is quite alright for us to conduct Proms, under the law, without any parents or teachers in attendance at all. In fact, this has always been the case with complete success.
Unfortunately, we've had far more trouble with the poor behaviour of parents at Proms in the past than with teens. As a result, we've decided that Parents will no longer be able to attend our Proms, unless with special permission from our management. The overwhelming consensus amongst students has also told us that they do not want their parents overshadowing their big night, even though they may be too polite to say so.
Individual School Staff Members attending High School Proms must assume total responsibility for the guests while attending the event.
This is a myth! Any attending staff member would have no greater responsibility or duty on the night than any attending guest, student or partner. Our own staff actually run the event and control all that transpires at the event without the need to call upon anyone for assistance.
Further to this, it is actually illegal for a staff member of the school to assume any roles whatsoever that may fall under the category of supervision or security unless they 1/ Possess a Bona-Fide Security License and display it, 2/ Carry their own Public Liability Insurance and 3/ Have written permission to conduct these duties from the organiser and the venue.
To clarify that, we should point out that responsibility for adherence to the standard terms and conditions that require signing at the "proposal" and "agreement" stage of planning a Prom falls upon the actual person signing the documents. If that person coincidentally happens to be a member of Faculty, this does not necessarily mean that the school immediately assumes joint liability for anything that happens on the day.
To further clarify this point. To date, in the 16 year history of this programme, not a single function has been closed down, not a single cent of normally refundable deposit money has been withheld and not a single school or signatory individual has been held liable for anything going wrong. We accredit much of this to the smooth running and stringent security methods we have finely tuned to suit this market.
Rumour: Proms are now open for Primary schools to have their events in major venues as well.
Myth!:Although there have been some instances of extravagent behaviour by parents resulting in year 6 events, it is actually illegal to have Proms below year 10 in most of the venues best suited to Proms.
Because most Prom venues operate under a Hotellier's license, and certain permits are required for "Minor's Functions" to take place, the rules are very clear. No guests below the age of 15 years are permitted to attend.
Legally, and from a pure liability exposure and insurance perspective, year 6 Proms in major venues (for the most part) can't happen.
Rumour: School students (in N.S.W.) should never be placed under the supervision of those who have not been submitted to the mandatory screening process imposed by the Department of Education and Training under the N.S.W. Child Protection (prohibited employment) act 1998.
Truth: We agree wholeheartedly! That's why all of our Staff, Management, Masters of Ceremony, Disc Jockeys, Event Managers, Security Personnel, Photographers and all those within our crew likely to attend a Prom and interact with students are put through that process as a mandatory requirement of employment with us.
We challenge any and all others in the Prom Supply Industry, in any capacity to boast that they adhere to Governmental regulations as seriously as we do.
Rumour: By a school refusing to take part in arranging a Prom, no such Prom will take place, therefore, the schools good repute will remain in tact no matter what.
This is one of the most dangerous myths of all!: Our surveys have shown that 86% of schools that refused involvement have students who will go ahead and hold a Prom regardless, AND in most cases will use the school's name in the process. The fact that the school does not sanction the event will not prevent it from taking place and if anything goes wrong, will not protect the school if a liability claim transpires OR the media happens to come across a worthy story. YES! That's right! Even if the school has no knowledge that the Prom is taking place, legally it potentially attracts a liability exposure if anything at that Prom goes wrong.
Where many Proms go wrong is simply that students are easy prey for disreputable people in the marketplace who seek to capitalise on their inexperience and produce less than adequately planned and controlled events. We know of quite a number of firms that rely on school students to buy illegal event packages for their main source of income each season. They include many venues that also market heavily but don't even possess licenses to hold school events.
Make no mistake! The best way to avoid students travelling down a poor path is to advise them well and supervise their decisions, equipped with the facts and reputable assistance from well established and experienced professionals.
Rumour: Events like Proms are only really for elite private schools who's students can afford it.
Myth!: For the last 12 years, we have conducted more State school events than private schools. In most cases, the ticket price of our events is far less than other items on the list of the average Prom guest. Students will pay far less on their ticket price than they will gladly pay for things like suits or dresses, make up, nails & hair, limousines and after parties.
This is often the most important event on their social calendar. Students, if left to book their own function, will more often pay $30 or $50 more per head than our ticket price, to attend some other venue that serves them unlimited liquor illegally.
Frequently Asked Questions (by parents & teachers)
Q: Who pays the initial deposit?
A: Who ever wants to. If a school sanctions the event and a member of staff signs the paperwork, the school doesn't have to put up the deposit. In most cases they do because we no longer ask for deposits to be "held over" in case of damage. We cover the security bond with the venue ourselves. Deposits paid to Prom Night are actually down payments and come off the overall price.
Parents are often willing to cover the deposit. Likewise, the students often have some form of fundraising exercise to raise the deposit.
In any case, there is no rule and the school isn't obliged to take on this responsibility unless the Principal agrees to do it.
Q: If all our students are advised as to the rules for their conduct at the event, how do we make sure that outside partners are kept in line?
A: A compendium of the rules is printed on every event ticket. The tickets will be dispatched well before the event so each ticket holder will be in possession of it before arrival on the day. Of course the tickets will also have our web address printed on them so that anyone can view the full list of detailed rules as each date approaches.
Q: What if our school has always had a policy of not supporting Proms? (See HERE for a video explaining the issue in greater detail)
A: That policy was most likely adopted to combat the kinds of issues described here. Schools may now look at how we operate "Zero Tolerance" events and choose to review their policy under these circumstances.
If you look at the list of venues we are partnered with, you will see many of them are traditionally venues that have had the same "no Proms" policy for years. They are only participating in the programme because they are completely convinced that our methods make the market worth re-entering.
In short - any policy is adopted because it is formed according to the environment at that time. If the environment alters for the better, so should a policy. That's just sound business sense.
Q: Are the controversial security procedures conducted by Prom Night Events legal AND does my student / minor have the right to refuse to submit to them?
A: Yes and Yes. The procedures we operate were in fact written according to the law and many of them were suggested by the State Government itself. There are constant reviews to make sure we keep up to current legislative changes in this regard.
It is any ticket-holders right to refuse to submit to any security process we conduct, but it should be known that entry may be refused under such circumstances.
Schools we've helped (and continue to help)
2011 was a record year for us with a whopping 89% return business figure.
Many of these are regular clients year after year. Many also give us control of Year 10, Year 11 and Year 12 events.
- Auburn Girls High
- Arden Anglican College
- Arthur Phillip High
- Asquith Girls High
- Balgowla Boys High
- Barker College
- Bedford College
- Beverly Hills Girls High
- Blacktown Girls High
- Blakehurst High
- Bonnyrigg High
- Bossley Park High
- Brent St High
- Brigidine College Randwick
- Burwood High
- Camden High
- Canterbury Girls High
- Canterbury Boys High
- Carlingford High
- Casimir Catholic College
- Catherine McCauley High
- Chatswood High
- Cheltenham Girls High
- Chevalier College
- Concord High
- Covenant Christian School
- Cranbrook School
- Crestwood High
- Danebank Girls College
- Davidson High
- De La Salle College
- Domremy College
- Dulwich High
- East Hills Girls High
- East Hills Boys High
- Elderslie High
- Endeavour Sports High
- Fort St High
- Freshwater High
- Frensham School
- Georges River College
- Glenmore Park High
- Holy Cross College
- Holsworthy High
- Homebush Boys High
- Hurlstone Agricultural High
- International Grammar School
- James Ruse Agricultural School
- Jannali High
- Killara High
- Kingsgrove North High
- Ku-Ring-Gai Creative Arts High
- Leichhardt High
- Liverpool Girls High
- MacKellar Girls High
- MacQuarie Fields High
- Manly High
- Marcellin College
- Marist College
- Marist Sisters College
- Marsden High
- Meriden School
- Miller Technology High
- Monte Sant Angelo
- Moorefield Girls High
- Moorebank High
- Mosman High
- Newington College
- Newtown Performing Arts High
- Normanhurst Boys High
- North Sydney Girls High
- North Sydney Boys High
- Pennant Hills High
- Picnic Point High
- Pittwater High
- PLC Croydon
- PLC Sydney
- Port Hacking High
- Queenwood School for Girls
- Randwick Girls Technology High
- Randwick Boys Technology High
- Reddam House
- Redlands Grammar
- Riverside Girls High
- Rose Bay Secondary College
- Rosebank College
- Ryde Secondary College
- Sarah Redfern High
- Sefton High
- Shore School
- Sir Joseph Banks High
- South Sydney High
- St Aloysius' College
- St Catherines
- St Charbels College
- St Clares College
- St Clair High
- St Euphemia College
- St George Girls High
- St Ives High
- St Maroun's School
- St Pauls Catholic College
- St Paul's Grammar School
- St Scholastica's College
- St Spyridon College
- St Vincents College
- Strathfield Girls High
- Strathfield South High
- Sydney Boys High
- Sydney Girls High
- Sydney Secondary College
- Sydney Technical High
- Sylvania High
- Tara Anglican School
- Tempe High
- The Emanuel School
- The Forest High
- The Kings School
- The Scots College
- The Pittwater House School
- Waverley College
- Westfield Sports High
- Wiley Park High
- William Clarke College
- Willoughby Girls High
- Wooloware High
- Wyndham College
And more new schools being added to this list every year.
REGISTER FOR FREE ASSISTANCE
LATEST FORMAL INDUSTRY NEWS
Catch the latest news and views about the Formal Industry. Click Here