The NSW Department of Education’s Chemical Safety in Schools Package (CSIS) is available online (DEC intranet) to all staff in all government schools in NSW. Whilst the CSIS package has been developed for use in NSW government schools, access is available to Independent and Catholic schools under a licence agreement. You are advised to contact the NSW Department of Education for further information regarding current access.
CSIS is a resource package to help schools meet their legislative requirements under the WHS Act and Regulations and provides up-to-date information on the safe use and handling of chemicals. The information in the online document supersedes some advice in previous versions. Whilst most of the online information is up to date, there are still some sections that are currently under review. This revision was anticipated to be finalised by early 2016. There will not be any major changes to the range and usage advice for the chemicals in the CSIS package.
The coloured dot system has also been developed for use by government schools. It is a colour key to the user groups for a particular chemical. They act as a quick visual reference in the classroom and in storage areas.
The 1999 printed copy that you have access to has information that is not current, as it exceeds the 5-year period for SDSs, of which you are aware, but we see that your question relates more with whether the user code is still applicable.
If you do not have access to the online version of CSIS then we suggest the following options.
- Check the information from your version of the CSIS package against current SDS and conduct your own risk assessment giving consideration to staff training, student behaviour, the activity conducted and school facilities.
- Check the current information and user group to see if it is also included in the Science ASSIST Recommended list of chemicals for science in Australian schools and if you choose to, you can apply the coloured dots accordingly.
NSW Department of Education and Communities ‘Chemical Safety in Schools (CSIS)’ resource package. NSW DEC website http://www.dec.nsw.gov.au/ DEC Intranet, login required.