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RSPCA Policy D4 Animals in education

Article ID: 186
Last updated: 12 Nov, 2008
Revision: 1
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 4.1 RSPCA Australia supports and encourages animal welfare education at all stages of formal education, in order to improve understanding of the principles of animal welfare, foster a positive attitude towards animals and help prevent acts of cruelty.
 4.2 RSPCA Australia supports and encourages the use of alternatives to the use of animals, living or dead, in teaching wherever possible, both to introduce the concepts of reduction, refinement and replacement at an early stage, and to reduce the burden of animal suffering.
 4.3 Preschool, primary and secondary education
 4.3.1  RSPCA Australia does not support the keeping, breeding or use of living animals in pre-schools or schools other than agricultural high schools. In general there are insufficient facilities and trained staff to adequately protect the welfare of animals in this setting (including such aspects as housing, proper handling, veterinary care and humane killing).
 4.3.2   RSPCA Australia regards the killing of animals for use in schools for dissection or other teaching purposes as unnecessary as many alternatives are available.
 4.4  Tertiary education
 4.4.1 The use of animals in interventional studies in tertiary education should be minimised. There should be a strong focus on the principles of reduction, refinement and replacement, and students must be able to opt-out of activities involving animals without risk of academic penalty. Wherever possible, teaching methods employing alternatives to the use of animals should be employed.
 4.4.2 RSPCA Australia advocates that there should be a clearly defined animal welfare component in all vocational animal-related courses, science and veterinary degrees.

(adopted 01/08/08)
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RSPCA Policy D3 Toxicology research and testing       RSPCA Policy D5 Use of animals sheltered or owned by the RSPCA