Reports of misconduct by public school teachers or other staff have increased 25 per cent compared with the previous year, driven partly by a rise in allegations of staff behaving inappropriately.
Figures from the Education Department's annual report reveal it received 675 allegations of misconduct last financial year, compared with 541 in 2011-12.
Of the 268 serious cases managed by central office, 108 were for inappropriate behaviour ranging from unsuitable contact via social networking sites to allegations of sexualised contact with students, up from 69 the previous year.
The number of central office reports of physical assault, which ranged from minimal touching to unlawful physical contact, fell from 65 to 55.
Physical assault cases managed at a local school level increased from 121 to 148 and inappropriate behaviour complaints went up from 112 to 148.
More than two-thirds of locally managed misconduct cases fell into the child protection category, which the department said could include behaviours such as a tap on the hand, a tug on a ponytail or screening a DVD that was not age-appropriate.
The department's professional standards and conduct executive director Eamon Ryan noted the number of serious allegations had remained fairly constant in recent years, while reports of lower level misconduct increased.
"This increase was most likely due to greater awareness of the need of staff to report misconduct, including instances of relatively minor misconduct," he said.
"While there has been a small increase in the number of allegations categorised as inappropriate behaviour, there is nothing to suggest that this is due to any particular reason and may be simply the result of cyclical trends."
State School Teachers Union president Anne Gisborne said too many trivial complaints were being investigated, placing teachers under unnecessary stress.
The report also showed that 16 employees were banned from school premises because they were considered a risk to student safety and three employees were suspended while being investigated, two without pay.