We seek to create a learning environment where the safety of children comes first. We value the help and contributions of volunteers and want to see your service to the children of this community continue. Please review the information below and speak directly with your building principal if you need help with the process.
Volunteer packets with forms are available in your school building office. Ask the building secretary for assistance.
The district strongly supports the involvement of parents/guardians and community volunteers to enhance the educational, co-curricular and extracurricular programs of the school district. Accordingly, the Board encourages the use of and the schools are encouraged to provide a variety of opportunities for parent/guardian and community volunteers subject to certain requirements and procedures set forth in this policy.
Key Terms for Volunteers
- Direct Contact with Children – as part of the volunteer position, the individual has regular, ongoing, contact with children or the possibility of care, supervision or guidance. This is not to be interpreted as incidental contact as part of the school setting.
- Volunteer – adult who provides a service without compensation, remuneration or other consideration for an educational, co-curricular or extracurricular program.
- Adult – individual eighteen (18) years of age or older.
Types of Volunteers (2)
- Volunteer “Helper” – An adult who volunteers for a single event, a consecutive series of days, or several nonconsecutive days, in one or more positions during the school term, where no one position is more than ten (10) days total.
- Volunteer “Assistant” – An adult who volunteers for more than ten (10) school days per school term in the same position, or any adult who accompanies students on overnight field trips.
Volunteer “Helper” – Prior to providing services as a volunteer, the Helper shall be required to sign Volunteer Responsibility Statement (916-1) and Request for Wavier (916-2) that they have not perpetrated or been convicted of any offense that would preclude their volunteer status by the school district under Act 34, Act 114, and/or Act 151.
Helpers may be required to complete, submit for approval, and file an Act 34 Criminal History Report, an Act 151 Child Abuse Clearance Statement, Act 114 FBI Criminal Background Check, and the results of a tuberculosis examination (i.e. Tine Test) in accordance with state law and regulations at the request of the Superintendent.
Volunteer Helpers must receive approval from the building administrator prior to providing services.
Volunteer “Assistant” – Prior to providing services as a volunteer, the Assistant must complete, submit for approval, and file an Act 34 Criminal History Report, an Act 151 Child Abuse Clearance Statement, Volunteer Responsibility Statement (916-1), and the results of a tuberculosis examination (i.e. Tine Test) in accordance with state law and regulations.
In addition, an individual wishing to serve as a Volunteer Assistant who has not resided in the State of Pennsylvania during the ten (10) years previous to the start of volunteer work shall be required to apply for and supply a copy of the Act 114 FBI Criminal Background Check. If the volunteer has been a continuous resident of Pennsylvania for the past ten (10) years, s/he must swear or affirm in writing they are not disqualified from service based upon a conviction of an offense under PA Code 6344 (Request for Wavier 916-2)
Volunteer Assistants must receive board approval prior to providing services.
- No person who is required to submit clearances will be permitted to volunteer if the criminal history or child abuse reports/clearances required by this policy evidence an offense which would preclude such individual from providing services under the Child Protective Services Law (see Disqualifying Offenses).
- Volunteering is a privilege, not a right. Even if a volunteer has obtained the required background clearances, the district retains the right to exercise discretion in permitting the individual to serve as a volunteer.
Cost Of Clearances / TB Examinations
- The costs of obtaining the required clearances and/or TB Tine Test, shall be the responsibility of the volunteer, but will be reimbursed by the district once submitted.
Age/Renewal Of Clearances
- When first submitted, the clearances cannot be more than twelve (12) months old.
- After the first submission, clearances must be updated every sixty (60) months from the oldest date on the clearances.
Submission/Maintenance of Clearances
- Volunteers should submit the following documents at the district administrative offices:
- Original PA State Criminal Records Check – Act 34;
- Original PA Child Abuse History Clearance – Act 151;
- Original Federal Criminal History Record Check (Fingerprint) – Act 114 (if not seeking a Request for Waiver 916-2);
- Request for Waiver of FBI – Federal Criminal History Record Check (if seeking waiver of #3); and
- Acknowledgment of Volunteer Responsibility Form available online as 916-1.
Volunteers, at their own discretion, can delete personal identification numbers from the clearance record on file, such as their social security number, once accepted by the district.
Duty To Notify
- If, after the date of the clearances, the volunteer is arrested or convicted of a Disqualifying Offense, or named as a perpetrator of a founded report of child abuse, the volunteer must provide written notice to the office of the district Superintendent within seventy-two (72) hours of the arrest or conviction.
Failure To Disclose
- Anyone failing to disclose information required under this policy commits a misdemeanor of the third degree and will be reported to law enforcement.
Early Renewal Right
- If the district has a reasonable belief that a volunteer has been arrested or convicted of a Disqualifying Offense or was named a perpetrator in a founded report of child abuse or the volunteer has given notice of an arrest or conviction of a Disqualifying Offense, the district, at its expense, shall immediately require the volunteer to submit updated clearances.
- No volunteer shall be permitted to access, review, disclose or use confidential student information (written or verbal); or participate in conversations in which confidential student information is discussed. Examples of such information include, but are not limited to, the following: grades or other measures of academic performance; class standing; standardized or other test scores; attendance records; disciplinary history; intelligence test scores; personality and interest test scores; individualized education plans; health data; family background information; teacher or counselor ratings and observations; and any other verified or unverified information contained in a student’s file maintained by the teachers, administrators or schools within the school district.
- Each volunteer shall keep strictly confidential all information s/he may learn about students in the school district during the course of performing services. Volunteers may be required to sign a confidentiality agreement prior to providing services.
- The role of a volunteer is to assist, but not replace or assume the responsibilities or authority of the district staff.
- All volunteers providing service during the time that school is in session will be required to sign in at the appropriate building with a statement of their volunteer purpose and wear and display an identification tag/badge at all times and return the tag/badge to the office at the end of the volunteer period.
- Under no circumstances shall a volunteer be considered an employee or an independent contractor of the district. A volunteer shall receive no wages or other valuable consideration for the performance of his/her volunteer services.
- Except as specifically authorized by superintendent, on a case-by-case basis, volunteers shall not be permitted to operate any motor vehicles owned or leased by the school district. Volunteers shall not transport students, other than their own children, to or from any school event, without approval from the building administer.
- The building administrator or designee shall assume general authority and responsibility over all volunteers serving at that site. The Athletic Director will assume general authority and responsibility over all athletic volunteers.
- Volunteers will not be permitted to directly administer student discipline.
- Volunteer activities will be provided only as requested by the teacher or supervisor.
- All School Board approved volunteers must obtain a tuberculosis (TB) test as required by the Department of Health.