You may be aware that Pennsylvania has recently passed legislation that requires additional clearances, training, and other documentation for those who work with children and youth. In the past most of this was required of employees only, but now much of it is extended to volunteers. Mercyhurst Prep has always been fortunate to have so many of you who volunteer in myriad capacities; often it is your time and effort that enable us to offer the events that we do and to execute them well. Now, due to the new requirements, we will need to ensure that all of our volunteers meet the state and diocesan mandates.
There are several categories of volunteers, and I will try to give a clear explanation of each. In order to facilitate your continued volunteerism on which we depend, it would be extremely helpful if you could read the explanations and anticipate those activities in which you may become involved at some point in the school year. Then, if you could now obtain the clearances, forms and trainings required, you will be free to participate.
VOLUNTEER CLEARANCE REQUIREMENTS
So many of you are willing to support MPS programs through volunteerism, and we are very, very grateful. Below is the necessary information to help expedite compliance with the legal requirements of a school volunteer.
1) The first category is for OCCASIONAL VOLUNTEERS. Most of you would likely fall into this category as it is for people who have occasional contact with children/youth. This category includes chaperones for dances, mailing helpers, school committees that include students, athletic and other boosters selling concessions at school-sponsored events, workers at registration tables and concessions at events like the Laker Glow, parent helpers setting up for events like the gala if present when students are present, etc.
These volunteers must have on file:
- Acceptable Use and Internet Safety Policy Form
- Acceptable Use and Internet Safety Policy Agreement
- Their name listed on the Occasional Volunteers List form (annually – MPS will take care of this.)
* Adults who are paying travelers on a trip and who have NO SUPERVISORY duties need only obtain the three clearances – criminal record check, child abuse, and FBI (if not continuous residents of PA for the past 10 years) – and need not complete the other trainings. However, in this case, they may be given no supervisory duties of any kind throughout the duration of the trip.
2) The second category is for VOLUNTEER DRIVERS. Many of you help us out by driving students to competitions, games, field trips and other events, and it is much appreciated.