Volunteering at St. Isidore School

Thank you for volunteering your valuable time and talent with St. Isidore School students and staff. The Archdiocese of Philadelphia’s Office for Child and Youth Protection and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania have strict requirements for volunteers who work with children.  All volunteers and chaperones who will be with children must have these documents on file in the St. Isidore Parish office. Having said that, many clearances can be obtained online and for free. The Archdiocese does require one in-person training session, but this is free and is offered many times at various sites throughout the year.

Please obtain these documents and either email or provide hard copy to Dr. Conboy. Once she has cleared and updated the school records, they will be on file in the Parish office and will be available if you wish to volunteer for other Parish activities involving children such as CYO, PREP, etc. If a clearance expires, the school will contact you with a renewal reminder, but it is your responsibility to keep these documents current.  You may want to keep a copy for your files. ALL of these documents MUST be on file in the Parish Office for any volunteer to be considered in compliance and able to continue volunteer services with the children of St. Isidore School.

For parents concerned about maintaining PAPA volunteer credits, there are many opportunities to fulfill that requirement that do not need volunteer clearances (such as working on or donating to the annual Auction).

COMPLIANCE GUIDELINES FOR VOLUNTEERS

The following guidelines are the Pennsylvania Child Protective Services Law and Archdiocesan Policy for the Protection of Children and Young People.

Archdiocesan policy requires all adult volunteers (unpaid) who may have any possible contact with or responsibility for children must obtain clearances, as required by Pennsylvania law.

Archdiocesan compliance guidelines state that clearances should be submitted prior to the commencement of volunteer service. There are certain circumstances under which provisional status might be approved. During the provisional period, individuals are not permitted to work alone with children.

BACKGROUND CHECKS AND TRAINING FOR VOLUNTEERS

All program volunteers, who are 18 and older, and lived in PA for less than 10 years must provide the following and renew every five years:

  • PA State Police Criminal background check
  • PA Dept. of Public Welfare Child Abuse History Clearance
  • Federal Bureau of Investigation Fingerprint (FBI) Clearance (DHS)

All program volunteers, who are 18 and older, and lived continuously in PA for 10 years must provide the following and renew every three years:

  • PA State Police Criminal background check
  • PA Dept. of Public Welfare Child Abuse History Clearance
  • Disclosure Statement Application for volunteers to be filed at the place of service

 OBTAINING REQUIRED BACKGROUND CHECKS

The Pennsylvania Criminal Background Check and Pennsylvania Child Abuse History Clearance are now free for volunteers!

LINKS TO THE CLEARANCE WEBSITES

PA Criminal Background check: https://epatch.state.pa.us/

For the Pennsylvania Criminal Background Check, there is now a yellow button on the main page that says “New Record Check” with the words “volunteers only” in red to the right.  Clicking there allows for volunteers to run their check free of charge. Renewal required every three years.

PA Child Abuse History Clearance: https://www.compass.state.pa.us/CWIS/Public/Home

For the Pennsylvania Child Abuse History Clearance, when completing online via the Compass site, as long as the individual has identified him/herself as a volunteer when they begin the application, the fee will be waived. Renewal required every three years.

Federal Fingerprint Check (FBI): https://uenroll.identogo.com

Pennsylvania now uses IdentoGO for identity-related needs. Go to the IdentiGO site and enter this service code 1KG6Y3.  Follow the instructions to schedule an appointment.  For a listing of locations visit: https://www.identogo.com/locations/pennsylvania

TRAINING REQUIRED BY THE ARCHDIOCESE OF PHILADELPHIA

Volunteers who have regular contact with children (at least one time per week) are required to complete parts one and two of the Safe Environment training within 90 days of beginning their volunteer work. This training only needs to be done once.

Part I: Protecting God’s Children (instructor-led), is offered regularly at sites throughout the Archdiocese. The training provides basic facts about child sexual abuse and adults’ roles in prevention. Register at https://www.virtusonline.org/virtus/reg_list2.cfm?theOrgID=18461&theme=0

Part II: The Mandatory Reporting of Suspected Child Abuse (online) is available online at our Training Institute in English and Spanish. This training provides an overview of Archdiocesan reporting procedures for suspected child abuse and Pennsylvania Child Welfare Laws. The training should take you approximately one hour to complete. Register at https://learning.childyouthprotection.org/login/index.php.

Review of the Technology Addendum  This training module is only pertinent to those staff and volunteers who attended the Safe Environment/Protecting God’s Children Training before July 1, 2011. From this date forward the addendum has been included in the new Safe Environment Foundational Training. Please go to http://childyouthprotection.org/docs/Use%20of%20Technology%20Addendum%20Review%2012-23-14.pdf for further information.

IS THIS A LOT TO DO?

We empathize because we have all had to do these steps in order to work or volunteer at St. Isidore.  But most of it is online, free and relatively quick to complete.  Here is a simplified decision tree:

1. Have you lived continuously in PA for 10 years?

Yes! You need to complete-

No! You need to complete-

  • PA State Police Criminal background check
  • PA Dept. of Public Welfare Child Abuse History Clearance
  • Federal Bureau of Investigation Fingerprint (FBI) Clearance (DHS)

2. Did you receive Archdiocese training?

Yes!

  1. Did you go to a Protecting God’s Children session? If you attended that before July 1, 2011, download and complete the Technology Addendum if  you have not already done so. If you attended after July 1, 2011, it was included at that time.
  2. Did you complete the Mandatory Reporter training online? If you did not, but did receive and review an email brochure outlining Archdiocese policies effective November 2014, download and complete the Mandated Reporter Acknowledgement form.

No!

  1. Register for and attend a Protecting God’s Children session.
  2. Complete the online Mandatory Reporter training.

Again, thank you for supporting the students and staff of St. Isidore School!

Rev. 8/1/18