Requirements for Programs Involving Minors
As you may recall, in February 2021, we provided you with information about CMU’s commitment to maintaining a safe and secure environment for minors. This update will provide information on the requirements set forth by the Policy on the Protection of Children in Carnegie Mellon Programs, Activities, and Facilities, which CMU programs involving minors must adhere to. These Policy requirements, summarized as the five “R”s, are detailed below.
The Five R’s:
- Responsible Parties: All programs must have a designated responsible party, tasked with ensuring that the program complies with university policy. It is strongly recommended, but not required, that programs also designate a backup responsible party. The backup responsible party should be able to assume responsibility for the program, should the primary responsible party become unavailable.
- Registration: The Policy requires that any CMU program, activity, or course involving non-matriculated minors register annually with the Office of Human Resources. Program registration is required for both in-person and virtual programming. Registration gathers information on the program such as when it occurs, the type of program, number of minors, etc. A member of the Child Protection Operations team will review the program information and consult with the responsible party on the program compliance requirements.
- Roster: As part of program registration, the responsible party must submit a roster of all CMU faculty, staff, students, contractors, and volunteers who will be interacting with minors in the program. Individuals interacting with minors for CMU programs or activities must obtain Child Protection Clearances as required by the Pennsylvania Child Protective Services Law.
- Required Training: The responsible party and backup responsible party must complete an online training prior to the start date of the program. While required for responsible parties, this training is also highly recommended for all individuals interacting with minors for CMU programs.
- Release Forms: Written permission must be obtained from each minor’s parent/guardian prior to the minor’s participation in certain CMU programs. The Office of Human Resources will provide a pre-approved release form to the responsible party for programs that require one.
Additional requirements for remote/online programs:
Please note that due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the expectation is that any program occurring this spring or summer takes place remotely/online. Remote/online programs have additional requirements to those above, which are outlined in the Guidance for Remote/Online Programs [pdf].
Next Steps, Resources and Further information
If you are planning a program involving minors, the next step is to check out the Child Protection Clearances and Youth Programs webpages. These pages provide specific information about registering programs that involve non-matriculated minors and more information about Child Protection Clearances. Additionally, the site provides helpful resources including:
- Programs and Positions Involving Interaction with Minors: An Overview of CMU Policy and Processes [pdf]
- Programs Involving Interaction with Minors: Guidance for Responsible Parties [pdf]
- Programs Involving Minors: Online and Remote Program Administration Guidelines [pdf]
The Child Protection Operations team is available to answer any questions you may have related to this topic. Reach out to Karen Whistler Eck with any questions.
The HR Update quarterly newsletter is doing a four-part series to introduce the team, their work, and what you need to know regarding compliance with university policy and state law.