Home » Conferences » Protection of Minors on Campus

Protection of Minors on Campus

Purpose and Scope of the Policy

Vanderbilt University is dedicated to the welfare and safety of all Minors who visit the Vanderbilt campus to participate in Vanderbilt related programs, athletic and youth organizations and any other event involving minors on the Vanderbilt campus that are hosted by the Vanderbilt Office of Conferences.

The Vanderbilt Office of Conferences works closely with the Vanderbilt Office of Risk Management and Insurance to ensure that all of our Conference Organizers, as well as all participants comply with all the requirements as stated in the Vanderbilt Protection of Minors Policy.

Copy of Vanderbilt University – Best Practices Guide to protecting Minors on Campus Best Practices Policy Implementation Guide FINAL 05062014

Copy of Vanderbilt University – Protecting Minors on Campus Policy Minors Policy- Risk management

If your event and/or activity will include minors that are not supervised by parents/legal guardians while in Vanderbilt Facilities and on Grounds, the following steps are required:

A. Program Registration

The Program Director shall register the Program with the Office of Conferences, who in turn will send the completed registration forms with sufficient advance notice to meet the requirements and intentions of this policy to the Office of Risk and Insurance Management in behalf of the Organization.

Please click on the link below for a copy of the Program Registration form Office of Risk and Insurance Management – VU Conferences

B. List of Individual Staff Members Participating in the Program on the Vanderbilt Campus

To comply with the Vanderbilt University Protecting Minors on Campus Policy, as a legal agent of the Organization, the organizer will complete and submit a document indicating the names of individual staff that will be participating in the program on the Vanderbilt campus. The list of names will be sent to Vanderbilt HR to undergo a criminal background check at the cost of $29.50 per staff member. The background checks will be kept on file at Vanderbilt.Staff List for Background Checks

C. Execute Written Agreement(s)

All third party organizations applying to use VU facilities to host activities involving minors under this section will provide evidence of general liability insurance coverage in an amount satisfactory to Vanderbilt as required in contract agreements and shall name Vanderbilt as additional insured on the policy for the duration of the event, program, or activity occurring on Vanderbilt property. Liability for incidents that may occur as a result of the Organization’s activities falls on the Organization only, and does not extend to Vanderbilt University. Liability Waiver agreements between the program participant’s parent/guardian and the Organization shall plainly state that participation in the third party Organization’s program or activity is neither endorsed nor sponsored by VU; endorsed not sponsored by VU; in addition, liability waiver agreements will include a photo release indicating parental release of photo/video obtained while participating in the program.

Please click on the link below for a copy of the Summer Registration Application 2014 Permission & Release

D. Criminal Background Checks

Criminal background checks are required of each adult, to be completed and affirmative confirmation is cleared to work prior to his or her interaction or participation with Minors in Programs covered by this policy. This includes but is not limited to third party or non-Vanderbilt personnel who work with, instruct, or otherwise engage with Minors on the Vanderbilt campus, as well as Vanderbilt administrators, faculty, staff, students, and volunteers who work with, instruct, or otherwise engage with Minors.

It is the responsibility of the Program Director or designee of the Program to ensure that each participating adult has submitted the background request information and has subsequently received clearance to participate. The Office of Risk Management and Insurance will maintain a database of individuals who have been cleared to participate.

Third Party Organizations contracting with the University shall affirm by submission of cleared dates, that all personnel have been cleared by a criminal background check within the last 12 months and that the results and method are sufficient to meet University standards. Those personnel that do not meet this requirement will not be permitted to work, volunteer, or engage in the activity on campus.

Background Check List

E. Mandatory Training on the Prevention and Recognition of Child Abuse is Now Required

Each adult who will be participating with Minors on the Vanderbilt campus is required to take the United Educators online course Sexual Misconduct: How Teachers and Other Educators Can Protect Our Children (or submit evidence of completion approved child abuse prevention training course.) This hour long training course can be accessed at www.uecampussolutions.org. Once you log on to the site enter our institutional registration code: 1784-UN37-XY12. Once the online course has been completed, the trainee will be required to print out the Certificate of Achievement verifying completion of the class and submit a copy of the certificate to the Organization’s Program Coordinator. The Program Coordinator will add training completion dates of each personnel participating in the Organization’s activities.The training module shall include but is not limited to: Vanderbilt University’s policies regarding interactions with Minors, behavioral signs that Minor victims may exhibit, sexual abuse and sexual harassment, inappropriate behavior with Minors, reporting requirements and procedures, and other topics as appropriate.

F. Required Supervision of Minors on campus:

Minors must not be left unsupervised on Vanderbilt’s campus. It is the responsibility of those who bring minors to campus (including Vanderbilt Program Directors or those individuals designated by third party programs) to ensure appropriate and continuous supervision.

G. Code of Conduct for Interacting with Minors

You are required by Tennessee law and Vanderbilt University policy to report actual or suspected abuse
or other improper conduct (including harassment, hazing, and exploitation) involving a Minor by an adult or other minor. You also are also required to comply with the following code of conduct when interacting with Minors.

1. Do not spend time alone, either on or off campus, with a Minor away from others. If one-on-one
interaction is required, meet in open, well lit rooms or spaces with windows observable by other adults from the Program. It is expected that activities where minors are present will involve two or more authorized adults.
2. Do not engage in any sexual actions, make sexual comments, tell sexual jokes, or share or view
sexually explicit material with or within the vicinity of Minors.
3. Do not touch Minors in a manner that a reasonable person could interpret as inappropriate.
4. Do not shower, bathe, or undress with or in the presence of a Minor.
5. Do not engage in any abusive conduct of any kind toward, or in the presence of, a Minor, including but not limited to verbal abuse, hitting, punching, poking, or restraining, except as
required to protect a Minor or others from harm. All incidents involving such conduct, whether or not required to protect a Minor or others from harm, must be documented and disclosed promptly to the Program Director and the Minor’s parent/guardian.
6. Be aware of the impact of your words and language on Minors.
7. Do not use, possess, or be under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs while on duty or when
responsible for a Minor’s welfare.
8. Do not meet with Minors outside of established times for Program activities. Any exceptions
require parental authorization and must include more than one adult from the Program.
9. Do not engage or converse with Minors through email, text messages, social networking websites, or other forms of social media at any time except and unless there is an educational or programmatic purpose and the content of the communications is consistent with the mission of
the Program and the university.
10. When transporting Minors in a Program, more than one adult from the Program must be present in the vehicle, except when multiple Minors will be in the vehicle at all times through the transportation. Avoid using personal vehicles if possible.
11. Do not tell children “this is just between the two of us” or use similar language that encourages
Minors to keep secrets from their parent/guardians

A report is required when:

  • A person has knowledge that a child has been harmed by abuse or neglect.
  • A person is called upon to render aid to any child who is suffering from an injury that reasonably appears to have been caused by abuse.
  • A person knows or has reasonable cause to suspect that a child has been sexually abused.  (Citation: Ann. Code §§ 37-1-403; 37-1-605)
  • Abuse should be reported to: The Department of Children’s Services (877.237.0004), either by contacting a local representative of the department, the judge having juvenile jurisdiction over the child, the sheriff of the county where the child resides, or the chief law enforcement official of the municipality where the child resides. (Citation: Ann. Code §§ 37-1-403; 37-1-605)

    Criminal Consequences for not reporting: In Tennessee you can be fined up to $2500 for failure to report.

    H. List of Compliant Staff Members in the Organization

    To comply with the Vanderbilt University Protecting Minors on Campus Policy, as a legal agent of the Organization, the organizer will complete a document indicating the names of and certify that ALL the listed staff members, coaches, Vanderbilt students, outside contractors, volunteers and/or chaperones working with the Organization on the Vanderbilt campus are in compliance with this policy and have undergone a recent criminal background check, have taken the online training course, have submitted a copy of their Certificate of Achievement, and have read and agree to follow Vanderbilt University’s Protecting Minors on campus policies and procedures. The sign document will be sent to the Vanderbilt Office of Risk Management and insurance and must be received three weeks prior to arrival in campus.

    Document to be completed by the Program Director Protecting Minors 11-1