At Quaker Valley School District we could not do all that we do for children without the help of volunteers. In October 2014, the Pennsylvania Legislature passed a bill, referred to as Act 153, requiring school volunteers to have clearances and background checks every 60 months. While this new state mandate may be cumbersome and costly, child safety is our priority and protecting children is a shared responsibility.
Effective July 1, 2015, all school volunteers in Pennsylvania are required to renew clearances every five years. The Quaker Valley School Board has refined its Volunteer Policy to comply with this new state law. Board policy 110.00 defines a school volunteer as someone who has an ongoing presence in the school and whose role requires them to have routine interaction with students in a directly supervised or occasionally not directly supervised basis. Examples of volunteers include: field trip chaperones, athletic coaches, band, musical or performing arts assistants. Volunteers are required to submit background check materials and clearances before acting as a volunteer in any Quaker Valley School District building. These clearances are required every 60 months and will be kept on file at QV District Offices.
Visitor or Volunteer?
All non-staff entering a QV school building during the school day will fall into one of two categories: Visitor or Volunteer.
A visitor is someone who comes into the school building to assist under the direction of a staff member. Examples of visitors include: a presenter, a class speaker, a college recruiter, a helper for a class activity or celebration, a guest reader. A visitor will only have interaction with children under the supervision of a QVSD staff member. A visitor will never assume the responsibility of a professional staff member. Visitors are not required to have clearances, but will be required to show a valid U.S. Driver’s License to enter the school building during the school day, and will be escorted through the school building.
A volunteer is someone who has an ongoing presence in the school and whose role requires them to have routine interaction with students in a supervised or occasionally not directly supervised basis. Examples of volunteers include: field trip chaperones, athletic volunteers, assistant or volunteer coaches, band chaperones, musical or performing arts assistants.
Effective July 1, 2015 any school volunteer must have the following:
- Pennsylvania state background check
- Child abuse clearance statement
- FBI background check
- TB Test
Please note: The PA Department of Health Division of School Health requires school volunteers to have a TB test. This test only needs to happen one time. If you are currently a QV school volunteer, you do not need to resubmit TB test results. If you are a new QV Volunteer, you must submit a TB test, dated within the last year.)
Financial assistance may be provided to families who demonstrate financial hardship. Please contact the building principal of school(s) in which you wish to volunteer to request financial assistance.
1) Pennsylvania State Background Check:
You can apply directly online https://epatch.state.pa.us. There is no cost for volunteers. When you visit the site you will select the yellow box that says 'New Record Check'.
2) Act 151 – Child Abuse:
You can apply directly online https://www.compass.state.pa.us/CWIS
There is no cost for volunteers. When you visit the site you will need to create a new account, unless you have a valid login from a previous child abuse clearance.
3) FBI Fingerprinting:
This is a two-step process. The cost is $24.25.
1. You must first register at www.pa.cogentid.com or by calling 1-888-439-2486. When registering, make sure you choose the Department of Education option. Cogent will then assign a Registration ID Number to you, beginning with the letters “PAE.” This ID is important and you should keep track of this number, as you will need it when you get fingerprints done. This is also the ID you need to provide to the school district.
2. Once you have a registration ID you can go to a valid location and have fingerprints done. The locations can be found at www.pa.cogentid.com.
Here is a list of valid locations in Allegheny County
Here is a list of valid locations in Beaver County
You will be required to have a valid ID present at the fingerprint site. Please provide the PAE # to Quaker Valley School District once you have the fingerprinting done. QV will then look up the results online.
4) TB Test:
The PA Department of Health Division of School Health requires school volunteers to have a TB test. This test only needs to happen one time. If you are currently a QV school volunteer, you do not need to resubmit TB test results. If you are a new QV Volunteer, you must submit a TB test, dated within the last year. Most doctor's offices and urgent care centers can administer this test.
Volunteer Clearances Collection
Volunteers can drop off completed clearances at Quaker Valley District Offices located at 100 Leetsdale Industrial Drive, Suite B, Leetsdale, PA 15056. Clearances will be collected Monday-Friday from 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. and evenings by appointment.
If you have additional questions please call (412) 749-3600.