Use This Summer Program Checklist to Protect Your Students and School

Vol. 16 No. 8

head eletter vol16 no8 summercam

You have worked hand-in-hand with the Business Office all year to prepare for your upcoming Summer Program. You met last fall to determine program goals, open lines of communication, and provide support for the Summer Program Director. Your Business Office helped finalize the budget and your Admission and Marketing Communications Offices assisted in filling the available spots.

As April arrives and the final pieces are put into place, ensure you’re following a risk management protocol for your summer program to protect your students and your school. Give this risk-management checklist to your Summer Program Director to help you maintain the safety of your campus and your students.

Establish that your facilities are safe.

  • Perform a walk-around with a representative from the Business Office to check all facilities the summer program may use. This could include buildings, classrooms, common areas, sports fields, playgrounds, and eating areas.
  • Check that all fire prevention, electrical, and alarm systems are in good working order.
  • Confirm the campus is secure and all entrances and exits are through designated areas.
  • Create a process for visually identifying adults who come in contact with program students that’s vetted with your School Head and Business Office. Will staff members and volunteers wear badges? Will visitors be identified as such? How will you deal with unidentified adults, or those who don’t go through the proper channels when encountering students?

Prepare the summer program team to handle emergencies.

  • Create and disseminate a process to handle medical emergencies, whether injury or illness, for students and employees.
  • Decide whether a nurse will be on-duty during the summer program. If not, define how illnesses or injuries will be handled.
  • Determine the legal requirements for staff members’ CPR or first-aid certification. Work with the Business Office to make sure all training is complete before the program begins.
  • Decide whether someone on campus will have access to student and staff medical records in the case of a medical emergency and confirm with the School Head and Business Office.
  • Confirm that staff members have a plan for communicating with each other.
  • Share and adjust your school’s crisis plans and safety drills as necessary.

Confirm that your school carries adequate insurance.

  • Work with the Business Office to know what is covered and what isn’t as it relates to the summer program. Review all relevant activities and personnel with your insurance agent, considering the following.
    • Do you plan to offer activities outside your school’s academic-year programs?
    • Are you using equipment that the school does not own or normally access?
    • Are you taking students to an off-campus facility (YMCA, swimming pool, park)?
    • What transportation options are you using?
    • Are your instructors and staff covered by your school’s liability insurance? What about volunteers?
    • What due diligence is required regarding the employee, volunteer, and vendor qualifications?

Vet employees and volunteers appropriately.

  • Work with the Business Office to confirm that appropriate background checks and screenings have been performed for all summer program employees and outside volunteers and vendors.
  • Ensure that appropriate policies are in place regarding sexual harassment, drug and alcohol use, attendance, and discipline.
  • For volunteers specifically, decide whether you’ll have a protocol that prohibits these non-employees from working one-on-one with a student. Look to the Business Office to confirm whether volunteers are covered under your school’s Workers Compensation and liability insurance. Finally, if they will be expected to operate a vehicle as part of their volunteer work with the school, confirm the following.
    • Are their operators' licenses, tags, and insurance current?
    • Are they covered under the school’s automobile policy?
    • Are the vehicles they will be operating safe and in good repair?
    • Do you require motor vehicle records checks?

Solidify student policies.

  • Define appropriate logistics for drop-off and pick-up.
  • Create policies for when a student arrives late, does not show up as expected, or isn’t picked up at the end of the day, and vet it with the Business Office
  • Establish what staff members or volunteers should do if a parent needs to contact their child immediately.
  • Ensure all staff and volunteers are educated about legal custodial issues—for example, who is and is not permitted pick to up each child.

While many of these policies may exist for the school year, make sure they extend to (and make sense for) the summer program. Give this checklist to your Summer Program Director and work together with the Business Office to help reduce risk for the program and the school as a whole.

Additional ISM Resources:
The Source for Private School News Vol. 17 No. 1 Start Planning Next Year’s Summer Program Now
The Source for School Heads Vol. 12 No. 1 Raising the Bar on Your Summer Program
The Source for Advancement Vol. 17 No. 2 Recruiting Students Through Your Summer Program

Additional Resources for ISM Members:
I&P Vol. 39 No. 11 Hiring, Preparing, and Training Staff for Your Summer Program
I&P Vol. 42 No. 2 Paying Your Summer Program Director
I&P Vol. 38 No. 10 Strategies for Promoting Your Summer Program

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