Volunteer Background Checks

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Basic Information

Criminal background checks are required for volunteers who may have unsupervised contact with students. The conviction of a crime (felony or misdemeanor) will not automatically disqualify a person from volunteering in a school. Each situation will be considered individually. Completed forms are maintained in a confidential manner at the district office.

The district requires criminal checks on any volunteers (including parents) who meet the following criteria:

  • the volunteer will have unsupervised contact with students;
  • the volunteer has a regular and ongoing assignment at the school;
  • the volunteer will be off campus with students in an unsupervised situation, including
    driving students on field trips;
  • the volunteer is a mentor to a student or students;
  • the volunteer is a coach or activity director; or
  • the volunteer is unknown to the school or department staff.

The Communications and Intergovernmental Relations office coordinates Volunteer Background Checks for the district. The volunteer background check coordinator is responsible for:

  • conducting the criminal records check in a confidential manner;
  • informing the school when volunteers are cleared or talking with the principal if the records check shows cause for possible concern;
  • maintaining the list of volunteers cleared this year and in previous years;
  • and supplying schools with copies of volunteer interest forms, criminal background check forms, and 4J volunteer guidelines upon request.

Background Check Process

Volunteers may not begin until they have been cleared. This requirement to conduct a criminal background check for volunteers is covered by District Administrative Rule I9600, Placement of Volunteers.

To ensure that the criminal checks are completed, schools must follow this process.

  1. Community and parent volunteers new to a school need to complete two forms, and return them to the school:
    4J Volunteer Interest Form (or your school’s volunteer interest form)
    Confidential Criminal Background Check Form  (Spanish-language form)
    Parents who have concerns about confidentiality should be encouraged to place the Criminal Background Check form in a sealed envelope. All information on this form is sensitive and must be maintained in a confidential manner.
    The Volunteer Interest form is for school office staff and volunteer coordinator to use to contact and place volunteers.
     
  2. No criminal background check is needed for those who have volunteered in the same school in the recent past and have already had a 4J criminal check. Parent volunteers must complete the Criminal Background Check form only once while their student is in continuous attendance at a school. Schools should contact the Volunteer Background Check Coordinator to confirm whether a check has been done.
  3. Schools send the Criminal Background Check form to the Volunteer Background Check Coordinator at 4J Communications and Intergovernmental Relations. Schools do NOT keep a copy of this form.
  4. The coordinator will conduct the criminal records search and alert the school when a volunteer is cleared. The Criminal Background Check form will then be stored in a confidential manner in the Human Resources Department.
  5. The coordinator will inform the principal of any individual whose criminal records check or Criminal Background Check Form contains questionable information. The principal will determine whether the offense relates directly to the capability or suitability of the volunteer to work in the school. The principal will consult with Human Resources as needed in making this decision.
  6. An individual who disagrees with any decisions regarding their status as a volunteer that results from the criminal background check may appeal that decision to Barbara Bellamy, Director of Communications (541.790.7735; bellamy@4j.lane.edu).
  7. If you have an urgent need for a quick response, contact Katie McRae in Communications and Intergovernmental Relations (541.790.7737; mcrae_k@4j.lane.edu).