Volunteer Frequently Asked Questions
Question: If a parent or grandparent wants to attend a school play or breakfast, do they need to have clearances?
Answer: The attendee will not need clearances because they were invited by the school to either watch their child perform or socialize with their child as they eat. The attendee in this case is not volunteering.
Question: Do I need clearances to attend classroom celebrations/parties?
Answer: Parents/guardians and/or other family members who are invited to attend classroom or school celebrations (e.g. Harvest Party) are covered by the school visitor policy and do not need to submit the PDE-6004 form or clearances. If an individual volunteers to assist with the coordination or running of such events, then the individual must complete the required paperwork and provide clearances.
Question: If a volunteer is scheduled to assist the coach during athletic practices, does he/she need clearances?
Answer: The volunteer needs to provide clearances because he/she is performing the same duty on a regularly scheduled basis with kids.
Question: If a parent obtains clearances but can no longer continue to finish out the year because of family emergencies, does he/she need new clearances during the following year?
Answer: The parent will not need new clearances if their clearances are dated within five (5) years.
Question: If an employee of the district is interested in volunteering, will he/she require new clearances?
Answer: If an employee (extracurricular, substitute, part-time, or full-time) is actively working, he/she will not need to submit new clearances.
Question: Can an employee from another district volunteer without new clearances?
Answer: Only if the person's clearances were obtained within the last five (5) years. Otherwise new clearances must be obtained.
Question: What if my current employer requires clearances, but they are not the same as the Act 34, 151, or 114 clearance?
Answer: PA Code mandates that districts can only accept clearance results in the Act 34, Act 151, and Act 114 formats. We are unable to accept clearance results intended for private sector, healthcare, eldercare, or other non-public PA educational entities.
Question: I have obtained these clearances previously because of requirements at my place of employment or for another organization. Can the district recognize these clearances or must I obtain updated clearances?
Answer: Unless you have obtained the clearances for your place of employment or another organization within the last five (5) years, you will need to obtain and submit updated clearances. Please note - active duty police officers do not need to obtain/submit clearances to volunteer.
Question: How long will it take me to obtain the clearances if I am interested in volunteering?
Answer: Our experiences indicate that it can take up to four weeks for people to receive clearances, so please plan accordingly.
Question: Why must I complete the PDE-6004 form if I am only seeking to volunteer in the district?
Answer: This document represents one more way that the district can demonstrate that it is doing everything it can to ensure the safety of our children. Completion of this self-disclosure document coupled with the clearances that we require provides the district with important information about the adults who may have contact with students in our schools. This form should take less than two minutes to read and complete in most cases.
Question: Do I need to submit the paperwork or clearances if I want to assist with PTO-sponsored events that are held outside of the school day (e.g. Fun Fest, basketball nights, ice cream socials, etc.)?
Answer: Parents do not need to provide the volunteer application, PDE-6004 form, or clearances to assist with PTO events outside the school day, as these are not school-sponsored events.
Question: May I take photos or videos of my student while volunteering or visiting the classroom or school building?
Answer: When serving in the capacity of a volunteer or when visiting our buildings for special events, we ask for your awareness of our “Photography Notice” for students. Unless a parent/guardian has submitted a letter stating otherwise, they have provided permission for only the school district to use pictures of their child. These parents/guardians have not provided volunteers or visitors permission to post pictures of their child on websites or social media. Group or classroom photos should not be posted publicly on volunteer or visitor websites, including social media, since parent/guardian permission has not been given to do so.