Administrative Procedure 491
VOLUNTEER COACHES AND SUPERVISORS
Students benefit from opportunities to be involved in extracurricular activities. Division teachers are the preferred choice to lead such activities; however, the use of adult volunteers as supervisors and coaches may be a necessary alternative to allow such activities to proceed.
- Parents or community members may lead or supervise extracurricular activities, but only under the direct supervision of an employee of the Division.
- Ensuring welcoming, caring, respectful and safe environments for students must be the primary consideration in the selection and use of volunteers to assist with extracurricular activities, in accordance with Board policy and administrative and school procedures.
- Principals shall be responsible for the approval of volunteers, the establishment of roles and responsibilities, supervision and maintenance of ongoing communication between the school and the volunteer.
- Extracurricular activities involve varying levels of risk. As a result, a volunteer screening procedure must be in place to ensure volunteers are suitable to be working with students and have the appropriate skills necessary to undertake the proposed activity.
- For the purposes of screening and selection of volunteer supervisors or coaches, the principal or designate shall interview prospective volunteers and conduct reference checks where appropriate.
- All volunteer coaches and supervisors shall complete the Division Confidentiality Undertaking Declaration for Volunteers (Form 490-2) and successful applicants are required to provide a Criminal Record and Vulnerable Sector Check. Such forms shall be kept on file at the school, to be updated annually or as necessary.
- The principal shall provide the volunteer with a Request to Waive Fees for Criminal Record and Vulnerable Sector Check (Form 490-3) explaining the application is as a volunteer in a non-profit organization and therefore the fee would generally be waived.
- Any fee incurred in order for the successful applicant to obtain a Criminal Record and Vulnerable Sector Check shall be borne by the school.
- For the purpose of this Administrative Procedure, a current Criminal Record and Vulnerable Sector Check is one that is less than 12-months-old.
- If the result of the Criminal Record and Vulnerable Sector Check indicates a record exists, the individual’s volunteer application shall be declined.
- If the principal believes there are extenuating circumstances and supports the volunteer application, an applicant who has a criminal or vulnerable sector record may appeal this decision in writing to the Division Principal. The result of this appeal shall be final.
- The principal shall be responsible for informing parents, prior to the commencement of the activity, if a volunteer(s) will be coaching or supervising students—under the direct supervision of a Division employee.
- When a volunteer is new to the school and has been approved to lead or assist with a student activity—under the direct supervision of a Division employee—the principal shall ensure an orientation session occurs in which the following topics shall be discussed:
- any school philosophy regarding the participation of students—For example, selection, playing time, behaviour expectations;
- use of school facilities and equipment;
- safety requirements as specified within the Safety Guidelines for Physical Activity in Alberta Schools;
- supervision expectations;
- discipline and referral procedures;
- communication with parents;
- finances and fundraising;
- transportation procedures;
- professional development opportunities; and
- Board policies and Division administrative procedures that would impact the operation of the proposed activity.
- Volunteer supervisors or coaches are encouraged to avail themselves of professional development, specifically, activities that enhance their ability to deal with the needs of students involved in the activity, such as coaching certification clinics, first aid programs. In addition, the volunteer shall participate in and comply with any training deemed appropriate by the principal, such as Welcoming, Caring, Respectful and Safe Learning and Working Environments; Professional Boundaries; and/or Occupational Health and Safety.
Section 11, 52, 53, 197, 222, 256 Education Act
Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act
Physical Education Safety Guidelines of Alberta
Last Updated: May 2020