Frequently Asked Questions
What is a 'Campus Program for Minors' - Section 51.976(a)(2)?
College campuses regularly host 'campus programs for minors' -- camps for various activities including athletics, cheerleading, debate, theater, dance, music, and more.
Sometimes these campus programs are created and provided by the college; other times, the programs are provided by third-parties that negotiate the use of campus facilities.
The new legislation defines a 'campus program for minors' as any program that is:
(1) operated by or on the campus of an institution for higher learning;
(2) for the purpose of recreation, athletics, religion or education;
(3) for at least 20 campers;
(4) who attend or temporarily reside at the camp for all or part of at least 4 days.
This is a very broad definition, and intended so by the legislature. TAMUS' guidelines are more stringent than these guidelines and Tarleton State University (TSU) must adhere to these guidelines since TSU is a member of the TAMUS.
When do the requirements of the new law go into effect?
June 1, 2012
Who is Impacted by the New Law - Section 51.976(a)(4) and (5)?
SB 1414 creates requirements for those who offer 'campus programs' - a host college/campus or the entity providing the program. [These can be identical when the campus program is created and hosted by the college.] Though the term 'college' is used above, the definition of 'institution of higher learning' in the new law is much broader, including all institutions from the largest public universities to smaller community colleges (see Texas Education Code, Section 61.003 for a list of those entities covered by the new statute).
While above are the guidelines set forth in SB 1414 are regulated by the State of Texas, Texas A & M University Systems (TAMUS) has developed guidelines that are more stringent. As a member of TAMUS Tarleton State University must adhere to the guidelines set forth by them.
What is Required - Section 51.976(b) and (d)?
Each campus program for minors has a program operator - whether an employee of the college or an independent third-party. The program operator is responsible for staffing the program that delivers services to minors. Each person employed in or by the program having contact with campers must complete a state-approved Sexual Abuse Awareness Training. The Texas A&M University System developed TrainTraq Course 2111652 which has been certified by the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS). This course can be accessed by internal employees and external volunteers of Tarleton State University sponsored Programs for Minors.
The program operator must:
-Submit Campus Program for Minors Form within 5 days after the camp or program start date and simultaneously provide a copy by email to Tarleton’s Office of Risk Management and Compliance (RMC) at email@example.com.
What is Sexual Abuse Awareness Training?
Sexual Abuse Awareness Training, generally, provides the following information: definitions and effects of sexual abuse and child molestation, typical patterns of behavior/methods abusers employ to victimize children (grooming behaviors), warning signs and symptoms associated with sexual abuse, requirements and methods for reporting suspected abuse, and recommended procedures to reduce the risk of sexual abuse.
Sexual Abuse Awareness Training serves as the foundation of any safety system designed to protect children from child sexual abuse.
How often is the training required?
The training is to be renewed every 2 years.
What are the record retention requirements for the training certificates?
The program operator is to retain certificates of completion (or other written records of compliance) for 2 years.
What is the response by the Texas A&M University System to SB1414?
The System developed System Regulation 24.01.06 in April 2012 which is more stringent than SB1414. This regulation requires the following:
-all camp staff/counselors/volunteers of applicable camps and programs for minors must complete a Child Protection Training Course offered by the TAMU System (or other DSHS certified course) prior to being employed by or volunteering for a TSU Camps and Programs for Minors (CPM); and
- must have a background screen performed prior to the camp start date.
How do I know if my proposed camp or program involving minors meets the definition that would require Child Protection Training and Background Screening of staff/counselors/volunteers?
The following questions should be asked:
1. Does the camp or program involve minors (<18 years old)?
2. Is the duration of the camp or program with the same audience > one day?
3. Is the camp or program “for” minors? Or is the camp or program for all ages but minors may be participating?
4. Does Tarleton have “full” supervision of the minor? Or is a third-party, a sponsor from a school district, or a parent or legal guardian supervising the minor?
If the answer to all of these questions is yes, the camp or program meets the definition and Child Protection Training and Background Screening of staff/counselors/volunteers is required.
Do all camps or programs, regardless if minors are involved have to be reviewed by Tarleton’s Office of Risk Management and Compliance?
Yes. Actually, a Risk Assessment is performed by RMC and by the System Risk Management Office to determine if additional insurance, safety measures, training or other controls are recommended to ensure a safe event.