Board adopts policy to protect children at Pa. universities - abc27 WHTM

Board adopts policy to protect children at Pa. universities

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The governing board of Pennsylvania's state-owned universities has adopted a policy to protect children from physical and sexual abuse while visiting campuses.

The policy includes a "code of conduct" that spells out expectations for everyone who works with children.

It will apply not only to university employees and students, but to outside contractors and volunteers for university-sponsored programs and to those who offer programs independent of the university.

Depending on their level of involvement with minors, those working on campus will be required to undergo training on how to detect and report sexual abuse, physical abuse and neglect.

All program staff will be subject to criminal background screenings.

Program administrators of non-university groups will be required to certify that they and their employees have satisfactorily completed the required training before they can use university facilities.

Thousands of children participate in programs on the university campuses each year, including summer camps, day care, educational competitions and tutoring programs.

The new policy will take effect December 31.

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