The Board recognizes that community members can provide valuable services to the schools by sharing their time, talents and experience. An effective volunteer program allows students to benefit from individual attention, provides enrichment opportunities that supplement the regular educational program, allows teachers to focus on teaching and learning by relieving them of non-teaching tasks, provides interested community members an opportunity to become directly involved with education, and strengthens the relationship between school and community.

The Board approves the use of volunteers to support the school system’s instructional programs and extracurricular activities. The Board adopts this policy to provide direction for the school system’s volunteer program.

For the purpose of this policy, a volunteer is a person who provides services, without compensation or benefits of any kind or amount, on an occasional or regular basis in the schools or in school activities.

All volunteers shall be at least 18 years of age unless their volunteer work is part of a class, is done to fulfill a service learning or community service requirement for graduation, or is done by a recognized student organization.

Volunteers may provide assistance by:

A. Tutoring students on a one-to-one or small group basis under the direct supervision of the classroom teacher;
B. Using their special musical, artistic or other talents to provide enrichment experiences and extend student learning;
C. Reading to children;
D. Playing instructional games;
E. Providing services in libraries, lunchrooms and playgrounds;
F. Accompanying students on field trips;
G. Assisting teachers in assembling instructional materials; and
H. Assisting in school plays, music programs and other extracurricular activities.

Volunteers serve under the direction and supervision of the building principal or designated staff. When volunteers work with children, their activities will be under the direct and immediate supervision of the classroom teacher, coach, activity adviser, or other designated employee.

Approval, assignment, continuation, or termination of volunteers shall be at the discretion of the building principal.

Staff must have their use of volunteers approved in advance by the building principal.

Volunteers are expected to abide by all Board policies, procedures and school rules when performing their assigned responsibilities. The building principal shall make volunteers aware of applicable policies, procedures, and rules before they undertake their first assignment through a volunteer orientation, volunteer handbook, or other means.

Volunteers should perform only those tasks that have been assigned.

Volunteers will not have access to confidential information in student records except as allowed by federal or state law or regulations and will be responsible for maintaining confidentiality regarding information seen or heard while working as a volunteer.

Persons interested in volunteering time or services should contact the teacher or building principal and fill out a registration form. Volunteers will be asked upon registration to provide the required information to allow the district to conduct a background check with the Maine State Police. Information collected during this screening process will be treated as confidential to the extent allowed by law.

Volunteers may not transport students in private vehicles except as allowed by Board policy.

The school unit will provide liability insurance protection for volunteers while performing assigned services.

The Superintendent will be responsible for devising a method for evaluating the effectiveness of the volunteer program on an annual basis.

The Board recommends that volunteers be properly recognized at the building level for their service.

Legal Reference: 20-A M.R.S.A. § 1002

Cross Reference:    EEAG - Student Transportation in Private Vehicles
                                IJOA - Field Trips and Excursions

Adopted: November 9, 2010

M.S.A.D. #4