Before the Start of a Youth Program: Planning, Organizing and Coordination
Requirements and Plans
All University-affiliated programs engaging youth participants under the age of 18, except as excluded by Section 5.1.2, must notify the Office of Youth Program Development and Support by completing an online notification form prior to commencing program operations. Programs that fail to notify the Office of Youth Program Development and Support may be denied permission to continue operations at the University.
The requirement to notify applies to any youth program conducted on or off the University campus or its other properties, regardless of the time of year the activity is taking place, if the activity:
- is sponsored, overseen, supervised, operated, or managed by the University; or
- is funded in whole or in part from any University cost center
The Youth Program Notification Form must be submitted no later than three (3) months prior to the start of the program. Any amendments or changes to the program registration should be submitted as soon as is practical after the need for amendment becomes known.
When a youth program charges a fee to its youth participants in the forms of a cash, check, or credit card transaction, it must go through an approved UTEP system. If unable to secure payment through an approved UTEP system, will provide financial oversight and management of all registrations. Professional and Public Programs will assess a coordination fee in the amount necessary to cover the costs of administering registration and any other service provided. To determine the appropriate fee for this service, contact Professional and Public Programs at email@example.com.
With regard to purchases and in accordance with University policy, all purchases, regardless of dollar amount, require a purchase order or payment using a procurement card, if applicable.
Any University employee, student, independent contractor, or other volunteer who will serve as a designated individual in any University-sponsored program must first meet the following requirements.
Criminal Background Check: Youth Event Coordinators must ensure all designated individuals who will work with youth participants during the program undergo a criminal background check conducted each year of the program. The check must be conducted and successfully cleared at least five (5) days prior to the start of the program. To determine the appropriate type of background check, refer to https://www.utep.edu/vpba/hoop/section-5/ch-12.html
The following sources will be used in conducting a background check:
- Texas DPS Crime Records Service: Secure or Public Site
- Sex offender registration check
- Appropriate out-of-state check
- International check for any foreign national whom the Youth Event Coordinator has reason to believe lived outside the U.S. after the age of 14 unless the person’s visa issuance or renewal occurred after implementation of the U.S. Patriot Act on October 24, 2011. (Reasonable efforts will be used to obtain such a check and it need only be conducted initially if the individual does not live outside the U.S. during the year)
To request a background check you must submit the Background Check and Information Form and select Youth Camp. For further assistance with criminal background checks, please contact Human Resources at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (915) 747-5202.
Youth Protection Training: It is the University's policy to provide training to personnel who work with youth participants in order to educate them about significant risks posed to children. The University aims to keep children safe by engaging staff and volunteers in strategies for recognizing, preventing, and reporting abuse and neglect.
The University provides the training mandated by Texas Education Code § 51.976 and the University of Texas System. This training includes information and examination concerning warning signs of sexual abuse and child molestation. To receive information about training, please contact the University’s Office of Institutional Compliance at (915) 747-6478.
It is the responsibility of the Youth Event Coordinator to ensure all designated individuals complete the Youth Protection Training five (5) days prior to the start day of the youth program. Designated individuals must complete the Youth Protection Training and Examination every year and achieve a score of 100% on the examination. A designated individual will be allowed to re-answer the questions if necessary to achieve a passing score. Upon successful completion of the course, the designated individual will receive a certificate of completion, which should be provided to the Youth Event Coordinator.
The training is provided by the University at no cost to the designated individual. Youth programs that host twenty (20) or more youth participants who are on campus for all or part of at least four (4) days are required to submit an annual Sexual Abuse and Child Molestation Training and Examination Report to the Department of State Health Service Campus Program for Minors (PHSCPS@dshs.state.tx.us) within five (5) days of the start of the youth program.
Use of Volunteers: Youth Event Coordinators must ensure that all volunteers, regardless of age, adhere to the Volunteer Policy located in the Handbook of Operating Procedures at https://www.utep.edu/vpba/hoop/section-5/ch-25.html
All youth programs must carry accident and liability insurance with coverage at least equivalent to the Camp Insurance Program offered by the UT System Office of Risk Management. Any purchase of insurance must also comply with the requirements of Regents' Rule 80601. To enroll in the Camp Program, the following steps must be completed:
- Please notify the UT System Office of Risk Management (ORM) at least 7 business days prior to the start of your program if you want to enroll in the Camp Program. It will take at least 5 business days to receive a certificate of insurance. Completed applications should be sent to the ORM, attn: Ruth Maldonado, via email at email@example.com.
- Youth Event Coordinators should complete the appropriate application based upon the type of program to be held.
- ORM will accept the application as an order to bind coverage for the program for in-person programs; coverage for online programs must be approved by the carrier. If ORM finds any inaccuracies on the application, ORM will contact you as soon as possible to have them corrected. All applications must be sent to Ruth Maldonado at the email above.
- Southwest Special Risk Insurance (SWSR) will email the certificate of insurance and claims form to the Youth Event Coordinator designated on the application. Please note that the accident claim form must be completed and submitted according to the instructions on the form within 30 days of an injury.
- SWSR will send an audit form to the designated Youth Event Coordinator via email at the end of each program for the actual final number of youth participants and staff. Once completed and returned to SWSR, an invoice for the premium (based on the actual youth participants counts) will be sent to the designated Youth Event Coordinator. Note: If audit form is not returned to SWSR in a timely manner, SWSR will invoice based on the initial application.
- Timely payment of premium is due directly to SWSR. Failure to make timely payments may result in removal of coverage and impact future eligibility to participate in the Camp Insurance Program.
Conditions for Online Camps
- Coverage for online programs is not automatic; the carrier must affirmatively agree to bind coverage. Once ORM receives your online camp application, we will submit it to the carrier for review and approval. The policy is bound when you receive a certificate from the carrier.
- All questions on the application must be answered and are a condition of coverage.
- All written communications must be done in group messages. No private messaging is allowed between the instructor and youth participants, and no private messaging is allowed between youth participants.
- Each program must indicate a start time and end time on the application. The policy does not respond to incidents that occur outside of the stated start and end times.
- Format and description of activities must be provided on the application.
- Live stream origination (i.e. institution, instructor's home, etc.) must be provided on the application.
- Live stream service venue must be provided on the application.
- Coverage territory is limited to the United States of America, including its territories and possessions, Puerto Rico and Canada.
- Please note you must inform the UT System Office of Risk Management as soon as possible if a camp you have requested for coverage has been cancelled.
Each youth program must have the following minimum adult supervision ratio requirements consistent with the American Camp Association staff ratio standards:
Age of Youth Participants
Number of Adult Staff
Overnight Youth Participants
Day Only Youth Participants
|5 years or younger
The supervision plan must be developed and specify the person having responsibility over all designated individuals serving in the program, the ratio of youth participants to designated individuals over 18, and the designated individuals by category of employees, students, and volunteers. Each program should meet the minimum designated individual (staff) to youth participant ratio.
The supervision plan for any overnight program should also
- specify curfews;
- establish rules pertaining to visitors; and
- have no unsupervised free time.
Program counselors/volunteers must be sixteen (16) years or older, pass a criminal background check and pass the UTEP Youth Protection Training. All youth program employees MUST comply with the minimum age requirement. Please see the Handbook of Operating Procedures at https://www.utep.edu/vpba/hoop/section-5/ch-3.html for the full details regarding age requirements.
In the event of an emergency, Youth Event Coordinators are encouraged to
- provide designated individuals with contact information for parents/legal guardians of youth participants in the event of an emergency;
- ensure the parents/legal guardians are provided with contact information to reach the youth participants while the program is in session;
- utilize the communication plan template provided by the Office of Youth Program Development and Support; and
- contact University Police at 915-747-5611 so they may assist and document during emergencies.
Youth Event Coordinators must be prepared in case of an emergency and discuss the emergency action plan with all designated individuals.
Youth Event Coordinators should ensure that all designated individuals are
- aware of all identified means of exiting the building(s).
- knowledgeable of the area(s) for all youth participants and staff to gather in an emergency that requires evacuation; this area should be far enough away from building so as not to interfere with emergency response operations.
- prepared to escort the youth participants out of the building and to a safe area designated by the camp emergency plan where they will remain with their assigned group and take attendance immediately.
Emergency action plans will include assigned staff conducting a roll call to ensure all participants and staff are accounted for at the designated area.
If all youth participants and staff are accounted for, the Youth Event Coordinator or designated individuals will maintain order and follow the instructions of emergency personnel.
If a youth participant or designated individual is missing when attendance is taken, emergency personnel must be immediately notified and their instructions followed.
Youth Event Coordinators must be prepared in case of a medical emergency and discuss the medical emergency action plan with all designated individuals. It is highly recommended that each youth program have a first aid kit on site and have identified staff who are trained in the following:
- First aid
- Youth mental health first aid
When parents/guardians, teachers, coaches WILL NOT be present at all times and retain custodial responsibility of the youth participants during the youth program, the Youth Event Coordinator must also obtain the following forms from each youth participant’s parent/legal guardian:
- Authorization to permit transportation of youth participants as deemed necessary in an emergency
- Disclosure of any allergies, other medical/mental conditions, or physical limitations of a youth participant that may impact his or her participation in the youth program
Medical information is confidential and only for use by camp staff. It is imperative that parents/guardians are notified of all medical-related situations.
In the event of an emergency involving an injury or acute illness, the Youth Event Coordinator must follow the risk reduction measures listed below:
- Call 911 to summon emergency personnel
- Notify the parent/legal guardian or the emergency contact
- Have a designated individual accompany the youth participant to the hospital and remain until the parent/legal guardian arrives
- Ensure that the appropriate designated individual prepares a written report no later than 24 hours following the medical emergency to submit to the Youth Event Coordinator for filing
Other Policies and Procedures
Missing or Lost Youth Participants Procedure
Designated individuals are responsible for knowing the location of youth participants at all times, both on- and off-site for the duration of the program.
Designated individuals must account for their youth participants at all times and regularly check attendance, especially when youth participants are in transition.
Designated individuals must immediately notify the Youth Event Coordinator if a youth participant is unaccounted for. The Youth Event Coordinator and designated individuals will immediately search the area where the youth participant was last seen.
If the youth participant is not located after the aforementioned steps have been completed
- the Youth Event Coordinator or designated personnel will contact the police and wait for them to arrive.
- the Youth Event Coordinator or designated personnel will contact parents/guardians to apprise them of the situation.
- the Youth Event Coordinators are to direct designated individuals to continue the search until police arrive. When the police arrive, they will assume command to locate the missing youth participant.
Youth Event Coordinators and employees are NOT allowed to use their personal or non-approved vehicles to transport youth participants under any circumstances.
UTEP’s Parking and Transportation office offers various transportation and parking services. Youth Event Coordinators should contact UTEP Parking and Transportation for more information at (915) 747-5724 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
A parking permit may be required for each vehicle entering campus for youth participant drop-off or pick-up depending on the day and time of each youth program.
If a youth program plans to have an event in which additional guests or an influx of guests will be parking on campus for a few hours during the event (e.g. award ceremony/game/concert), an Event Parking Form must be submitted for each event. The form can be accessed at https://www.utep.edu/vpba/parking-and-transportation/parking/event-parking.html.
Current parking regulations are available at https://www.utep.edu/vpba/parking-and transportation/ and must be followed.
Room and Facility Usage/Reservations
Youth Event Coordinators should coordinate with UTEP’s Housing, Student Recreation Center, Scheduling and Union services as needed. Please be aware that fees may be associated with the use of these spaces. Each facility has specific policies and procedures that must be followed.
Minors in Laboratories and Similar Facilities
UTEP is committed to introducing minors to interesting and challenging scientific, scholarly, or artistic pursuits at a young age. These experiences should be handled in ways that will promote the safety of the minors and will not impair the normal functions of the University. The Environmental Health and Safety Office (EH&S) is available to assist in the planning and appropriate usage of laboratories and similar facilities. Please contact EH&S for assistance at (915) 747-7124.