University of Missouri System establishes new youth protection policy and requirements

Policy establishes standards of conduct and reporting for both in-person and virtual programs systemwide

Columbia, Mo.— University of Missouri System officials today announced new policies and procedures related to youth programs at all UM System universities. The Protection of Minors policy establishes a centralized registry of youth programs systemwide and establishes standardized safety, training and background check requirements for program staff and volunteers.

“The University of Missouri System is committed to providing a safe environment and positive experience for all participants in youth programs available through our universities,” UM System President Mun Choi said. “The Protection of Minors policy sets forth standards that will ensure program staff and volunteers are thoroughly vetted, trained and able to deliver enriching programs to youth participants.”

UM System universities offer a wide variety of learning opportunities through academic, athletic, enrichment and behavioral programs to children, including workshops, group lessons, conferences, seminars, camps, conferences, competitions and internships. The university is committed to ensuring a safe environment and providing the best possible experience for any child participant in a youth program available through the UM System universities.

New requirements include:

  1. Program directors must submit an application for their program in advance to the UM System Youth Program Registry.
  2. Screening requirements, including a background check and sex offender registry search, for adults staffing the program.
  3. Training and/or orientation requirements for program staff and youth participants, including university reporting protocols for suspected child abuse.
  4. Certain standard forms, including a notice to parents/guardians.

The policy is effective immediately for all applicable youth programs systemwide, whether held on a university campus or virtually.

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Youth program coordinators should visit the UM System Protection of Minors webpage for additional information, including program registration, training and screening requirements, FAQs, and full policy provisions. Program coordinators can also access the youth program registry portal, a full-service tool for submitting an upcoming youth program that can assist with initiating screening and organizing trainings and orientations.

Live and on-demand learning opportunities are available to learn more about the policy, requirements and registration process, and to ask questions.

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