School is Back in Session

As school is back in session, it’s important to make sure your school is equipped with the correct safety procedures. Thinking about your school’s physical security as a series of layers can help you find gaps in your plan. Transportation and volunteers are just two important aspects of your school safety plan to think about.

A well-designed transportation and supervision plan demonstrates your school’s commitment to safety, builds trust, and protects your students on the move. These steps will help you diminish the risks to improve safety and reduce liability:

  • Require a volunteer driver form, provide contact info, consider non-owned vehicle insurance, discourage caravan travel, prohibit distracted driving, and ensure age-appropriate car seats and seat belts.
  • Screen drivers before they get behind the wheel to ensure that those in your care are transported safely.

Field trips offer hands-on opportunities for students to explore topics outside of the classroom and should be addressed by your transportation safety plan. Some modes of transportation, such as 15-passenger vans, have poor safety records. Their high centers of gravity make them more likely to roll over in the event of an accident. Consider other options, like school buses, chartered buses, small buses, vans, or private vehicles for transporting students to and from your field trip location.

Another key piece of your school’s safety plan should be proper supervision for children. Good supervision not only helps deter abuse but helps avoid false allegations of abuse. Your school’s procedures need to be explicit: No adult volunteer should be alone with a child or youth. This includes in a vehicle, at a camp, on a mission trip, or during an overnight event. Consider using the two-adult rule or the rule of three.

  • The Two-Adult Rule – This rule creates accountability that helps prevent and deter misconduct. It also helps reduce the ability for anyone to make a false accusation. The rule requires that two screened and unrelated adult volunteers be present in every vehicle involving children and youth.
  • The Rule of Three – For the rule of three, it’s about accountability—the age and capacity of the children being supervised should be taken into consideration. When ministries cannot support the Two-Adult Rule, supervision policies and procedures should require at least three individuals to be present, one of whom is a screened adult. To maintain an environment of accountability, the Rule of Three should be reserved for settings where children are at least five years old.

Brotherhood Mutual has insurance and services for K-12 Christian schools designed to help ministries like yours thrive in the school environment. You can customize your insurance property package and general liability coverage with additional protections that meet your school’s individual needs. We’re committed to serving you by offering coverages designed to protect your Christian school. Contact your American Church Group agent to ensure you have all the necessary coverage for your school.