Skip to Main Content

Protecting Minors on Campus

The University of Pennsylvania, as part of its educational mission, may engage in programs and events that involve minors. The University recognizes both its institutional and legal obligations to ensure the safety and well-being of minors on campus and has therefore implemented the Protecting Minors on Campus Policy, effective February 19, 2019. This policy is established in compliance with Pennsylvania law, pertaining to faculty, staff, students, and volunteers having direct contact with children.  

All University faculty, staff, postdoctoral trainees, students and volunteers having direct contact with children in connection with University activities are required to undergo a three-part background check consistent with Pennsylvania law. The check will be in addition to any standard background check applicable to an employee at the time of hire. 

Below is information regarding how to request a background check and other important resources.

Request a Minors Program Background Check

If your program is already cleared by your school or center, you can request a background check by completing the online Minors Program Background Check Request Form (PennKey log in required).

Employees

For paid faculty, staff, and students, we will not accept previously issued PA state documents. The University will issue both PA state searches - the Pennsylvania Criminal History Record (PATCH) and the Pennsylvania Child Abuse Clearance. 

A previously issued FBI fingerprint search will be accepted provided it is registered to PA and was issued within the last five years.

The required searches are:

  1. Pennsylvania Criminal History Record (PATCH)
  2. Pennsylvania Child Abuse Clearance
  3. Federal Criminal History Record - registered to Pennsylvania through the Department of Human Services (DHS)

Volunteers

The University will accept previously issued PA state documents if they have been issued within the last five years. 

Out-of-state volunteers may provide comparable documentation from their state of origin provided they are working less than 90 days in a calendar year.

The required searches are:

  1. Pennsylvania Criminal History Record (PATCH) 
  2. Pennsylvania Child Abuse Clearance
  3. Federal Criminal History Record - registered to Pennsylvania through the Department of Human Services (DHS)

Register for FBI Fingerprints

If you are unable to attend one of the clinics, please register directly through the Identogo website.

You can purchase payment codes for your school or center by filling out and faxing the "No Charge Authorization Codes" application form to IDEMA.

To complete your FBI Fingerprint registration, review the FBI Fingerprint Process guide.

Resources

Visit the Keep Kids Safe website at KeepKidsSafe.pa.gov for lots of useful information and additional resources. 

Have a question about the background check process for programs involving minors? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Need to report a case of suspected child abuse? Reports can be made orally or via written report. Any person with a reporting obligation who suspects a minor (as defined in the Protecting Minors on Campus Policy) participating in any University program is the victim of abuse or neglect (irrespective of whether such abuse is on campus, at home, or elsewhere) must report such abuse or neglect as follows: 

  1. A reporter making an oral and/or written report of suspected child abuse or neglect must immediately notify the Division of Public Safety, Special Services, at 215.898.4481 (215.898.6600 off-hours).
  2. An oral report of suspected child abuse or neglect must be made to the Department of Human Services at 800-932-0313 (“ChildLine”).  This number is available 24 hours per day, seven days per week.  Further information about child-abuse reporting is available online at http://www.dhs.pa.gov/provider/childwelfareservices/childlineandabuseregistry/index.htm
    and
    http://www.phila.gov/dhs/reportNeglect.html
  3. A reporter making an oral report shall also make a written report to the department or county agency assigned the case, in the manner and format prescribed by the department.  Assistance in making this report shall be provided to the reporter by the Division of Public Safety, Special Services. 

Questions

The Penn Employee Solution Center is now available to help with any questions.  The Solution Center is available Monday through Friday, during business hours, to answer questions. The number to call is 215-898-7372.  The e-mail is hcmsolutioncenter@upenn.edu.