Minors in Duke University Programs Policy


The Minors in Duke University Programs Policy ("Policy") promotes the welfare and safety of Minors who visit Duke's campus and Minors who participate in Duke programs or activities. Failure to comply with the requirements set forth in this Policy may lead to immediate cancellation of the Program, disciplinary action, and/or revocation of the opportunity to use university facilities and land.

Scope of Policy

"Programs" covered by this Policy, as determined by Duke Human Resources, include all activities, placements, camps, and programs involving children under the age of 18 ("Minors") that take place on university land (whether hosted by Duke or a third party); that take place in university facilities (whether hosted by Duke or a third party); or that take place under the authority and direction of or with the involvement of the university; whether on campus or off-campus, and whether one time activities, regular meetings, or residential camps. All Programs run, organized, sponsored, or hosted by Duke student organizations, Duke departments and units, Duke University Health System, and other Duke-related entities as determined by Duke Human Resources are included under this Policy, even when the Program may involve supervision by a Minor's school or Minor's parent/ legal guardian.

Examples of Programs covered by this Policy include but are not limited to athletic camps and athletic clinics; academic camps and activities; student organizations working with Minors; intern and observer placements; Minors interning or working in laboratories; campus visits and housing of visiting Minors in residential halls; activities or classes that involve service to Minors; and any other Programs or activities organized, run, or hosted by the university or any university-related entity for Minors.

This Policy does not apply to:

  • Enrolled Duke students who are under 18 (however, note that the mandatory reporting requirements described in this Policy do apply to students under 18)
  • Events open to the general public that are not targeted towards Minors, and at which any Minors will be accompanied by their parent/legal guardian at all times
  • Guest speakers whose role in a Program is limited to a short one-time presentation, and who are never alone with Minors
  • Patient care-related activities pertaining to Minors in the Duke University Health System or Duke patient related settings

Additionally, please note that other policies may also apply to Minors activities and Programs. Compliance with this policy does not necessarily satisfy the requirements of other policies. Similarly, compliance with other policies does not necessarily satisfy the requirements of this policy.

Reporting Requirements

"If you see something, say something." Every member of the university community ("Member") has an obligation to report immediately instances or suspected instances of the abuse of or inappropriate interactions with Minors to the Program Director, the Duke University Police, and the Duke Human Resources Youth Protection Coordinator. This includes information about suspected abuse, neglect, or inadequate care provided by a parent, guardian, or custodian/caretaker, or in situations where a Minor is at immediate risk of harm or the victim of a criminal act.

Additionally, every Member may have a further obligation under North Carolina or other state law to make a report of suspected child abuse or neglect to the director of the department of social services in the county where the Minor resides or is found. Duke University Police (available at 919-684-2444) can assist in providing contact information for reporting to social service agencies. Members making a report in good faith will be protected from criminal and civil liability for making the report. Further, it is the policy of the university that no Member making a good faith report of suspected abuse or neglect will be retaliated against.

Program Directors for Programs held in states other than North Carolina are responsible for reviewing reporting obligations in such states.

Process Requirements

All Minors Programs must be registered with Duke Human Resources at least four (4) weeks before the start date of the Program. In order to register, Programs must first obtain approval for the Program at the Dean or Vice President level (or a designee who has been designated in writing). University system Programs require approval from the Provost's Office after a recommendation from the relevant Dean.

Every adult interacting with Minors must complete a criminal background check and training on Duke University policies regarding interactions with Minors, inappropriate behavior with Minors, sexual abuse and sexual harassment of Minors, behavioral signs that Minor victims may exhibit, and other topics as appropriate.

For each Minor, the Program must collect a written Participation Agreement signed by the Minor's parent/ legal guardian before the Minor can participate. Where appropriate, the Program should also collect Health Forms completed by the Minor's parent/ legal guardian and a licensed health care provider before the Minor can participate.

Complete instructions for successfully meeting these requirements can be found here.

Operational Requirements

Duke has developed Standards that all Programs, where applicable, must follow. These Standards can be found here.

Duke expects all members of the university community to adhere to and act in accordance with this Policy, including but not limited to faculty, staff, administrators, students, and volunteers who work with, instruct, or otherwise come into contact with Minors. Duke reserves the right to periodically audit youth programs for compliance with this Policy.

Policy Number: 04.17

Issued Date

September 1, 2012

Last Revised

August 30, 2109
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