Mission Statement: As Christian adults, we have a moral and legal responsibility and are entrusted by God with the spiritual, emotional, and physical well-being of minors and vulnerable adults. As we participate in activities within or sponsored by our Diocese, it is our responsibility and commitment to provide an environment which is safe and nurturing for all.
Purpose: The Safe Environment Program has been adopted to:
- Provide a safe and secure environment for the minors and vulnerable adults in our faith community.
- Reduce the possibility of false accusations against clergy, employees and volunteers.
- Provide a structure for evaluating a person’s suitability to work with minors or vulnerable adults.
- Provide a system to respond to the victim and his/her family as well as the accused.
WHO MUST BE SCREENED?
· All clergy and staff of the Parish and School
· All volunteers who work with MINORS (under 18) or VULNERABLE ADULTS(Vulnerable Adults are those who for reasons of mental or physical impairment cannot recognize danger or if they do, cannot extract themselves from a dangerous situation).
SPX SCHOOL PARENTS: If you have decided to work your volunteer/cafeteria requirement AND if you plan on accompanying your child on field trips throughout the year, you have to be screened and cleared through the safe environment program.
REQUIREMENTS FOR SCREENING & CLEARANCE:
INITIAL & ANNUAL TRAINING: Documented attendance at one Safe Environment Program training session offered every 4-6 weeks here at St. Pius and various other times throughout the Diocese. Please watch church bulletin, website and school newsletters for specific dates and times. We will schedule additional sessions in August to accommodate new parents and to prepare for school opening. The Diocesan-wide schedule is available. Online training is available as well, but only for those who have been previously screened and require their annual update—see our website or the diocesan database link for specific instructions. ONLY the training is required to be updated every year—not your paperwork.
COMPLETION OF REQUIRED FORMS: All are available in English and Spanish in the church and school offices and on our website. Rest assured that all forms and information are kept filed under lock and key to ensure your privacy.
These are the steps required if you are new to the Safe Environment program and have not been trained. If you have already been trained and just need your annual training update, click here.
1. Complete the On-Line Screening form(includes permission/release for background check).
NOTICE: If you have been screened and cleared at another parish in the Diocese of Dallas, please have the Safety Officer from that parish add one of the locations: St Pius X Church or School to your database record so the safety officer may have access to your record.
2. Complete the Three (3) Reference forms—by a personal reference who has known you 3 years—cannot be a family member/relative (if completing the on-line screening form, email addreses for references must be given).
3. Complete a written Interview— to be viewed by head of ministry/Director of Safe Environment/or parish designate.
4. Complete the Acknowledgment form—affirms you have read the SEP booklet and that you agree to abide by those instructions and guidelines.
5. Complete the Social Media Policy form—affirms you have read the Social Media Policy booklet and that you agree to abide by those instructions and guidelines (applicable to all employees, clergy, and specific groups working with youth, i.e. Religious Education Teachers, Scout Leaders, Coaches, Youth Choir, etc.).
6. Submit to a Background check—this will be conducted and documented by Diocesan approved vendor—currently Accutrak from information you have already provided on the screening form.
7. Have your picture taken for the badge—taken at the initial training session or by appointment.
Picture ID Badges: We have been fortunate to have a parishioner who provides “cleared” volunteers with badges and we ask each volunteer to wear the ID when you are on campus or representing St. Pius as a chaperone. This enables the children and other adults to see at a glance that you have been properly trained and screened.
· Parents should not drop students off at school until official supervision begins at 7:30 a.m. Students MUST be picked up by 3:20 p.m. If you need Extended School Day Care for your child, please make arrangements with the School Office at (972) 279-2339.
· An adequate number of CLEARED adults (minimum of 2) will be present at parish sponsored events involving children/youth. If you notice that proper supervision is not in place, (especially for extracurricular events held on campus—athletic practices, scouts, etc.) we ask that you stay with your child until the requirement is met.
· All parish/school events involving minors have specific starting and ending times—please do not put YOUR CHILD at risk by ignoring the guidelines. Many teachers/volunteers have taken the responsibility to supervise your child—we must not take advantage of their generosity.
REPORTING CHILD ABUSE: A person having cause to believe that a minor’s or vulnerable adult’s physical or mental health or welfare has been or may be adversely affected by abuse or neglect by any person must immediately make a report to:
Texas Dept. of Family & Protective Services –Hotline: 1-800-252-5400 by secure website: www.txabusehotline.org
QUESTIONS OR CONCERNS REGARDING THE SAFE ENVIRONMENT PROGRAM HERE AT ST. PIUS X SHOULD BE DIRECTED TO: Ginger Farrell, 972-279-6155 x 146.