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4-H Youth Development

Questions and Answers

Who must complete the Volunteer Screening process?

The Volunteer Screening process must be completed by:

  • any individual (adult or youth) who works in close, ongoing interaction with youth, or
  • any adult or youth with authority to independently plan and conduct 4-H educational experiences for youth with other adults present or in a public setting.

Volunteers who do not fit into one of the above criteria would be considered episodic and do not need to complete the screening.

What are the components of the background screening starting August 1, 2014?

There are two components, A National Criminal Background Check (CBC) and a check of the Kansas Department for Children and Families, Child Abuse and Neglect Central Registry.  Both checks are required.

What will be the costs be?

The National Criminal Background Check (CBC) cost is $22.50 for the first time it is conducted on a volunteer, $16.50 for all subsequent checks (every three years).  The Child Abuse and Neglect Central Registry check is free, the $10 fee is waived because Kansas 4-H is a Kansas Mentor Organization.

When do we need to run the National Criminal Background Check?

The new process started August 1, 2014.  All new volunteers and volunteers currently serving who have not been screened will need to be screened using the new process.  A volunteer will need to be rescreened every three years.

“I understand the state will pay for the CBC for the first year.”

The state will pay for the CBC for all NEW Volunteers for the first year (August 1, 2014 – August 31, 2015).  The cost for the CBC for Volunteers who have been serving but have not completed the screening will be the responsibility of the local Extension Unit.

What is a “new 4-H leader”? 

A new 4-H leader is a person who has not, within the last two years, provided leadership in any 4-H role which requires volunteer screening.

How often do 4-H Volunteers need rescreening?

Volunteers are to be rescreened every three years.  For Volunteers who are registered (appointed) by July 31, 2014, their first required screening will be between August 1, 2017 and December 31, 2017.  This is three years from the August 1, 2014 start of the new process.  Their next rescreening would be between August 1, 2020 and December 31, 2020.

Can we start the screening earlier than August 1, 2017 to spread out the costs?

Yes you may.  You may start any time after January 1, 2015.  Volunteers will need to be rescreened every three years between August and December of the year they are due for rescreening, three years from the date of their last screening.

Under the current process, what constitutes a fully screened volunteer?

A fully screened volunteer is one for whom all the steps in the Volunteer Screening process have been completed. This includes appointment by the local Extension Council/Governing Board.

On the Criminal Background Check, there is a question regarding the Summary of Rights Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) that the applicant has to agree to.  Several agents have been questioned by the applicant about this wondering if their credit is being checked.  Validity (the company that conducts the Criminal Background Check) has provided the following answer:

The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) is a United States federal law that regulates the collection, dissemination, and use of consumer information. Unfortunately, it is titled very poorly, as most of the general public assumes it only covers credit reports. Consumer reporting agencies (CRAs), such as background check companies and credit bureaus, collect and disseminate information about consumers to be used for pre-employment, credit evaluation, and other purposes. The law covers not only credit reports, but criminal background checks as well.

It is important to note that Validity's release covers all kinds of consumer reports, including credit and criminal, in order to be used by all of our clients no matter what information they actually run. It is up to our clients to make clear to their applicants what their background checks consist of. If applicants are receiving a copy of their completed report, they will see that you are not obtaining credit information on them.

It is also illegal to utilize credit scores for making decisions on employment or volunteering.

I have reviewed the old files for completeness and notice the references are missing.  They are check off and dated on the checklist.  What should I do?

The previous process allowed references to be shredded after they had been received, noted, reviewed and the volunteer was appointed.  Therefore if you believe there is adequate documentation that references had been received, reviewed and used in the appointment process, you can consider that step done.  This of course is only applicable to current volunteers as you strive to have all volunteers appointed and registered with full documentation in their file.