UW System institutions offer hundreds of academic and recreational pre-college programs and activities to youth ages 5-18, such as college and career exploration, academic skill-building, and academic and personal enrichment in the arts, sports, leadership, and STEM. UW System takes it’s responsibility seriously to ensure each institution has the proper protections to provide safe environments for minors that participate in pre-college and youth programs on our campuses and providing training to UW System employees to identify and report child abuse and neglect if they observe or learn of an incident.
The UW System Office of Compliance and Integrity (OCI) works to help each institution ensure they have the proper protections to provide safe environments for minors on our campuses. OCI supports youth protection requirements by:
- sharing expertise on youth protection policies and best practices;
- providing guidance on establishing and enforcing processes for programs to meet youth protection standards;
- offering youth protection training and professional development for program staff, administrators, and other adult leaders of youth programs.
Operating During a Pandemic
To ensure the safety of children, families, and staff during the COVID-19 pandemic, precollege and youth activities will monitor the evolving circumstances and lean on the expertise, guidance, and recommendations from the University of Wisconsin-System, Public Health Madison and Dane County (PHMDC), and the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP). Programs will also monitor information provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and other federal, state, and county agencies.
Provide input on the implementation of the Youth Protection and Compliance policy. During these sessions data will be collected to share with the policy drafting group as considerations for updates to the policy.
A Youth Activities Registration System (YARS) developed for UW System institutions to centrally register youth activities on their campuses. Allows institutions to document all interactions with youth on their campuses and have better oversight of the compliance to youth protection policies.