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Not So Fast

Thursday, 27 October 2011

Courtesy Microsoft Office

My most recent post was about the wonderful experience that I had volunteering the library at Poppyseed’s elementary school. There was, of course, a second part to that story…

Towards the end of my shift, the library volunteer coordinator mentioned something about how exciting it was that there are so many new volunteers this year, but that it was taking a while to finalize the schedule due to the large number of folks who were still waiting for their clearances.

Clearances? Uh-oh.

Off I went to the main office…

FrumeSarah: Um…hi. I just finished volunteering in the library. Had a wonderful time, by the way. I understand that I need some sort of clearance…
School Secretary {{rather sternly}}: Why yes. It was explained in great detail at Meet-the-Teacher night. Weren’t you there?
FrumeSarah: Nope. It was scheduled on the first night of Rosh Hashanah.
School Secretary: Oh. Um. Well, sorry about that. Anyway, you’ll need a background check, a criminal check, and this other statement witnessed by a notary. Should take a few weeks. All of the instructions are right here on this top page.
FrumeSarah: Wow. Really? In California we just needed a TB test.
School Secretary {{shocked}}: So just anyone could work with kids?
FrumeSarah: Yep…just as long as they don’t have tuberculosis.

Form #1 (submitted online) = $10.00 via credit card
Form #2 (submitted via US Postal Service) = $10.00 via money order
Form #3 (in person) = $5.00

Form #1 takes 10-14 days to process. Only once that has been completed can one remit Form #2 to the Dept. of Public Welfare. Which will take 2-3 weeks to to clear. Then one must hand-deliver the entire packet to the district office.

In other words, you have to really want to volunteer at your kid’s school.

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20 Comments leave one →
  1. Thursday, 27 October 2011 9:26 pm

    Um, so you didn’t have to do anything to qualify to be the kid’s parent, but to work in the library…now there’s some logic in that somewhere.

    • Frume Sarah permalink*
      Friday, 28 October 2011 4:24 pm

      In all fairness…it’s for any volunteer position where one comes into contact with kids.

      Your response reminds me of a similar line in the movie, “Parenthood”:

      You know, Mrs. Buckman, you need a license to buy a dog, to drive a car — hell, you even need a license to catch a fish. But they’ll let any butt-reaming a**hole be a father.

  2. Thursday, 27 October 2011 11:20 pm

    Wait, you mean the school secretary didn’t ask you what Rosh Hashana is?
    Do you need a character witness? I can vouch for you being a character.
    Miss you!

    • Frume Sarah permalink*
      Friday, 28 October 2011 4:25 pm

      I can only imagine what kind of reference you might submit 😉

      Miss you too!!!!!!!

  3. Friday, 28 October 2011 1:43 am

    But…can you have TB?

    • Frume Sarah permalink*
      Friday, 28 October 2011 4:25 pm

      Yes. Yes, you can.

  4. Friday, 28 October 2011 9:20 am

    Welcome to PA! Imagine all the hoops to jump through if you actually want to teach 🙂

    • Frume Sarah permalink*
      Friday, 28 October 2011 4:31 pm

      I can understand hoops for teaching…but to volunteer?? Wow…

      And thanks. I feel like a stranger in a strange land here your beautiful Commonwealth!

      • Friday, 28 October 2011 5:04 pm

        Have you tried to buy booze here yet? Oy!

      • Frume Sarah permalink*
        Wednesday, 2 November 2011 4:44 pm

        I know! They do not make it easy to get a drink around here.

  5. Crys permalink
    Friday, 28 October 2011 12:03 pm

    In our district we have always had to have the background check, but now we have to have a Live Scan fingerprint done. It costs between $65-$80 Once you do it it stays active while you have kids in elementary and middle. It takes over a month to process. I think we are the 3rd district in San Diego to require Live Scan, but we are the only district that makes the parent pay for it. I don’t think mine got processed in time so I don’t get to go on the field trip next month :(. We don’t need a TB test.

    • Frume Sarah permalink*
      Friday, 28 October 2011 4:33 pm

      That is pretty expensive. I wonder how many folks are deterred from giving of their time because they are unable to afford the fees??

      • Crys permalink
        Friday, 28 October 2011 5:27 pm

        This is the first year it’s been a requirement and I’m sure there have been parents who won’t, or can’t, do it. I only know about the 2nd graders and it hasn’t seemed to the be a deterrent. The field trip volunteers (for trip in Dec.) filled up before I even got on the “approved volunteer” list. This will be her first field trip without me.

  6. Saturday, 29 October 2011 9:24 am

    Best part will be when the district starts to complain that there are not enough parent volunteers…

    • Frume Sarah permalink*
      Wednesday, 2 November 2011 4:44 pm

      How right you are.

  7. Monday, 31 October 2011 9:47 am

    This sounds crazy to me!

    • Frume Sarah permalink*
      Wednesday, 2 November 2011 4:45 pm

      Well, the idea is a good one. After all, who wants a sex offender volunteering in their kid’s classroom. That being said, is there an easier way to do this?

      • Wednesday, 2 November 2011 5:46 pm

        Would a sex offender still have paternal responsibility, or whatever it is called, for his children?

  8. Wednesday, 2 November 2011 1:08 pm

    They ask you to do all that stuff but apparently don’t check it, since they let you volunteer without it. Hmmm.

    • Frume Sarah permalink*
      Wednesday, 2 November 2011 4:46 pm

      An oversight, I am certain.

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