Child Protection Policy

Sexual Abuse and Misconduct Prevention Policy
Smoky Valley Home Educators (SVHE) prohibits and does not tolerate sexual abuse or misconduct in the workplace or during any organization-related activity. SVHE provides procedures for employees, volunteers, board members, or any other victims of sexual abuse or misconduct to report such acts. Those reasonably suspected or believed to have committed sexual abuse or misconduct will be appropriately disciplined, up to and including termination of employment, as well as criminally prosecuted. No employee, volunteer, board member, or other person, regardless of his or her title or position has the authority to commit or allow sexual abuse or misconduct.

Definitions and Examples
The following definitions or examples of sexual abuse, misconduct or harassment, may apply to any and/or all of the following persons- volunteers, employees, or other third parties.

  1. Sexual abuse or misconduct may include, but is not limited to:
    1. Child sexual abuse- any sexual activity, involvement, or attempt of sexual contact with a person who is a minor (under 18 years old) where consent is not or cannot be given.
    2. Sexual activity with another who is legally incompetent or otherwise unable to give consent.
    3. Physical assaults or violence, such as rape, sexual battery, abuse, molestation or any attempt to commit such acts.
    4. Unwanted and intentional physical conduct that is sexual in nature, such as touching, pinching, patting, brushing, massaging someone’s neck or shoulders, and/or pulling against another’ body or clothes.
    5. Material such as pornographic or sexually explicit images, posters, calendars, or objects.
    6. Unwelcome and inappropriate sexual activities, advances, comments, innuendoes, bullying, jokes, gestures, electronic communications or messages (e.g., email, text, social media, voicemail), exploitation, exposure, leering, stalking or invasion of sexual privacy.
    7. A sexually hostile environment characterized as comments or conduct that unreasonably interferes with one’s work performance or ability to do the job or creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive environment.
    8. Direct or implied threats that submission to sexual advances will be a condition of employment or affiliation with the organization.

Reporting Procedure
Immediately report suspected sexual abuse or misconduct to the SVHE Advisory Council or the Director of the involved activity. It is not required to directly confront the person who is the source of the report, question, or complaint before notifying any of the individuals. In the event that a suspected incidence of abuse is reported, the staff member in question may be temporarily suspended from duties while an investigation takes place. SVHE will take very reasonable
measure to ensure that those named in complaint of misconduct, or are too closely associated with those involved in the complaint will not be part of the investigative team.

Anti-retaliation and False Allegations
SVHE prohibits retaliation made against any employee, volunteer, board member, or other person who lodges a good faith complaint of sexual abuse or misconduct or who participates in any related investigation. Making knowingly false or malicious accusations of sexual abuse or misconduct can have serious consequences for those who are wrongly accused. SVHE prohibits making false or malicious sexual misconduct allegations, as well as deliberately providing false
information during an investigation. Anyone who violates this rule is subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment and criminal prosecution.

Investigation and Follow-up
SVHE will take all allegations of sexual abuse or misconduct seriously and will promptly, thoroughly, and equitably investigate whether misconduct has taken place The organization may utilize an outside third party to conduct an investigation of misconduct. SVHE will cooperate fully with any investigation conducted by law enforcement or other regulatory/protective services agencies. SVHE will make very reasonable effort to keep the matters involve in the allegation as confidential as possible while still allowing for a prompt and thorough investigation.

Reporting to Law Enforcement or Appropriate Child or Adult Protective Services
SVHE is committed to following the state and federal legal requirements for reporting allegations or incidents of sexual abuse or misconduct to appropriate law enforcement and child or adult protective services organizations. It is the policy of SVHE not to attempt to investigate or assess the validity or credibility of an allegation of sexual or physical abuse as a condition before reporting the allegation to proper law enforcement authorities or protective services organizations. Reports of abuse or neglect of an adult or child will be reported to the Kansas Protection Report Center by calling 1-800-922-5330 or online at

Employee and Worker Screening and Selection
SVHE is committed to maintaining a diligent screening program for prospective and existing employees, volunteers and others that may have interaction with those employed by, associating with or serviced by SVHE. The screening and selection process shall include the following:

  1. Application: Every staff member and volunteer working with our students will complete a written application that will set forth appropriate background information, and require disclosure of any prior claims or allegations of sexual abuse or other inappropriate conduct.
  2. Screening: Each prospective staff member will be interviewed by the Director of the corresponding activity. This screening process will include specific questions regarding the existence of any prior claims of inappropriate behavior with respect to youth.
  3. Background Check: All potential staff members will be subject to a criminal background check with a contracted vendor qualified to conduct such checks. For returning staff members, this background check will be updated at least every two (2) years.

Supervision of Youth
To provide a safe environment for minors, SVHE strives that a minimum of two adult workers supervise or be in attendance with minors during organization-related activities. The purpose is to avoid one-on-one interactions between adults and minors that are not easily observable by others. If individual meetings with a minor must be held in an office, keep the door open. Only conduct closed door meetings when another adult is put on notice of the meeting and the door
remains unlocked.

Prohibited and Discouraged Behavior

  1. 1. Prohibited Behavior
    1. Use of profane or degrading language. Staff members are also responsible for stopping disrespectful language or behavior between activity members.
    2. Threatening or intentionally inflicting physical injury upon a minor.
    3. Committing any sexual offense against a minor, or engaging in any sexual contact with a minor.
    4. Making any kind of sexual advance, or making a request for sexual favors, or engaging in other verbal, visual or physical conduct of a sexual nature.
    5. Communication between leaders and children that is not directly related to activities.
  2. Discouraged Behavior
    1. Rides to/from practices and competitions unless there is an urgent situation such as where a parent/guardian does not show up and the child would be in danger not having a ride.

Download Child Protection Policy