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Madison Metropolitan School District

Volunteer Expectations

MMSD Volunteer Expectations

As a new or continuing volunteer, you will have the support of a volunteer coordinator or other staff as you carry out your volunteer assignment.  In addition to this assistance, we are providing the following guidelines and commitments to outline expectations about your volunteering experience. Enjoy knowing your investment of time and interest is making a difference for students!

Student Confidentiality

  •  I understand that in providing my services as a volunteer with Madison Schools I will respect the confidential nature of the knowledge I will gain concerning the academic performance, behavior and personal information of the students with whom I work.  You may discuss concerns with the student’s teacher or the school’s tutor coordinator. You may not discuss with other community members, volunteers, parents/family members or acquaintances. 

  • If a student tells me something or I notice something that may indicate his/her safety is at risk or he/she is in emotional distress, I will report that information to my supervising teacher or a support staff member (social worker, psychologist, nurse).

  • I also agree to not initiate contact with the students with whom I work or their families outside of the school or program setting to which I have been assigned.

  • Protect privacy.  Do not ask for students’ addresses or phone numbers, and do not share yours with the students. Please do not take a photo of the student(s) you tutor.  If you are provided a photo of the student by a staff person, please do not share the photo on Facebook, photo libraries, or other forums that are accessible to others.

Commitment to anti-racism, inclusion and alliance to all children and their families

  • Be a positive role model for children and youth in attitude, behavior and language.  Let your conversations demonstrate respect for others, and avoid language that may be perceived as discriminatory, sexist, or offensive.

  • Be respectful of children’s diversity of culture, language, religion, and background.  Don’t assume that all students celebrate the same holidays (Christmas, Easter, Halloween, or even birthdays).  Don’t assume the make-up of a student’s “family” (size, race, gender or financial resources). Practice correct pronunciation and spelling of students’ names if they are unfamiliar.  Show interest in students’ cultures and learn more about those cultures.

Commitment to Student, Staff, School Safety

  • Complete the required application and background check in Volunteer Tracker

  • Attend any available orientation and applicable training sessions.

  • Be prompt and dependable.  Please notify the school tutor coordinator if you cannot come at your scheduled time. Communication by e-mail or voicemail is preferred.

  • Sign in and out upon arrival and departure according to school procedures.  Wear your nametag for identification.

  • Notify the teacher, principal, or social worker if a student tells you something or you notice something that may indicate his/her safety is at risk or he/she is in emotional distress.  Staff will do the necessary follow up.

  • Follow “safe touch” suggestions.  Volunteers do not initiate touching a student (pats on arm or back, or for younger children, hand-holding, hugs, or lap-sitting), but may respond to student’s initiation of appropriate touch.

  • Never arrive to your volunteer assignment while under the influence of alcohol or drugs, or use alcohol, drugs or tobacco during your assignment.  Never carry a weapon on school premises or other program sites.  

Commitment to School and Classroom Rules and Regulations

  • Follow the lead of school staff in appropriate dress and footwear.  Different schools and after-school programs reflect varying levels of casual and business casual wear.

  • Follow universally accepted norms regarding non-harassment and safe work-place rules and regulations.

  • Communicate.  Ask questions, share ideas, get to know the staff and other volunteers. The tutor coordinator is there to help - don’t hesitate to call, leave a note, or ask for a meeting to discuss any problems or concerns that may arise.  Every problem is solvable with respectful, honest communication.

  • Support the work of the classroom teacher and school staff.  The volunteer’s role is one of assistance.

  • Gifts for students are inappropriate.  Don’t bring gifts or food treats for individual students.  With teacher or program coordinator approval, volunteers may bring snacks for the entire class or group, or they may make a donation of books or supplies for the class or group.

  • Know and adhere to school district regulations regarding Internet use and social media.  

  • Silence cell phones during volunteer assignments.

  • Fundraising, solicitation of donations, and using a volunteer placement for personal gain are prohibited.  Some program fundraising and solicitation of donations may be appropriate in collaboration with designated school and program staff.  Only they are authorized to publicly represent the program and/or serve as spokespersons.

  • Promotion and/or solicitation on behalf of your own personal interests or those of your organization or business is not allowed.

  • Ensure positive closure.  If you plan on ending your volunteer involvement before the end of the school year, please notify your teacher and the tutor coordinator.  It is especially important that the student is aware of your final tutoring session. The student needs to be left with the clear message that you have enjoyed working with him/her.