Conducting curricular community learning activities can involve risk. It is important to identify and address potential risks to reduce concerns about liability.
Best practices for risk management
- A University Organization Agreement is established between the SJSU and community organization/placement site regarding student service activities and liability.
- Students are made aware of any risks so they can provide informed consent prior to engaging in service activities.
- Students understand their roles and have the training, knowledge, skills and tools to perform their service duties safely and effectively.
- All stakeholders (students, faculty, community site supervisors) are encouraged to report problems, potential hazards or feelings of being physically or emotionally at risk.
- Faculty member monitors students' service experiences and addresses risk issues quickly if they arise.
Risk management tools are required by the Chancellor's Office. They were created by a group of CSU community learning practitioners and risk managers for practical and legal reasons to:
- Help protect the instructor, the university, the community partner, and the students from taking unnecessary legal and physical risks;
- Track student placements and service hours as well as clarify student commitment and accountability;
- Encourage the community placement site to establish plans for training, orientation and supervision - critical elements for reducing risk to students;
- Establish agreements between the university and community agency, protecting both in the event of an accident or incident and;
- Prompt the exchange of important information such that all participants are informed of and prepared to accept the risks of engaging in the community learning activities.
SJSU's risk documentation is now embedded in SJS4 - Supporting Students & Service Sites.