Safe Environment Program for Children OPT-OUT Process
In his letter of promulgation of the Valuing God’s Gifts in Ourselves and Others, Bishop Morlino called upon us to ensure that we support parents who choose to teach this material to their children themselves. The National Office of Child & Youth Protection, which reports to the USCCB, requires an “OPT-OUT” form for these parents.
Here is the process:
- When approached by a parent or guardian who has concerns or issues with the program or has turned in an Opt-Out form, find out exactly what is troubling them and whether it can be resolved.
- If, after discussion, the parent/guardian insists that they do not want their child to participate, ask them to sign the “OPT-OUT” form.
- Give the parent/guardian the appropriate lesson plan(s) for their child(ren) and ask them to use it in teaching their child(ren).
- Tell the parent/guardian that they are welcome to join the program with their child at any session in the future.
- Document on the form the issues/concerns voiced by the parent.
- If the parent/guardian refuses to sign the “OPT-OUT” form, you should document their issues/concerns and sign the form, noting specifically who refused to sign.
- Keep the form on file at the parish/school.