PROTECTING GOD’S CHILDREN (VIRTUS)
St Robert of Newminster Parish complies with the requirements of the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and the guidelines of the Diocese of Grand Rapids. Under the requirements of the program, all employees and volunteers of the parish engaged in regular contact with children or young people must undergo a criminal history background check and attend a Protecting God’s Children abuse awareness session.
FORMS TO BE COMPLETED by persons working with children and young people:
- Volunteer Services Application
- Standards of Ministerial Behavior in Dealing with Children & Young People
- Background Check Information, Notice, Authorization Form
PROTECTING GOD’S CHILDREN ABUSE AWARENESS SESSIONS
To register for a Protecting God’s Children Abuse Awareness session or see a list of upcoming sessions, visit www.virtus.org, click “Registration.” Click the drop down arrow by “Select Your Organization” and select Grand Rapids, MI (Diocese).
POLICIES & PROCEDURES
CLOSINGS & CANCELLATIONS Faith formation sessions are automatically cancelled when Forest Hills Public Schools cancel classes due to weather conditions. If bad weather starts just prior to session times, the staff will contact the catechists, who will then attempt to contact the parents of their learners. Cancellations will be broadcast over local radio and television stations, including WOOD-AM (1300), WOOD-FM (105.7), WOOD TV-8, WZZM TV-13. Cancellations will also be listed online on the parish website. If in doubt, please contact the Faith Formation Office.
FOOD & SNACKS No food or snacks will be allowed in the rooms. Parents are responsible for ensuring their children eat before entering the learning space. (There may be exceptions for lesson-related activities, as approved by the Pastoral Associates.)
PARENT PARTICIPATION Every parent is expected to volunteer with an activity at least one time during the year. Sign-up information will be available in September.
DROP OFF & PICK UP In order to maintain safety and security, the standard procedure for dropping off and picking up children in the Sunday Preschool-Kindergarten and Elementary Be My Disciples programs is for parents or other authorized adults to escort their children to and pick up their children from their learning spaces/rooms. Middle school students participating in Catholic Connections may sign themselves in and out, but parents are encouraged to escort them in and out of the building.
PHOTOS/VIDEOS Participants of St Roberts faith formation activities may have their pictures taken for use in promotion of parish programs. Parents/guardians designate their option for photo release on the Photo Release section on the registration form.
PLACEMENT Because approximately 1200 children participate in faith formation sessions, we cannot take special requests for placement with friends or certain catechists. All placement is done in a practical manner.
REGISTRATION You must be a member of the parish to register your family for Faith Formation activities. Join the parish.
SAFE ENVIRONMENT/PROTECTING GOD’S CHILDREN (VIRTUS) St Robert of Newminster Parish complies with the requirements of the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and the guidelines of the Diocese of Grand Rapids. Under the requirements of the program, all employees and volunteers of the parish engaged in regular contact with children or young people must undergo a criminal history background check and attend a Protecting God’s Children abuse awareness session.
SAFETY In the event of a TORNADO, learners will be escorted to the inner hallway and rooms and be seated facing the wall with a book over their necks and heads. Tornado drills will be held during session times at the beginning of the year.
In the event of a FIRE, learners will be escorted out the nearest exit to the back of the parking lot where attendance will be taken. Parents will meet us at the back of the parking lot and must sign out their children with the catechist before taking their children away. Fire drills will be held during session times at the beginning of the year.
If a student is injured, appropriate FIRST AID will be performed. In the case of a minor injury, faith formation staff will perform basic first aid, and parents will be notified as soon as possible. In the case of an injury requiring professional medical attention, faith formation staff will contact 911 for emergency treatment and will contact the learners’ parents or the designated emergency contact. Medical Treatment Release is obtained through the registration process.
SPORTS & APPOINTMENTS We discourage early dismissal of learners for other activities. If this situation arises occasionally, parents are required to notify the Faith Formation Office.
STUDENT CONDUCT St Robert Faith Formation learners are expected to be respectful of catechists, fellow learners, and church property. Restitution for any damage incurred by a student is the responsibility of the student and/or his/her parents/guardians. If a student is disrespectful to the catechist or fellow learners or damages church property, the following steps will be taken:
- The catechist will give the student a warning.
- If a second correction is needed during the same class session, the student is sent to the office to complete an assigned activity.
- The student will complete a Responsible Action Form and give this to the staff person in charge. A copy of the form may be sent home to parents/guardians. The original will be kept in Faith Formation office files.
- If a student is sent to the office for a second time during a six-week period, parents/guardians will be asked to come in for a consultation with the staff.
TEXTBOOKS Textbooks will remain in the rooms. If a parent prefers to have an additional at-home text, contact the Faith Formation Office.
- Tuition: (Sunday Preschool, Elementary-gr 1-5, Middle School-gr 6-8, home formation & FIRE)
- $35 per student if registered prior to June 30
- $40 per student if registered between July 1-August 31
- $45 per student if registered after September 1
- Sacrament Preparation (Reconciliation/Communion-gr 2 and Confirmation-gr 8)
- $15 per student if Sacrament Enrollment Form is received prior to June 30
- $20 per student if Sacrament Enrollment Form is received between July 1-August 31
- $25 per student if Sacrament Enrollment Form is received after September 1
Catechists do not have to pay registration fees for their children, but do still need to complete a registration form.
Scholarships are available for families experiencing financial hardship.
Make checks payable to St Robert Church
ONLINE PAYMENT: You may make your payment with credit card online by clicking the online payment icon on the parish website: www.StRobertChurch.org. You may either sign up for a new account, or you may select the “Quick Give” option to make a one-time payment of your Faith Formation Registration Fee. After choosing one of these options, follow the prompts to select the appropriate fee and make your payment
VISITATION Parents are always welcome and encouraged to visit their children’s faith formation sessions.