The Board of Education believes the school facilities of this district should be made available for community purposes, provided that such use does not interfere with the educational and co-curricular programs of the school district. For the purpose of this policy, “school facilities” also includes school grounds.

The Board will permit the use of school facilities when such permission has been requested in writing and has been approved by the Superintendent of his/her designee. The Board reserves the right to withdraw permission after it has been granted in the event circumstances change requiring school facilities or school grounds will be needed for a school district purpose or due to a school closing due to weather or other emergency.

In weighing competing requests for the use of school facilities, the Board will give priority to the following uses, in the descending order given:

1. Uses and groups directly related to the schools and the operations of the schools, including pupil and teacher groups;

2. Uses and organizations indirectly related to the schools, including the P.T.A., P.T.O., Home-School Association, and other school-parent related organizations;

3. Departments and agencies of the municipal government;

4. Governmental agencies;

5. Community organizations formed for charitable, civic, social, or educational purposes;

6. Community political organizations;

7. Community church groups;

8. Private groups and organizations.

The use of school facilities will not be granted for the advantage of any commercial or profit-making organization, partisan political activity, or any private social function.

The use of school facilities will not be granted for any purpose that is prohibited by law.

Each user shall present evidence of the purchase of organizational liability insurance to the limit as prescribed by district regulations. Each user shall inspect any facility or school grounds to be used prior to such use and shall notify a district representative of any existing safety or dangerous conditions. In the event such conditions exist, the district may cancel or modify the user’s access to the school facility until such conditions are addressed. Users shall be financially liable for damage to the facilities and for proper chaperonage as required by the school district administration.

Use of school equipment in conjunction with the use of school facilities must be specifically requested in writing and may be granted in accordance with Policy No. 7520. The users of school equipment must accept liability for any damage or loss to such equipment that occurs while it is in their use, regardless of any assignment of negligence. Where rules so specify, certain items of equipment may only be used by a qualified operator approved by the school district administration.

The Board shall approve annually a schedule of fees for the use of school facilities based upon the following guidelines:

1. The use of school facilities for activities directly related to the educational program and district operations shall be without cost to the user except that the user shall be responsible for any custodial costs incurred by the use and any fees charged by a law enforcement agency in connection with the use.

2. All other organizations or persons granted the use of school shall pay in advance the scheduled fee and the cost of any additional staff services required by the use.

The school district shall provide a copy of Policy and Regulation 2431.4 – Prevention and Treatment of Sports-Related Concussions and Head Injuries to all youth sports team organizations that operate on school grounds or in school facilities. In accordance with the provisions of N.J.S.A. 18A:40-41.5, the school district shall not be liable for the injury or death of a person due to the action or inaction of persons employed by, or under contract with, a youth sports team organization that uses school facilities or operates on school grounds and the organization has provided the school district with proof of an insurance policy in the amount of not less than $50,000 per person, $1,000,000 per occurrence, and $1,000,000 for property damage; insuring the youth sports team organization against liability for any bodily injury suffered by a person. The youth sports team organization must also provide a statement of compliance with the school district’s Policy and Regulation 2431.4 – Prevention and Treatment of Sports-Related Concussions and Head Injuries.

For the purpose of this Policy, a “youth sports team organization” means one or more sports teams organized pursuant to a nonprofit or similar charter or which are member teams in a league organized by or affiliated with a county or municipal recreation department.

The Superintendent shall develop regulations for the use of school facilities; such regulations shall be distributed to every user of the facilities and every applicant for the use of school facilities. Permission to use school facilities shall be granted only to persons and organizations that agree to the terms of Policy and Regulation 7510, the requirements as outlined in the use of school facilities application, and in accordance with the terms outlined in the approval granted by the school district.

N.J.S.A. 18A:20-20; 18A:20-34

Adopted: August 2003

Revised: February 2015