The Office of the Ministry of Children (Youth), exists to provide safe, fun, and educational activities during scheduled and structured sessions at events, meetings, and/or other SCA functions. Children’s Officers are not daycare workers, but instead are coordinators or teachers who offer age-appropriate means for learning and involvement within the scope of the SCA.
If you are interested in assisting the office of Minster of Children within your Barony, Shire, or Canton, please contact your seneschal. If you are interested in assisting the office at the Kingdom level, please contact The Kingdom Children’s Minister or one of the deputies.
PARENTAL RESPONSIBILITIES FOR CHILDREN AT SCA EVENTS
Updated August 1, 2012
• All persons under the age of eighteen (18) attending Society events must do so in the company of their parents, legal guardians or parental representatives. Parental representatives must be in possession of a notarized waiver to be left with reservation during check-in on site.
• The parent or legal guardian of any minor attending a society event must complete such paperwork as the Kingdom Seneschal deems necessary. Such paperwork must be notarized
• Any minor, 11 years of age or younger, must have on his or her person at all times while attending any Society event both his or her legal name and both the legal and SCA names of the parent or other responsible adult at the event.
• Children four (4) and under should not be left unsupervised by the parent/legal guardian at SCA functions, even at planned children’s activities.
• With exception for impairment, a “Sight and Sound” rule is in effect at all SCA functions. Generally, this states that children ages 11 and under should be in eyesight/earshot of the parent or a designated adult of teenager (as determined by the parent).
a. As a guideline, it is suggested that children in this age range are in the care of an adult besides the parent/guardian (designated babysitter, attending activities, etc.), the children should be checked on periodically by the parent/guardian to ensure their safety and suitable behavior.
b. Common sense in effect regarding the “sight and sound” rule. Children need not be in direct sight while engaged in certain activities (ie: in restroom stalls or sleeping in a tent with only one egress.)
• Children under the age of fifteen are not considered suitable babysitters for younger children.
• Curfew, unless otherwise dictated by site guidelines, for children 12 and under is 10pm and for those 13 – 17, it is 1am.
a. During the curfew hours, children should be in their camp with a supervising, responsible adult or caregiver.
HAVING CHILDREN’S ACTIVITIES AT AN EVENT
A. Official SCA groups must ensure all SCA children’s activities are approved by the local group Seneschal and/or Event Steward and by the Children’s Officer, where applicable. If the group has no children’s officer and a volunteer plans and implements the activities, it is the responsibility of the Seneschal to ensure that volunteer is fully aware of all relevant policies and guidelines concerning minors and the running of activities.
B. SCA Children’s Officers or other adults supervising children’s activities have no authority to discipline or restrain children other than their own, unless the children are in immediate danger of hurting themselves or others. Children’s Officers will not be held responsible for correcting the conduct of children attending activities. Likewise, as parents and children must follow rules attendant to participation in events, Children’s Officers are not responsible for children who leave activities unsupervised.
a. Children exhibiting lewd, violent, or otherwise severely problematic behavior at organized activities should be returned to parents. The Event Steward and/or Seneschal should be notified of the problem if such actions must be taken.
b. Official SCA groups must follow the “Two Deep Leadership” model of supervision at all SCA Children’s Activities as outlined in a Society Seneschal policy:
a. “For all organized SCA functions for minors, a minimum of two adults (persons who have achieved the age of majority in the state, province, or country in which the function is being held), unrelated to one another by blood or marriage, must be present. This policy does not relieve parents or guardians from their primary responsibility for the welfare of their children. This policy is not subject to granting of variance or ‘grandfathering’ of existing activities.”
c. Children’s Officers must ensure that sufficient leadership is provided for all activities, and have the right and responsibility to cancel activities if requirements cannot be met.
C. Children’s Activities should be located as near to main activities as is possible and practical, and where consideration can be given to minimizing noise, traffic, and safety issues. Caution should be exercised when activities are hosted in a private room of an event facility.
D. An SCA Children’s Officer should not accompany an individual child to the bathroom. Groups of children may be escorted to the facility building by the Officer.