Online or Virtual Youth Programs


All programs and activities that involve youth participants, including online or virtual youth programs, must be registered through Cy Check and University Event Authorization system at least four weeks before the program start date.

Background Checks

Online or virtual youth programs are subject to the same background check requirements as in-person youth programs.

Setting up an Online Program

Online or virtual programs should utilize ISU-approved software, such as Webex or Zoom. Visit IT's Learning and Working Remotely page for technology recommendations and assistance. Program leaders must be ISU faculty or staff and must use their ISU credentials at all times.

Required Forms

Program staff must have on file a completed Virtual Online Youth Program Student Participation Agreement and Parental Permission Agreement before youth may participate in an online or virtual youth program. Parents and participants may sign the agreement electronically, but normal document retention requirements apply. Departments/units should save signed copies until participants reach the age of 20.

Safe Contact and Privacy Guidelines

In addition to our standard guidance for conducting youth programs, the following safety guidelines apply to online or virtual programs for youth:

  • Avoid one-to-one online or virtual contact with a youth participant.
  • At least two adults should interact with youth during live programs.
  • Do not allow private direct messaging, texting, chatting, or personal emails between a youth participant and program leader, staff member, or volunteer. Group messages and posts are allowed as long as they are viewable by all participants.
  • Parents/guardians must be provided with access information to all virtual meetings and programs.
  • Programs should not include activities that involve youth using hazardous materials (chemical, biological, radiation) or working with mechanical tools during an online or virtual program. Contact Environmental Health and Safety (EH&S) if you have questions about the safety of a proposed activity.
  • Program staff may only record an online or virtual program if all parents/guardians have provided consent via the required Virtual Online Youth Program Student Participation Agreement and Parental Permission Agreement. Program staff may not record online or virtual sessions to their personal computer or device.

Reporting Requirements

The procedures and requirements for reporting child abuse, other crimes, and safety violations apply to all online or virtual programs.

Disability Accommodations

Participants who wish to request disability accommodations should contact their program leader.




Brandy Cunningham
Youth and Volunteer Programs Manager