Media Release Policy
Scope: All Berea College Externally Sponsored Programs staff members, student labor workers and volunteers
Effective Date: December 17, 2012
Purpose: To ensure our department maintains a positive, professional and service-oriented image, and to protect the safety and privacy of our staff and program participants.
As a Federally sponsored program, it is our obligation to document our work through videography, photography and writing. It is also our obligation to promote Federally sponsored programs and services through local media outlets. In order to meet our obligation and to protect the privacy of the people we serve, guidelines for collecting and reviewing media release forms are outlined below.
School-Based Programs or Events
When working with school-based programs, it is the policy of Externally Sponsored Programs to reference the media release forms on file at the student’s school to obtain permission for photos, video and documentation. If a student participating in the program does not have a media release on file, or if the media release lists restrictions on sharing information, then the organizers of any event the student participates in should be notified. It is the responsibility of the Externally Sponsored Programs staff member serving as liaison with the school to verify media release information for all students participating in a program. It is then the responsibility of the event organizer to communicate those restrictions to the communications team, or if the communications team is not present, with anyone documenting the event or media representatives.
Occasionally, the communications team, partner agencies or media outlets will request photos or video for program promotions. Before sharing any media (electronically or in print) it is the responsibility of all staff members to verify that students have current media releases on file with their school. If possible, names of students and school information should be sent with all media, so that release information can be verified.
Externally Sponsored Programs Events
It is recommended that all small group and intensive programs coordinated outside of school time distribute and collect Externally Sponsored Program media releases and maintain those releases with other program documentation. It is required that all programs that include minors not enrolled in school and programs operated solely by the Office of Externally Sponsored Programs maintain media release files for all participants.
Exceptions will be made for large, public events where media notifications are visibly posted. Exceptions can only be made for events in which parents or guardians attend with minors. No exceptions can be made for events in which students are transported by the school district without legal guardians present. The executive director must approve all exceptions.
Posting Photos and Videos of Department Activities Online
Before posting photographs, images or descriptions of field trip on social media and the internet OR distributing photos of program participants to partner agencies, staff members should:
- reference the school or district internet or social media guidelines, if applicable
- review or obtain media consent forms on file with either the program or the school district
- review the context of the site or setting to ensure that inappropriate material is not shown in ads or sidebars and that site content is professional
- review the permissions or security settings of the site where the material is to be shared and ensure that the site is trustworthy
- refrain from posting full student names and information when possible
If students are under 13, please do not share their images on social networking sites without express written permission from parents and approval from the Program Director.