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1610 E Emmaus Avenue
Allentown, PA 18103
Ph: (610) 351-0234
Fx: (610) 351-0307

Volunteer with AACMS

AACMS welcomes all members of the school and local community to volunteer!  Volunteers are needed regularly at all times of the year to assist with student performances, school fundraisers, event planning and organization and in many other ways.  If you would like to receive more information about how to get involved, please contact the Events and Volunteers Office at events@arts-cs.org.

Do you have a special skill or talent?  AACMS would love to know about it!  We are looking for parents, family members, friends and other members of the school community to help us in creative, innovative ways.  Please contact us at development@arts-cs.org to share your unique talents or ideas!

Do you own, operate or work for a local business?  AACMS is looking for ways to partner with Lehigh Valley businesses and organizations on future projects and events.  Please contact the Development Office at development@arts-cs.org for more information.

Current Volunteer Needs
  • Online Volunteer Sign Up - Spring 2019
    AACMS needs your help this spring!  Online volunteer registration is now available via our online Sign Up Genius form.  This one form includes ALL of our currently-scheduled events through the end of the 2018-19 academic year.  Additional events may be added throughout the spring, so please continue to check back for more volunteer opportunities!


    Current Volunteer Opportunities:

  • Instrumental Music Spring Concert - Wednesday, May 8
  • Visual Arts Spring Showcase - Friday, May 17
  • Figure Skating Spring Showcase - Sunday, May 19
  • Theater Spring Showcase (Gr. 6) - Saturday, June 1
  • Theater Spring Showcase (Gr. 8) - Saturday, June 1
Volunteer Information
As of July 1, 2015, Pennsylvania law requires all volunteers who work with students must have valid clearances.  Clearance are NOT required to be updated annually, but must be less than one year old when initially submitted to AACMS.  Answers for some of the most commonly asked questions regarding volunteer clearances and background checks are included below.

Are clearances required of all parent and community volunteers?
Not necessarily.  Clearance requirements depend on the type of volunteer work to be completed.  

Direct Contact with Students:  By law, clearances must be on file with the school for any individual who will volunteer in direct contact with students.  This includes but is not limited to:

  • Field trip chaperones
  • Volunteering backstage at a student performance
  • Volunteering during the school day

General Volunteer Tasks:  There are many ways to volunteer at AACMS without obtaining clearances, including:

  • Attending Teachers and Parents (TAP) Organization meetings
  • Assisting at a performance as a Front-of-House volunteer
  • Helping at a public AACMS event (ArtDart 5k, Barnes & Noble Book Fair, etc.)

What clearances must be on file with AACMS?
Pennsylvania law requires volunteers to have three clearances on file with schools if they will work in unpaid volunteer positions in direct contact with students.  These clearances are:

  • PA Child Abuse Clearance
  • PA Criminal Background Check Clearance
  • FBI Background Check & Fingerprinting*

*Volunteers who have lived in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania for at least ten (10) years may complete a Volunteer Affirmation Form in lieu of obtaining the FBI Background Clearance.  Any individual who is not eligible to complete the Volunteer Affirmation Form must obtain the FBI Background Clearance at his/her own cost.

How do I obtain my clearances?
Some volunteer clearances can be obtained online, with results for most applicants available immediately upon submitting the application.  Please see below for instructions.

PA Criminal Background Check - Click Here to Begin
To obtain clearances at no charge, visit the PA Access to Criminal History website and click the link for New Record Check (Volunteers Only).  Read the terms listed on the page and check the box at the bottom of the page to certify you are requesting the background check for unpaid volunteer work.  Click Accept and continue the process.

PA Child Abuse History Clearance - Click Here to Begin
When applying for the PA Child History Clearance (also known as the Child Abuse Certification), volunteers must create or log into their Individual Account.  When asked to select the purpose for applying on the application, select the Volunteer category and mark the box for Volunteer Work.  

A third clearance or affirmation is also required according to the following guidelines:

Volunteer Affirmation FormClick Here to Download
Individuals who have lived in Pennsylvania for at least ten (10) years may be eligible to complete the Volunteer Affirmation form in lieu of the FBI Criminal Background Check & Fingerprinting.  If eligible, please complete the form in the presence of a notary and submit the form to the AACMS Main Office.  All other volunteers requiring clearances must complete the FBI Background Check process as outlined below.

FBI Criminal Background Check and FingerprintingClick Here to Begin and enter Service Code 1KG6Q9
Applicants must register online via the IDEMIA website.  Payment for this background check is the responsibility of the volunteer and must be submitted through the website when completing the application.  Please be sure to read and follow all instructions carefully.  After submitting the online application, volunteers must be fingerprinted at an approved fingerprinting site.  (A list of fingerprinting sites is available on the IDEMIA website.)  Applicants will receive unofficial results of the background check by mail; the school will receive the official results and file them accordingly.  For more information, please visit the Pennsylvania Department of Education website.

This document from the Pennsylvania Department of Education helps explain the process further.

How do I file my clearances with AACMS?
Please drop off your clearances to the AACMS Main Office.  The office staff will forward your clearances to the Assistant to the Executive Director for filing.  You may also mail your clearances to the school at the following address:

Arts Academy Charter Middle School
ATTN: Asst. to Exec. Director
1610 E Emmaus Avenue
Allentown, PA 18103

How often do I need to renew my clearances?
Clearances must be renewed every five years.  New or updated clearances can only be accepted if filed within one year of issue.  AACMS is prohibited from accepting clearances more than one year from their issue date.  

Who do I contact if I have questions?
If you have technical questions about how to apply for a specific background check/clearance, please contact the support hotline for that clearance or agency.  For general questions about submitting clearances to AACMS, please email events@arts-cs.org or call the school at (610) 351-0234.