Residential Programs

Recommended Policies and Procedures

Programs with a residential component should develop specific Program policies and procedures to promote the safety and well-being of participants.  Items to consider in the development of policies and procedures include the following:

  • Curfews: define weekday and weekend curfews commensurate with the ages of the participants and enforcement mechanisms;
  • Quiet Hours: define weekday and weekend quiet hours commensurate with the ages of the participants;
  • Overnight guests: define if and when they are permitted;
  • Overnight absences: establish an approval process for overnight absences, including written permission from a parent or legal guardian;
  • Residence supervision: determine how many supervisors should be on duty during the day and overnight, based on the number of Program participants residing on campus. Define roles and responsibilities for each time period and whether or not one-on-one contact is permitted;
  • Restricted physical access: establish rules to restrict access to residence halls (e.g. locking windows and doors, keeping outside doors closed, not copying keys, etc.);
  • Drugs & alcohol: forbid the use and possession of alcohol, illegal drugs, and drug paraphernalia;
  • Gambling: forbid gambling on campus;
  • Parties: if allowed, provide guidance on scope and supervision;
  • Guidelines for Interacting with Minors: for distribution to participants and parents or legal guardians. In addition to the specific Program rules, the guidelines can stipulate that participants must agree to:
    • Not inflict physical violence on others;
    • Not bully, intimidate, harass and prank others;
    • Not share ID cards;
    • Respect the privacy, living space, and belongings of others;
    • Respect Harvard University’s property;
    • Stay in the room that they have been assigned, unless granted permission to move;
    • Keep their rooms clean and stay in compliance with any Program safety & security guidelines;
  • Emergency contact information: distribute and post relevant emergency contact information for participants throughout the residence; 
  • Ensure that Program Administrators and overnight supervisors are listed in the Youth Protection Registration Portal;
  • Immunizations: establish processes to comply with MA and Harvard regulations regarding proof of immunization against communicable diseases for participants or staff who may be here on a visa of any kind.