North Carolina - Community Use of Public School Facilities: Partnerships

Area: 
Partnerships
Policy Type: 
statute; regulation
Summary: 

State laws encourages and/or incentivizes the community use of school buildings and property for recreation or other purposes.

North Carolina General Statutes 115C-206. State Board of Education; duties; responsibilities.

The Superintendent of Public Instruction shall prepare and present to the State Board of Education recommendations for general guidelines for encouraging increased community involvement in the public schools and use of public school facilities. These recommendations shall include, but shall not be limited to provisions for:

  • (1) The use of public school facilities by governmental, charitable or civic organizations for activities within the community.
  • (2) The utilization of the talents and abilities of volunteers within the community for the enhancement of public school programs including tutoring, counseling and cultural programs and projects.
  • (3) Increased communications between the staff and faculty of the public schools, other community institutions and agencies, and citizens in the community.
  • (4) Local boards of education are to be directed to give priority in the use of school facilities to any youth group listed in Title 36 of the United States Code as a patriotic society, such as the Boy Scouts of America, and its affiliated North Carolina groups and councils, and the Girl Scouts of the United States of America, and its affiliated North Carolina groups and councils, in order to encourage schools to facilitate access for students to participate in activities provided by these groups at times other than instructional time during the school day for the purposes of encouraging civic education.

Based on the recommendations of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, the State Board of Education shall adopt appropriate policies and guidelines for encouraging increased community involvement in the public schools and use of the public school facilities.


North Carolina General Stautes 115C-12. Powers and duties of the Board generally.

(35)  To Encourage Local Boards of Education to Enter into Agreements Regarding the Joint Use of Facilities for Physical Activity. -- The State Board of Education shall encourage local boards of education to enter into agreements with local governments and other entities regarding the joint use of their facilities for physical activity. The agreements should delineate opportunities, guidelines, and the roles and responsibilities of the parties, including responsibilities for maintenance and liability.


North Carolina General Statutes 115C-207. Authority and responsibility of local boards of education.

Every local board of education that uses State funds to implement programs under this Article shall:

  • (1) Develop programs and plans for increased community involvement in the public schools based upon policies and guidelines adopted by the State Board of Education.
  • (1a) Develop policies and programs designed to encourage the use of community-based academic booster organizations, which may be known as Community Achievement Network -- Developing Our Educational Resources (CAN DOER) organizations, to provide tutoring and other appropriate services to encourage and support student academic achievement.
  • (1b) Develop policies and/or procedures for approving the use of volunteer organizations and for approving the use of individual volunteers.
  • (1c) Develop policies and/or procedures designed to make information available to parents and students about what tutoring and other academic support services are available to students in the community or through school volunteers or other community organizations.
  • (2) Develop programs and plans for increased community use of public school facilities based upon policies and guidelines adopted by the State Board of Education

North Carolina General Statutes 115C-524. Repair of school property; use of buildings for other than school purposes.

(a) Repair of school buildings is subject to the provisions of G.S. 115C-521(c) and (d).

(a1) Local boards of education may employ personnel who are licensed to perform maintenance and repairs on school property for plumbing, heating, and fire sprinklers pursuant to Article 2 of Chapter 87 of the General Statutes.

(b) It shall be the duty of local boards of education and tax-levying authorities, in order to safeguard the investment made in public schools, to keep all school buildings in good repair to the end that all public school property shall be taken care of and be at all times in proper condition for use. It shall be the duty of all principals, teachers, and janitors to report to their respective boards of education immediately any unsanitary condition, damage to school property, or needed repair. All principals, teachers, and janitors shall be held responsible for the safekeeping of the buildings during the school session and all breakage and damage shall be repaired by those responsible for same, and where any principal or teacher shall permit damage to the public school buildings by lack of proper discipline of pupils, such principal or teacher shall be held responsible for such damage: Provided, principals and teachers shall not be held responsible for damage that they could not have prevented by reasonable supervision in the performance of their duties.

(c) Notwithstanding the provisions of G.S. 115C-263 and 115C-264, local boards of education may adopt rules and regulations under which they may enter into agreements permitting non-school groups to use school real and personal property, except for school buses, for other than school purposes so long as such use is consistent with the proper preservation and care of the public school property. No liability shall attach to any board of education or to any individual board member for personal injury suffered by reason of the use of such school property pursuant to such agreements.

(d) Local boards of education may make outdoor school property available to the public for recreational purposes, subject to any terms and conditions each board deems appropriate, (i) when not otherwise being used for school purposes and (ii) so long as such use is consistent with the proper preservation and care of the outdoor school property. No liability shall attach to any board of education or to any individual board member for personal injury suffered by reason of the use of such school property.


North Carolina Administrative Code 16 NCAC 06F .0102 Local Requirements

LEAs which elect to apply for state community schools funds and to develop a local program must:

  • (1) appoint a community schools advisory council;
  • (2) adopt policies, rules and plans for increased community involvement in public schools and their programs; and
  • (3) adopt policies, rules and plans for increased use of public school facilities by individuals, organizations and agencies.
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