page image
Back to Administrative Procedures

Administrative Procedure 544: Community Use of School Facilities

The primary purpose of school facilities is to serve the educational needs of the students that reside within its boundaries.  However, the facilities in rural communities may be limited or non-existent and, as such, each school represents a community resource in addition to its educational mandate.  Therefore, school facilities should be available for use by the community, provided that such use does not compete with existing community facilities designed for social, recreational or related activities. The Palliser School Division will make appropriate specified portions of school buildings, facilities, and equipment available to responsible organizations from the community for approved purposes, providing such use will not conflict with or restrict school programs or needs.

This Administrative Procedure is supported by the following beliefs of the Board:

  1. Whenever possible, the school staff/Principal will direct those seeking to rent space for an activity to the local community facilities designed for recreation or social activities.
  2. The use of school facilities by non-Palliser groups results in additional operation and maintenance costs.
  3. This Administrative Procedure applies only to Palliser-owned facilities.
  4. This Administrative Procedure does not apply where joint use agreements are in place.
    1. Approval process:
      1. Community use shall be overseen by the Principal.  The Facilities Services Supervisor is the final approving authority for all Palliser-owned facilities.
      2. Schools will not be available for bingos or casinos unless they are school-sponsored events.
    2. Security of facilities and technology
      1. Should there be more than one community user group in a school building at any given time; the Principal will decide if additional School Division personnel are required for the security of the facility.
      2. School building security is the responsibility of the Palliser School Division.  School Division officials have the right to visit and inspect community use programs operating within school buildings.
      3. The school caretaking staff is responsible for building security for all community use during their regular work schedule.  For community use outside the caretaking staff’s work schedule, the Principal is responsible to ensure that School Division personnel are available for the security of the facility. This includes opening and closing the facility after community use.
      4. If the event occurs outside of the regularly scheduled custodial hours, fees will be charged to ensure the security of the building.
      5. The use of Palliser computers, interactive boards, and other Palliser technology is not permitted.
    3. Facility priority and care
      1. Priority for granting approval for school use is as follows:
        1. Division or school-sponsored programs;
        2. Activities administered by the municipal government having a Reciprocal Use of Facilities Agreement with Palliser School Division;
        3. Programs sponsored by formal partners of Palliser School Division;
        4. Community non-profit groups;
        5. Educational institutions;
        6. Private groups; and
        7. Profit-making groups.
      2. The Board shall not be responsible for accidents causing injury to any individual on school property.
      3. Due to health and safety concerns, CTS (including Industrial Arts and Home Economics) and band facilities, as well as physical education equipment are not available for community use except as noted in the addendum.
      4. Emergency closure of the school shall result in the cancellation of community use activities for the duration of the school closure.
      5. Any community use may be canceled or rescheduled by the School Division, with the approval of the Principal, provided two weeks’ notice has been given. Emergency closure of the school shall result in the cancellation of community use activities.
      6. In consultation with the Principal the use of school facilities by an organization may be canceled by the Facilities Services Supervisor at any time, if in its estimation, the privilege granted is being abused.
      7. A community organization may appeal a decision of the Principal in writing to the Facilities Services Supervisor within 30 days of the decision. 
      8. A second appeal may be made to the Secretary-Treasurer within 15 days of the decision of the Facilities Services Supervisor.
    4. Equipment
      1. Volleyball or badminton standards and/or physical education floor mats may be available provided they are installed by individuals approved by the principal of the school.
    5. Fees
      1. A schedule of fees will apply to the whole School Division unless otherwise stated in this policy.
      2. A damage deposit of $100 ($500 for rentals with requests to consume alcohol on premises) must accompany the completed Community Use Application Form.  This form will be submitted to the Principal.  Please note that in the case of rentals with requests to consume alcohol on the premises, the additional step of receiving approval for the rental from the Secretary-Treasurer or designate is required.  Obtaining this written permission is solely the responsibility of the party/person requesting the rental.
      3. Fees will be payable to Palliser School Division and must be paid prior to the community use of the facility.
      4. Where additional custodian service is required as a result of the inappropriate use of a school, the School Division will charge the user group all the costs of this custodial service at the rate of $35.00 per hour.
      5. Where maintenance is required as a result of any damage caused by the user group, the Facilities Services Supervisor shall assess the costs of repairing the damage.  The School Division will charge the user group all associated costs.
      6. All facility rental fees will be used by the School Division to defray operating costs incurred in the operation of this Administrative Procedure.
      7. Insurance fees will be paid by the user groups for requests to consume alcohol on school premises.  The fees are based on the number of participants (1-100, 101-500, etc.).  Insurance fees will also be charged for high-risk activities.
    6. User Group Responsibility for the Supervision of its Members
      1. The organization applying to use school facilities and equipment will be jointly and severally responsible for the supervision of and behavior of each member of the groups.  One member of the group shall be designated by the organization to be responsible for the supervision and behavior of the group and to sign the Community Use Application Form.  Specific supervision responsibilities are detailed on the Community Use Application Form and schools may specify additional supervision responsibilities.
      2. The members of any group will be jointly and severally liable for any costs arising from damage caused by the group or any of its members.
      3. The Principal shall be advised of any damages caused by the group.
    7. Other Regulations
      1. School field use: covered under a separate Administrative Procedure.
      2. Liability Insurance: Minimum of $2,000,000 per occurrence.
      3. Footwear: Footwear that causes damage to floor surfaces is prohibited.
      4. Food and Beverages: Consumption of food and beverages will be limited to those areas specified.
      5. Smoking and Tobacco Use: Smoking is not permitted in the buildings or on the property of Palliser School Division. This includes products but is not limited to: chewing tobacco, dipping tobacco, dissolvable tobacco, cannabis, and/or cannabis edibles.
      6. Alcoholic Beverages: Rentals requesting permission for the consumption of alcoholic beverages in the buildings or on the property of Palliser School Division must obtain written permission from the Secretary-Treasurer or designate, an Alberta Government liquor license, and insurance coverage based on the number of participants.
      7. Other regulations governing community use may be established by the Principal as deemed appropriate.


Education Act

AP 541 Building and Grounds Security

AP 543 Smoke/Substance Free Environment

Community Use Application Form PDF

Community Use Application Form Word Format

Updated March 30, 2021