Summer Camps Checklist

April 10, 2011

Ian McGregor, Ph.D.
President, McGregor & Associates

Since Summer Camps participants are minors, these unique programs should automatically be classified as ‘high-risk’. Since the standard of care for minors is very high (the reasonable parent test), program planners need to pay extra attention and sound risk management principles incorporated into all planning efforts.

The following checklist is designed to alert professionals to the key risk management areas that need to be addressed when planning a Summer Camps program. For more detail in each of the identified areas, consult the new text: ‘SportRisk: Risk Management Planning Resource’ .


  • Camp Director position
  • Qualifications and Training
  • Position descriptions and roles
  • Background checks
  • Minimum age for staff hiring


  • Camper Ratios
  • Lesson Plans with progressions
  • Transition/ Washroom/ Lunch supervision (Peanut Club?)
  • Participant matching
  • Strategies for different age groups
  • Behavior Management
  • Pre-post camp activities/ programs
  • Residence supervision (overnight camps)


  • Pre-camp training/ orientation
  • Onsite (in-service) training
  • Emergency Response; 1st Aid/ CPR etc.
  • Dealing with Heat and Sun


  • Parental Consent
  • To participate/ allow emergency care/ EpiPen admin./ taking photos
  • Medical questionnaire
  • Allergies/ medical problems/ medications
  • Pick-up/ Drop-off procedures
  • Sign-in/ sign-out checklist; Procedures for late pick-up
  • Risk Information
  • Medical insurance information
  • Emergency contact information
  • ‘Parents Survival Guide’

Emergency Response Plan

  • Missing campers
  • Fire/ evacuation/ weather/ medical emergency procedures
  • Safety and communication equipment
  • Accident follow-up; accident reports

Facilities & Equipment

  • Facilities/ Facility-related Equipment/ Activity Equipment/ Protective Equipment
  • Inspections and Checklists

Employee Issues

  • Sexual harassment/ child abuse/ sexual misconduct/
  • ADA
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