Tag Archives: Students

Dr. Edward F. Dragan, Author of the Soon to be Released Book, ‘Keeping Kids Safe in School: What Every Parent and Teacher Should Know,’ Comments on Keeping Students Safe

Lambertville, NJ (PRWEB) August 22, 2007

Dr. Edward F. Dragan, author of the soon to be released book, Keeping Kids Safe in School: What Every Parent and Teacher Should Know, comments on keeping our students safe. School safety and liability expert, Dr. Edward F. Dragan states, “Unnecessary risks in schools must be corrected, most importantly to protect the safety of students, faculty and support staff, but also to eliminate costly litigation and settlements. Implementing regular assessments of school safety policies and procedures can greatly reduce risks.”

Dr. Dragan remarks, “All too often we hear after the fact, ‘How did this accident happen?’ or ‘Could the school have prevented it?” “Unfortunately once the accident occurs; it is too late to ask these questions, a school’s risk management plan must be proactive to be effective.”

Our nation’s schools pay millions of dollars annually in damages to school children injured in class, sexually assaulted by teachers, and harassed by fellow students. New Jersey alone faced 381 suits-more than one case a day-representing a potential liability of over 500 million dollars. This total does not include cases filed in administrative court, which typically hear special education issues. Since most cases settle privately, the general public and even some education insiders are not aware of the scope of such liability.

The following three recent instances chronicle occurrences that could have been avoided had the schools developed a risk analysis plan identifying potential safety hazards, emphasizing accountability and establishing procedures for creating and maintaining a hazard free school.

A 1.7 million dollar verdict was awarded to a third-grade student told by her teacher to return a television cart with a television on its top shelf to the library. The cart fell, causing the television to strike the student, whose injury resulted in permanent brain damage. A federal court jury decided the school was partially liable for the accident due to the student’s lack of supervision. This unfortunate incident could have been prevented if teachers and administrators had assessed the risks of allowing young children to move such equipment.

A private settlement was reached in a similar case. A board of education paid $ 850,000 to a five year old student with autism who was seriously injured when a fifty pound television fell and struck him on the head. When evidence of inadequate supervision pointed to the school’s liability the case was settled.

The coach of a girl’s track team and a student who threw his javelin one more time after the coach announced practice was over both shared payment of a $ 300,000 settlement to a student who received permanent nerve damage and facial paralysis when the javelin struck her in the face. The coach was responsible for the students while they were using potentially dangerous equipment.

Most cases of school safety violations could be prevented through practice of proactive risk management. Teachers and administrators must scrutinize their procedures, equipment use and personal practices for ways to ensure the safety of everyone concerned. Schools must follow risk management guidelines to improve overall school safety and to eliminate the high costs of accident related litigation. Although insurance companies usually pay these settlements, schools and taxpayers will ultimately have the burden of higher taxes and insurance premiums.

Dr. Dragan comments, “School administrators must develop a systematic procedure for inspecting school premises and reviewing safety procedures for evidence of potential risks. An inspection log should be established to record potential risks along with the remedial action taken to eliminate the unsafe hazard or procedure.”

In addition, Dr. Dragan suggests the following risk management guidelines to maximize school safety and security. “School administrators should assess potential risk related to all equipment in proximity or accessible to students. A safety handbook that details procedures for supervising students in all school areas should be established.”

“Administrators need to conduct in-service training and review of first-aid practices, crisis response strategies, school evacuation drills, and alternative communication methods to use, if warranted, during potential crises.”

Dr. Dragan also remarks, “Each faculty member must be aware of their specific responsibilities related to safety and should have prioritized action system available to them to effect needed safety corrections in a timely matter. Administrators need to model and emphasize personal accountability and commitment to create and maintain school safety and security procedures.”

“School administrators who demonstrate a proactive commitment to safeguarding the welfare of students, faculty members and support staff will produce safe and secure school campuses and climates which will reduce potential school liability.”


Edward F. Dragan, Ed.D. is the founder of Education Management Consulting, LLC, providing consultation to school administrators and education expert witness services to attorneys on education-related issues including school management, safety, bullying, sexual harassment, child custody, and special education . His book, Keeping Kids Safe in School: What Every Parent and Teacher Should Know, is scheduled for publication in 2008.

Contact Information

Edward F. Dragan, Ed.D.

Education Management Consulting, LLC




New Web-based Vorex Online Survey 1.4 Software Bridges Gap in Communication Between School Systems, Students and Parents

Dallas, Texas (PRWEB) August 12, 2008

Vorex, Inc., a leading provider of web-based software tools to increase productivity and efficiency, has released Vorex Online Survey V. 1.4 for both public and private K-12 school systems as well as higher education facilities such as Universities, vocational Universities, community colleges, liberal arts colleges, technical colleges and career colleges. The new web-based Vorex Online Survey software provides educators and administrators with the ability to easily create and distribute professional-grade, fully customized online surveys and forms in a cost-effective manner.

“We are extremely pleased to unveil Vorex Online Survey software to school educators and administrators to better close the gap in communication between the schools and their student body – as well as effectively reach parents,” said Mike Salem, President of Vorex, Inc. “Our new SaaS solution is the most cost-effective and highly efficient method of issuing surveys and obtaining instantaneous results and accurate information. We are providing a true solution for school systems seeking to interact with both parents and students in a paperless, eco-friendly format,” concluded Salem.

The robust functionality of the new Vorex Online Survey software is illustrated by the following features:

Absolutely no additional software, hardware, or computer programming knowledge is needed to use Vorex Online Survey — it runs as a software-as-a-service online.

Choose from 17 different question types ranging from check-boxes, yes/no answers, rating scales and comment fields.

The built-in Spell Check feature ensures a professional presentation.

Auto-skip questions based on respondents’ answers.

Automatically inserts respondent’s answer into subsequent questions.

The survey can expire on a specified date or after a pre-determined number of responses are received.

Allows information sharing with multiple co-workers or different school departments.

Effectively organizes results — create one or hundreds of customized folders to store results.

Easily exports a survey and accompanying results into different formats such as Excel, Word, HTML, or PDF document.

Control access to the survey with optional password requirements.

Post survey results on a secure, password protected web site.

For schools that do not have a web site, or have a limited access web site, Vorex provides a free portal web site that is fully maintained. School educators and administrators have full access to the provided portal web site. They may then direct students or parents to go directly to the portal where survey respondents will enter a unique code for each survey – thereby immediately directing the respondent to the related survey.

As high school teacher Reem Khodr states, “A solution that truly bridges the gap between the school and students — as well as parents — has been long overdue. Finally with Vorex Online Survey, school systems can engage parents regarding their child’s education, gather feedback from students, or collect votes for budget allocations or school elections. School systems will surely gain invaluable insight using the accurate and up-to-date information this web-based survey tool provides,” concluded Khodr.

Visit http://www.vorexsurvey.com/education_institutions/ for more information.

About Vorex, Inc.

Founded in August 2007, Vorex, Inc. is headquartered in Dallas, Texas and is a leading developer of advanced user-friendly online solutions for businesses. The company strives to provide affordable solutions that will increases both organizations and corporations’ productivity and profitability.

Media Contact:

Mike Salem, President

Vorex, Inc.

Tel. 214.621.8324

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GLSEN Study Finds Nearly 9 out of 10 LGBT Students Experience Harassment

New York, NY (Vocus) October 8, 2008

GLSEN, the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network, today released the most comprehensive report ever on the experiences of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) students, The 2007 National School Climate Survey. The report is being released in conjunction with the announcement that GLSEN will partner with the Ad Council on a multiyear national public education campaign targeting anti-LGBT language among teenagers.

The survey of 6,209 middle and high school students found that nearly 9 out of 10 LGBT students (86.2%) experienced harassment at school in the past year, three-fifths (60.8%) felt unsafe at school because of their sexual orientation and about a third (32.7%) skipped a day of school in the past month because of feeling unsafe.

“The 2007 National School Climate Survey reveals that, on a whole, the situation is still dire for many LGBT youth when it comes to school safety,” GLSEN Executive Director Kevin Jennings said. “It’s hard to believe that anyone who reads this report could continue to turn the other way as our nation’s LGBT students are bullied and harassed at alarming rates. The good news is there’s hope. The 2007 National School Climate Survey also shows that when schools and educators take action, they can make a drastic difference.”

Key Findings of The 2007 National School Climate Survey include:

A Hostile School Climate and the Effects on Academic Achievement:

New York Medical Malpractice Lawyer Warns School Nurses to Beware of Legal Consequences for Vaccinating Students Without Parental Consent

New York, NY (PRWEB) November 23, 2009

The legal terms assault and battery pop up in city tabloids and cops and robbers TV programs all the time. But lately these familiar phrases could just as easily apply to the actions of some New York City elementary schools, and their school nurses, in the wake of the current swine flu pandemic sweeping the country, according to Richard Gurfein, a New York medical malpractice attorney and senior partner in the New York personal injury law firm of Gurfein Douglas, LLP.

Despite claims, Gurfein said, by city health officials stressing the safety of the H1N1 vaccine, and the rapidly growing spread of the disease in city schools (hospitalizations for H1N1 have tripled in New York State in the past three weeks) the law requires parental consent before a school is permitted to give the swine flu vaccine to a student.

According to recent media reports, school nurses mistakenly gave the swine flu vaccine to two students whose parents didnt sign up for it, including a Brooklyn girl with epilepsy who wound up in the hospital after getting the shot.

Any unlawful touching, Gurfein explained, or unauthorized administration of medical care not in an emergency situation is a battery, a legal term for an assault. A school district cannot unilaterally administer vaccinations without parental consent, in writing.

Gurfein explained that on the issue of liability, it wouldnt matter if the child got sick or not from the vaccination.

If there is a battery, Gurfein said (medicine given to a child without an emergency situation, or parental consent), by law the child is entitled to compensatory damages.

The measure of damages is another issue, he added. If there was no ill effect from the vaccination, the damages would be relatively small. If the child became ill, the amount of the damages would go up considerably. Sadly, if the child dies, that wrongful death case would have almost no value because of existing arcane laws in New York State that place little monetary value on the life of a child.

Gurfein said there are exceptions as to when schools are allowed to intervene. For example, in the event of an emergency, schools would be able to render medical care to the student since they are acting in loco parentis while a child is in their care.

But no court, he said, would ever accept the argument that vaccination without consent is an emergency, since the simple alternative is to refuse the child access to the school if parents dont comply with the schools wishes regarding vaccination.

Vaccinating a child without parental consent, Gurfein explained, is a tort that has a one-year statute of limitations. But because the school is part of the City, a parent only has 90 days from the time of the battery to file a Notice of Claim. He said, ninety days does not mean three months. It means ninety days.

Since a battery falls under the category of an intentional tort, Gurfein explained, it also cannot be insured against by the school, or the school nurse. In these situations, the nurse who gave the child the shot, and the school district as her employer assuming the nurse was acting within the course and scope of his or her employment would have to pay any judgment.

Gurfein advises parents to remember that municipalities and their school districts are heavily protected against lawsuits. He instructs parents of children who have been victims of a battery to contact a New York personal injury lawyer who is familiar with both negligence and medical malpractice claims.

Since a school, Gurfein said, is a department, or arm, of a municipality, a lawsuit must be commenced within a year and ninety days from the time of the battery, after having filed a timely Notice of Claim.

Such a lawsuit, he added, typically takes longer to pursue than an average auto case because the City of New York has so many lawsuits it just doesnt have the manpower to process all of them. As with any other personal injury claim, the damages would be determined by a jury. All costs to litigate the case are advanced by the lawyer, not the client. The lawyer only gets those costs reimbursed, and compensated for his, or her, services, if he or she wins the case.


Bonita Springs Charter School Students Decide to Change the World

Bonita Springs, Fla. (Vocus) December 8, 2009

It happens every day, in every classroom, in every city, in every country in the entire world. Bullying. Although its not a new concept, bullying has taken on an alarming level of seriousness that can lead to devastating outcomes. In todays world, bully targets are just as apt to take their own life as someone elses as a result of bullying. Few understand this better than the mother of teen Jeffrey Johnston who successfully lobbied for the Jeffrey Johnston Stand Up For All Students Act, which mandates schools enact anti-bullying policies and programs to help protect students from bullying. Johnston took his own life after being cyber-bullied. A program at Bonita Springs Charter School is taking the challenge to eliminate bullying just as seriously one student at a time.

Jeffs Law, which it is commonly called, goes hand-in-hand with a curriculum-based character education program adopted last year by Charter Schools USA (CSUSA) called STRIVE. STRIVE is a program created by the Clarion Council that is being implemented as a pilot program with all CSUSA schools. STRIVE 65 is a list of traits that help build moral and performance character as well as encourage active citizenship. STRIVE 65s #18 reminds students to Help the person others are bullying or being mean to.

This STRIVE trait is the foundation of a program developed by Robert Barnes, the guidance counselor at Bonita Springs Charter School. His program called What if uses trait #18 as its basis. The concept asks, What if you could change the world and be the one person who saves a student from making a life altering decision.

Each year we survey the students in our middle school to find out what they believe should be the focus of our bullying program, says Barnes. This year, the overwhelming response was to address cyber-bullying and sexting. Were now focusing on those two bullying behaviors and have been working on the elimination of these demeaning practices from the lives of middle-schoolers.

Cyber-bullying occurs when a child is targeted, harassed, humiliated or embarrassed by someone using interactive or digital technologies or cell phones. Sexting is the act of sending sexually explicit messages or photos electronically, primarily through cell phones. Both forms of bullying can have very damaging effects on children.

The What if? program empowers students to use the time they have in school to help build the self esteem of others. It suggests that students identify those students who are the target of bullies and make an effort to be kind to them even if it means just using their name when addressing them in the hall, making eye contact with them and smiling or sitting with them at lunch. According to Barnes, since it takes two people to engage in a bullying situation the target and the bully its easier to take the target out of the equation.

Bullies want power, says Barnes. Their efforts are only effective if the victim is offended or hurt by their words. Bullies target those with low self esteem who will believe their taunts. So if the rest of the students help build their peers self esteem, the bullies have fewer and fewer targets.

The program seems to be working well. Last year, prior to the advent of this program, Barnes received four to five bully reports per week. So far this year, there has been only one complaint that needed to be resolved by disciplinary action and one other that was resolved by the students in a peaceful manner. He is greatly encouraged by the dramatic decline in referrals.

I think there is a combination of the students helping each other and a better understanding of the definition of bullying that is helping to decrease those numbers, adds Barnes. Its so gratifying to see students looking out for each other. No one wants to be bullied and everyone can relate to being a target. Giving these students the tools they need to help stop this trend empowers them to truly believe they can change the world.

Bonita Springs Charter School is part of the Charter Schools USA Inc. (CSUSA) family of schools. CSUSA is one of the nations leading charter school management companies, serving kindergarten through 12th grade. CSUSA provides comprehensive management services to corporations, government entities and non-profit organizations. CSUSA schools are individually developed to meet the unique needs and requirements of the community. CSUSA educational advantages include integrated technology, parental involvement contracts, student uniforms, enforced discipline policies, highly qualified and motivated staff, community focus and high academic performance.

Enrollment for Bonita Springs Charter School is underway; interested parents can register their child online at http://www.bonitaspringscharter.org. For additional information, contact Charter Schools USA at 1-866-KIDSUSA or visit the corporate Web site at http://www.charterschoolsusa.com .

Media Contacts:

Deborah Tracy Bonita Springs Charter School Principal or

Robert Barnes Bonita Spring Charter School Guidance Counselor

Ofc: 239- 992-6932

Colleen Reynolds, APR, president and owner of Edge Communications

Ofc: 239-437-0040; Cell: 239-849-6400; Fax: 239-437-0170

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Olympian Summer Sanders, Upstart Band ‘The Maine’ Encourage Students to Enter America’s Greenest School Contest

Warrenville, IL (PRWEB) February 27, 2010

Last year, nearly 2,000 students from hundreds of schools nationwide competed for the coveted title of Americas Greenest SchoolSM in the first annual contest sponsored by leading school bus manufacturer IC Bus.

In 2010, the program is expanding to include even more opportunities for students to enter. U.S. Olympic gold medalist Summer Saunders and increasingly popular teen band The Maine kicked off this years contest with a bang. The Maine headlined an Americas Greenest School 2010 pep rally at Irvington High School last years contest winner in Freemont, Calif.

As parents, students and teachers are looking at ways to lead a greener life, school is a great place to show environmental leadership, said John McKinney, president of IC Bus. The Americas Greenest School Contest is one way to help educate and influence eco-friendly behavior like riding the bus to school instead of using a passenger car.

Students nationwide are encouraged to submit an entry, such as a photo collection, music, a video, an essay, or photos of a diorama, collage or piece of artwork, which illustrate the vision for how theyd make their school a greener place. Since every school bus has the capacity to take 36 cars off the road, school bus transportation is inherently eco-friendly. As part of their contest entry, we would like students to demonstrate how their school is committed to green transportation, McKinney added. Contest details and entry guidelines are available at AmericasGreenestSchool.com or http://www.facebook.com/AmericasGreenestSchool. Students have until March 8, 2010 to enter.

IC Bus will select ten finalists and America will choose the winner through online voting. The winner will be announced the week of Earth Day 2010 and the school of the winning entrant will win a hybrid school bus from IC Bus (a $ 150,000 value), a green audit of their school from a LEED Accredited Professional and approximately $ 20,000 for their school to use toward a green makeover.

Last year, Americas votes chose Irvington High School in Fremont, California as the prestigious winner. The school received a hybrid school bus from IC Bus, based on the award-winning essay from 16-year-old Alexander Chen. The hybrid school bus awarded to his school is up to 65 percent more fuel efficient than standard school buses and reduces greenhouse gas emissions by up to 39 percent. It has also been specially engineered with a larger wheelbase to accommodate a wheelchair lift, making it fully compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Chen also received a $ 5,000 scholarship and his teacher, who is also the schools green coordinator, Clint Johns, received $ 3,000 for green school supplies.

Chens essay outlined the areas where his school has become more energy efficient, including reducing the schools energy use by one third. Irvington High School was the second school in the state of California to be recognized as an Energy StarSM school because of its efforts to reduce energy consumption by connecting computers to power strips, installing timers on exterior lighting and reprogramming classroom thermostats.

Student responsibility was also a key area in Chens essay. He wrote that students are encouraged to recycle and described the schools food scrap recycling program that diverts waste from landfills.

Riding a school bus is one great way to help the environment. Here are a few green facts from the American School Bus Council:

One school bus has the capacity to take 36 cars off the road, for a total of 17.3 million cars a year.

More than 26 million children ride the school bus daily, saving 2.3 billion gallons of fuel each year.

If an additional 10 percent of children rode school buses, it could save another 300 million gallons of fuel annually.

School bus models made in 2007 or later incorporate newer engine technology and are 60 times cleaner than those built before 1990

The daily fuel cost to transport a child to school is $ 3.68 for a private vehicle, but only 73 cents if that child rides a school bus.

About IC Bus

IC Bus, LLC, of Warrenville, IL, is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Navistar, Inc. (NYSE: NAV). The nations largest integrated manufacturer of school buses, IC Bus is a global leader in passenger protection, chassis design, engines and ergonomics. The company is also a producer of commercial buses. All IC Bus brand buses are sold, serviced and supported through a renowned dealer network that offers an integrated customer program encompassing parts, training and service. Additional information is available at icbus.com.

Media Contact: Dane Roth, (312) 228-6843, Dane.Roth(at)Ketchum(dot)com

Dont Forget Insurance As You Send Students Off To College

Lincoln, RI (Vocus) August 27, 2010

Most students head off to college with an expensive list of computers, televisions, digital cameras, cell phones, stereo equipment and bicycles in tow. Amica Mutual Insurance Company suggests that you review your homeowners and auto insurance to make sure your child is properly covered while away from home.

If your child is a full-time student, most homeowners insurance policies should provide coverage for possessions taken to school, said Lisa Melton, an assistant vice president in sales and client services for Amica. Typically, protection of property away from home is limited to 10 percent of the personal property limits on the familys homeowners insurance policy. However, you can also buy specific additional insurance to cover expensive items, such as jewelry and computers.

“If your child is taking a vehicle to college, your auto insurance policy will most likely cover it as long as the vehicle is registered with you, the parent, as owner,” Melton said. “And if your student is not taking an insured vehicle, you may be eligible for a reduction in auto insurance premiums,” Melton noted.

If your child is heading off to college this year, check with your insurance company not only to make sure he or she is protected, but also because it may save you money in the long run, Melton said.

Insurance tips for college-bound students and families:

Smart Horizons Career Online High School Provides Critical Education for Students in Need of an Accessible High School Diploma

Tallahassee, FL (PRWEB) October 6, 2010

Smart Horizons Career Online High School(SHCOHS) opened last May with the specific intention to help adults in our nation who have not completed a high school education. This is a significant population, and now more than ever, with jobs being scarce, a high school diploma, coupled with a career certificate is critical. The schools goal is to quickly and in a cost effective manner provide students the education they need so they can compete in the work force. SHCOHSs inaugural cohort of students is finishing up their graduation requirements. These students are encouraged about the opportunities that will now be available to them.

Betsaida Marrero is one of these students. Marrero is a twenty-four year old, single mother of three. She is completing the education process that was interrupted after her tenth-grade year by the birth of her first child. It was hard to go back to school after I had the baby, Marrero said. You have to make a lot of decisions when you become a parent and I decided I needed to work for my child, but I never lost the dream of completing my education. I am now able to work on this goal thanks to the Smart Horizons Career Online High School program. I can do it on my own time and in my home, which is very convenient. Taking online high school courses works extremely well with my busy schedule.

In addition to earning her high school diploma, Marrero is also completing course work for a career certificate in office management through the Smart Horizons Career Online High School program.

I completely love the way the program is designed, Marrero said. I am able to understand everything very well, and I also love the fact that I am able to finish high school and get a career certificate as well.

Marrero said that the SHCOHS program is helpful because it allows her to both read and hear all the information she needs on a given topic. She also likes the way the program helps her to understand a topic by showing her the parts of the topic she did not understand.

Just knowing that Im accomplishing this goal to finish school helps me to know that I can look forward to a brighter future both mentally and economically, Marrero said.

Another student, Vaughn Jones is about to celebrate her 50th birthday, but shes already giving herself a valuable gift by obtaining the high school diploma that eluded her so many years ago. Smart Horizons Career Online High School is making it possible.

Smart Horizons Career Online High School is giving me the opportunity to obtain something Ive been trying to get since 1978, Jones said, referring to that high school diploma. Jones, who lives in Pahokee, Florida, is also completing course work for a career certificate in Childcare & Education. The ability to earn online high school credits has helped simplify her life.

I started out with the career certificate part of the program and Im almost done with that, Jones said. Ive just started the high school classes and I think this is going to be the most interesting part. Its a good program and I especially like the math courses.

Jones, who is married and has four grown children, said it was hanging with the wrong crowd that cost her high school diploma in her youth. I was trying to fit in and I let myself be influenced, she said. Jones completed the eleventh grade, but left school shortly after starting her senior year.

Getting this accredited online diploma is going to give me more opportunities than Ive had, Jones said. Most jobs require a high school diploma and this is going to open doors for me.

About Smart Horizions Career Online Education: Smart Horizons Career Online Education, a private adult online high school district, is a national leader in delivering affordable, career-based online education to students throughout the world. Founded in 2009 and located in Pensacola, Florida, Smart Horizons Career Online Education offers complete career-based online high school diplomas and career (credentialed) certificates in the fields of healthcare, childcare and education, transportation services, homeland security, protection services, and office management. For more information, visit our Web site at http://www.smarthorizonsonline.org , call our office at 800-261-6248 or email our office at hliebman(at)smarthorizonsonline(dot)org.

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The Resurgence of Gap-Year Programs: For Students Volunteering, Heres a Checklist

Gilbert, AZ (Vocus) October 29, 2010

Its an exciting trend to be sure, says Jeff Gulleson of Good Neighbor Insurance, who has helped thousands of students serving overseas. The brightest, well-to-do, but often insulated students from universities in the U.S. are going off to deliver solar power to rural India or to do statistical research on nutrition in Southern Sudan. Its now becoming so popular that some universities are actually encouraging students to defer matriculation.

But what should you know before informing your family and packing your bags?

1. Consider why you are volunteering overseas.

Is it to practice your expertise/skills, take a break from study, or discover if you want to remain in your major? Trying to pad your resume? Trying to save on tuition? Realize that volunteering overseas isnt much of a break from tuition costs, and you could work a year at home to help pay next years tuition.

2. Look for reputable help and advice either online or at your campus. (Many Gap-Year sites are geared towards Europeans. If you are a U.S. student, some things may/may not apply.)

3. Consider your budget. Be realistic and try to avoid using credit.

4. Buy good travel/health insurance. Most U.S.-based health insurance policies will not cover you overseas, and do not cover medical evacuation or canceled flights, let alone bungee jumping or getting stepped on by an elephant. For the small cost, it doesnt make sense to go without it. Good Neighbor Insurance http://www.GNInsurance.com is a reputable broker that helps students and others whether they plan to visit multiple countries or do some adventure travel along the way.

5. Protect your health. The Telegraph newspaper and other online sources, including the internationally recognized book ‘Where There is No Doctor’, offer advice to keep you from getting sick or can help mitigate the symptoms when you are far from a good hospital.

6. Learn as much as you can, listen as much as you can, be as sensitive as you can. Nothing is worse than a 20-year-old know-it-all telling locals how to tie a knot. Or organize a community. Or work their way out of poverty.

7. Decompress and debrief when you get back home. Dont immediately jump back into school. Talk to a trusted and wise friend. Consider where you struggled and have grown, as well as what you most enjoyed.

A Gap Year can be a great opportunity for students (especially from the U.S. that often are far removed from the complexities and struggles of the third-world) to serve selflessly and expand their knowledge in a way that few other experiences can match. While they may not be for everyone, a Gap Year can improve your leadership and communication skills while improving the world. Or a single childs life in the nation of Belize.

About Good Neighbor Insurance

Jeff Gulleson established Good Neighbor Insurance in 1997 to provide global health and life insurance services after working with an NGO for 30 years in Indonesia.

The staff at GNI use their expertise to help clients find good, cost-effective international health, travel, and life insurance while providing caring service based on integrity. The company serves students traveling overseas, short-term teams, aid organizations, foreign and domestic corporations, universities, and volunteers both from the U.S. and abroad. Since many have lived and worked for extended periods overseas, they have the expertise to counsel individuals, families, and groups on their international insurance needs.

Contact Information

For more information, contact Jeff Gulleson at Good Neighbor Insurance

Toll Free: 866-636-9100 or in Phoenix, AZ: 480-813-9100

Good Neighbor Insurance, 690 E. Warner Rd., Ste. 117, Gilbert, AZ 85296, USA



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Insurance Coverage for Students Leaving the Nest

(PRWEB) August 17, 2011

The beginning of the school year marks big changes, especially for students moving away from home for the first time. In the midst of packing, moving, course selections, and buying supplies like books, computers and laptop bags, insurance might not have crossed anyones mind. However, with the kids out of the house, there are implications for auto insurance coverage, and possibly a need for tenant insurance. In accordance with its focus on educating consumers to help them make informed insurance decisions, InsuranceHotline.com explains how sending children off to school can impact insurance rates

Auto Insurance Coverage

Student auto insurance rates are generally quite high. If he or she will be taking a car to school, then it may be a good idea to insure it with the same company as the parents insurance to benefit from the multi-vehicle discounts that some companies offer. Some cities have higher or lower risk compared to others so it is important to shop around to compare rates. In some cases, the student may be able to stay on the parents policy as an occasional driver, offering the potential for significant savings versus coverage as a primary driver. Another opportunity to save is for students with good grades as some insurance companies offer a discount for strong academic performance. As always, having a good driving record that is free of accidents and tickets can minimize insurance costs; hence, instilling the value of defensive driving among younger drivers has a financial reward in addition to the overarching objective of keeping children safe on the road.

Many parents may be tempted to remove a student completely from their policy during the school year if the child is living on campus without regular access to a vehicle; but, this may result in higher costs down the road when it comes time to adding the driver back on to the policy. Insurance companies will acknowledge that students, while away at school, will be driving less. Parents can investigate the option of changing a childs status to Restricted Driver which could lead to an insurance discount of up to 50% for the students coverage. Keep in mind, however, that this status must be changed when the student comes home for the summer to ensure proper coverage in the event of a claim.

Tenant Insurance Coverage

With high-tech devices becoming more common, and in some cases mandatory requirements, students may be going off to school with thousands of dollars of technology. These valuable items may be at risk of theft given that dormitories are generally more easily accessible than personal dwellings as well as the fact that students can sometimes be absent-minded. In addition to ensuring a students belongings are covered, it is also important to make sure that there is liability coverage in place. Parents should start by checking the insurance policy of the residence in the school to determine if coverage exists; However, most schools will not cover anything beyond the public domain the residences grounds, lobby or corridors. Hence, anything that happens within the premises of the students room will not be covered, including damage to the contents and/or incidents that could find the student liable for damages. If the student is sharing a house with others, the risk is even greater and each tenant should get an individual policy. While replacing a computer may not be worth all the trouble or extra costs, leaving out liability coverage could have significant financial implications. Liability coverage, like property coverage, can also be extended from the current home policy so its a good idea to start by checking with the parents current insurance company.

There are three steps parents can take when considering tenant insurance.

1. Check with the current broker or agent to see if the personal items are already covered under the existing home insurance policy. The student may still be considered a dependent and since attendance at school is only temporarily moving out, the students possessions like their computer, may still be protected despite its relocation. An extension of the home policy to cover the student may also be available for a small fee.

2. Contact the school to see if they have a preferred insurance company. Much like available auto insurance discounts from group membership, the school may have a preferred company that provides discounted rates. In the unfortunate event of an unexpected incident such as flooding, the school will take care of the room itself, but not any damage done to the students property.

3. Purchasing tenant insurance for the child may seem like an additional cost to an already expensive school year, but as with all insurance, the implications of not having coverage could be substantial if anything does happen. Most tenant insurance policies have similar coverage and the cost will vary among different insurance companies; hence, parents should shop around to find the best rate. Modifying the deductible is another way to manage costs in an effort to decrease current expenses while increasing the cost in the event of a claim.

Living away from home can be both a challenging and rewarding experience for young adults. Says Tammy Ezer of InsuranceHoline.com Taking some time at the start of the year to organize insurance needs will ensure that financial implications and stress levels are minimized in the unfortunate circumstance requiring an insurance claim, whether for personal belongings, or even worse, an injury.

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