Act 31-Frequently Asked Questions (2023)

FrequentlyAsked Questions

Act31of2014– Child Abuse Recognition and Reporting Requirements

1. What is Act 31of2014and who is required to complywith the new law?

Act 31 of 2014 statesthat the Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs (BPOA), in conjunctionwith the Department of Human Services (DHS) is required to ensure that allpersons applying for issuance of an initial license as a health-related licenseeor funeral director (mandatory reporters under section 6311 of the ChildProtective Services Law (CPSL) (23 P.S.§ 6311)) shall be required to complete 3hours of DHS-approved training in child abuse recognition and reportingrequirements as a condition of licensure.

Additionally,effective with the first license renewal after January 1, 2015, all healthrelated licensees and funeral directors applying for the renewal of a licenseissued by the Board are required to complete at least 2 hours of Board-approvedcontinuing education in child abuse recognition and reporting requirements as acondition of renewal.

Act 31 applies to allhealth-related licensees (except for licensees of the State Board of VeterinaryMedicine), regardless of whether they are subject to the continuing educationrequirements of the applicable Board. For example, although licensed practicalnurses have no independent continuing education requirement at this time, theyare required to complete the Act 31 continuing education in child abuserecognition and reporting requirements.

2. Where can I obtain a copy of Act 31 of 2014?

Act 31of2014may be viewedat the following link:

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3. Where do I find Act 31 of 2014 approved training fromthe Department of Human Service (DHS - formerly Department of Public Welfare)and or the Department of State?

Acomplete list of DOS/Board approved providers can be found on our website atthe link entitled, “Mandated Child Abuse Reporter Training Under Act 31 of 2014.” As additional providers are approved, the DOS/Boardwill update this information at

A complete list ofDHS approved providers can be found on their website at the linkentitled, “Training for Mandated Reporters.”

TheBoard has also been informed that the Department of Human Services, inconjunction with University of Pittsburgh and the Pennsylvania Child WelfareResource Center has developed a 3-hour online training program which is offered free of charge to assist individualsin complying with the training requirements under Act 31 of 2014.

Moreinformation on this subject can be found on the Department of Human Serviceswebsite at: and the Departmentof State’s website at

4. How do I become an approved training providerby the Department of Human Services (DHS)?

Theprocedures to submit a course for DHS approval is set forth in the documententitled “Submission Proceduresto the Department of Human Services Regarding Course Approval for Child AbuseRecognition and Reporting Training for Mandated Reporters.”More information regarding DHS’s requirements for approved courses is found inthe document entitled “Department of HumanServices Course Approval Outline for Child Abuse Recognition and ReportingTraining for Mandated Reporters.”

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5. How do I become an approved training providerby the Department of State (DOS)/Board?

Thoseorganizations, entities and individuals that are seeking “DOS/Board approval”must submit the required course materials to both DHS and the Department ofState’s Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs as set forth in the “Submission Procedures.” DOS/Boardapproved course providers will be provided a secure sFTP site through which tosubmit attendance/participation records electronically. Thus, the abilityto report attendance/participation electronically is a condition of DOS/Board approval.

For moreinformation regarding the electronic reporting requirement refer to the “PennsylvaniaDepartment of State (DOS) Child Abuse Training Vendor Process” and theaccompanying Excel spreadsheet. Fortechnical assistance related to the use of the sFTP site or the DOS standardsfor submission of the electronic data, contact the DOS help desk at

6. How do I determine if a child abuserecognition and reporting course has been approved?

As courses areapproved by the Department of Human Services and/or the Department of State/Board,these courses will be listed on the respective Board website. Unless a course is listed as approved by oneor both of these agencies, the course will not be considered acceptable to meetthe requirements for initial licensure or renewal.

7. How many hours of child abuse recognition andreporting training do I need to obtain “initial licensure”

from the Departmentof State?

Under Act31 of 2014, effective January 1, 2015, applicants for licensure by any of thehealth-related licensure Boards and the State Board of Funeral Directors mustdemonstrate that they have completed 3 hours of DHS-approved training in childabuse recognition and reporting. A list of DHS-approved courses isavailable at

8. How many hours of child abuse recognition andreporting continuing education do I need to “renew” or “reactivate” my licensewith the Department of State?

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Under Act31of2014current licensees of the health-related Boards and the State Board ofFuneral Directors must complete 2 hours of Board-approved continuing educationin child abuse recognition and reporting as a condition of renewal of a licenseafter December 31, 2014. The Department of State/Board will accept atleast 2 hours of Department of Human Services (DHS) approved training to meetthis requirement, as well.

9. Can I “renew” or “reactivate” my license if I have not completed the required child abuse continuingeducation?

No – Until electronicverification is received from the approved course provider and processed by theDepartment of State/Board to verify that the licensee is in compliance and hascompleted the 2 hours of DHS/DOS approved child abuse recognition and reportingcontinuing education, the licensee will not be permitted to renew theirlicense.

10. Must I complete the child abuse recognitionand reporting continuing education every time I renew my license?

Yes. As a condition of renewal, you must complete2 hours of Department of State/Board approved continuing education in childabuse recognition and reporting within the required renewal period (24 monthperiod).

11. Does the 2 hours of child abuse recognitionand reporting continuing education have to be completed within the biennialrenewal period for which my current license was issued in order to renew thelicense for the next biennial renewal period?

Yes. For example, if your license expires onDecember 31, 2016, you will be required to complete 2 hours of child abuserecognition and reporting continuing education between the two year biennialperiod for your active license (January 1, 2015 through December 31, 2016).

12. Are the 2 hours of child abuse recognitionand reporting continuing education required in addition to the Board’s owncontinuing education hours or can they be included as part of the Board’s totalhours required to renew?

The2 hours of child abuse recognition and reporting continuing education hours canbe part of the total hours

required to renew your license. For example:If you are required to complete 100 hours of continuing education in

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order to renew your license, do not need to complete 102 hours in order torenew.

However,you cannot substitute the 2 hours of child abuse recognition and reportingcontinuing education hours for any Board specific continuing education (i.e.,ethics, public health, etc.)

13. Will the 2 hour child abuse recognition andreporting continuing education count towards my Board required biennial renewalcontinuing education requirements?

Yes. For example:If you are required to complete 30 hours of Board approved/requiredcontinuing education in order to renew your license, the 2 hours of child abuserecognition and reporting will count towards the total 30 hours required torenew your license. However, if you takea 3 hour DHS approved course, the additional 1 hour may or may not be appliedtowards the 30 hours of Board required continuing education needed torenew/reactivate your license (check with the appropriate Board) and cannot becarried over into the next renewal period to meet the child abuse recognitionand reporting requirement for that renewal period.

14. Currently I do not need to complete any Boardrequired continuing education to renew my license. Do I need to complete the requirements underAct 31of 2014?

Act 31of2014(for bothinitial licensure and renewal) applies to all health-related licensees andfuneral directors, regardless of whether they are subject to the continuingeducation requirements of their applicable Board. Initial licenses will not be issued and alicense will not be renewed until the requirements under Act 31 of 2014 have been met.

15. In the practice of my profession, I do not comeinto contact with children. Do I need tocomplete this training to obtain a license, reactivate or renew my license?

Yes. The new law applies to all health-relatedlicensees and funeral directors, regardless of whether they feel that they comeinto contact with children in their profession or not. Applicants and licensees must still completethe requirements under Act 31 of 2014. Requestsfor this type of exemption will not be considered a valid reason for exemption.

16. Can I request an exemption from beingrequired to complete this training/continuing education requirement?

You can submit anexemption request to the Board; however, prior to submitting a request for anexemption, please review the exemption criteria on the form carefully todetermine whether or not you meet the specific criteria that would make youeligible for an exemption. Very fewlicensees meet the exemption criteria.

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How long is Act 31 good for in PA? ›

How long is my Act 31 Mandated Reporter Training Certificate good for? Certificates of completion are valid until your next license renewal date. The 2-hour version of the Act 31 Child Abuse course must be taken again each time you renew your PA license.

What is the PA Act 31 clearance? ›

Act 31 of 2014 states that the Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs (BPOA), in conjunction with the Department of Human Services (DHS) is required to ensure that all persons applying for issuance of an initial license as a health-related licensee or funeral director (mandatory reporters under section 6311 of ...

How long does a mandated reporter certificate last in Pennsylvania? ›

All volunteers are required to complete the Mandated Reporter Training annually. Certificates expire one year from the date of completion.

How often do you have to renew mandated reporter training in PA? ›

Every employee of a school entity and its independent contractors who have direct contact with children must complete a minimum of three hours of training every five years.

How hard is a 31 ACT? ›

Looking at this from another angle, a score of 31 on the ACT puts you at the 95th percentile — that means you scored higher than 95% of all test takers. Additionally, a 31 is within the range of scores that elite and extremely selective colleges accept on average.

Should I retake the ACT if I got a 31? ›

That being said, based on national averages, benchmark scores, and national percentiles, a 31 is a very good ACT score. The national percentiles of composite scores fluctuate by the year and by the test, but earning a composite score of 31 usually ranks you in the 95th-97th percentile of all test takers in the nation.

How long does it take to get clearances back in PA? ›

How long does it take to get the clearances? Some of the clearances come back within a few minutes but it could take up to 4 weeks. The online application process depends on several factors but could take an hour or more in total.

How much do PA clearances cost? ›

Complete your clearance application online using a credit card for a cost of $22. You are responsible for this cost. If you are unable to accomplish your clearance application online, you can print out the form and mail it to the State Police.

How long do PA clearances take? ›

By law, all child abuse history clearance applications must be processed no later than 14 days from the receipt of the application (CY 113 form).

What happens if a mandated reporter fails to report in PA? ›

What if a mandated reporter fails to follow the law? The penalties for a mandated reporter who willfully fails to report child abuse range from a misdemeanor of the second degree to a felony of the second degree.

Do mandated reporters in PA have to give their name? ›

The law requires that the mandated reporter identify themselves and where they can be reached.

How much is it for mandated reporter training in PA? ›

These live sessions are open to any mandated reporters at no cost.

What protection do mandated reporters have in PA? ›

All persons are protected from civil and criminal liability if acting in good faith when reporting, cooperating and consulting in investigations, testifying in proceedings as a result of the report, taking photographs, arranging for medical tests and x-rays, taking a child into protective custody (as allowed under the ...

How many hours is mandated reporter training PA? ›

Are you a Mandated or Permissive Reporter in need of training? Go to the Pennsylvania Child Welfare Resource Center for a FREE 3-hour on-line course that provides information on: Recognition of child maltreatment. Your obligation or opportunity to report suspicions of abuse.

Who is required to do mandated reporter training in PA? ›

Act 126 requires that all school entities (a public school, charter school, cyber charter school, private school, nonpublic school, intermediate unit or area vocational-technical school) and independent contractors of school entities provide child abuse recognition and reporting training to all employees, including ...

How much money can you get with a 31 ACT? ›

The student has a top 10% class rank and a 3.9 unweighted GPA. And here's what the Clemson net price calculator says the student is likely to get in aid, with various scores. Here, you can see that a student with 27 ACT score gets zero merit money. A 31 gets the student $10,000 per year or $40,000 over four years.

How many students get a 31 on the ACT? ›

How Many People Get a 36 on the ACT?
ACT ScorePercentilePercentage
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What is a 31 ACT equivalent to? ›

ACT/SAT Equivalency Table
SATACT Composite Score
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Can I get into an Ivy League with a 31 ACT? ›

Generally speaking, you need a minimum ACT score of 31 to get into an Ivy League School. The minimum score is 32 at a few of these schools, including Harvard and Yale. The minimum SAT score to get into an Ivy League school ranges from 690 to 730 for the reading section and from 700 to 730 for the math section.

What percentile rank is ACT 31? ›

If your composite score was a 31, for instance, you would be in the 95th percentile, meaning you did better on the entire ACT than 95% of the other students.

Has the ACT gotten harder over the years? ›

Relatively speaking, the ACT has gotten “harder” over the years. As students start to do better on ACT, the test-makers gradually adjust the difficulty level of the test. And students have gotten better. In 1970, the average composite score nationwide was 18.6.

What are three secret clearances? ›

Security Clearance Level 3: Confidential

Confidential security clearance holders have access to material that could be reasonably expected to cause some measurable damage to national security. Most military personnel hold this security clearance level.

What are the 3 PA clearances? ›

The required clearances may include:
  • Pennsylvania Child Abuse History Clearance.
  • Pennsylvania State Police Criminal History Clearance.
  • Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) Criminal History Clearance. (required for all employees and some volunteers)

How far back do security clearance questions go? ›

The SF-86 form requests information back 7 years for employment and residence; however, to comply with the investigative standards, 10 years is required. Citizenship of yourself and “immediate” family members (spouse, children, mother, father, brothers and sisters).

How much does a top secret clearance add to salary? ›

Based on survey data, on average, a security clearance generates 10-20% salary premium with higher clearances commanding the largest increases.

Are secret clearances hard to get? ›

But assuming you don't have go down that path, the process to getting a Secret clearance is fairly straightforward. It just isn't always that fast. Timelines have changed over the years, but you'll want to have some back-up work in the hopper while you wait for either an interim Secret clearance or the final decision.

Do FBI agents have clearances? ›

The mission of the FBI is vital to the safety and security of our nation and its citizens. Often, our work is very sensitive in nature. Therefore, all FBI positions require at least a Top Secret Clearance; special agents must be able to obtain a Top Secret SCI Clearance.

How many clearances get denied? ›

The denial rate for interim clearances is around 20 to 30% but is only 1% for full security clearances. So if you receive a denial, be patient; odds are you'll be a security clearance holder working to protect our national security soon.

How many security clearances are denied each year? ›

Just under 10% of applicants are denied by the National Security Agency. Just under 7% are denied by the CIA and just over 7% are rejected by the National Reconnaissance Office. Every candidate is evaluated carefully during the security clearance application process. What can you do if your application was denied?

How much is a FBI fingerprint clearance in PA? ›

The total cost of the clearance is $22.60, and there is a $1.00 processing fee for credit cards. What if I registered for fingerprints prior to the transition to the new vendor? Fingerprinting is no longer being handled by Gemalto Cogent, Pennsylvania's previous vendor.

What crime is failure to report in PA? ›

The first offense of willful failure to report is a second-degree misdemeanor. Penalties are increased to a third-degree felony if the mandated reporter willfully fails to report child abuse that is a felony of the first degree or higher and the mandated reporter has direct knowledge of the nature of the abuse.

Do mandated reporters report past abuse Pennsylvania? ›

It is not required by Pennsylvania law or Penn State policy to report historical abuse if the alleged victim is now over the age of 18. While not required, it is best to discuss and encourage reporting with the alleged victim and also to encourage them to get support services if they have not already done so.

Is Pennsylvania a mandatory reporting state? ›

YES. Mandated reporters, by law, must report suspected abuse when you have reason to suspect on the basis of medical, professional or other training and experience, that the child has been abused.

What are unfounded reports of abuse? ›

If a reported crime is investigated by law enforcement authorities and found to be false or baseless, meaning that the crime did not occur or was never attempted, the crime is “unfounded”. Only sworn or commissioned law enforcement personnel may unfound a crime.

What kind of burns indicate abuse? ›

Evaluation and documentation of the burn pattern should be precise. Multiple burns of varying ages and types that obviously could not have occurred from the same accident (for example, cigarette and scald burns or different types of scald burns) are strong indicators of child abuse.

What involves emotional neglect? ›

Emotional Neglect or Rejection. Emotional neglect can be defined as a relationship pattern in which an individual's affectional needs are consistently disregarded, ignored, invalidated, or unappreciated by a significant other.

Are teachers in PA mandated reporters? ›

As educators, PSEA members have mandatory reporting requirements involving suspected cases of physical and sexual abuse of students.

Is a lawyer a mandated reporter in PA? ›

An attorney affiliated with an agency, institution, organization or other entity, including a school or regularly established religious organization that is responsible for the care, supervision, guidance or control of children.

In what state is everyone a mandated reporter? ›

In New Jersey and Wyoming, ALL persons are required to report suspected child abuse, regardless of profession.

Are mandated reporters immune from liability? ›

Mandated reporters have immunity from state criminal or civil liability for reporting as required. This is true even if the mandated reporter acquired the knowledge, or suspicion of the abuse or neglect, outside his/her professional capacity or scope of employment.

What is the Reporter Shield law in Pennsylvania? ›

The Pennsylvania Shield Law and the First Amendment reporter's privilege provide broad protections to reporters in Pennsylvania who are subpoenaed for their notes, documents, or testimony. The Shield Law is an absolute privilege that precludes the compelled disclosure of confidential source information.

What immunities do mandated reporters have under Canra? ›

No mandated reporter shall be civilly or criminally liable for any report required by CANRA. This immunity also applies even if you acquired the knowledge or reasonable suspicion of the abuse or neglect outside your professional capacity or scope of employment.

What is a mandated reporter for adults in PA? ›

Mandatory Reporting

If the abuse involves serious injury, sexual abuse or suspicious death, reporters must also call police and the Pennsylvania Department of Aging at 717-783-6207. In addition, the reporter may also call the Pennsylvania Department of Health Nursing Home Complaint Line at 800-254-5164.

Who is a permissive reporter PA? ›

Who is a permissive reporter? Permissive reporters are individuals who are encouraged to report suspected child abuse, although not required by law. When can permissive reporters make a report? Permissive reporters can make a report at any time they suspect a child is the victim of child abuse.

Are EMTS mandated reporters in PA? ›

ChildLine will provide information, counseling, and referral services for families and children to ensure the safety and well being of the children of Pennsylvania. All Pennsylvania EMS providers are mandated reporters of suspected child abuse or neglect; however, anyone can make a report of suspected child abuse.

Does ACT score expire? ›

Fortunately, ACT scores never expire, meaning nontraditional students returning to school may use their scores from many years in the past if needed. Those who took the ACT before 2016 will view a different score report than the current version.

How long is an ACT valid for? ›

The good news is there is no official expiration of the ACT score according to ACT, Inc. However, any test-taker who had taken the test five years ago is encouraged to retake the examination.

How long is PA ACT 33 good for? ›

In order to comply with Pennsylvania legislation (ACT 153), your position requires that you secure a new Act 33 Pennsylvania Child Abuse History Clearance every 60 months.

What does a 31 on ACT mean? ›

31 is an excellent ACT score. The highest ACT score possible is a 36. An average ACT score is 20, so 31 is well-above average. If you earned a 31 on the ACT, congratulations! Students who score a composite score of 31 on the ACT have a national rank of 95.

Is the ACT harder now than 20 years ago? ›

Relatively speaking, the ACT has gotten “harder” over the years. As students start to do better on ACT, the test-makers gradually adjust the difficulty level of the test. And students have gotten better. In 1970, the average composite score nationwide was 18.6.

Should I retake the ACT if I got a 32? ›

Should I Retake the ACT with a 32 Score? You're in a great position to go to college and, unless a college you really want to apply to wants a higher score, there's no particular reason to retake it. A 32 ACT not only makes you an eligible candidate for acceptance, it also makes you a competitive one.

Can I take the ACT at 40 years old? ›

People of all ages and grade levels are eligible to take the ACT.

How many times can you fail the ACT? ›

ACT Inc., which administers the exam, lets you take the test up to 12 times, though it's best to take it no more than 2-3 times. Beyond that, you're unlikely to boost your scores substantially. What's more, multiple retakes might reflect negatively on your college application.

Do colleges see all your ACT scores? ›

You can't choose which test scores they will see; schools will see them all. However, they will not know that you also took the ACT in October, and they won't know what your scores were on that administration.

Do colleges care how many times you take the ACT? ›

You can take the ACT up to 12 times, and many students end up taking the test between 2-3 times before applying to college. Most colleges are neutral about multiple scores. Many students, in fact, make score improvements by retaking the ACT. Give yourself time to improve before you begin filling out applications.

Does Pennsylvania have the 7 year rule? ›

State law places no restrictions on how far back a Pennsylvania criminal background check can search, and permits employers to consider relevant convictions, no matter how old, when making a hiring decision.

Should I retake a 33 act? ›

Should I Retake the ACT with a 33 Score? With a 33 ACT score, there's no need to retake the exam. The only reason to consider retaking the ACT is to increase your competitiveness at the most elite colleges. Because competition for elite schools is fierce, every extra point both on your ACT score and GPA will help.

How many people get a 31 ACT? ›

How Many People Get a 36 on the ACT?
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Can I get into Duke with a 31 ACT? ›

The average scores of students accepted at Duke are between 31-35. The national average is 21, so Duke students are expected to excel at this entrance exam.


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