Junior colleges are institutions specializing in advanced learning beyond the secondary or high school level. Most are public and act as intermediaries to four-year colleges and universities. Junior colleges are generally funded from state or federal tax programs and additional revenues come from tuition, fees, bookstores and any licensing of miscellaneous goods or apparel bearing the institutional’s name or logo. Every junior college is going to have unique set of programs which would present their own unique set of insurance risks.
The following list are nine must-have insurance coverages for every junior college and transcend the unique exposures the junior college may have in addition to these nine baseline must have coverages.
#1 – Building Exposure
As with all organizations that own building property the most common cause of damage is fire from equipment, machinery or faulty wiring. The severity of a specific junior colleges exposure will vary based on the classes taught, science or automotive related classes that involve fire or blowtorches will obviously have a higher risk, but proper prevention measures should always be in place including fire extinguishers, hardwired heat and smoke detectors as well as emergency evacuation plans.
#2 – Business Income Exposure
Depending on the resulting damage of loss, something large like a fire to a major dormitory can result in significant loss of income due to the refunded tuition fees or dormitory fees based on the loss. Having a proper disaster plan in place as well as having identified prior to a loss temporary facilities and/or suppliers could help minimize the business income exposure.
#3 – Crime Exposure
in most cases with a junior college the major crime exposures are due to employee dishonesty. Duties must be separated and books must be audited both internally and externally. The external audit should be conducted at least on an annual basis, preferably on a quarterly or semiannual basis. Doing proper background checks including criminal history and running credit reports for employees should be performed on anyone handling money. Additionally any service providers with in the institution that handle cash, such as bookstores, should have proper deposit procedures in place.
#4 – Inland Marine Exposure
The major Inland Marine exposure for junior colleges is accounts receivable, computers and valuable papers and records such as student records or library books. A good practice to reduce your exposure to Inland Marine coverages is to make duplicates of all important documents and keep them at an off site location. Fine art such as paintings,sculptures and antiques are also called common on college campuses and should be protected and insured accordingly. Having proper security cameras and security personnel will help prevent a crime related loss.
#5 – Liability Exposure
Due to the age and the number of students on most junior college campuses, business liability is a major exposure for junior colleges. A good way to reduce the business insurance liability for a junior college is to prevent unauthorized access to the campus. Having security guards in place on any entrances to check and make sure that only students, registered visitors and campus staff are coming into the college can help. Security is very important because junior college institutions are charged with the responsibility of the safety of teachers, staff, students and visitors. This is especially true if there is dormitory living as part of cart college campus.
#6 – Personal and Advertising Injury Exposure
Personal and advertising injury insurance exposures include invasion of privacy, unauthorized or intrusive searches, failure to prevent intimidation, humiliation, hazing or bullying by the instructors or other students, false arrest or detention, slander and libel from publishing or broadcasting activities, professor publications, including research and stealing her disputes and/or copyright or patent infringement. Having proper procedures in place in case of incidents is a good way to reduce exposure.
#7 – Abuse and Molestation Exposure
If there are any students under the age of 18 or if the institution has a day care facility then there is a large risk for abuse and molestation claim. It’s important to understand when it comes to an abuse of molestation charge there is never coverage for the abuser. There can be some coverage for the institution where the abuse takes place, but it depends on the policy. There are specialized markets for abuse and molestation insurance coverage which provide a more complete product and are the ideal place to cover this type of risk.
#8 – Professional Liability Exposure
Verification of professional credentials is critical for professors, counselors, nurses or doctors employed by the junior college institution. Educational standards must be in writing and meet all criteria for the state and federal licensing and accreditation. Junior colleges allowing professors to produce research papers can have a significant professional liability exposure.
#9 – Business Auto Liability Exposure
Any junior college with sports teams that regularly transport students to and from games have a large business auto liability exposure. All drivers must have the appropriate license for the type of transports used. Driving records must be checked to make sure that all transportation drivers have proper credentials.