Since PALS is an all-volunteer organization, please remember that under the recently passed law,  all adults who will be attending PALS need to have obtained state-required CLEARANCES (as described below) before they will be permitted to register for classes and before they or their children will be permitted to attend PALS classes.

Once you have received your two (or, if applicable, three) clearances, email to They will be kept in strict confidentiality. Your privacy is our utmost concern. Any volunteer that has clearances on file with PALS does not need to resubmit another copy unless your clearances have expired. Clearances are good for 3 years. If you are not sure if PALS has a copy of your clearances, please contact Joanne at

All adults attending PALS with their children must obtain at a minimum both  (1) the Child Abuse Clearance and and (2) the PA State Police Criminal Record Check BEFORE registering for PALS classes.  Governor Wolf has waived the fees for any volunteers working with children starting July 25th. All links and information to get your two clearances can be found at Clearances

To see the press release in which Governor Wolf discusses the new fee structure, go to Press Release

If you have NOT lived in Pennsylvania for at least 10 years, you are also required to obtain an FBI Criminal Background Check. If you are an OUTSIDE TEACHER (teach at PALS as an independent contractor and charge a fee to families) you are required to have an FBI Criminal Background Check. The cost is $27.50 and you will need to be fingerprinted. Please use the link below for Cogent Fingerprinting Applicant Registration for the Department of Welfare. Choose DHS Volunteer for the reason fingerprinted.Cogent Fingerprinting

A note from from Celishia about the FBI clearance:

Hello PALS families! I just wanted to tell you that I went today to get my FBI fingerprinting done. I had to preregister online the cost of was25.75, take my registration and go to a fingerprinting center. There were 9 people in front of me and it took 90 minutes in line. I requested a receipt and the cost was $2.68. According to the employees they are staying really steady and that was a short wait. Please, Please get your FBI clearances done if you need them. It can take from 2 weeks to 2 months to get the return on them.