A.        Introduction

The school district recognizes that the public schools are created and supported by the citizens of Hamilton and Wenham; therefore the Hamilton-Wenham Regional School Committee shall encourage the use of the schools by community individuals, groups, and associations for educational, cultural, and civic activities.  Such use shall be in accordance with the requirements of the schools and Chapter 71, Section 71 of the Massachusetts General Laws as amended.  Policies regarding access to the school facilities will be the responsibility of the Superintendent (and/or designee) and the School Committee.  The policy shall include rates and fees.  

This Policy is intended to set, coordinate, and schedule all (school and non-school) events which use any building, field and/or any portion thereof leased, owned and/or operated by the School District.  This Policy is also intended to address fee collection for usage by groups and/or organizations from within and outside of the Hamilton - Wenham Community.

B.        Designated District Facilities Coordinator

The Hamilton Wenham Superintendent shall designate a District Facilities Coordinator who is responsible for maintaining a master schedule.  The schedule shall cover all usage of school buildings, fields, and District Staff, and equipment as required.

C.        Process

As an integral part of this policy, it is important that the District Facilities Coordinator be contacted directly by anyone seeking to utilize school buildings and/or grounds.  The District Facilities Coordinator in consultation with other pertinent District administrators (i.e. Principal, District Business Manager, and District Director of Facilities) will confirm rental and inform the requestor of availability, rental cost, staffing requirements, and all other fees as necessary.

All final decisions on matters pertaining to facility usage, fee structure and appropriateness of events to be held on District property will be made under the direction of the Superintendent of Schools. Additionally, all events that take place on District property will be held in accordance with all applicable local, state and federal regulations.

All contact must be made prior to the contemplated use date.  It is required that the process be initiated no less than thirty days prior to the usage.

A Building Use/Facilities Request Form must be completed in full and submitted by a duly authorized community, civic or public representative who has the authority/ responsibility to accept any liability (financial or otherwise) on the behalf of the requesting organization.

The District Coordinator shall ensure that the Building/Facility Use Request Form is maintained for a period not less than one calendar year from the date of the use of the school property.

D.        School Property

School District property includes, but is not limited to, buildings, grounds and facilities. Specifically and without limitation this shall include any property owned and/or leased by the school district such as; gymnasiums, weight training rooms, theaters, stages, cafeterias, multi-purpose rooms, classrooms, and outdoor playing fields. It is also understood that requests for District Staff (i.e. custodians, cafeteria workers, technicians, etc.) will also be made through the completion of the Building Facility/Use Request Form.

E.        Fees, Insurance, and Notification

The rate/fee may be a flat fee or an hourly rate and may be established based upon any or all of the following factors:

  1. Type of space is being requested
  2. Time of year
  3. Time of the day
  4. Availability of the requested space
  5. Anticipated wear and tear on the property
  6. Duration of the event(s) requested

The Assistant Superintendent will annually prepare a schedule of fees for building and grounds rentals.

The fee structure may be negotiated for groups that are either community based and/or have previously used District facilities in a similar capacity such as Hamilton-Wenham youth athletic organizations.  Any such arrangement or other consideration of this policy must have the prior written approval of the Superintendent and/or designee.

The District Facilities Coordinator will coordinate both the invoicing and collection of all rentals and associated fees for each specific request.  All fees collected will be placed in the Rental Revolving Account.    

The rental fee will not include applicable District Staff fees, including custodial fees, kitchen staff, and technical staff fees if applicable.  Police details, if necessary, shall be the additional fiscal responsibility of the organization and/or group utilizing the school property and is not included in any fee.  

All-users/organizations must supply a “Certificate of Liability” to the District confirming coverage and stipulating the dates that our facility will be used. The certificate must be filed with the District Facilities Coordinator one week prior to the event.  The District reserves the right to cancel any event for which it does not have a “Certificate of Liability”.

Any damage or destruction to school property shall be the responsibility of the organization and/or group using the school property. The District Facilities Coordinator in consultation with other pertinent District administrators (i.e. Principal, District Business Manager, and District Director of Facilities) will have the responsibility for determining the nature, extent, and impact of any damage or destruction to District property.

All groups using District facilities must notify the District of schedule changes or cancellations at least 24 hours in advance.          

F.        Reciprocity

The District gratefully acknowledges and anticipates that it will also utilize community property and that reciprocal arrangements may be made between the District and the communities, and/or other organizations or groups. Any such arrangement or other consideration of this policy must have the prior written approval of the Superintendent and/or designee.

G.        Priority

It is acknowledged that the Hamilton Wenham Regional School District will always have first priority in requesting District building/facility usage. Consideration for other organizations/groups from the local Hamilton Wenham community will follow.  Every reasonable effort will be made to accommodate those various organizations and groups who are seeking to utilize school property.  District reserves the right to revoke permission previously granted and shall not be held responsible either directly or indirectly for any loss or expenditure incurred by the applicant.

H.        General Guidelines

The following have been established by the Hamilton Wenham Regional School District as guidelines in the use of school facilities.

        equipment requiring specialized knowledge or skill.

        24 hours in advance.


  1. Policy Review and Revision

        Review and revision of these policies and procedures shall occur as needed, but at least every two years.

  1. Legal References        

        M.G.L. Ch. 71 S 37H; M.G.L. Ch. 71 S 71; M.G.L. Ch. 272

Adopted: May 26, 2005

Reviewed: February 4, 2016