Travel Abroad Review and Approval Procedure | KCTCS

Administrative Procedures

Travel Abroad Review and Approval Procedure

Policy Number: 3.3.20.1-P

Current Effective Date: 05/09/2019

Original Effective Date: 05/01/2018

Revision Dates: 05/09/2019

Revision Number: 1

Revision Summary: Revisions to refine the processes

Responsible Official: KCTCS Chancellor, KCTCS General Counsel

References: Administrative Policy 3.3.20.1

1. Purpose

This procedure articulates the approved process by which KCTCS-related travel abroad experiences are planned, vetted, and approved to enhance the educational value to KCTCS students, employees, and institutions while fully informing travelers and minimizing inappropriate risks.

2. Scope

This Procedure applies to all KCTCS employees, students, colleges, offices, and workplaces in any way involved with the organization, planning, or execution of KCTCS-related travel abroad experience. It does NOT apply to personal vacation or unaffiliated travel of KCTCS students, employees, and institutions. This is a mandatory procedure for covered individuals and activities. Failure to comply may result in adverse personal disciplinary and financial implications for the employee.

3. Definitions

  1. Travel abroad experiences are classified as one of four (4) types:
    1. KCTCS-Official: Travel abroad events that a KCTCS entity organizes, plans, oversees, and executes, OR is directly related to the employee’s KCTCS position where another entity has organizational or financial responsibility, such as participation on an accreditation team. This is official KCTCS-related travel and falls within the authority and responsibility of the College/KCTCS. The College/KCTCS has legal duties or obligations to the traveler. Employees on KCTCS-Official Travel need not use vacation leave for this travel, except for days away from the primary duty station not directly related to the employee’s KCTCS duties. This is the only form of travel for which KCTCS liability insurance applies. The traveler’s personal insurance may also apply; travelers should confirm coverage with their personal insurance carriers.
      1. Trips Jointly Sponsored with Other Organizations. Where the College jointly plans a travel abroad experience with another entity, the Responsible Employee shall ensure that the rights, duties, and obligations of the College and the other entity are documented in a Memorandum of Understanding or other agreement approved by the College President or his/her designee and the KCTCS Office of General Counsel. Education First trips may fall in this category.
      2. The Responsible Employee shall consult the KCTCS Office of General Counsel for assistance in completing the agreement before any KCTCS employee signs the document.
    2. Unsponsored Creditable: Travel for which a KCTCS College may award academic or PPE credit, but for which the College undertakes no duties for organizing, planning, oversight, or executing, even though a KCTCS employee may have advertised or publicized the trip. The College has no legal duty, financial, or other obligation to the traveler, except to the extent that the College awards credit for the experience. Employees shall use approved leave time for this travel. Kentucky Institute for International Studies (KIIS) and Knowledge Exchange Institute (KEI)trips may fall into this category. KCTCS liability insurance does NOT apply to or cover this type of travel. Travelers should confirm with their personal insurance carriers whether their personal insurance coverage applies.
    3. Independent Faculty/Student: Travel that may have some cultural, educational or academic aspects on which a KCTCS employee, student, or members of a student organization may go but is unrelated to official KCTCS programs or events, even though a KCTCS employee may have advertised, publicized, or participated in the trip. KCTCS undertakes no legal duty, financial, or other obligation for organizing, planning, oversight, or executing, and has no responsibility for any aspect of travel(i.e. an educational trip by or through a nonKCTCS educational organization such as KIIS, KEI, etc.). KCTCS does not award credit of any kind for this type of travel. Employees shall use vacation or other approved leave for this travel. KCTCS liability insurance does NOT apply to or cover this type of travel. Travelers should confirm with their personal insurance carriers whether their personal insurance coverage applies.
    4. Unaffiliated: Travel on which a KCTCS employee, student, or members of a student organization may go that has no connection to an official KCTCS program or event, regardless of the involvement or participation of a KCTCS employee. Neither the College nor KCTCS has any legal duty, financial, or other obligation to the traveler. KCTCS liability insurance does NOT apply to or cover this type of travel. Employees shall use vacation or other approved leave for this travel.
  2. Responsible Employee. The Responsible Employee is a KCTCS employee who undertakes the duties and responsibilities of planning and organizing the KCTCS-Official group travel abroad experience. Each travel abroad experience should have a designated Responsible Employee, but whether or not designated, any KCTCS employee who undertakes such actions is a Responsible Employee.
    1. No Delegation of Responsibility. The Responsible Employee may enlist the help of others for any part of the planning process, but the ultimate responsibility for all aspects of the travel abroad experience may not be delegated.
    2. Insurance and Liability Defense for Designated Responsible Employees. KCTCS insurance and legal protections shall cover an employee designated a Responsible Employee for travel abroad-related duties that are within the scope of his/her employment and for ordinary negligence. KCTCS insurance and legal protections may NOT COVER OR PROTECT the Responsible Employee for acts or omissions outside the scope of employment or that constitute grossly negligent or intentional acts, criminal conduct, or acts that willfully disregard his/her duties.
    3. Eligibility to Serve as Responsible Employee. The College President should not choose or approve as a “Responsible Employee” any person with a history of non-compliance with the law or KCTCS policy, or who has displayed conduct indicative of unreliability or untrustworthiness, or who has been the subject of severe disciplinary action within the preceding two (2) years.

4. Process for Planning a KCTCS-Official Travel Abroad Experience

Any employee considering an employment-related travel abroad experience should review this procedure to determine which category applies to the proposed trip. If the trip meets the definition of a KCTCS-Official travel abroad experience, the individual traveler or the Responsible Employee for group travel shall complete the KCTCS Travel Abroad Planning Form, Form BA27, and obtain the initial approval of the College President or System Vice President (for System Office Employees).

All business-related travel is subject to all other applicable KCTCS policies and procedures, including KCTCS Business Procedure 8.1, Employee Travel Expense and Reimbursement.

  1.  Individual Travel Abroad. Individual employees traveling abroad for employmentrelated purposes must:
    1. Complete Form BA27 and receive required approvals.
    2. Complete the travel abroad training.
    3. Complete Form BA26 as required by Business Procedure 8.1. 
    4. If the employee experiences any injuries, incidents, or issues during the travel abroad, upon their return the employee shall complete Form BA29B in accordance with section B(4)(c)(ii) below.
    5. Employees shall submit expense reports for reimbursable travel abroadrelated expenses within forty-five (45) days of their return, in accordance with KCTCS Business Procedure 8.1, Employee Travel Expense and Reimbursement.
  2. Group Travel Abroad. Following initial approval of the College President, the Responsible Employee shall contact the Travel Abroad Coordinator in the KCTCS Chancellor’s Office to schedule a Planning Briefing with appropriate System Office reviewers.
    1. Planning Duties: The Responsible Employee shall complete Form BA27A, the KCTCS Travel Abroad Planning Checklist, and the travel abroad training.
      1. The Responsible Employee shall assure that:
        1. All aspects of the travel abroad experience are equitable, reasonably safe, value-added to the travelers, and comply with applicable KCTCS policies and procedures.
        2. All travelers receive a proper briefing about the destination, known risks of the intended travel, travel-related details, key laws of the destination(s), and expected conduct.
        3. All required forms, including those of travelers, are properly completed, signed, and dated. The Responsible Employee shall file the completed forms with the College Chief Academic Officer at least ten (10) working days before the departure date. Required forms include:
          1. KCTCS Travel Abroad Planning Form, Form BA27
          2. Assumption of Risk and Release from Liability Form, Form BA28.
        4. There is an At-Home Point-of-Contact to serve as the source for travelrelated inquiries and emergency notifications, and that key stakeholders know how to reach the At-Home Point-of-Contact.
        5. All chaperones or others with authority to supervise any portion of travel on behalf of KCTCS have completed the KCTCS pre-employment background check before the departure date.
    2. Pre-Travel Duties: Prior to starting a travel abroad experience involving KCTCS, its faculty, or its students in an official KCTCS or College capacity, the Responsible Employee shall complete this KCTCS Travel Abroad Approval Process, and obtain the final written approval of the KCTCS Chancellor and the College President on the KCTCS Travel Abroad Planning Form, Form BA27. This form shall be retained with all other documents pertaining to the travel abroad experience.
    3. In-Travel Duties. During the trip, the Responsible Employee is not required to “babysit” travelers but shall provide reasonable oversight of the travel abroad experience.
      1. The Responsible Employee shall contact the nearest U.S. Consulate or other State Department office to the destination and apprise them that United States affiliated travelers are in the local area.
      2. The Responsible Employee shall assure travelers suffering from medical conditions or traumas have the appropriate access to reasonable medical care.
      3. The Responsible Employee shall notify the At-Home Point-of-Contact as soon as practicable if any relevant issues occur. The At-Home Point-ofContact shall coordinate with others as appropriate on an official response to any reported events.
    4. Post-Travel Duties: Upon return, the Responsible Employee shall submit a PostTravel Report, either Form BA29A or BA29B.
      1. The report should validate that no injuries, incidents, or issues occurred during the travel abroad experience or document with as much detail as practicable those that did occur.
      2. Employees shall submit expense reports for reimbursable travel abroadrelated expenses within forty-five (45) days of their return, in accordance with KCTCS Business Procedure 8.1, Employee Travel Expense and Reimbursement.
      3. Where to Submit Post-Travel Reports.
        1. Uneventful Reports If the Responsible Employee’s Post-Travel Report does not reflect injuries, incidents, or issues involving a traveler that occurred during the travel abroad experience, he/she should submit the report (Form 29A) to the KCTCS Chancellor’s Office.
        2. Reports Containing Details of Injuries and Incidents. If the Responsible Employee’s Post-Travel Report reflects injuries, incidents, or issues involving a traveler that occurred during the travel abroad experience, he/she should submit the report (Form 29B) to the KCTCS General Counsel’s Office. 
          1. Reports submitted under this provision should bear the Notice at the top: “ATTORNEY-CLIENT PRIVILEGE WARNING: THIS DOCUMENT WAS CREATED BY OR AT THE DIRECTION OF AN ATTORNEY IN ANTICIPATION OF LITIGATION. IT IS THEREFORE PROTECTED BY THE ATTORNEY-CLIENT PRIVILEGE. IT MAY NOT BE RELEASED OUTSIDE OF KCTCS OFFICIALS WITH A LEGITIMATE NEED TO KNOW THE INFORMATION WITHOUT THE ADVANCED PERMISSION OF THE KCTCS OFFICE OF GENERAL COUNSEL.
          2. Emails transmitting such reports should contain the following language as the first words in the Subject Line: “ATTORNEY CLIENT PRIVILEGED COMMUNICATION.
  3. Record-Keeping.
    1. All documents should be segregated by travel destination and date, and retained for no less than three (3) years or as otherwise required by the KCTCS Record Retention Policy. 
    2. If any unusual issues occurred during the travel, the file should not be discarded, misplaced, or destroyed until cleared by the KCTCS Office of General Counsel or the KCTCS Asset Management Office.
    3. For individual travel, the traveling employee shall assure that all completed forms, documents, and other records related to the travel abroad experience are delivered to the College Chief Business Officer.
    4. For Group travel, the Responsible Employee shall assure that all completed forms, documents, and other records related to the travel abroad experience are delivered to the College Chief Academic Officer.
  4. College Travel Abroad Policies and Procedures. The College may establish local supplements in addition to this Procedure, provided those supplemental policies and procedures do not conflict with this Procedure.