Joint Use

How can you make it easier for your community to access local school facilities like gyms, fields, basketball courts, and playgrounds?

Schools often keep these spaces locked after hours because they’re concerned about security, liability, maintenance, and other costs. But cities and towns around the country are resolving these issues through joint use agreements – written contracts spelling out terms that allow public agencies and nonprofits to share the costs and responsibilities. Although many communities informally agree to share facilities, a well-crafted joint use agreement can help things go smoothly – from coordinating scheduling and staffing to handling maintenance and the possibility of injury.

  • Download Playing Smart, a nuts-and-bolts guide designed to help school staff and other community leaders craft and implement joint use agreements.
  • Read Immunity Hazards: The Risk of New Liability Laws to Schools and Students, a short look at the risks and benefits of different laws offering liability protection for schools that open their grounds to the community.
  • Check out the array of materials we've developed to help make joint use a reality nationwide.
  • Watch our new one-minute video, which gives a quick but vivid picture of how joint use can help your community: