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Preventing Adult Sexual Misconduct and Child Sexual Abuse

Protecting the children on our campuses is one of the most important tasks we face.  Resources and guidance are available here to raise awareness about child sexual abuse, build skills to recognize warning signs of adult sexual misconduct, report ALL concerns and thoroughly investigate ALL reports received.  

TITLE IX of the Education Amendments of 1972

All public and private elementary and secondary schools, school districts, colleges, and universities (hereinafter “schools”) receiving any Federal funds must comply with Title IX.  Under Title IX, discrimination on the basis of sex can include sexual harassment or sexual violence, such as rape, sexual assault, sexual battery, and sexual coercion. Know Your Rights

SIA presents the ESCAPE Program

ESCAPE Program Logo: End Sexual abuse of Children with Awareness, Prevention and Education

Step 1. Policies and Procedures for Best Practices for Safe and Healthy Boundaries: 

Adopt an updated Board Policy from provided template with recommended safe and healthy boundaries for adult-to-student and student-to-student interactions will be provided to all districts. The California School Boards Association (CSBA) has released new guidance for School Districts regarding Boundaries.  This article provides further information. Include training requirements in the policy as well as criteria for establishing a qualified trainer at the district. ​Consider the Model Code of Educator Ethics as a guidance document when developing your policy.

Step 2. Screening & Hiring of Employees and Volunteers

Establish district-wide recommended hiring practices to include;

  • Department of Justice background checks and fingerprinting,
  • Review any action taken against a teaching certificate in any of the 50 states, SIA provides NASDTEC services to all member districts.
  • Reference checks to prior districts specifically related to sexual misconduct claims and disciplinary action and,
  • Adopt recommended interview questions that address an employee’s use of safe and healthy boundaries.  Sample Interview Questions from Diane Cranley; 8 Ways to Create Their Fate

Step 3. ASM and CSA Prevention Training and Awareness: 

All employees are assigned and have completed the ESCAPE program Educational , through HZ Online that assigns and tracks training completion. 

Train every district employee and volunteer annually and ensure that all trainers conducting group training meet a minimum criteria for qualifications on the subject matter. 

A variety of awareness materials are disseminated to all employees via multiple media channels such as email, written and electronic newsletters, and website pages. 

Educating School Adults:

 
Articles

Educational Video Series

SIA along with NBSIA and RESIG is CCAP; a partnership of K-12 public school pools, representing 133 school districts and County Offices of Education across 12 counties, 57,000 school employees, and over 500,000 school children.  Together, our goal is to educate K-12 schools on how to recognize and prevent child sexual abuse and, ultimately, to protect kids. CCAP, in conjunction with Diane Cranley, a renowned expert in sexual abuse preventionhas prepared this Educational Video Series.

This series is aimed at helping school staff identify and report suspicious behaviors that may indicate adult sexual misconduct or child sexual abuse and develop best practices for the prevention of adult sexual misconduct and child sexual abuse in schools.  A series of discussion guides accompany each module of the series to help facilitate discussions between staff about preventing child sexual abuse.

  • Module 1: Introduction and Overview - focuses on introducing concepts of the series and alarming statistics around child sexual abuse. 
  • Module 2: Grooming - explains grooming behavior in the steps involved in grooming a student to become a victim of sexual abuse.
  • Module 3: On-Site Isolation Boundaries - helps school administrators and staff set appropriate boundaries for children to avoid students being isolated by potential child molesters.
  • Module 4: On-Site Behavioral Boundaries - Like Module 3, Module 4 helps school administrators and staff set appropriate behavioral boundaries for staff and children, to prevent potentially harmful or abusive behaviors.
  • Module 5: Off-Site Boundaries - helps school administrators and staff set appropriate boundaries and identifies best practices for off-site activities involving students and staff.
  • Module 6: Off-Hours Behavioral Boundaries - examines boundaries that restrict staff access to students during non-school hours.     
  • Module 7: Electronic Social Media Boundaries - teachers school administrators and staff to set appropriate boundaries with electronic communication between staff and students, especially private communication.
  • Module 8: Gift Boundaries - discusses the importance of establishing policies for gifts given to students and their families from staff, to ensure they remain appropriate.
  • Module 9: Student-to-Student Boundaries - addresses sexual abuse and behavior that may occur between students, and how to handle these situations.

Educate Students on Safe and Healthy Boundaries

Step 4. Reporting:

Adopt an electronic tool with anonymous reporting capability to ensure that anyone can report misconduct at any time. SIA provides the StopIt Reporting Tool for all members.  

Reports are handled according to the best practices provided and investigation steps outlined below. 

The district Title IX coordinator shall oversee all reports and investigations.

Step 5. Investigation: 

The district Title IX coordinator will review every report to ensure that best practices are being followed with regards to investigation. 

Any report meeting a threshold of identified flags will warrant a third-party investigation process led by professionals to remove all bias and ensure a thorough and fair investigation.

Investigations will be completed in a timely fashion with recommendations made for any necessary employment action, including specialized training when misconduct is not present, but healthy boundaries have not been maintained. SIA provides specialized training through Making Right Choices to all members as needed.  

Step 6. Response: 

Protocols shall be established for how the district will communicate with families and communities in the event of an incident to ensure transparency, yet maintain privacy as required. 

District policies will be followed with regards to corrective action and disciplinary action.  

resources:

Relevant Resources:

Suicide Prevention Hotline: 1-800-SUICIDE or 1-800-799-4TTY (Hearing Impaired)