All children need a safe place to learn, play, and develop the skills to succeed in life. Unfortunately, not all schools are a safe place, as many children each year suffer sexual abuse at an educational institution.
An investigative report by the Associated Press has found that child sexual abuse in public schools is widespread but often goes unreported and unpunished. In some cases, school officials allow pedophiles to continue teaching despite sexual misconduct toward children.
The American Psychological Association reports the short-term effects of abuse can include eating problems, behavior and performance problems at school, regressive behaviors (such as a return to thumb sucking or bed wetting), sleep disturbances, and nonparticipation in school and social activities.
Sexual abuse in schools can take two forms. First, the perpetrator is an adult in a position of authority, such as coaches, teachers, or administrators. It is also all too imaginable for the abuse to be perpetrated by other students. Either way is it possible to hold the abuser accountable for their heinous actions.
From 2001 through 2005, teaching licenses for 2,500 educators were revoked due to sexual misconduct with a child.
School officials often fail to recognize “red flags,” such as extra attention paid to a particular student or gift giving, Groomed from an early age, pedophiles slowly escalate the relationship to a sexual level.
Tragically, sexual assault on campus is often never reported, and some reports estimate only 1 in 10 victims report the abuse to authorities. Even then, accusations may not be taken seriously, as officials may resist contacting the police, concerned about false claims.
Sexual abuse in school can harm education, job performance, future earnings, psychological and physical health, and sometimes serves as a catalyst for unhealthy future relationship patterns.
Educators are obligated to create an environment that protects students under their care. When students suffer sexual abuse on campus, the school system must be held accountable for their role in such tragedies.
The child sexual abuse attorneys at Eisenberg and Baum have successfully represented victims sexually abused at school by other students.
Children with disabilities are particularly vulnerable to sexual assault from other kids.
When accusations of sexual abuse are ignored, or schools fail to protect children from assault, the schools are utterly failing to protect those in their care.