It’s strange what triggers a memory. This memory should have been triggered when my wife and I were watching the Oprah show on November 5, 2010, where she had 200 adult men in her audience that had been sexually molested as children.
As millions know, Oprah was abused as a child and is seriously passionate about the awareness of sexual child abuse.
What triggered this memory was a series of stories such as Anthony Weiner‘s inappropriate Twitter exchanges with a 17-year old girl and French writer Tristane Banon, who refuses to testify in the Strauss-Khan U.S. sexual molestation case.
At this point, you may be thinking that this is about me being sexually molested as a child but no, that is not the story.
This “true” story is about a ninth grade student of mine while I was still teaching high school English.
Since I wrote many of my reports on a computer and kept them on a USB drive, I probably still have this report and the name of the boy that was molested stored away somewhere in a file, but I doubt if I would ever find it since that CPU is now on a shelf and has been replaced by a series of newer, faster computers over the years.
California has a law that mandates educators must report suspected child abuse or the educator (including teachers) may lose his or her job and never work in education in California again.
In California “child abuse” refers to physical abuse, neglect, sexual abuse, and severe emotional abuse. The pdf. document to educate educators and/or teachers is 85 pages long and comes with a test. Source: Mandated Reporter Ca.com
If you are curious what this training entails, click on the above link and discover the training I had one year. We may not have used this exact manual, but we had one and spent several hours in a workshop learning what to do and what happened if we didn’t do anything.
The penalties for failure to report are severe. “A person who fails to make a required report is guilty of misdemeanor punishable by up to six months in jail and/or up to a $1,000 fine.… Educators who fail to report may also risk loss of their license or credential,” which means losing your job as an educator/teacher.
During my 30 years as a teacher, I filed one report. It was the only time that I suspected that one of my students had been sexually molested.
To be continued on June 13, 2011 in The Sexual Molestation of the Happy One – Part 2
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