Sep 25, 2020

Many schools around the country have training programs for school staff members about issues associated with child sexual abuse. This is an excellent initiative since school staff can play a significant role in detecting or preventing child sexual abuse.

Children typically spend a significant part of their days at their schools, and over time they develop a trusting relationship with a number of school staff members. And often they find one or more of the staff members to be the only trustworthy people with whom they can share some difficult personal struggles that they may not feel comfortable in sharing with their own family members. Often information about child sexual abuse or about concerns of possible child sexual abuse fall in this category. For various reasons children often do not feel that they can share these situations with their own family members, but they might feel more comfortable discussing them with a trusted school staff member. In my book “Father Figure – my mission to prevent child sexual abuse”, I describe a true story about a young child who ended up disclosing being sexually abused to a trusted school counselor. Training all school staff members about all issues associated with child sexual abuse is therefore is an excellent idea.

In trainings like this, the school staff typically get to know all about child sexual abuse including key information, salient advice, and guidance on what child sexual abuse is, what it does, how it happens, how to recognize it, and what to do about it. School staff also receive training about noticing children’s behavior and finding any significant discrepancies that might lead to having a discussion with the child, which might then lead to detecting possibilities of sexual abuse or of concerns about sexual abuse. That is why trainings of this kind are a very positive approach.

© 2017 - Sumi Mukherjee
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