Blue Ridge Elementary School held their annual Mandated Reporter Training on August 29, 2013. This training session was to inform volunteers of their duty to report any possible abuse they might encounter when working with the children.
During this information session, volunteers completed an online presentation and test regarding issues of abuse. This presentation explained that anyone working with or volunteering for child related events, whether the event is school sponsored or not, they are required by law to report any suspected abuse.
The various types of abuse are the most obvious, physical, but others that often go unnoticed are verbal, emotional and sexual. Emotional abuse is one of the most common types of abuse a child endures because it is less likely to be detected. Possible abuse reports can be made at the District Attorney’s office, Family and Children’s Services, to any school personnel member or to any law enforcement officer.
When considering signs of abuse, one must realize there is a fine line between discipline and abuse and while the lines seem vague when thinking about where those boundaries lie but they’re easily recognized once they’ve been crossed. Failure to report abuse is a misdemeanor offence and any case should be reported within 24 hours. The individual that reported the case should request a document called a Mandated Reporter Letter and keep it for future records.
Parents and other volunteers who attended this assembly walked away with a significant amount of knowledge. If you need additional information on abuse, you may contact any of the organizations listed above or your child’s school. Together, as a community and with this knowledge, we can help keep our children safe.