Because Someone Asked For It. - Public School Sex Abuse For The Record - Granite Grok

Because Someone Asked For It. – Public School Sex Abuse For The Record

Public school teachers, as a matter of record, have recorded more incidences of sexual misconduct than any other group we know of, but because these events are often unreported, under-reported, (not sensationalized by the press or any particular group), or just concealed from the public, there is a false public perception that while it probably happens, it can’t be all that bad.

By most accounts it is far worse that the sensationalized abuse by priests.  Far worse.

And just to be clear I am not trying to advance a political agenda by inferring that everyone in this class of persons is a sex abuser.  They are not.  What I am saying is that there is a ton of evidence that the sex-abuse problem (teachers or faculty sexually ‘abusing’ students) is and always has been more severe than the press, the schools, or the unions have been willing to let on, and far worse than even most educators realize.

And were these cases to be pursued legally the way the Catholic church was, the K-12 education landscape might look very different.

Just Google “sex abuse public school teacher “and my point is confirmed.  Every major paper has a different story about recent charges of sexual misconduct by teachers against their students.  But these snapshots do not begin to paint the larger picture because there is no ‘Task force’ to investigate rampant sex abuse by school teachers.

We do however have some resources to consult.

We have a report by a psychologist who collected any and all current data on the subject into one report here, and the research by AP (Yes, the associated Press)- “Sexual Misconduct plagues US schools“), all of which have provided some further insight.

One report mandated by Congress estimated that as many as 4.5 million students, out of roughly 50 million in American schools, are subject to sexual misconduct by an employee of a school sometime between kindergarten and 12th grade. That figure includes verbal harassment that’s sexual in nature.

 

CBS News Quoted Dr, Charol Shakeshaft relating to her research

Hofstra University researcher Charol Shakeshaft looked into the problem, and the first thing that came to her mind when Education Week reported on the study were the daily headlines about the Catholic Church.

“[T]hink the Catholic Church has a problem?” she said. “The physical sexual abuse of students in schools is likely more than 100 times the abuse by priests.” (emphasis added)

It is estimated that as many as  1 in 10 students (echoed here by Slate.com) has been subjected to at least some form of sexual harassment or abuse by public school faculty. (This includes the kind of verbal harassment that gets you fired if you use it on a fellow employee in the workplace.)

Around one in 10 students said they had been the victim of one or more such things from a teacher or other school employee, and two-thirds of those reported the incident involved physical contact. If these numbers are representative of the student population nationwide, 4.5 million students currently in grades K-12 have suffered some form of sexual abuse by an educator, and more than 3 million have experienced sexual touching or assault. This number would include both inappropriate romantic relationships between teachers and upperclassmen, and outright pedophilia.

Philadelphia reports similarities about how misconduct is hidden or ignored

Recently (April 20), the Courier Times had an epiphany moment — a true revelation — when it editorialized that “it turns out the Catholic Church — in Philadelphia and elsewhere — has not been the only enabler of sexual misconduct involving children and young people.” The editorial said that “(public) school employees known or suspected to have abused children are allowed to resign their employment, often keep their teaching certificate and move on to a new unsuspecting school to continue their crimes. The process … would seem to be the same as the much-criticized church practice of reassigning priests accused of molesting children to new jobs where they would be in contact with additional potential victims.”

The editorial noted a Philadelphia federal courthouse hearing, where testimony revealed “that when allegations of such conduct are reported in the schools, administrators and teachers unions often attempt to keep them secret.”

From the Oregonian

Billera is one of 129 Oregon educators disciplined for molesting or having sexual relations with more than 215 public school children over the past 10 years.

An examination of those cases by The Oregonian, combined with hundreds of interviews and thousands of pages of documents obtained under state public records law, shows that state and local officials repeatedly missed opportunities to protect students.

LA Schools send 604 cases to state:

In the wake of a teacher misconduct scandal, Los Angeles school officials have referred the discipline cases of 604 teachers from the past four years to state authorities to decide whether the teachers’ licenses should also be revoked, a school spokesman said Thursday.

The list just keeps going, and there is far too much material to compress here.  But I’ll just return to the Hofstra professors remarks as I close so that those who will want to continue to live in a bubble will remember it:

Hofstra University researcher Charol Shakeshaft looked into the problem, and the first thing that came to her mind when Education Week reported on the study were the daily headlines about the Catholic Church.

“[T]hink the Catholic Church has a problem?” she said. “The physical sexual abuse of students in schools is likely more than 100 times the abuse by priests.” (emphasis added)

Links

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2006/08/24/opinion/main1933687.shtml

http://ww.themediareport.com/fast-facts/

http://www.wthr.com/Global/story.asp?s=7242535&clienttype=printabl

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/10/21/AR2007102100144.html

http://www.ed.gov/rschstat/research/pubs/misconductreview/report.pdf

http://www.oregonlive.com/special/index.ssf/2008/02/schools_let_sex_abuse_cases_sl.html

http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/explainer/2012/02/is_sexual_abuse_in_schools_very_common_.html

Educator Sexual Misconduct Report- PDF