Mandatory reporting

Discussion in 'General Education' started by wldywall, Sep 12, 2008.

  1. wldywall

    wldywall Connoisseur

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    Sep 12, 2008

    A serious question here. How far outside of school does that mandatory reporting go? My DD came to me with info that one of her friends is being abused occasionally but does not want anything done (she doesn't want to leave her family, school, etc) Do I only have to report what I learn in school or is outside of school part of the deal? I don't believe she is at any huge risk for bodily harm, and I plan on picking her up the moment she feels she needs it. There are also others trying to get her parents to either go into counseling or let the girl stay elsewhere for awhile (abuse is related to marital problems, sometimes the girl gets in the middle of the parents fight, usually on accident)

    I want to do what is best for this girl, and trust me, after all the experience with my nephew, I no longer believe the foster care system in this state is a safe place for a child.
     
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  3. michelleann27

    michelleann27 Cohort

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    In our district if we know anything at all we are to document it and go to the P and then the P takes it higher up. We can not hold that information it has to be taken seriously or we can be sued. I would take it to whomever you need to and document what was said to you. Good Luck.
     
  4. wldywall

    wldywall Connoisseur

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    I work in a different district than this child, that is what is confusing me.
     
  5. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    As it was explained to me, I must report ANY suspicions of abuse...in or out of the school. Do you have a trustworthy administrator to whom you can explain the situation and ask questions? I might start there.
     
  6. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    mm's advice sounds like the best bet, especially if this isn't in your district.
     
  7. tracykaliski

    tracykaliski Connoisseur

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    I know here in Ohio I am required to report any types of suspected abuse, not just for the children in my school/classroom.

    I know it's hard because the child doesn't want to leave and foster care is not a good idea, but at least in Ohio if I knew about it and didn't report it, I'd also be put in jail.
     
  8. wig

    wig Devotee

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    I believe in Michigan all suspicians of abuse are to be reported - by anyone aware of it.

    Unfortunately, my experience is that the first one goes on record and is not dealt with. The second one will get a SS worker out to talk with the family. Based on what you said, I suspect the worst that wopuld happen is that the parents would be required to get marital counseling.
     
  9. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    What difference does it make where she goes to school- can you live with yourself if something horrible happens? Report what you have heard and let protective services take it from there...
     
  10. Special-t

    Special-t Enthusiast

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    What if the parents accidentally kill the girl before the counseling sinks in?
    How can she not be in danger of bodily harm if she's being abused?
    How can you plan on being there to pick her up if she needs you? Will she be able to pick up a cell phone during a beating?

    If she's taken away from her parents, she is not necessarily going into the foster care system - a grandparent or relative might be available.

    I know I sound harsh, but I don't understand the logic here.
     
  11. MrsWbee

    MrsWbee Companion

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    Sep 13, 2008

    My understanding is that ALL teachers, aides, administrators, other staff, and even school volunteers are mandatory reporters for ALL cases of suspected abuse/neglect, regardless of whether the child is your student, attends your school, or goes elsewhere. If ANY child is suspected of being abused/neglected, you are required to file a report.

    Here in AZ, it is not considered acceptable to just take it to a P or admin., but you must be the specific person to contact protective services on your own. I know it is not this way in all places (which I think is unfortunate).

    And I agree with czacza... it shouldn't matter what district this child attends; the fact that you know should be enough for you to make that decision as a person, not just as a teacher. You mentioned that the child says she doesn't want anything done, but children, especially in abuse situations, are not always capable of seeing the big picture. Speaking from personal experience, wanting to remain in the home is a common desire, but is not always safe and/or healthy for the child. Children aren't capable of making this judgment clearly, and I think it's your responsibility to allow someone more qualified to make the call on that.

    These situations are never easy and they require great courage. Please pick up that phone and call!!!
     
  12. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    I always heard that EVERYONE is a mandatory reporter, not just those in the education system.
     
  13. tracykaliski

    tracykaliski Connoisseur

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    If we weren't teachers, and just regular people on the street, we would have a moral responsibility to report it, but not a legal responsibility like we do as teachers.
     
  14. wldywall

    wldywall Connoisseur

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    I am going to give the parents a chance to report it themselves and ask for help from CPS. If they choose not to do so, I will report it. I first have to find out FOR SURE what is happening so I can report if neccessary but I cannot do it with second hand knowledge (I consulted an expert today) My daughter told me a tiny bit of info, the rest came from someone telling them what my daughter said the girl said......too second hand for an accurate report.

    At this point I will take the situation one step at a time. I just think the parents deserve a chance to fix it first. (this comes from the expert) It could be as simple as alchol counseling with marriage counseling. Since that is when the incidents happen.
     
  15. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    That sounds like a very good plan of action. Good luck, and I'll be praying for you and this family.
     
  16. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Sep 14, 2008

    It depends on where you live:
    In most states, mandated reporters are "professionals who, in the ordinary course of their work and because they have regular contact with children, disabled persons, senior citizens, or other identified vulnerable populations, are required to report (or cause a report to be made) whenever financial, physical, sexual or other types of abuse has been observed or is suspected, or when there is evidence of neglect, knowledge of an incident, or an imminent risk of serious harm." In SOME states all citizens are considered mandatory reporters...

    Mandatory or not, abuse (or suspicions of abuse) should be brought to the attention of authorities.
     
  17. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    So you are waiting for the parents to report themselves? That's going to be a looooong wait....
     
  18. sarzacsmom

    sarzacsmom Groupie

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    Sep 14, 2008

    i would be required to report-- but would not have to go through my school to do so--I would call DCYF directly. and I have to say something about foster care-- no it'sn ot always the ideal, but sometimes it's the best alternative available. My husband and I have had 12 foster children come through our home. some were able to return home. Some did not. yes the system is overloaded and doesn't always work as well as we want it to. WE actually quit being foster parents becasue of the system, not the kids. I'm not sure what your situation was, I just hope that you don't judge all the foster parents out there by your experience. My husband was raised in catholic children's home and foster home. the foster homw had it's issues, like any other home--no one's home or family life is perfect after all, but it was way better than the children's home---and it was way better than being with his parents at the time. I don't know about other sttes, but I do know that here, the number one goal of DCYF is to reunite the child with parents if at all possible. And it would take 3 reports to get the child removed fromthe home unless it was a true crisis and the child was in immediete danger. is there any chance you can talk to yoru child's friends parents and offer to let her stay with you for a brief period while they begin taking care of their own problems? We have done that before too-- been unofficial foster parents for a few weeks for our son's friend while his parents went through a tough time --they made arrangements for us to temporarily have power of attorney to sign permission slips, get medical care and deal with the school.
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2008

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