Respond to at least two colleagues with a different perspective on the type of case this scenario presents. Additionally, you may share your perspective on the legal responsibility and strategies of the superintendent.

(Note: I posted two of my colleague’s responses to the discussion post below, please respond to their posts. You may begin the response with Hi Sherelle & Hi Tranisia) (I need a half page response for each person) The instructor is very strict with references and citations. You must include both citations and references. If you do not know how to properly cite references please look it up, my grade will decrease with every reference error. Please use APA 6th edition format. Do not forget to list your references and you must include the in-text citations. Also please use current (meaning within the past 2 years) scholarly journal articles as references. Thanks.

Sherelle’s Post:

In society, many horrible can things happen. Luckily, there are  laws and policies in place to protect “whistleblowers”. There are also laws and policies in place that state if a crime occurs and there is a witness or witnesses, they can be held legally responsible if they do not report the crime to the proper authorities. As an educator, it can be difficult to deal with some of the situations that are going on in students’ lives. At times it can be difficult as an educator to not take students’ problems personal.

The case would be considered a criminal case, due to the fact, that it pertains to sexual abuse. Child abuse laws exist on the federal, state, and local levels. Meaning each state has it’s own laws and policies regarding child abuse. However, legislation keeps children free from exploitation, harm, and danger (Darkness to Light, 2016). The Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act was passed in 1974 and reauthorized in 2010 is the largest body of legislation with regard to the fair, ethical, and legal treatment of children and is intended to keep them free from all forms of abuse including physical, sexual, emotional, and psychological (Darkness to Light, 2016).

In Oklahoma, where I reside, states that child abuse is harm or threatened harm to a child’s health, safety, or welfare including but not limited to non accidental physical or mental injury sexual abuse and or exploitation or negligent treatment. This includes lack of provision of necessities such as food, shelter, and  medical care (FindLaw, 2016). The school bus driver definitely violated state and federal laws pertaining to child abuse.

As the Superintendent, my first action would be to make a report to the Department of Human Services to report what the student has told me. Reporting what the student has communicated to me, is my legal responsibility. Oklahoma  law states that failure to report child abuse is a misdemeanor and may be fined up to $5,000 (FindLaw, 2016). My next step would be to contact the student’s parents or guardians to inform them of the incident and to explain that the Department of Human Services have been contacted. I would then provide the parents or guardians with the option of me  finding  an alternative bus for the student and her sister to ride home on. My next step would be to contact the school board to find out what the next steps would be. Then, I would then document the incident, carefully and exactly documenting what the student told me. I would make sure to be objective and non judgemental (Sorenson, & Goldsmith, 2009).

Two strategies I would use to ensure compliance of the laws and policies surrounding this case would be to stay current on what constitutes child abuse. Posting these laws and policies around the school would be helpful. Another strategy would be contacting the Department of Human Services every six months to a year to inquire the protocol for reporting child abuse. Discussing this information to my colleagues will be important as well.  

References

Darkness to Light (2016). End Child Sexual Abuse. Child Abuse Protection Laws. Retrieved fromhttp://www.d2l.org/site/c.4dICIJOkGcISE/b.8015209/k.95B3/Child_Abuse_Protection_Laws.htm.

FindLaw (2016). Oklahoma Child Abuse Laws. Retrieved from http://statelaws.findlaw.com/oklahoma-law/oklahoma-child-abuse-laws.html

Sorenson, R.D., & Goldsmith, L.M. (2009). The principal’s guide to managing school personnel. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press.

Tranisia’s Post:

Post an explanation of whether this is considered a criminal or civil liability case, or both, and cite the laws or policies that were violated.

In this particular situation, this would be considered bother a criminal and civil liability case. The first issue with this case is the student had been touch inappropriate for six years and the person is still employed with the school district.  The next issue is her little cousin is now being touched by this individual. The first question that comes to mind is where the cameras on the bus are checked thoroughly and has this person background check came back cleared. It is so important to before background checks on a person who are working around children. This is important because no child should be touch inappropriately especially by people who are supposed to leaders and also protective of our young people. In my opinion, it was not enough evidence to provide on what laws were being violated, when there is only a statement of a child saying she and her cousin are being touch in inappropriately by the bus driver. If the scenario had more details then you can see where the violation takes places. It is an very uncomfortable situation for both sides due to fact this situations has been occurring for quite some time.

Then, assuming the role of the superintendent, what steps would you take to address this situation?

 First, I would allow the student to explain the situation of what has occurred to happen to her and her cousin on the bus. Second, I am taking notes of everything the student is providing in our discussion about the inappropriate behavior taking place by the bus driver. Third, I would need to see if anyone has witness what is taken place on the bus. Immediately, the bus driver would be removed from his positon until the evidence is clear or not of him touching students in an improper way. After the discussion with the students, I need to see videos of what is occurring on the bus and also I need to be contact the parents immediately to discuss what is going on with their children.  At this point, I would have the children check out to get more accurate information regarding this situation. Next, I will be working with the school counselor and psychology about speaking to students and faculty members about speaking up if someone is being aggressive or making you feel uncomfortable. Until the result comes back about the child being touch, the employee will be suspended until further notice. It is important to take cautious procedures relating to these situations to make sure the right approaches are being handle properly.

Explain your legal responsibility in this case.

One of my main responsibilities in this case is to report to the appropriate agency for reporting suspected child abuse (Tower, 2003, p.30). This helps to get things rolling in order to get these situations in the hands of legal officials. No school system needs anyone working for them who like to harm children.  In this situation, is certain procedures that have to take place first because if anything is not handle the right way then lawsuits and other termination can take place.

Finally, explain at least two strategies you would employ to ensure compliance of the laws and policies surrounding this case to mitigate future occurrences.

One strategy is to find great resources for students and parents facing this type of situation.  This is not only hard for the child, but this affects the parents as well. Indeed, it important for the school to support in a major way. The second strategy is working with local community agencies and providing a big rally relating to child molestation in order to help students to speak up if someone is being inappropriate towards them.

Reference:

 Grand City Community: Laureate Education (Producer). (2015a). Case study: Child molestation [Video file]. Baltimore, MD: Author.

Tower. (2003). The Role of E ducators in Preventing and Responding to Child Abuse a nd Neglect. Retrieved June 29, 2016, from https://www.childwelfare.gov/pubPDFs/educator.pdf

 

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