School Personnel Training on Child Sexual Abuse Bill Introduced

Recently Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Jon Kyl (R-AZ), Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX) and Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) introduced the Helping Schools Protect Our Children Act of 2012 (S. 3173). This bill amends the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (P.L. 107-110) to include training for school personnel on how to recognize child sexual abuse.

Eligible training activities currently target a variety of purposes furthering certification, recruitment and retention, professional development and quality administration and instruction of school personnel. S. 3173 would make recognizing child sexual abuse a training option under activities by state, local education agency and eligible partnerships. Training could be targeted towards teachers, principals, and pupil services personnel. Current law does not include training options for recognizing other forms of abuse and as written, S. 3173 is limited to sexual abuse. This legislation follows a spate of proposed policies in the wake of the university sexual abuse tragedies highlighted in the media at the end of last year.

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