As an educator, if you suspect a student is the victim of child abuse or neglect, Indiana law requires you to report it to Child Protective Services (CPS). Most school corporations also require reporting. Failure to report to CPS could result in criminal prosecution and/or leave you open to a liability lawsuit.
For your own protection -- as well as that of the child -- report any suspicions you may have immediately, even if you're not sure.
Signs/Symptoms That May Indicate Abuse:
- Child has a pattern of unexplained injuries or an inordinate number of unexplained ones.
- Child comes to school inappropriately dressed for the season.
- Child is habitually late or often absent from school.
- Child arrives early or stays late because he or she is reluctant to go home.
- Child is unusually fearful of adults or other children.
- Child goes to the bathroom with difficulty.
- Child is constantly tired or thin or shows evidence of malnutrition.