SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - California teachers applying for or renewing their credentials will be required to acknowledge that they understand their responsibility to report suspected child abuse to law enforcement or county welfare officials, and not just school administrators, under a bill signed by Gov. Jerry Brown on Wednesday.
The legislation, AB2560, by Assemblywoman Susan Bonilla, D-Concord, was drafted in response to troubling cases involving child abuse in California schools.
According to Bonilla's office, teachers reported several cases of suspected abuse to a principal in the Mt. Diablo Unified School District last year. But the principal never contacted law enforcement authorities, and the abuse wasn't discovered until later.
"Student safety is an important priority in our schools," Bonilla said in a statement. "It is imperative that all school employees clearly understand that once abuse is suspected, the appropriate intervention occurs immediately."
AB2560 requires all teachers applying for or renewing their credentials to read and sign a statement saying they will report suspected child abuse to Child Protective Services or police, and not just to a principal or school administrator.
The bill also requires that a written report of the suspected child abuse be submitted within 36 hours of learning about the incident. It was supported by teachers unions, school administrators and law enforcement groups.
Bonilla said she hopes the bill will prevent delays that allowed for abuse to continue.
The bill will take effect in 2015.
Deformed mutt is crowned World's Ugliest Dog
A 10-year-old mutt named Quasi Modo, whose spinal birth defects left her a bit hunchbacked, is the winner of this year's World's Ugliest Dog…
Crazy Stats on What Americans Do All Day
New stats released on what Americans do each day, food going to waste, and a brave cat takes on a black bear – it’s what’s…
Detectives get closer to finding missing teen
The Kern County Sheriff's Office is continuing the investigation into reported missing juvenile Amber Woolwine.
Google lets people 'climb' El Capitan
The stunning views of Yosemite National Park's El Capitan are now available to the height adverse.