This is an archive of the old Stones Cry Out site. For the current site, click here.

« German Homeschool Parents Get Visiting Rights | Main | UN Gives Hizbollah & Hamas Time to Rearm »

February 20, 2007

Surge in Teacher Sex Abuse Against Students

New York State's Education Department has completed an internal study with results that should disturb parents of any state.

The study found the number of accusations against teachers [of sexual abuse to students] doubled in five years, to nearly one case for every day and a half of the school year. Almost three in four of the "moral conduct" cases involved sex between a teacher and student.

Taken together, the cases show a pattern of a small number of teachers preying on adolescents' need for attention, then exploiting their insecurities to keep the secret out of fear of ridicule or long-lasting damage.

The misconduct is part of a system in which other teachers can be reluctant to report colleagues, administrators are reluctant to act on claims that could result in bad press and lawsuits, and state hearing officers are not trained to spot and deal with sexual misconduct.

A state investigator called one case "almost like a type of mind control" often reinforced by e-mails and instant messages.

Of course, the study can't count or document those incidents that don't get reported, and if colleagues are reluctant to report on each other, there could indeed be a large number under the radar.

UPDATE: The original link is now broken. Click here for another copy of the story.

Posted by Doug at February 20, 2007 01:14 PM

Trackback Pings


Closed-circuit to Dan Trabue: This article quotes the very same person as my previous post on this topic.

"We need to be more concerned with the well-being of kids than the well-being of adults," said Charol Shakeshaft, a professor at Hofstra University who has studied educator sexual abuse in New York. In 2004, she wrote an analysis of the scant research in the area for the U.S. Department of Education. She found that nearly one in 10 students nationwide are targets of "educator sexual misconduct."

The last time her stats were quoted you "smelled" WorldNetDaily reporting. Do you now smell Associated Press reporting, or are you still hung up on the messenger?

I will grant you that her estimate in 1998 was 15% and in 2004 was down to 10%. I will grant you that folks quoting the 15% number ought to get their data updated, and that news outlets might want to do more digging when folks they cover cite studies.


My search of the web for citations of Prof. Shakeshaft didn't uncover the 2004 study number, though admittedly I just just a couple of Googles for it. Nonetheless, I don't know that it's all that easy to find. Also, I know that even this lower number would have set you off, had I found it. Quoting one of your comments:

I don't think that 15%, or even 10% of students at schools are even harassed by their teachers.

Fair enough, but you called the news outlet into question over reporting her numbers. You called the WND story a "bogus report by a bogus 'news' organization designed to cater to people who won't think about the nutty and unfounded claims they make", in spite of my attempts to direct you to the real issue you had; the numbers by Prof. Shakeshaft, not who reported them. You want to consider WND "bogus" and dismiss their reporting out of hand? Fair enough if you now view the Associated Press the same way. You said:
You'd have to find something much more serious than WND and these other orgs that I have not heard of to get me to even begin to believe it. It is much easier to see that this is another WND hatchet job on truth.

Is the AP serious enough for you?

Posted by: Doug Payton at February 20, 2007 01:38 PM

I am a doctoral student who is writing her dissertaion on the need for greater supervision and testing of teachers and teacher canidates, as you can imagine my university is struggling to assist me any help with scholorly site to provide me with assistance would be appriciated.
Julieanna G. Renner

Posted by: Julieanna G. Renner at March 22, 2007 01:28 PM