REPORTING SUSPECTED CHILD ABUSE
Every individual employee of the Smithfield School Department who has reasonable cause to know or suspect that a child has been abused or neglected or the victim of sexual abuse by another has a responsibility to report abuse directly to DCYF. Reasonable cause to know or suspect could result from personal observation, an admission or response from a child, or any type of communication from any other person that would lead someone to reasonably believe that a child has been mistreated.
In addition to informing a direct supervisor immediately, DCYF must be notified as soon as possible (1-800-RI-CHILD) and within 24 hours. The information that should be provided to both the supervisor and DCYF includes the child’s name, age, grade, school, home address, home phone number, and name of parents as well as the alleged abuser’s name, a description of the incident, and the basis for the reasonable suspicion of abuse. If DCYF allows, the supervisor may set up a conference call with DCYF to meet the reporting requirement. During the conference call, someone should identify all the employees present to DCYF during the call.
Each employee reporting to DCYF must prepare and maintain in a confidential location a written record of the time, date and basis for the reasonable suspicion as well as the date and time of the call to DCYF and the name of the DCYF employee taking the report. A copy of the written record must be forwarded to the employee’s supervisor.
It is the responsibility of the Superintendent to notify staff about these requirements at the start of each school year and provide additional training, as needed. Training shall also be provided as part of the orientation for all new staff.
ADOPTED: February 22, 1999
REVISED: May 7, 2018