Graduate Research Papers


Open Access Graduate Research Paper


Child abuse -- Reporting; Child sexual abuse -- Reporting;


School counselors, being mandatory reporters, are required to report the sexual abuse of children. Training is done according to state standards, and additional education may occur during the school counselor's graduate study. It is estimated that 90 % of all sexual abuse allegations are true (MacFarlane & Waterman 1986), but the American Humane Society (1986) reported that many states have substantiation rates lower than 50 % . Mandatory reporters are not supposed to be investigators. However, child protection workers will not or cannot investigate an allegation that does not meet their criteria. This creates a dilemma for both parties. It is possible that substantiation could improve if mandatory reporters were better trained to gather information that would support the child's allegation It is also possible that more sexual abuse cases would come to the attention of the authorities if mandatory reporters knew what to look for in a victim of sexual abuse. This paper will provide a review of the literature in regard to sexual abuse assessment and reporting. Clear explanations of the legal, developmental, and pragmatic issues regarding child sexual abuse will be provided.

Year of Submission


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Education


Department of Educational Administration and Counseling

First Advisor

Terry Kottman


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Date Original


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