Professional Training Program: Child Abuse
In response to the Freeh report recommendations, Penn State developed a sustainable professional training program for its employees to recognize and report child abuse.
The trainings are meant to educate employees on understanding the law and its requirements, identifying signs of abuse, and knowing exactly who to call and how to report in order to build a safer community for children.
Headed by Susan Cromwell, director of Workplace Learning and Performance in the Office of Human Resources at Penn State, development and implementation has been a team effort that includes employees from Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape (PCAR), WPSU Learning & Media Design Team, University Police, Student Affairs, Centre County Women’s Resource Center, faculty experts and professionals throughout the community.
Training is currently underway for mandated reporters across the University, and more than 10,000 individuals have participated in the sessions. According to Pennsylvania law, a mandated reporter must file a report of abuse when that person, “who in the course of employment, occupation or practice of a profession, comes into direct contact with children and has reasonable cause to suspect on the basis of medical, professional or other training and experience that there is a victim of child abuse."
Online Training Module
We are in the process of developing an online training module that will target mandated reporters as well as those considered permissive reporters – Penn State employees not mandated by law to report abuse. The training will teach employees how to recognize abuse and report it to the appropriate sources, even if not directed by law to do so.