According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1 in 4 girls and 1 in 20 boys will experience sexual abuse before they turn 18. Being sexually abused as a child is the strongest predictor for experiencing sexual violence as an adult.
Not sure where to start to meet Connecticut’s mandate for sexual violence awareness and prevention programming in schools? Contact your local sexual assault crisis program to request prevention programming.Connecticut's Legislation
The Alliance’s member centers provide sexual violence prevention programming as well as training for school staff, including how to respond to disclosures of child sexual abuse.
Connecticut’s legislatively mandated Statewide K-12 Sexual Assault Awareness & Prevention guidelines outline what this programming should include.Statewide Guidelines
If you are considering using your own school staff to implement sexual violence prevention curricula for students, know that not all programs are equally effective. When deciding on what program to use, schools should consider the following:
Awareness to Action, the Wisconsin Child Sexual Abuse Prevention Project, created a child sexual abuse prevention curricula review guide that provides a comprehensive overview of existing prevention and awareness programs.Prevention Curricula Review
The Connecticut Alliance to End Sexual Violence would like to highlight the Care for Kids, We Care Elementary, and SAFE-T programs, created by Prevent Child Abuse Vermont. These programs have strong results and are currently being evaluated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Is your school successfully meeting the state mandate? We’d love to hear more about how you are making this happen, and what the impact has been on your school and community. We would like to celebrate and uplift schools who are doing great work!
If your school is implementing the necessary training and has solid policies in place, consider how else you can amplify the importance of consent, bodily autonomy, and healthy boundaries in your school.
Sexual development is a normal part of childhood that begins at birth. Sexuality is an umbrella term that encompasses our values, attitudes, feelings, interactions, and behaviors. Sexuality may change across the lifespan, but everyone has a sexuality, including children.
Preventing and ending child sexual abuse, and all sexual violence, is not only possible but a social and moral imperative. Children are full of opportunity, and it is our collective responsibility to nurture and facilitate positive experiences that help them realize it. Building collective resilience and responsibility to protect and support children can both prevent child sexual abuse and help children who have already experienced abuse and trauma get the support they need to heal.