A Lingering Shame
Most of America’s educators are dedicated professionals who wouldn’t dream of crossing the line into sexual conduct with a student. But a small slice of school employees do not respect that boundary. Their crimes can leave indelible scars on their victims, severely damage families, and cause lasting harm to entire school communities. How to recognize and combat the threat posed by such educators is an issue that no education policymaker, administrator, teacher, or parent can afford to ignore. This special collection of stories, “A Lingering Shame: Sexual Abuse of Students by School Employees,” assembles reporting on a problem that is only sporadically recognized as a national issue. The collection features a three-day 2007 Associated Press series on teacher sexual misconduct based on a seven-month investigation by AP reporters across the country. Some of the stories in the series appeared in the October 24, 2007, issue of Education Week; the entire series is available here. The collection also highlights special Education Week coverage, including “A Trust Betrayed,” an award-winning series based on a six-month investigation the paper conducted in 1998, as well as an update of the series based on fresh research done five years later.