Tuesday, August 5, 2014

More Out of Date BOE Policy on Child Abuse and Neglect

Part 2 of our look at the Board of Education's out-of-date Child Abuse and Neglect policy. 

Page 4 of the out of date BOE policy shows section 5-704.  Cross that out and see below for what the law actually looks like today.  

Give a copy to your child's teacher. 
They won't have seen current Maryland law in their MCPS training. 


Md. FAMILY LAW Code Ann. § 5-704  (2014)

§ 5-704. Reporting of abuse or neglect -- By health practitioner, police officer, educator, or human service worker 

   (a) In general. -- Notwithstanding any other provision of law, including any law on privileged communications, each health practitioner, police officer, educator, or human service worker, acting in a professional capacity in this State:

   (1) who has reason to believe that a child has been subjected to abuse or neglect, shall notify the local department or the appropriate law enforcement agency; and

   (2) if acting as a staff member of a hospital, public health agency, child care institution, juvenile detention center, school, or similar institution, shall immediately notify and give all information required by this section to the head of the institution or the designee of the head.

(b) Oral and written reports; cooperation among departments and agencies. --

   (1) An individual who notifies the appropriate authorities under subsection (a) of this section shall make:

      (i) an oral report, by telephone or direct communication, as soon as possible to the local department or appropriate law enforcement agency; and

      (ii) a written report:

         1. to the local department not later than 48 hours after the contact, examination, attention, or treatment that caused the individual to believe that the child had been subjected to abuse or neglect; and

         2. with a copy to the local State's Attorney.

   (2) (i) An agency to which an oral report of suspected abuse or neglect is made under paragraph (1) of this subsection shall immediately notify the other agency.

      (ii) This paragraph does not prohibit a local department and an appropriate law enforcement agency from agreeing to cooperative arrangements.

(c) Contents of report. -- Insofar as is reasonably possible, an individual who makes a report under this section shall include in the report the following information:

   (1) the name, age, and home address of the child;

   (2) the name and home address of the child's parent or other person who is responsible for the child's care;

   (3) the whereabouts of the child;

   (4) the nature and extent of the abuse or neglect of the child, including any evidence or information available to the reporter concerning possible previous instances of abuse or neglect; and

   (5) any other information that would help to determine:

      (i) the cause of the suspected abuse or neglect; and

      (ii) the identity of any individual responsible for the abuse or neglect.

HISTORY: 1987, ch. 635, § 2; 1989, ch. 730, §§ 1, 2; 1997, chs. 367, 368; 1998, ch. 21, § 1; 2000, ch. 61, § 1; 2003, ch. 308; 2011, chs. 398, 399; 2013, ch. 380.


  1. It is equally irresponsible for the policy to be out of date and for the authorities to turn a deaf ear.

  2. But, MCPS doesn't even comply with the out-of-date policy. When they are required to "notify the head of the institution" that assumes the head (principal?) will do something which he does/did not; those above the head who were aware also did nothing; and nobody notified the parent - and I don't see anything in the above policy about notifying the parent. When the child is abused at school, why is the parent not notified? Finding out through non-official channels years later certainly doesn't help the child's recovery..... Also, can you go ahead and add Kemp Mill to your labels/tags for these articles....

    1. That's because they view their primary mission as raising SAT scores and leveling the playing field.


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