School Abuse Attorney

Child abuse is more than bruises and broken bones.  While physical abuse might be the most visible, other types of abuse, such as emotional abuse and neglect, also leave deep, lasting scars.  The earlier abused children get help, the greater chance they have to heal and break the cycle, rather than perpetuating it.

According to the U.S. Government Accountability Office, over the last 20 years there have been hundreds of allegations of school personnel using restraint and seclusion in abusive ways on children.  It’s happening disproportionately to students with disabilities, often at the hands of untrained staff.  Many of these students bear haunting physical and emotional scars.  And in a number of cases, students have died.

Child abuse  is defined in the California State Penal Code to include:

  • Intentional physical injury to a child less than 18 years of age, inflicted by another
  • Sexual abuse
  • Neglect
  • Permitting to be or willfully endangering the person or health of a child
  • Unjustifiable physical pain or mental suffering
  • Unlawful corporal punishment

Child abuse and neglect can and does occur in schools today.  Reports show that close to 10 percent of children in public schools – more than 4.5 million – endure sexual abuse or misconduct by school employees.  If you suspect a child is being abused, it’s critical to get them the help he or she needs. As difficult as reporting child abuse or neglect can be, it’s important for you to stand up for a child in need.

Children can endure child abuse and neglect in schools from principals, teachers, counselors,  and other school employees.  There are several types of child abuse.  The four main types are physical, sexual, psychological, and neglect.

Physical Abuse

Physical abuse involves physical aggression directed at a child by an adult.  Under child abuse laws the deliberate infliction of serious injuries, or actions that place the child at obvious risk of serious injury or death, to be illegal.

Sexual Abuse

Child sexual abuse is a form of child abuse in which an adult or older adolescent abuses a child for sexual stimulation.  Sexual abuse refers to the participation of a child in a sexual act aimed toward the physical gratification or the financial profit of the person committing the act.  Forms of child sexual abuse include asking or pressuring a child to engage in sexual activities, indecent exposure of the genitals to a child, displaying pornography to a child, actual sexual contact with a child, physical contact with the child’s genitals, viewing of the child’s genitalia without physical contact, or using a child to produce child pornography.

Psychological/Emotional Abuse

Emotional abuse is defined as the production of psychological and social deficits in the growth of a child as a result of behavior such as loud yelling, coarse and rude attitude, inattention, harsh criticism, and denigration of the child’s personality.  Other examples include name-calling, ridicule, degradation, destruction of personal belongings, excessive criticism, and routine labeling or humiliation.


Child neglect is the failure of a parent or other person with responsibility for the child to provide needed food, clothing, shelter, and medical care.  Neglect is also a lack of attention from the people surrounding a child and the non-provision of the relevant and adequate necessities for the child’s survival.

All types of child abuse and neglect leave lasting scars.  Some of these scars might be physical, but emotional scarring has long lasting effects throughout life, damaging a child’s sense of self, ability to have healthy relationships, and ability to function at home, at work and school.

The teacher sexual abuse attorneys at The Law Offices of Eugene K. Hollander represents the families of students whose rights have been violated at school or school-related functions.  If your son or daughter was the victim of school abuse, please contact our offices today or as soon as possible to arrange a free consultation and case evaluation.  Call us at 312-425-9100. We represent clients nationwide.