As we prepare for the start of a new school year, students, parents and teachers are facing a unique set of concerns and challenges during this pandemic. Whether teachers connect with their students in a traditional classroom or through a virtual platform, the CAN Council is grateful to have them back in our children’s lives.

Teachers have one of the most important roles in society: they educate our future. A great deal of time is spent in the classroom, and significant resources are dedicated to this education. Yet just as significantly, our teachers serve another role in our children’s lives – that of a mandated reporter. As an educator, teachers are considered among the professions obligated to report suspected child abuse and neglect to authorities. It’s in this capacity that teachers offer solace and hope to children living in dangerous conditions. Fulfilling this role can be stressful and frustrating for a mandated reporter. Teachers tackle these emotions, along with the fear of retaliation, for the good of our children. For that, the CAN Council celebrates them as Superheroes!

“We are extremely grateful for teachers watching out for our children’s well-being, as they may be the only contact a child has outside of the home. During the isolation of COVID, even with children having little to no relief from abusers at home, our CAN Council still conducted a significant number of forensic interviews of abused children. This number is only expected to rise with students returning to school and to caring teachers who will report suspected abuse. Now more than ever we must rely on teachers as mandated reporters to report child abuse and neglect.” – Emily Yeager, CAN Council President/CEO

While their capes aren’t easy to detect, the care and compassion teachers have for our children is recognized and applauded! The CAN Council offers our deepest gratitude to teachers for taking on all the challenges of this school year, and for reporting suspected abuse among their students. Mandated reporters set the bar for all of our community: when anyone sees a sign of child abuse, they too can make an anonymous report to Children’s Protective Services at 855-444-3911.

To learn more about potential indicators of abuse and neglect, visit cancouncil.org/report-child-abuse. To schedule the CAN Council Mandated Reporting training, call our CAN Council office at (989) 752-7226. Presentations are offered virtually as well as in-person.