Beginning of school year often reveals child abuse, neglect

Aug. 12, 2014 at 6:33 p.m.

The end of summer and the start of a new school year is an exciting time for most children. But for some, the beginning of school could reveal a dark secret when signs of abuse and neglect these children have suffered over the summer are noticed by teachers, staff and other parents.

Teachers in Texas are mandated by law to report child abuse and neglect. According to the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services, schools were the No. 1 source of reports of child abuse and neglect in 2013. The department completed more than 35,000 investigations as a result of reports from school officials.

Because children are subject to less adult supervision over the summer, it's not uncommon for reports of suspected abuse and neglect to spike at the start of the school year.

Many of the children who are confirmed as victims are removed from their homes and placed into foster care - often far from their friends, families and schools. Court Appointed Special Advocates volunteers from Golden Crescent CASA are screened and trained to speak up for abused and neglected children who end up in the foster care system.

Golden Crescent CASA needs more volunteers to step up and be a voice for children.

An information session about CASA is scheduled for Sept. 23. Call Diana Sneed at 361-573-3734 for location information.

For more information on volunteer training or supporting CASA's mission, visit



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