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School district may require students to undergo sexual harassment training to protect teachers

Marin County schools in California is considering a required sexual harassment curriculum for students after some teachers complained their students were harassing them. (Image source: KPIX video screenshot)

During a February school board meeting, two Marin County, California, teachers spoke about the sexual harassment they experience from students. Now, the superintendent is considering required sexual harassment curriculum in response to the complaints, KPIX-TV reports.

What’s the story?

Two teachers shed light on what they perceived as a growing problem in their schools: Teachers subject to sexually inappropriate behavior from their students.

“There’s a woman who has had condoms put on her car by male students,” said Jessica Crabtree, a math teacher at Redwood High School. “Male students were asking a teacher what she looks like with no clothes on. Two or three boys were watching porn on their cellphone in class, and refused to stop.”

Another teacher, Eva Rieder of Tamalpais High School, said she has been harassed at least a dozen times in her career, and said the district does next to nothing when teachers report harassment by students.

“When we look on the national scene and we wonder how the Harvey Weinsteins are made, we’re making them,” Crabtree said during the Feb. 6 school board meeting.

Superintendent David Yoshihara admitted the district had room for improvement in handling sexual harassment, and at that time brought on an independent investigator to review harassment and the handling of complaints.

Educating the students

Now Marin County schools are considering a curriculum addendum that would require all students to receive sexual harassment training.

The independent investigation is ongoing, and the district added a Title IX coordinator (something common at colleges and universities) to handle sexual harassment complaints.

Russell Camden, a student at Redwood High School, told KPIX he was in favor of the potential new curriculum.

“It’s important because it’s happening to teachers and you can’t feel safe in a learning environment or a teaching environment if you’re getting harassed by the people you’re supposed to teach,” Camden said.

One last thing…
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