From to , 2, teacher credentials were revoked for sexual misconduct. There were about 3 million teachers at the time. In , female students who had been sexually harassed in school reported male-to-female harassment that was one-on-one while male students who experienced sexual harassment reported either one-to-one harassment by a female, or harassment by a group of females. Types[ edit ] There are three primary types of sexual harassment found in schools: The most common type is verbal, followed by physical, and nonverbal.
AAUW, One of the most common reasons reported for sexually harassing behavior is because the harasser thinks it is funny to do so. In their study, the AAUW found that this was the most common rationale for harassment by boys—59 percent used it. AAUW, Other researchers assert that the "I thought it was funny" rationale is a fallacy, and the true reasons align more with that of a need to assert power and induce fear in others—more in line with bullying. These hazing behaviors develop in school, continue in high school and college, eventually moving into the workplace.
High schools are addressing this behavior. Sexual harassment between peers may also be a result of students trying to conform to expected gender norms created by society. It can also be used as a tool for gender policing.
For example, this could be seen if a male is exhibiting behavior not seen to peers as being masculine, so others may label him with homophobic slurs in order to reinforce gender conformity through a form of nonphysical sexual harassment. Students may exhibit, accept, or tolerate this conforming behavior as to not cause rifts in peer groups. Those who are unprepared to interact with those of the opposite sex, are unable to appropriately read social cues, or try to exhibit sexual interest in another while not understanding appropriate boundaries, may end up engaging in sexually harassing behavior.
And a major study commissioned by the U. Department of Education found that nearly 10 percent of U. Indeed, one critic has claimed that sexual harassment and abuse by teachers is times more frequent than abuse by priests.
The students were asked if and how often they had experienced 14 types of behaviors which constitute sexual harassment. They then indicated who harassed them students, teachers, school employees.
Nonphysical sexual abuse e. Girls were more likely to report educator sexual harassment than boys For example, in a survey of high school graduates in North Carolina in the graduates were given a definition of sexual harassment and asked if they had experienced sexual harassment during their high school years. However, in some cases, bonds and relationships can form between teacher and student beyond class discussions.
Relationships between students and teachers can be often quite intimate and intense as they share common passions and interests. Students are dependent on their teachers' approval for academic success, opportunities, and later career success.
Such closeness and intimacy can blur the professional boundaries and lead people—both school employee and student alike—to step over the line.
They are expected to design teaching programmes and carry out their teaching duties to help their students develop as mature thinkers. This may involve close working relationships in tutorials or laboratories, individual meetings to discuss projects or essays, and more casual occasions for intellectual give and take.
For impressionable young students, the boundaries between intellectual development and personal life may become blurred. In this situation, some academics easily move from intellectual to personal to sexual relationships.
Even though the behavior is unacceptable, it can be a symptom of the effects of such stresses, and may stop if the situation changes, or the pressures are removed.
While sexual relationships with pupils is illegal in the U. Literature professor Jane Gallop argues that students learn more effectively in a sexually charged atmosphere. In her book, she describes the separate occasions she slept with two male professors on her dissertation committee, and when she first began sleeping with her own students as an assistant professor. In her September essay in Harper's Magazine , The Higher Yearning, academic Christina Nehring celebrated the educative nature of such sexual relationships: Gallop, However, it is this parallel that many say is the reason teacher-pupil sexual contact and relations are immoral because they are too closely akin to incest , and similar long-term damages can result.
Many experts argue that even consensual sexual interactions between students and teachers constitute sexual harassment. The most commonly expressed concern is over whether "mutual consent" can exist in a relationship where there is such a disparity in power between the people involved. Because of this, more and more schools are adopting policies that forbid amorous relationships between students and professors "in the instructional context" even when they are consenting Smithson, It cannot be defended or explained away by evoking fantasies of devoted professors and sophisticated students being denied the right to 'true love.
These relationships poison the whole academic well. Moreover, seduction attempts which are masked by pretenses to academic and personal attention are particularly damaging because the student feels complicit in their own abuse. Dzeich Another consequence is that, when sex is an accepted behavior between teachers and students, it can be more difficult to raise concerns about sexual harassment. For example, unwanted sexual advances by a professor may be intimidating or even frightening; however, if sexual relations between staff and students is common at the school, it will be difficult for a student to identify this behavior as harassment.
Martin, Abuse of trust and conflicts of interest[ edit ] Sexual relations between teachers and students raises concerns about the abuse of trust and conflicts of interest—and these points are not usually covered in sexual harassment policies. The question of abuse of trust comes into play when sexual relations between teacher and student are present.
This occurs when the trust associated with a professional relationship is destroyed because of non-professional actions or requests for non-professional actions. Martin writes, "Teachers are in a position of authority and trust to foster the intellectual development of their students. When they engage in sexual relations with a student, they violate that trust implicit in a professional teacher-student relationship. These can include showing favoritism towards a student sexually involved with the teacher, or hostility towards a student due to a past relationship.
If a teacher is sexually involved with a student, colleagues may feel pressured to give preferential treatment to the student, such as better marks, extensions on essays, extra help, or academic opportunities. When there are multiple relationships between several staff and students, the possibilities for conflict of interest are enormous.
Even if there is no favoritism or hostility, it can be perceived by others to be exhibited. Special education[ edit ] Like all other students, students with disabilities experience sexual harassment in school as both victims and perpetrators.
Some disabilities could cause a lack of control over impulses, a lack of awareness of the effects of their words and actions, and a lack of social skills needed to avoid sexually harassing behavior. In some circumstances, a student with disabilities could exhibit a behavior that would constitute sexual harassment without intentionally trying to be malicious or inappropriate. In these cases, where a disability could lead to sexually harassing behaviors, positive behavior intervention plans are often put into place by a team often including parents, school administrators, general education teachers, special education teachers, school psychologists, and counselors.
These types of plans could also be made during Individualized Education Program meetings regarding the student. The AAUW also found that sexual harassment affects academics and achievement: Students may experience multiple effects or just one.
The wide range of experiences lowers the percentage of students who experience any particular effect. Being absent from school frequently, having difficulties concentrating on school work, and performing poorly on academic work often result. Other effects include getting into trouble at school, changing the route in which one gets to and from school, and stopping doing activities and sports. In addition to negatively affecting health outcomes, teacher sexual abuse influenced the victims' academic performance.
When it comes to sexual harassment or sexual abuse cases involving a male teacher as the perpetrator to a female student, severe punishments are often the result. According to David Ring, a lawyer working with sexual abuse cases, it is not uncommon for the male teachers to be convicted, face jail time, or owe partial civil damages to the student victim depending on the severity of the case.
When a female teacher is the perpetrator of sexual harassment to a male student, there are arguments that the female teachers are given lighter sentences and the male victims are given lower amounts of compensation due to the reasoning that teenage males would be willing to have sexual encounters with older, female teachers as a response to changes in their hormones.
In some states in the U. Many assert that most boys would be happy to have a teacher show sexual interest in them. But it is only recently that the Supreme Court has said that schools can be held liable for money damages for sexual harassment. Of the women who have approached her to share their own experiences of being sexually harassed by their professors, feminist and writer Naomi Wolf writes, "I am ashamed of what I tell them: Not one of the women I have heard from had an outcome that was not worse for her than silence.
One, I recall, was drummed out of the school by peer pressure. Many faced bureaucratic stonewalling. Some women said they lost their academic status as golden girls overnight; grants dried up, letters of recommendation were no longer forthcoming. No one was met with a coherent process that was not weighted against them.
Usually, the key decision-makers in the college or university—especially if it was a private university—joined forces to, in effect, collude with the faculty member accused; to protect not him necessarily but the reputation of the university, and to keep information from surfacing in a way that could protect other women.
The goal seemed to be not to provide a balanced forum, but damage control. Gwinnett County GA Public Schools [ edit ] In , the Supreme Court decided that, out of the violation of their civil rights, students who were victims of sexual harassment have the right to seek monetary damages from their school district.
This was a major step taken by the Supreme Court where before this decision, compensation was not up for grabs from the damage in sexual harassment cases. Monroe County Board of Education[ edit ] In , when a judge ruled that the school district was not liable for the sexual harassment that occurred when a fifth grade boy allegedly made attempts to inappropriately touch another female student, the case made its way to the Supreme Court.
In , the Supreme Court decided that once sexual harassment among peers has been reported to a school district, they must be held responsible. South Kortright NY Central School District [ edit ] When a sixth grade girl was sexually harassed by some of her male peers, under Title IX , she was able to file charges against her school district, teacher, and assistant superintendent, and receive compensation for the damages.
Ultimately, because the school district was made aware of the situation and failed to address it, they were found liable for this incident. Female students especially were noted to hesitate to report these incidents in fear that the incidents are not important enough or a large enough deal.
Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights has mandated that schools create policies for sexual harassment as well as procedures for how to handle reports of these instances. The Office for Civil Rights ' guidelines for effective sexual harassment policies include: Issuing a policy against sex discrimination Incorporating grievance procedures Creating specific investigation plans and timelines Explaining where one can file a report Designating one person at least to be the Title IX coordinator for complaints and provide the school faculty and students with that person's contact information Creating a disciplinary plan for the perpetrators Ensuring that all of the sexual harassment policies and procedures are easily accessible to students, teachers, faculty, and parents  Along with sexual harassment policies in colleges and universities, brochures or informational handouts are often distributed, and there are often designated locations or personnel on campus where victims can report sexual harassment.
Prevention[ edit ] Aside from dealing with sexual harassment as it occurs, using the designated procedures, prevention is often used to eliminate sexual harassment before it begins, particularly in schools. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights has stated that training is part of the prevention of sexual harassment in schools and in their publishing of Sexual Harassment Guidance: Harassment of Students by School Employees, Other Students or Third Parties, they have indicated that not only should academic institutions provide faculty and teacher training, but also provide students with classroom resources in order to make them aware of what constitutes sexual harassment and what to do if it occurs.
Coetzee about a South African literature professor whose career is ruined after he has an affair with a student. Notes on a Scandal: A college professor is accused of sexual harassment by a student.
A scathingly satirical film of sexual harassment and discrimination in schools, and attitudes towards females in media and society. The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie: A teacher at an Edinburgh school engineers a sexual relationship between a male colleague, and former lover, and one of her students. Nothing Lasts Forever novel: