SCAN’s work in Public Education has been expanding its reach to include child care workers. These newly formed relationships are a perfect example of how we connect with the communities in which we live.
Through our involvement with the Child Protection Partnership of Greater Prince William, we have received funding and administrative support from the Early Childhood Partnership to train 100 child care workers in Prince William County, Manassas and Manassas Park using the Darkness to Light curriculum. There are 6 trainings scheduled before January 1 in which child care staff from large centers, home-based centers, and preschools will be trained.
Another opportunity with local child care workers came up as well — to educate them about their role as mandated reporters and more importantly, their role in protecting children. SCAN was connected with Open Arms Christian Child Development Center in Ashburn by one of our board members, Joe Carlin. Through this connection, we were able to provide one of our newly developed workshops to a group of over 70 child care staff at Open Arms.
Although child care staff are required to take mandated reporter training, mostly through online tools, it is important to have discussions around the topic in person and to constantly remind child care workers that they are mandated reporters and have a responsibility to protect children. Through this training, not only did we discuss the roles and responsibilities of mandated reporters within their center, but also when they are in the community. Their mandated reporter “hat” should not simply come off when they walk out of their classrooms. They have an obligation to help keep all of the children in their communities safe by speaking up when they witness abuse or harsh interactions or when they have suspicions of child abuse and neglect.
It is a great responsibility to be a mandated reporter. But children need a voice and it starts with them and it should start with you, too.
For more information about workshops – fee for service workshops
For more information about harsh interactions – fact sheet
For more information about being a voice for children – Advocacy Day