Washington - Shocking report finds sex abusers getting hired in schools
Sex predators who target children are getting jobs in America's schools, according to a shocking new government report.
In 15 cases where schools hired people with a history of sexual misconduct, 11 abused children and in six instances, the sex offenders used their new jobs to abuse more children, the Government Accountability Office report stated.
Some horrific examples include:
- An Ohio teacher forced to resign a previous job for "inappropriate" conduct with female students was called an "outstanding teacher" by the school superintendent and was later hired in a nearby district where he was convicted of sexual battery of a sixth-grade girl.
- A registered sex offender in Texas was hired by several schools in Louisiana. He is currently wanted by police for having "sexual conversations with a student."
- An Arizona school's rush to fill an opening resulted in skipping a criminal check of a teacher convicted of sexually abusing a child. The teacher was later convicted for having sexual contact with a student and had videos of nude, underage girls in his possession.
"I think this report tells us that we should be very concerned," Rep. George Miller (D-Calif.), the Chairman for the House Committee on Education and Labor, told ABC News.
According to Miller, the biggest problem is that schools allow sex offenders to resign and in several cases write letters of recommendation on their behalf, a move the congressman calls "passing the trash."
"It's outrageous," he said.
The report notes studies showing that 232 child molesters claimed they abused 17,000 victims, sometimes never being caught.
Roughly 38 states require criminal history checks for public school employees. The checks for private school workers vary among the states. Kansas and Montana have no background checks for any school employees, the report found.
"The current system clearly has huge gaps in it," Miller said. "And that is just not acceptable."