Child Abuse Protocol Policy
The State of Georgia requires by law that any principal, teacher, counselor, or other school administrator having cause to believe that a child under the age of eighteen has had physical injury or injuries inflicted upon the child other than by accidental means by a parent or caretaker, or has been sexually assaulted, shall report such incidents.
A person recognizing such signs of child abuse/neglect in the course of employment by a school or similar facility shall notify the person in charge of the facility, or designated delegate, who shall report the incidence.
An oral report shall be made immediately, but in no case later than twenty four hours from the time there is reasonable cause to believe a child has been abused, by telephone or otherwise, and followed by a report in writing, if requested, to a child welfare agency providing protective services, as designated by the Department of Human Resources, or in the absence of such agency, to an appropriate police authority.
Such reports shall contain the names and addresses of the child and parents or caretakers, if known, the child's age, the nature and extent of the child's injuries (including any evidence of previous injuries), and any other information that the reporting person believes might be helpful in establishing the cause of the injuries and the identity of the person(s) who caused them. The principal or designee to whom a notification of child abuse has been made may not exercise any control, restraint, modification or make other change to the information provided by the reporter, although may be consulted prior to the making of a report and may provide any additional, relevant and necessary information when making the report.
Any person or school system participating in the making of the report, or participating in any
judicial proceeding resulting therefrom, shall be immune from any liability, civil or criminal, that might otherwise be incurred or imposed, providing such participation is made in good faith.
Any person or official required by O.C.G.A. 19-7-5 to report a suspected case of child abuse who
knowingly and willfully fails to do so shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and may be punished.