Right off the bat I know there are going to be many of you who are going to disagree with me…and that is OK. This is just my opinion and I don’t expect everyone to feel the same way that I do. That being said, in light of the recent news coming out of Penn State and the death of Joe Paterno I strongly feel that more needs to be said in support of the boys who were failed by a system they trusted.
Prior to having my children I was a first grade teacher for 8 years. During that time I took my responsibility to the children I taught very seriously. Not only was it my job to keep them safe while they were in my care, but it was my obligation to report any signs of abuse they may have been experiencing while at home. There were always teachers who would look the other way in order to not “cause trouble”. I however was not one of them. I couldn’t live with myself if I knew of or suspected something and didn’t report and FoLlOw Up on my suspicions. Children often have a hard time expressing themselves and I knew I may have needed to be their “voice”.
In the Penn State tradgedy it is my opinion that simply “reporting” the alleged incident was NoT enough. A TrUe and TrUsTeD leader would have gone above and beyond no matter what the consequences would hold for the school or football program to make sure action was taken to protect all children. If you want to be a leader you must make difficult decisions in the best interest of those you serve. Joe Paterno looked the other way in exchage for continuing his legacy.
No amount of football wins can undo the pain that has been suffered by innocent children and their families. I wonder if those who have been so quick to look past this inaction and lack of leadership when it ReAlLy counted would feel this way if it was their brother, son, grandson, or friend who was one of the abused.
If you suspect someone is suffering any type of abuse please do the right thing. You only get one chance to make a difference.
~Robyn (Jersey Girl)