Erin’s Law and Comprehensive Health Education: Section 59-32-20 (B) of the South Carolina Code of Laws York 3 – Rock Hill School District Overview and Implementation
The South Carolina Legislature passed legislation in 2014 known as Erin’s Law. This law requires that South Carolina school districts extend their current mandated educational programs regarding personal safety, abuse education and prevention curriculum to students in pre-kindergarten through twelfth grades. The goal of the law is to teach children to avoid situations that may lead to abuse and to report any instances of abuse they may have endured.
The intent of the law is to give students skills in knowing how to stay safe from sexual assault and how to report any incidents of sexual assault. Parents and guardians are encouraged to discuss all health safety topics with their children. Specific to Erin’s Law, The Committee for Children and Darkness to Light (D2L) provides excellent resources for parents and families. Links to these resources are included here:
http://www.cfchildren.org/families/sexual-abuse-prevention http://www.d2l.org/site/c.4dlCljOkGcISE/b.6035035/k.8258/Prevent_Child_Sexual_Abuse.htm#.Vrj3SE_ wtaQ
Providing abuse education in schools is not a new initiative. Mandates under the Health Education Act and Internet Safety Education Curriculum require instruction beginning in sixth grade. Erin’s Law simply extends this education into grades pre-kindergarten through twelve. Some sample topics in elementary school include: Self-Esteem and Personal Power, Fitting In and Acceptance, Grooming and Boundaries, Staying Safe in the Virtual World; S.A.F.E.: It’s Ok to Tell.
Our district guidance counselors, health teachers, and physical education teachers, under the leadership of our Lead Clinical Nurse and Associate Superintendent for Planning and Programs, worked together to select developmentally appropriate curriculum that will give our students the knowledge and skills they need to protect themselves. Your child’s school guidance counselor will present age appropriate lessons Pre-K – 5. Parents are welcome to view the instructional materials at Safer, Smarter Kids. https://safersmarterkids.org/.
Luanne Kokolis, Associate Superintendent for Planning and Programs