How Do I Teach My Students About Sexual Abuse?

Did you know children who receive school-based education about child sexual abuse are 3.5 times more likely to report if they had been/were being abused, compared to children who did not receive that education?

Unfortunately, child sexual abuse occurs at all socioeconomic levels, across all ethnic and cultural lines, within all religions, and at all levels of education — 1 in 3 girls and 1 in 5 boys will become a victim before graduating from high school. However, 95 percent of this abuse is preventable through education and awareness. By educating and empowering students, parents and educators, we can prevent children from enduring this unnecessary and unthinkable abuse and help them access help in unsafe situations.

The Lauren’s Kids Safer, Smarter Schools curriculum is the country’s first Pre-Kindergarten through grade 12 school-based prevention and personal safety curriculum series. It was developed by the Lauren’s Kids Foundation, career educators, and developmental psychologists to educate children, teachers, and parents. The curriculum takes educators through the curriculum step by step and enables them to teach kids about abuse through fun, not fear.

Starting in Kindergarten, the curriculum introduces children to Lauren and Buddy, her trusty companion who introduce important vocabulary and tools to avoid victimization. In 1st grade, children work with Buddy to search for their safety tools to complete their Safety Tool Belts – a concept that helps children understand that they always have the tools and strategies necessary to protect themselves at home and access help, no matter the situation. Building upon concepts learned in 1st grade, children, along with Buddy and his new friends, discover the “super” power inside each of them that helps them to stay safe. In the 3rd grade, special emphasis is placed on defining safe cyber citizenship and teaching children the vulnerabilities that come with online relationships. In 4th grade, students join Lauren and kids from the Rec Center as they travel back in time to learn about the United States Constitution and Bill of Rights, which are provided as an introduction to the Kids’ Bill of Rights and build the framework for all of the lessons in the 4th Grade curriculum. Students are introduced to the Kids’ Bill of Rights, which includes their right to Safety, Respect, their Identity, a Voice and the right to their Childhood.

The Lauren’s Kids curriculum enables all children to effectively learn strategies to prevent sexual, physical, and other kinds of abuse, no matter their learning style – while also addressing digital safety, anti-bullying, and both mental health and trafficking prevention in fulfillment of new FLDOE rules. The Safer, Smarter Schools curriculum is FREE for Florida Public Schools. Learn more here!