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Sunday, June 11, 2017

Dr John Rubio Failed to Report Allegations of Sexual Assault at Emery Schools

Superintendent: Children Lied, 'Mandated Reporter' Law Not Applicable

Emeryville Police are investigating two alleged sexual assaults at the K-12 campus of the Emeryville Center of Community Life, expressing concern that the School District failed to report either incident, a possible violation of California law.
Emeryville Police Chief Jennifer Tejada described the recent allegations involving students at the school as potentially "serious crimes" and has notified the Alameda County District Attorney of both cases.  She said her department is also conducting its own investigation.
John Rubio
Emery Schools Superintendent

The children are lying he says.  It's
better to error on the side of
NOT calling the police.

School Superintendent John Rubio, meanwhile, said he didn't make a report because he believed the students were lying and that no assaults occurred.  Speaking through the School District's attorney, Rubio said he came to this conclusion based on his "professional experience."  He said because he believed the allegations to be false, he was not bound by the state's mandated reporting law. 

California AB 1432 sometimes called the mandated reporter law, requires professionals who work with children, including teachers, school administrators, psychologists and others to notify police or child protective services when they receive a report of alleged abuse.  The law states that “No proof of abuse or neglect is needed, only ‘reasonable suspicion’ that child abuse or neglect may have occurred.” 
Mr. Rubio argues that that "reasonable suspicion" did not exist in either of the two incidences the students reported at the school.

Police have disclosed little information about the incidents, which came to light after a parent of one of the alleged victims went to the police and filed a report.  According to the police crime report, the incidents occurred on April 28 and May 1 and involved allegations of “lewd or lascivious” acts at the elementary school and “sexual battery” at the high school.  While all K-12 students share a campus at the Emeryville Center of Community Life, the elementary and high school are housed in separate buildings.
Police Chief Jennifer Tejada
She thinks there may be something
to the children's allegations and
she is running an EPD investigation.
  


At a May 11th meeting of the Emeryville Public Safety Committee, Chief Tejada expressed concern over the School District's failure to make a report, "My concern is around the lack of reporting for serious crimes" she said, adding, "We came across these crimes not through school personnel, who had previous knowledge of the alleged assaults."  

A mandated reporter who fails to make a required report is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by up to six months in jail and/or up to a $1,000 fine.  Schools are required under the law to hold annual trainings of all school personnel.  That training is to occur within six weeks of the start of school and/or the first six weeks of employment.  The State has provided a free resource for schools that clearly sets forth all the law's requirements.  

Superintendent Rubio, who said he would answer questions from the Tattler only if they were in writing, did not answer a question of whether the District had met the state's training requirements. 


Chief Tejada said she was working with the School District to get them up to speed on their obligation under the law.  “We are in the process of taking care of the mandated reporter issues at the school,” she said.

5 comments:

  1. The children lied? Something tells me this isn't going to work out the way Rubio wants it to.

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  2. Rubio once again thinks he's above the law. Reporting laws are clear. He is a mandated reporter, plain and simple.

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  3. Here is the District’s response.

    Under no circumstances does the District assume students are lying.

    The District cannot share specifics regarding incidents with students, or provide information that may identify specific students, pursuant to both state and federal law. (Ed. Code section 49073, et seq.; Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) 20 U.S.C. Section 1232g.).

    Regarding the District's practices, if an alleged incident of child abuse or neglect is suspected, school site administrators (i.e. the principal or assistant principal) take the matter very seriously, and consider various factors in determining whether they, as mandated reporters, must notify appropriate authorities. The standard for a mandated reporter is to report when "in his or her professional capacity or within the scope of his or her employment, [he or she] has knowledge or of observes a child whom the mandated reporter knows or reasonably suspects has been the victim of child abuse or neglect." (Penal Code section 11166(a).) A school administrator uses their professional experience when determining whether there is a basis reasonably to suspect child abuse or neglect, and takes into account various factors, such as the ages of the student or students involved and the facts (e.g., whether the conduct was consensual). We are aware of no incident occurring in the District that falls into what is legally required to be reported under the standard above that was not reported.

    Concerning contacting the police, District school site administrators call the Emeryville Police Department as needed, depending on the circumstances.

    The topic of mandatory reporting requirements recently came up for the first time in many years in the District, and the District is undertaking a review of its policies and procedures to ensure ongoing compliance with all requirements under the California Child Abuse and Neglect Reporting Law (Penal Code sections 11164, et seq.). In the meantime, in compliance with that law, the District will continue to provide training to its staff on a yearly basis, as it has done to date. Such training is currently provided through the District's insurance broker, Keenan & Associates.

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    Replies
    1. It's hard to respond to this. This offers no more information than what has heretofore been provided by Mr Rubio. It's absurd that you're claiming that you aren't saying the children are lying and then you go right ahead and tell us they're lying. Is it the word itself you find problematic? Do you want that I should change it to "the Superintendent says children are not telling the truth"?
      And regarding the mandated reporter training, I request proof it has been provided as I said in my letter to Mr Rubio.

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    2. Here's the dictionary definition of the word lie:
      noun
      1.
      a false statement made with deliberate intent to deceive; an intentional untruth; a falsehood.
      This is exactly what Mr Rubio is claiming the children are doing in this case. The parents of one of the children filed a police report because that parent believed their child's assault allegations. Mr Rubio does not believe that child is telling the truth (or the other child in the other incident). What then does Mr Rubio think that the child is offering by way of an accounting of the incident? The answer is Mr Rubio believes the child is offering a false statement with an intent to deceive. For the District to deny this simple truth now is spin...and that's also called a lie.

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