Young children are often affected directly and/or indirectly by their family’s c

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Young children are often affected directly and/or indirectly by their family’s circumstances. While some may suggest that they leave their problems at the door, young children are rarely developmentally ready to do so. When families are in a crisis, it is increasingly important that teachers provide additional support for the child’s social-emotional needs. This often includes extending support beyond the child and onto the family.
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For this discussion, reflect on the following circumstances families with infants, abuse, and neglect.
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For this discussion:
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1. Identify the circumstance you have selected.
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2. Provide an analysis of the circumstance and how it can impact education.
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3. Describe a minimum of two community resources you would provide for an educator working with a child and family experiencing your particular circumstance.
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4. Discuss the importance of supporting families in particular circumstances. What are the benefits to the child and family? How can this circumstance affect the learning environment?
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5. Support your ideas by referencing the course text and at least one additional outside resource.
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I HAVE ATTACHED SOME INFORMATION BELOW TO HELP WITH THIS ASSIGNMENT
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Many teachers believe that in their communities, with their particular populations, they will never have to face this problem. But this is simply not so. Child abuse occurs in every segment of society, among families who look just like everyone else. In fact, it is likely that one in four teachers experienced abuse themselves as children or know someone well who is a survivor of abuse.
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Although reporting of cases seems to have improved in recent years due to more public information and awareness, it is still difficult to quote reliable statistics on occurrences of abuse and neglect. The most recent statistics on abuse and neglect indicate a continuing trend to decrease over the past 10 years.
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The website of the National Children’s Alliance states that reports of abuse or neglect were made on more than three and a half million children nationally in 2011. Experts believe that real figures are probably at least three times greater. Of these cases, about 60 percent of the children are victims of neglect, about 20 percent are victims of physical abuse, 10 percent have suffered sexual abuse, 7 percent emotional abuse—certainly the most difficult to prove—and the remainder a combination. In the case of neglect and physical abuse, nearly 84 percent of the children were abused by their parents, stepparents, or unmarried partners of their parents.
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Experts are not yet in agreement whether children who are not abused themselves but are in homes where family violence occurs should be considered maltreated (Edelson, 2001), although many child protection agencies already treat childhood exposure to domestic violence as a form of maltreatment that should be reported, investigated, and result in state intervention. Certainly, in many children, exposure to domestic violence is associated with behavioral, emotional, and cognitive problems that may last at least into young adulthood. Thus, teachers should be aware that many children exposed to domestic violence will themselves need sensitive responsiveness. It is therefore inevitable that classroom teachers will encounter abuse and neglect and their effects on families. Teachers must understand the dynamics of abusive or violent families and the indicators that suggest a problem may exist, as well as the legal obligations and possibilities for helping a child and her family. Perhaps even more important, teachers must be aware of their own emotional responses to the idea of abuse so they will be able to act in professional and helpful ways with the children and families involved, rather than merely react with personal emotion. Of the reports of suspected abuse and neglect, professionals made nearly three-quarters, with a majority of these reports made by educators and child care personnel. It is vital that educators perceive that they have several roles in relation to child abuse. These roles include a role of primary prevention—as they model positive child guidance and ways to enhance positive self-esteem in children and as they support parents by lending an empathetic ear and providing resources to develop positive parenting skills (Seibel & Gillespie, 2006). Caregivers play a role in secondary prevention when they identify suspected child abuse and report it to the appropriate child protection agency for investigation. They also play a tertiary role in child abuse prevention as they support children and parents when child abuse has been confirmed.
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The Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act as amended and reauthorized under the title Keeping Children and Families Safe Act of 2003 (PL 108-36) defines abuse and neglect as “any recent act or failure to act on the part of a parent or caretaker which results in death, any serious physical or emotional harm, sexual abuse or exploitation; or an act or failure to act, which presents an imminent risk of serious harm.”
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Physical abuse includes the deliberate hurting and inflicting of injuries on children—often becoming more severe over time. Emotional abuse is more difficult to prove, lacking the more obvious evidence of physical injury. Emotional abuse includes all acts of omission or commission that result in an absence of a nurturing environment for a child, resulting in damage to a child’s sense of self. It should be obvious that emotional abuse will also accompany any other form of abuse or neglect because the explicit and implicit message is always of the child’s lack of worth. Sexual abuse may include any involvement of children in sexual activities for the gratification of the offender, including sexual contact and exploitation of children for pornographic purposes. Neglect occurs when adults do not provide for the physical, emotional, and social needs that are necessary for healthy growth and development. NAEYC has issued a position statement on prevention of child abuse in early childhood programs and the responsibilities of early childhood professionals to prevent child abuse (NAEYC, 1997). Adults who are entrusted with the care of children are responsible for their well-being. When this well-being is at risk, the law enables others to intervene on a child’s behalf. In this discussion, we focus on the professional’s role in working with families to prevent, report, and change patterns of abuse.
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