In Foundations and Educational Psychology (EDU 2200), we discussed child abuse and rape as well as the impact it has on its victims. We were required to read a book on the topic and I chose to read A child called “It”: One Child’s Courage to Survive by Dave Pelzer. It is a detailed account of his childhood in which he was brutally abused by his alcoholic mother. This topic aligned with E3 – Exemplify an understanding of professional responsibilities and policies. The standard means being able to respond in professional manner and act upon responsibilities and policies. As evidence, I have received worksheets with complete details on the topic of child abuse and the responsibilities of teachers according to Washington State laws.
A child called “It”: One Child’s Courage to Survive presented three signs of child abuse and neglect that aligned it with the legal guidelines for Washington State. The first way is the physical abuse that Dave was experiencing. His mom constantly beat, kicked, choked and even burned him (Washington State Legislature, 2012, Pelzer, 1995). The second way is the emotional abuse. He believed he was worthless due to his mother yelling at him for no reason, calling him names, and continuously telling him that he was worthless and better off dead. The last way is the negligent treatment that Dave experienced at home. His mother made him sleep in an old army cot in the basement while everyone else slept in beds in the upper unit of the house. He had to perform chores under certain times in order for him to even receive the scraps that even a dog would not eat. These three ways aligned with the legal and ethical guidelines for child abuse and neglect of Washington State (Washington State Legislature, 2012).
Throughout the book, the school nurse did a great job in building a relationship with Dave. She built a trust that gave him confidence to speak to her about the abuse that was taking place at home. It gives him confidence and assurance he is heard by someone. In section 10 of RCW 26.44.030, the school nurse acted accordingly in obtaining more the information of the abuse. She consistently noted down information Dave gave her. She eventually reported the signs of abuse she suspected from Dave to the principle who then involved the law enforcement. This book is a great source to refer to because it presents valuable information that can be used in determining signs of abuse. It is also a great book that can be used by a victim of child abuse to find strength and encouragement.