Sex Abuse in LAUSD

Sexual Abuse Claims against the Los Angeles Unified School District

California child sexual abuse attorneys fighting for LA students

Over the past few years, the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) has paid out at least $327 million in sexual abuse, assault, and harassment claims. These claims all involved the abuse of students, committed by teachers, coaches, supervisors, substitutes, and other LAUSD employees and contractors. Taylor & Ring has obtained verdicts and settlements on behalf of students and families whose lives were changed forever by an act of child abuse by the LAUSD. Call us for help today.

How bad is LAUSD?

The sad truth is, no one really knows. As of 2016, the Los Angeles Times reports, the national database that tracks teacher misconduct was “missing at least 20 cases of California teachers whose licenses were revoked and more than 800 who faced lesser forms of discipline since 1990…. At least two teachers had their licenses revoked in California and went on to teach in other states.” We do not know how many of those 20 were from LAUSD. We also don’t know how many more might have “gone missing” between 2016 and today.

We tried to search the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing (CCTC) for a list of LAUSD educators who have been disciplined, or who have lost their licenses, but no such database existed there, either.

Here is what we do know:

  • LAUSD has paid our hundreds of millions of dollars in settlements and verdicts.
  • LAUSD has repeatedly “passed the trash,” moving problematic teachers from school to school – or simply letting them resign, without any further investigation or problems.
  • LAUSD has been on the losing end of a number of child sexual assault lawsuits filed by our firm.

LAUSD’s rules for employee misconduct

Per their own guidelines, “certain” sex offenses are grounds for immediate termination in LAUSD. Not all sex offenses – only “certain” ones. Among their own list of grounds, the following could be applicable:

  • Immoral conduct
  • Egregious misconduct (child abuse)
  • Unprofessional conduct
  • Dishonesty
  • Evident unfitness for service
  • Conviction for moral turpitude felony

Being charged with a crime, by the way, does not lead to immediate termination; instead, the employee is placed on leave. If the employee is convicted, he or she must be dismissed. If a teacher or other employee engages in any of these activities, he or she “remains in paid status and is dismissed after 30 days unless [he or she] demands a hearing.”

And it that was not bad enough, it is LAUSD policy that, in cases where district officials may be implicated as a possible child abuser, to “temporarily reassign” said alleged abuser.

In short: if a teacher sexually abuses your child, he or she will be put on leave. If a district official does it, he or she will simply be temporarily reassigned.

Failing to report sexual assault and other forms of child abuse

Almost everyone employed by LAUSD is a mandated reporter. As such, they owe a duty of care to any and all potential and known child sex assault victims. If they fail to report, LAUSD can dismiss the employee.

Who can I sue in the LAUSD if my child was sexually assaulted?

If a student is abused, harassed, or exploited at any school in the LAUSD, there could be multiple liable parties:

What if my child was abused on a school trip?

If your child was off of school grounds when the sexual assault occurred, the LAUSD, the school, and the trip supervisor may all be held liable. They owe your child a duty of care to properly supervisor and monitor what happens on trips.

What if my child was abused after school hours?

Schools have a responsibility to properly conduct background checks and vetting on all groups and individuals who wish to use the school: before, during, and after school hours. If, for example, your child was sexually harassed or assaulted by another student during after-care, or by a coaching assistant, both the school and the LAUSD can be held to account.

Seeking justice for students abused at school or during school activities

Our attorneys are fierce advocates who regularly achieve multi-million-dollar settlements for child sexual assault victims and their families, and have been instrumental in changing policies at schools. Our Los Angeles school abuse lawyers helped secure a $30 million settlement on behalf of the victims of Mark Berndt, a former teacher at LAUSD’s Miramonte Elementary School who sexually abused 58 of his students. Our attorneys collaborated with local firms to resolve the cases quickly and without litigation, allowing the children to avoid further emotional stress and move on with their lives.

In another Los Angeles school sex abuse case, Taylor & Ring ensured that Joseph Thomas Koetters, a teacher at Marlborough School who had sexual relationships with two of his students, was sentenced to jail. Koetters also was required to register as a sex offender, preventing him from coming in contact with other potential victims.

Taylor & Ring will handle your matter with the same dedication and compassion, making sure that you are satisfied with the restitution and justice you receive.

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Speak with our experienced California sexual assault lawyers as soon as possible

If you or a loved one has experienced sexual assault, harassment or personal injury at a school in the LAUSD, call Taylor & Ring at 310-776-6390 or complete our contact form to arrange a free, confidential consultation. One of our experienced and compassionate Los Angeles sexual assault lawyers will listen to you, explain your rights, and explore your possible legal remedies.

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