A survey of primary school educators' attitudes towards child sexual abuse in a South African black community.
Sithole, Njabulo Bongekile.
MetadataShow full item record
This study examines primary school educators' attitudes towards the sexual abuse of children in a South African black community. The aims of this study are threefold: to assess educators' knowledge and attitudes towards, and management recommendations for child sexual abuse. to examine differences in the attitudes of male and female educators and lastly, to look at differences in opinions of different age groups of educators. A sample of 155 educators in the Edendale area was randomly selected. These schools fall under the ex- Department of Education and Training and are traditional African schools. Educators were asked to read a case vignette describing a child sexual abuse case. They were then asked to respond to a questionnaire divided into three categories - knowledge, attitudes and management recommendations. Educators were asked to indicate the extent to which they agreed with the various statements. The data was analysed using means, frequencies and standard deviations for each statement. To examine the effects of age and gender, chi-square tests for independent samples were conducted per statement. Results showed that teachers have some knowledge in the area of child sexual abuse and were able to identify emotional and behavioural signs in the classroom, but that they had insufficient knowledge about the incestuous abuse of children. Results also indicated that teachers have a positive attitude towards intervention. Teachers agreed that a child needs to receive treatment from psychologists and that abuse should not be kept secret. In looking at significant differences in the gender of the educators, it appeared that more female teachers thought that young children are more traumatized by abuse than older children, and that more female teachers felt that a child should directly confront the perpetrator. Lastly, results showed that teachers know some procedures for dealing with abused children. In-service training was recommended as a means of helping teachers deal effectively with sexually abused children.