Watch CBS News

Redlands Unified agrees to CA DOJ oversight after sexual abuse investigation

CA DOJ sets up oversight protocol for sexual abuse complaints at Redlands schools
CA DOJ sets up oversight protocol for sexual abuse complaints at Redlands schools 02:09

The Redlands Unified School District on Wednesday agreed to an oversight protocol with the California Department of Justice after facing accusations of not acting on sexual assault complaints issued by students.

"The Redlands Unified School District commends the Department of Justice for their thorough review and collaborative efforts in finalizing this agreement," Superintendent Juan Cabral said. "The District is fully committed to complying with the terms of the judgment."  

The agreement comes after the Department of Justice expanded its investigation into the district's policies and practices to determine if they protect students from sexual assault, harassment and abuse in October 2022. The investigation uncovered immense inadequacies in the way the district prevents and responds to allegations of sexual misconduct perpetrated against students. 

The CA DOJ outlined the laws and regulations the district failed to follow to protect kids. First, it failed to hire, train and provide oversight for a coordinator who's job it is to ensure the district is following laws and regulations designed to protect students from this kind of abuse. Second, RUSD failed to address the allegations in a legally adequate manner. Next, administrators failed to establish and announce procedures and policies dictating the district's response to sexual misconduct and abuse of students. Finally, it failed to promote its notice of nondiscrimination and written policy about sexual harassment. 

"As a parent, and as Attorney General, protecting our kids is my most important job," Attorney General Rob Bonta said. "It is absolutely unacceptable that any child should be put at risk of sexual harassment or abuse while at school, where they should be free to learn and grow in a safe and supportive environment."

As part of the agreement, RUSD will fix the issues investigators discovered while also handing over all oral and written complaints of sexual harassment, assault and abuse to the DOJ. The district will also be required to send their responses to all complaints to the state authorities. 

Additionally, the state required RUSD to provide age-appropriate annual training to students and parents on reporting sexual misconduct.  

"California law guarantees each and every child the right to a public education free from sexual harassment, assault, and abuse, and today's stipulated judgment holds Redlands Unified accountable for failing to abide by the laws in place to protect our kids," Bonta said.   

Outrage about the district's shortfalls came after a CBS News documentary revealed that 50 students have accused more than 25 teachers of sexual misconduct between 1999-2022. Of those cases, two of which happened in 2022, 11 were investigated by police, which resulted in the arrest of nine teachers.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.