DODEA must do more to protect students from sexual assaults, lawmakers say
U.S. lawmakers are demanding that Defense Department schools do a better job of protecting students from sexual harassment and assault, calling for a centralized database to track cases that critics say are frequently ignored.
Provisions in a final version of the National Defense Authorization Act, agreed to by lawmakers on Monday, require Department of Defense Education Activity to develop policies and procedures to protect students by March 2019.
The demands from lawmakers come as the inspector general’s office conducts an investigation into allegations that the Pentagon’s schools lack a clear policy on how to deal with student-on-student sexual assaults.
The IG, which announced the launch of its investigation earlier this month, will also examine how DODEA refers incidents to law enforcement and child-advocacy service providers. DODEA leaders have said the school system has a zero tolerance policy when it comes to sexual assault.
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