A California Lutheran preschool is closing its doors under allegations that its 4 and 5 year old students committed sex acts on each other during school hours. First Lutheran Church of Carson School is facing a lawsuit from parents of several children after learning of the sexual activities. According to reports, the acts took place during nap time, in an outside bathroom, and on the school's playground.
So far, two boys and one girl are known to have been directly involved, though it is expected that others may come forward as well. "Their lives will be ruined in many ways," said attorney Greg Owen, "And we know there are many more." Investigators visited the home of the little girl involved but did not find any evidence of child abuse. According to her mother, when asked about where she learned this concerning behavior, she stated that she had seen another little girl at school do it at nap time. The little girl also said that sexual acts, including touching and exposing themselves, were a very common occurrence at her school.
Owen, who is an attorney representing several parents of the California school's students, states, "It all boils down to a lack of supervision. There were times when teachers would let aides in the room for hours at a time to watch the kids. During nap time, the aides would be sleeping, and the children would have been molesting each other during this time."
The California Department of Social Services has cited First Lutheran Church of Carson School with "at least one sexual incident that involved young students." Other reported charges include "overall lack of supervision and an improper teacher-child ratio."
The school, however, states that it is closing amid the resignation of its director, who alleges that the closing has to do with personal issues rather than the accusations of wrongdoing.
Parents of the children who attended the school are struggling with the long term consequences of what occurred at the preschool and grappling with what to do with their children after the school closes. According to the father of one of the two boys, "There's no way I can just take him to another school and be that parent that just lets a predator loose. How else do you explain it?" He states that his son has become troubled since the acts occurred, unable to fully understand what has happened due to his young age.
The concerns are not limited just to the three children involved, either. The exposure of the other children to these acts worries parents of some of the other children as well. “There were many children lying there, and they watched these acts. In our business and in psychological terms, that's sexualizing a child at a young age,” says one parent.
What do you think? Are school officials entirely to blame in this incident? Do parents play any role in this strange and disturbing incident? Do you think further investigation needs to occur into whether sexual abuse was going on in the homes of the children involved?