Freedom House Provides Illinois Mandated Programs for Schools and Communities

Freedom House has been helping schools and communities create safe, supportive and secure environments for students for the past decade. This programming fulfills state mandated requirements to protect children from violence by providing comprehensive curriculum for preschool through college-age students, as well as adults. Freedom House provides mandated and important programming for students. The Prevention Program offers child sexual abuse prevention, social-emotional learning, bullying prevention, healthy relationships, general violence prevention, and safety to students, school staff, and to the community.

Freedom House preventionist have given students information and strategies to prevent abuse as mandated by Erin’s Law. Erin’s law, in effect in Illinois since 2011, requires schools to impart age-appropriate child sexual abuse prevention education for K-12 students. Students learn about body safety, identifying personal safety people, and about their social-emotional well-being. For several years, Freedom House has made presentations for preteens and teens on healthy dating, also mandated by Illinois law. Teen Dating Violence Mandates amend the Critical Health Problems and Comprehensive Health Education Act, requiring school boards to adopt a policy stating that teen dating violence is unacceptable, prohibited, and that each student has the right to a safe learning environment. Schools are required to incorporate age-appropriate education about teen dating violence into new or existing training programs for 7-12 grade students.

Along with Teen Dating Violence Mandate coverage, Freedom House provides consent curriculum to students. In Illinois, the Consent Mandate amends the School Code which requires that course material and instruction must include an age-appropriate discussion on the meaning of consent, including recognition that consent is a freely given agreement in relationships and everyday life. Parents are encouraged to ask their school administrator about requesting this programming from Freedom House.

Freedom House, a non-profit 501c3 corporation, is the domestic and sexual violence agency for Bureau, Henry, Marshall, Putnam, and Stark counties in Illinois. Headquartered in Princeton, with satellite offices in Kewanee and Cambridge, Freedom House employs compassionate and skilled professionals to provide free, confidential, quality services to victims of abuse and their families, including a 24-hour crisis hotline (800-474-6031), emergency shelter, medical and legal advocacy, adult and child counseling, awareness and prevention education, and training for volunteers and professionals. In the past year, Freedom House staff provided needed services to more than 800 victims and families of domestic violence and sexual assault. For more information about their services or to donate, please call 815-872-0087 – or visit our website: http://www.freedomhouseillinois.org and find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.

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