by BYRON HARRIS
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Posted on July 9, 2012 at 6:28 PM
Updated today at 7:11 PM
•Uncut: What’s a good parent to do?
•Parents allege sexual abuse at Dallas school
It has been over 6 years since I worked for the Dallas Independent School District as a counselor, and since my departure, very little has changed.
I found this story of the failure to protect children by Dallas ISD officials appalling. The story of Ronya and Kenneth Martinez is typical of how the Dallas Independent School District often reacts when confronted with issues of child abuse, and what is often the case for the district is to first protect the school district’s reputation, and try to wait for incidents like this one to simply go away.
If not for the investigative spirit of WFAA Investigative Reporter Baron Harris there is a strong possibility that this story never comes out, and the Martinez family would have never known the truth about the sexual assault of their daughter.
I must make it clear that I myself, am not a journalist by no means, but I am like many of my listeners, just a educator, counselor, and parent that have seen to much, experienced to much, and most of all was forced to ignore to much within the school system to remain silent.
The simple fact that when the parents chose to take their child out of the school district because the DISD could not protect their child from being sexually assaulted, the school district chose to retaliate against the parents by bringing charges of truancy against the parents.
The actions the Dallas Independent School District took against these parents was a Dam sham!
It will take more then just articles written by The Watchful-eye to bring attention to cases like this one, along with others such as the retired Principal of Plano ISD who failed to take action against a sexual predator in her school building, or Cedar Hill ISD’ s Principal Tammi Mariani who would rather protect programs such as athletics, and the reputation of the school district then the health and welfare of children by allowing coaches to abuse minority children.
The message must loud and clear, the law must be changed that grant these schools district a cross the state of Texas Immunity against legal action for failure to protect children so someone can be held accountable.
If stories such as this one does not open the eyes of the people Texas, and throughout the country that our schools are not safe for our children, and we must first start by holding our school administrators responsible the care of our children.
DALLAS – Dallas police have issued a warrant for a suspect in the sexual abuse of a DISD special needs student.
There are two parts to this story: what DISD didn’t do in communicating with the child’s parents, and what the school district is still doing to punish them.
Ronya and Kenneth Martinez are the parents of an adolescent special needs child.
In March, they reported to DISD that their daughter had been sexually abused when left alone with a DISD employee in the copy room of Thomas Edison Middle School. The suspect was placed on administrative leave on March 5. He is not a teacher.
Mr. and Mrs. Martinez have not been contacted by DISD since it was first reported. Last Friday, Mrs. Martinez was contacted by a Dallas police detective, who told her a warrant had been issued for a DISD employee in the case.
Meanwhile, the district is continuing to prosecute Kenneth Martinez for pulling his daughter out of school after the incident. Martinez is charged with contributing to the truancy of a child.
The Martinez’ attorney is Jim Skinner.
“It’s hard to fathom that the father of a child who was sexually assaulted at school is now charged with truancy,” Skinner said to News 8.
Kenneth Martinez’ criminal truancy case was scheduled for jury selection Monday. The district’s case against him is being handled by the Dallas County District Attorney’s office, which has asked for a one-month extension to prepare for trial.