Gearing Up for the New School Year

Youth-Serving Organizations (YSOs) across Massachusetts are preparing to welcome thousands of children in the new school year. Early education and care providers, community centers, after-school programs and other YSOs are responsible for ensuring all children in their care are healthy and safe. Child sexual abuse can be prevented at your YSO by prioritizing safety and prevention planning.  

Review the following Elements of Prevention in preparation for the fall: 

Safe Environments 

Ensuring a safe environment for children includes targeting the five major areas of safety: visibility, access, supervision and communication, transportation, and safe technology use. 


All staff and volunteers must be adequately trained on child sexual abuse prevention at least annually. This includes a review of your YSOs policies and procedures, your Code of Conduct, and recognizing the signs and symptoms of abuse and grooming.  


All employees should be aware of their shared responsibility to hold each other accountable. Conversations about child abuse prevention are the norm rather than the exception. 

Preventing child sexual abuse is your number one priority as a YSO. Your commitment to prevention is centered on the mission that every single child that walks through your doors is safe. For more information on how to protect children from sexual abuse at your YSO, please visit 

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Customized child sexual abuse prevention guidelines to meet the unique needs of any organization that serves children.

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