Reporting Abuse/Neglect

Text from the P.K Yonge Reporting Abuse/Neglect Protocol


Florida Department of Children and Families:

More than 1 million children are victims of child abuse and neglect each year. Yet, many of these victims don’t receive the help they need because their abuse or neglect isn’t reported to the proper authorities to intervene or investigate. These abused and neglected children span all ages, races, religions and socio-economic backgrounds. Child abuse or neglect includes actions or omissions that result in imminent threat of serious physical or emotional harm, sexual abuse or sexual exploitation, or death of a child under age 18 by any adult (age 18 or older) or any person (regardless of age) if the abuse is sexual in nature.

University of Florida Policy:

Mandatory Reports of Child Abuse

State law requires a state university administrator, upon receiving information from another institution employee, to report known or suspected child abuse, neglect or abandonment (including physical, sexual and/or emotional abuse) that occurred on university property or at a university-sponsored event directly to the Department for Children and Families (DCF) via the Florida Abuse Hotline at (800) 962-2873 or via According to this policy, children are defined as people (including students and others) under 18 years old.


Training for Administrators

All UF personnel who fall under the definition of administrator listed at left should make every effort to review the Protection of Vulnerable Persons training available on the Board of Governor’s website.

The Board of Governors has defined administrators as the following high level personnel who have been assigned the responsibilities of university-wide academic or administrative functions:

  • university president
  • provost
  • senior/executive vice presidents
  • vice presidents
  • associate/vice provosts
  • associate vice presidents
  • deans
  • chief of police
  • equal opportunity programs director
  • intercollegiate athletics director
  • internal audit director
  • Title IX coordinator
  • university compliance officer


Institutional Penalties for Failure to Report

If a state university administrator knowingly and willfully fails to report or prevents another from reporting known or suspected child abuse, neglect or abandonment committed on university property (whether or not in a UF activity) or at a university-sponsored event, the university will be subject to a one million dollar fine for each failure to report.  The law provides that the DCF will determine whether child abuse, neglect or abandonment occurred; university administrators must report, even if there is a suspicion.

PLEASE NOTE: In addition to the above institutional requirements, all persons in Florida have an independent, individual obligation to report known or suspected child abuse, neglect and abandonment to the DCF Hotline at (800) 962-2873 or via The abuser can be anyone—not just a parent or caretaker— including, if the abuse is sexual in nature, another child.  Knowing and willful failure to report constitutes a third-degree felony.


P.K. Yonge Reporting Protocol

Step One

Any known or suspected apparent neglect (e.g., lacking food, shelter), physical (e.g., hitting, yanking), emotional (e.g., screaming profanity, threatening), or sexual abuse implicating an individual 18 years or older (e.g., caregiver, student 18 years or older, employee, teacher, coach, mentor, volunteer) and a victim under 18 years old, OR any abuse sexual in nature between children under 18 years old (including harassment or touching of a sexual nature), will be immediately reported to DCF via FAX (1-800-914-0004).

Mandatory, immediate reporting includes any allegations reported to administrators. Mandatory reporting by PKY administrators is also required when any PKY employee (including school counselors) indicate to administrators that they have made a report to DCF.

NO investigation of any allegation will take place prior to reporting to DCF (even in cases where specifics are not known).

 The P.K. Yonge FAX transmittal will read as follows:

This report is made pursuant to Chapter 39, Florida Statutes by the following administrators of P.K. Yonge Developmental Research School:

Lynda Hayes, Director | Carrie Geiger, Principal
[include any other PKY administrators or employees who have knowledge of the allegation]

The following information was reported to me concerning suspected abuse of a child at P.K. Yonge Developmental Research School on the campus of the University of Florida:

[insert any information you know about the situation – names, dates, what happened, etc.]


Step Two

The following offices will also be notified as appropriate, after the DCF report has been submitted:

General Counsel
Amy Hass

College of Education Dean’s Office
Dr. Glenn Good
Dr. Tom Dana

University Police
Captain Jeff Holcomb
Captain Bart Knowles

Human Resources
Kim Czaplewski

Sample e-mail notification:

I am writing to notify you that a P.K. Yonge administrator, XYZ (list name), made a report to DCF today regarding suspected abuse (by an employee; by a student; by a caregiver).

Let me know when you are available to discuss. Thank you.

NOTE:  All P.K. Yonge DCF reporting records and UF notifications will be archived.


Step Three

P.K. Yonge investigations and follow-up to inform disciplinary action will proceed when such action will not interfere with a DCF, UPD, or HR investigation.


Step Four

As appropriate, Captain Knowles and/or Kim Czaplewski will be notified of any potential threat to the safety of the P.K. Yonge campus, students, or employees for review by the UF Behavioral Consultation Team (which is the University’s threat assessment team).



  • Director will ensure that all members of the administrative team receive annual training on university responsibilities and liabilities regarding mandatory DCF reporting requirements.
  • Director will ensure that all P.K. Yonge faculty, staff, athletic coaches, and club sponsors receive annual training in mandatory DCF reporting requirements.
  • A web-based, P.K. Yonge training module will be developed in consultation with the General Counsel’s office to facilitate easy reference and consistent training for P.K. Yonge employees regarding reporting responsibilities and procedures.
  • The Director and Principal will schedule regular meetings with General Counsel, UPD, and HR to review recent P.K. Yonge incidents and reporting procedures.


Many crimes, especially sexual violence, are not reported to law enforcement. Victims of crime often turn to trusted UF employees, just like you, to discuss the nature of what took place and to seek advice on what to do next.  To ensure that students, staff, faculty and others who work and/or visit university and college campuses throughout the United States are made aware of potential dangers and incidents that have occurred, the Clery Act requires all institutions of higher learning that receive federal funding to gather and publish data from both law enforcement and CSA’s (P.K. Yonge Director,P.K. Yonge Principal). The CSA notifies the University of Florida Police Department (UFPD) about any potential criminal incident as quickly as possible.

When a crime has been reported, the location is an important part of the Clery Act reporting.  Documentation should include when and where the crime or incident occurred, when the person reported it, and who was involved.

Under the Clery Act, a crime is considered “reported” when it is brought to the attention of a CSA. The CSA documents the incident as reported and immediately provides the information to the University of Florida Police Department CSA Coordinator. The UFPD CSA Coordinator can be reached by calling (352) 494-6068 or via email at:

University of Florida CSA Coordinator
Major Brad Barber