Reporting code & reporting duty

The purpose of this obligation is to intervene more quickly and adequately in the event of suspicions of domestic violence and child abuse.

1. The Reporting Code

Educational institutions are required by law to have a Reporting Code for Child Abuse and Domestic Violence. The purpose of this obligation is to intervene more quickly and adequately in the event of suspicions of domestic violence and child abuse. The scope of the code therefore extends to the private and domestic sphere.

Because all employees of Esprit Schools are required to observe the Reporting Code described below, they also need to know what to do in case of suspected domestic violence or child abuse.

The individual schools have also taken specific measures as part of this Reporting Code. Every school has an attention officer, for example, who is aware of the Reporting Code and provides advice on suspected domestic violence and child abuse and the proper course of action.

The Executive Board of Esprit Schools has adopted the following Reporting Code and declares the attached step-by-step plan and written assessment framework (annexes 1 and 2) applicable to all Esprit schools.

The Executive Board expects employees of Esprit Schools to be alert to potential signs of domestic violence in all contacts with students and their parents and to respond effectively to these signs. Go to for lists of potential signs of domestic violence and child abuse. Caution is advised. One or two signs of child abuse are not necessarily grounds for suspecting child abuse.

Employees who suspect domestic violence or child abuse have to carefully weigh whether

it is necessary to make a report to Veilig Thuis or whether they can mobilize support and assistance themselves (to a sufficient extent).
Employees are required to use the assessment framework attached to this e-mail in making this decision. This has been a legal requirement since January 1, 2019.


Domestic violence is physical, mental or sexual violence or the threat thereof by someone from the domestic sphere. The victim's domestic sphere includes: current and former partners, family members, relatives and housemates.

Child abuse is any form of threatening or violent interaction of a physical, psychological or sexual nature with a minor. This includes actively or passively violent interaction on the part of the parents or other persons with whom the minor is in a relationship of dependence or non-freedom, and as a result of which the minor has suffered or may suffer serious harm in the form of physical or psychological injury.

Employees are professionals who work for Esprit Schools and who provide care, guidance or another form of support to students in this context.

Students are the children to whom employees provide their professional services.

How should employees act in case of signals or suspicions of domestic violence or child abuse?

They should follow the step-by-step plan below:

  • Step 1: Mapping signs;
  • Step 2: Consulting with a colleague and possibly consulting Veilig Thuis (the advisory and reporting point for domestic violence and child abuse);
  • Step 3: Conversation with the parent(s)/carer(s);
  • Step 4: Using the assessment framework, we can determine whether the child is structurally or temporarily unsafe. When in doubt, always consult Veilig Thuis;
  • Step 5: If the child is structurally or temporarily unsafe, notify Veilig Thuis.

The employee must immediately inform the school leader of the steps they intend to take.

The school leader will then inform the Executive Board about suspected domestic violence or child abuse / whether a report has been made to Veilig Thuis.

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2. Reporting duty

The Act Combating Sexual Abuse and Sexual Harassment in Education (Wet Bestrijding seksueel misbruik en seksuele intimidatie in het onderwijs) has been in force since 1999. The purpose of the law is to prevent sexual offenses from being solved by schools, which could lead to an employee of the same school committing a sexual offense again. 

What are sex crimes? 

  • sexual abuse;
  • assault;
  • rape;
  • grooming; 
  • indecent behaviour;
  • possessing, viewing or disseminating child pornography; 
  • a sexual relationship with a minor.

To which situations does the law apply?

The acts must have taken place between an employee of the educational institution and a minor student, within or in connection with the school situation. This includes your own school as well as any of the other Esprit schools.

Who are mandated reporters?

All school employees have a duty to report, including staff members and non-employed persons working for the school, such as interns, cleaning staff, temporary workers and volunteers.

When are you required to report?

Under this law, all employees who suspect or receive information about a possible sexual offense committed by an employee of the school against a minor student must immediately contact the school principal or the Executive Board. The prescribed procedure for reporting sexual abuse to the competent authority is included in Appendix 3.

Who should mandated reporters report to?

If you know or suspect that an employee has committed a sexual offence, you must report this immediately to the school principal or to the Executive Board. The school principal will then notify the Executive Board, who will file a police report.

Esprit also has an Integrity Code of Conduct and an Appendix: Integrity Code of Conduct. Everyone working in or around Esprit premises is required to observe these codes, which describe how we want to people to behave towards each other and others - students, parents, third parties.


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