NEW YORK (WOMENSENEWS)–Sexual abuse of students by teachers and staff is extensive in city schools and at least one child is abused by an employee every day, the New York Post reported July 30. Seventy-five percent of the victims are girls, it said.

“It has reached critical mass,” Schools Special Investigator Ed Stanick was quoted as saying. “I think it’s very hard for anybody to deny that we have a real problem.”

The Post analyzed 117 cases of sexual abuse substantiated by Stanick’s office over a 21/2-year period–from January 1999 to June 2001.

When these numbers are added to another 347 substantiated sex-abuse cases that were probed by the city’s Board of Education Office of Special Investigation between January 2000 and July 20, 2001, the total equals one case for every school day.

“Equally disturbing,” reporter Douglas Montero wrote, “is that one-third of the employees accused of sexual abuse are repeat offenders who have already been cited for inappropriate behavior by school officials.”

The Post found that more than 60 percent of employees accused of sexual abuse were transferred to desk jobs at district offices located inside schools.

The newspaper said 63 percent of the 117 cases it examined occurred in high schools, 18 percent in middle schools, 12 percent in elementary schools and 6 percent in special education schools.