Sexual assault was the topic for the January meeting of American Association of University Women. Dr. Marian Stephens was the speaker and she explained how serious and costly sexual abuse in schools is today.

She spoke about this from her years of experience as a teacher, a principal and a superintendent. As a retired educator, she is now sought for advice and testimony regarding sexual assault cases against schools throughout the state.

Dr. Stephens said all educational institutions have definite policies that address sexual abuse, sexual harassment and sexual assault. She recounted some of the cases she has dealt with where the policies were not followed and schools were at fault. She stressed how important it is that any suspicious activity be reported. There are severe consequences when it is ignored or covered up. This is necessary to protect students in today’s world.

AAUW meets at 4 p.m. on the third Wednesday of the month at Friendship Hall of Community Church. Information about Tehachapi Mountain Branch AAUW may be found at

Phyllis Belcher is an AAUW member.

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