School Safety

A current background clearance that includes a criminal history background check, fingerprint check and Safe Environment Training via the Diocese of Orlando is mandatory for all employees and volunteers. Vendors who interact with students or are on campus while students are present must also be cleared through this process. Employees may not begin work until they have successfully completed this process. Anyone on campus without an approved background clearance must be escorted and supervised at all times.

The State of Florida mandates that any person who knows, or has reasonable cause to suspect, that a child is abused, abandoned or neglected by a parent or other person responsible for the child’s welfare, must report any suspicion to the Department of Children and Family Services (F.S.39.201). Pursuant to Florida Statute 39.203, those professionals, acting in good faith, who report such allegations to the proper authorities under the law are held harmless and shall be immune from any civil or criminal liability which might otherwise result by reason of such action. Diocesan faculty and administrators are required to review this information annually and have a signed Code of Ethics Summary of Instructional Personnel and Administrator’s Training verification form on file.

Reporting by professionals as defined by the law is to be conducted using the following guidelines: 

  • If a professional knows or has reasonable cause to suspect abuse of any kind, a report must be made. 

  • Reasonable cause is not defined, but if your inner conscious is telling you something is not right, then you likely have reasonable cause to suspect and must make the report. 

  • Professionals must inform the Principal/Director which helps protect the professional who has made the report, and allows the school to prepare for a DCF/CPS investigation and/or media inquiry. The Principal/Director is required to notify immediately the Pastor and the Superintendent. 

  • The person who suspects the abuse must make the report personally.  

  • A School teacher or other school official or personnel is required to provide their name to the Department of Children and Family Services upon filing the report. The name of the individual filing the report will be held confidential and exempt. This is the law.

  • Do not investigate. DCF/CPS and the Diocese will do the investigation.  

  • Only obtain the necessary information to identify and report so that the Department of Children and Family Services can conduct an investigation. See the Abuse Reporting Form, which can be found on the Wave, to help you gather information PRIOR to your call.  

A person who is required to report known or suspected child abuse, abandonment, or neglect and who knowingly and willfully fails to do so, or who knowingly and willfully prevents another person from doing so, commits a felony of the third degree. An individual that is convicted of a third-degree felony may be sentenced to a prison term not exceeding five years. 

Florida Abuse Hotline Florida Abuse Hotline: 1-800-962-2873 

Florida Abuse Website: ttps://

Father Lopez Catholic High School employees are required to have a signed acknowledgement of the Diocese of Orlando Code of Ethics for Catholic Educators on file. A violation of this code can result in disciplinary action, up to and including termination.