Lopez Island School District releases statement about sexual harassment allegations

  • Fri Sep 13th, 2019 7:16pm
  • News

On behalf of the Lopez Island School District and School Board, we want to acknowledge that our district is in the middle of a very trying time.

As many in our community are aware, allegations of verbal sexual harassment between adult staff members were brought forward to the district. Members of our staff have reported feeling unsafe in the workplace, which is something we never want to occur.

We know that there are many questions in our community, as well as information being shared – both accurate and inaccurate.

The district and board take allegations of improper conduct very seriously and we are committed to having a safe workplace for our staff and an environment that fosters learning for our students.

At this time, the district has placed the individual accused of inappropriate behavior on administrative leave and has engaged a professional third-party investigator to gather facts related to the allegations presented. The investigator is now in the process of gathering information.

We are committed to a thorough and fair investigation. If it is determined that misconduct occurred, appropriate action will be taken by the district and the board, and outcomes will be shared with the public.

Because we are in the midst of a process intended to thoroughly and impartially explore the facts, and one which involves confidential personnel information, we are limited in what we are able to share with the community at this time.

We will be holding our regularly scheduled school board meeting on Wednesday, September 25. Any additional information that we are able to release will be presented at that meeting. Additionally, members of the community will have the opportunity to address the board in the public comments section of our agenda. The meeting will begin at 6 p.m. in the Multipurpose Room of the Elementary Building.

We recognize the tremendous impact this situation has had on the individuals involved, our district and our community as a whole. Despite the attention this issue has demanded of staff and faculty, they continue to provide quality education and a sense of normalcy for our students. That cannot be overlooked and it is truly appreciated.

It is our commitment to work through these difficult times together and return our collective focus to educating our young people. We appreciate your patience as this matter is thoroughly and impartially investigated.

Sincerely,

The Lopez Island School Board

Chris Greacen

Del Guenther

John Helding

Carol Steckler