Letter to the Editor: Handling of bus incident investigation questioned

Editor:

In response to the March 19 article regarding the release of the Title IX report involving the Strasburg High School basketball investigation: I’m not going into detail about how the report was so poorly written the first time that it had to be amended and still has inaccuracies. I’ll not mention that the “independent” investigator allowed school administration to be present during interviews. Nor will I ask why victims were created when students indicated there were none. The Shenandoah County Sheriff’s Office report clearly indicates only one incident that is currently handled within the judicial system.

I will bring up, however, two things. First, the environment at Strasburg High School and how students feel they are always being watched, afraid anything they do could be misconstrued by administration, getting them in serious trouble. Also, the number of teachers currently unhappy with the administration who are looking for positions elsewhere. This environment is not conducive to learning and needs to be investigated.

The second thing is why would the schools superintendent, whom it is presumed has the best interest of all students involved, release a report, to the media, of victimized students? Why put students through something again that the investigation indicates was detrimental to them? Is he trying to gain the favor of public opinion? My guess is yes, for his own personal agenda, in what he deems a bad culture within the high school’s athletic dept. If this is the case, then why are nearly 20 percent of students participating in spring sports at the school? And why aren’t these same policies implemented county wide if his concern is for the well being of all students?

I am calling for Dr. Raley’s resignation or for the School Board to relieve him immediately of his responsibilities. Also, I would like to see the principal at Strasburg High School be put on administrative leave until the board can conduct a thorough investigation of his actions during the investigation as well as determining the current state of the learning environment at the school.

Greg Jenkins, Strasburg

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