In a near perfect reflection of The Boston Globe‘s unearthing of extensive allegations of sexual abuse within New England Catholic churches, the Spotlight team has published a new article — this time revealing widespread instances of sexual abuse at New England private schools.
According to the article, part of the problem could be the students’ isolation from their families and the close living quarters they share with educators.
…boarding schools, in particular, present unique opportunities for educators to have close contact with students. Students often go weeks or months without seeing their families, while spending time with staff before and after classes and living alongside them in dorms.
The Boston Globe also found many instances of the guilty teachers being shuffled around to other private schools, rather than being terminated.
The Globe also found 11 cases in which private school employees who were accused of sexual misconduct went on to work at other schools — an echo of the Catholic church scandal in which abusive priests were often moved to other parishes. At St. George’s School alone, at least three staff members accused of misconduct have gone on to jobs where they faced subsequent sexual misconduct allegations involving children, including one teacher accused in a lawsuit of abusing a teenager in Hawaii.
This appears to be another case of institutions working hard to protect their reputations but failing to protect the children in their care. Thanks to the in-depth reporting from The Boston Globe, these schools’ reputations aren’t likely to remain intact.