I myself have not spoken with the family of the victim but Charlie has and believes the sincerity of their story.
I see now at their Facebook page -Stop Sexual Assault in High School - that the district is trying to shape the narrative of this incident.
Here's what the family says has happened recently:
the District wrote it was sending out the parents' Oct. 18, '13
response to the District's skewed investigation without including
essential information we parents provided, e.g. National Parks Service
reports with the assailant's testimony acknowledging
rape. For the complete thread, request all correspondence between Julie
Barbello, public information office, and the parents from July
29-August 1, 2014.
From the parents' e-mail to the district:
- I spoke to a journalist today. The Seattle School District won't even return his phone calls. (I'll bet this wasn't the Seattle Times where they still remain strangely silent. They covered the Title IX issues at the district previously so I'm surprised they are not covering this story which includes that element.)
Today's correspondence with the School District shows how it was
prepared to send out sanitized documents without information containing
the assailant's testimony showing that a rape occurred. Families should
not have to serve as a watchdog for public information requests. Stay
- e-mail to district public disclosure officer:
at 9:58 AM I informed you that our Oct. 18, 2013 response to the
District [‘s investigation] was missing vital information, including the
assailant's testimony that he raped our daughter. Instead of responding
to the information that essential information was missing, you stated
at 2:38 PM that you were sending the document out as is, without the
essential information. You emailed us the document you were sending out,
even though it lacked the essential information we informed you of that
[Parents strongly objected in writing]
you say [on the phone] you were "planning to add the attachments," with
the essential information even though you stated [wrote] the document
was complete yesterday, already knowing from my 9:58 email that it was
The District is not in compliance with the
requirement to provide complete records. . . . Parents of a sexually
assaulted student--or any student--should not have to perform a watchdog
role over public records requests.
It's also another example
of the way the District says one thing, but then when caught not
following laws, tries to find an explanation: "We were planning to add
the missing attachments," even though the District knew that the
attachments were missing at the time the record was announced as ready
horrified" is how one state level education employee responded to the
news that the victim's address, details of medical treatment, and second
hand counseling information were released to media by the Seattle
- We've spent the last two days doing damage control. More formal complaints are in order. We plan to excerpt
some of our complaint to the District on this site. The implications
are horrible for victims who want to report, knowing that their personal
information can be leaked.
I'm hoping to have a conversation on Monday with a district official to get clarity on this situation. However,
- if the district is giving out info to the media in a piecemeal fashion without telling the recipients that it is incomplete, that's wrong.
- if the district is giving out information on details of medical treatment of a victim - whether physical or mental - that's wrong.
If this is the district's idea of damage control, I think they are wrong.
Beyond this case, I hope people realize that this district is in a flux period that could go very wrong to perhaps just okay. New interim superintendent, no enrollment director, pressure to decide on a downtown school, this badly handled rape case and strife between the Board and senior staff plus the other myriad of problems that need to be addressed.
The district always has challenges to face; that's the nature of public education. I just like to think it's not problems of their own making.