Lewisville Elementary and Mr. Snow

The science teacher at my youngest son’s school, Mr. Snow at Lewisville Elementary, has been suspended with pay for alleged misconduct.  We got the automated call from the school at about 4:30 this afternoon and I just saw the notification in the Winston-Salem Journal’s afternoon email alert (article here).  No details were provided with the phone message other than that the school is participating with the sheriff’s office in the investigation.

This is the second time this year that Mr. Snow has been accused of misconduct.  The charges last fall were dropped after the authorities couldn’t find any support or proof of the allegations.  As I wrote here I wasn’t too pleased with the school’s initial handling of getting the word out the last time through, but I think they’ve learned their lesson because this time they seem to be getting the word out quickly and consistently.  One thing I’d like to know is when the allegations were initially made.  The last time we didn’t hear from the schools until a week after the allegations were made and the sheriff was called.  It will be interesting to see what the gap between allegation and parental notification was this time.

On the plus side the school reps went out of their way to say they are already working with the sheriff’s office so we know where they are in the process.  Unfortunately, because we’ve been through this already we know that the school system can’t tell us anything until the sheriff has investigated. Given the sheriff office’s performance in recent school cases let’s hope they get this thing investigated soon and thoroughly.

FYI, the phone’s already started ringing and the early take is that someone has it out for Mr. Snow.  I know it seems awful suspicious when any teacher is accused twice (where there’s smoke there’s fire, and all that), but let’s just say that those people familiar with the school have reason to think that there might be a reason that Mr. Snow would be accused.  As I said the last time, I don’t know Mr. Snow personally but I do know the people who are defending him and I trust their judgment. 

I just hope this somehow works out in such a way that the folks involved come out as unscathed as possible and that the truth is found.

26 thoughts on “Lewisville Elementary and Mr. Snow

  1. Scott S.

    Jon, I am also a concerned parent in Lewisville and it is indeed a sad way to end the year that was been at best trying and at worst tragic. It is true what you say Jon–“where there’s smoke there is fire”. I think that’s what many people are thinking today with the latest allegation–especially for people who do not know Mr. Snow. My child was in Mr. Snow’s class many years ago– She often says: “Mr. Snow was her favorite teacher of all time”. I am now good friends with a parent whose child is in the 5th grade at Lewsiville, and also friends with one of the teachers employed there.
    I have several thoughts. One, because of today’s “ultra-sensistive” & litiginous environment Mr, Snow was a sitting duck. After all the publicity of the fall “false allegation” by a disgruntled and and emotionally ill teacher, Mr. Snow’s reputaion was tarnished and he was especially vulnerable to this sort of incident. Something like this was bound to happen especially in light of what you said about those out to “get him”. To provide some insight to those who were “out to get him”, within minutes of the staff being told of Mr. Snow’s suspension on Friday (I was told that many of the staff were upset and crying) a phone call was made from a Lewisville teacher to WXII to report the suspension. One would wonder why a teacher would make such a call? I would say that person might be a good candidate for one of “those out to get him”.
    Mr. Snow is a victim of caring too much about children and being too deicated to his profession.
    I also hope that the investigation is quick and even handed. I am confident that he will once again be proven innocent. I know the public has to be weary and saying to themselves “there has to be somthing there”..however, keep in mind, those who are determined to bring someone down will only be more determined after loosing the “first round”.
    Finally, a quote about people who tell un-truths comes to mind: “Every violation of truth is not only a sort of suicide in the liar, but is a stab at the health of human society.”
    * Ralph Waldo Emerson
    If this current allegation is another lie like the one that had no consequence (for the liar) last fall, it is yet another stab to our society and specifically to the teaching profession. For my friend who teaches at Lewisville, they are demoralized and depressed by the current news. If lies are the source of this, then it has so many implications for the future of student-teacher interactions. it is yet another sad testimony to today’s “ultra-vigalent”, quick to judge, and pop culture obsessed society.

  2. Victims Rights

    We need to ask ourselves some questions as adults and as parents: How many times does a teacher get suspended in less than a year with different accusers each time (from my understanding it was 2 accusers the first time and unknown number of accusers this time). No one is out to get this teacher these are not false allegations. I am not saying Mr. Snow is innocent or guilty by any means but all these people are defending him and not thinking about these possible victims. We are acting like a person who is nice, caring, teaches, and plays with children cannot also do bad things; but what about the preachers that have been accused recently they are the least likely for anyone to think would do bad things, so why is this any different-maybe he did maybe he didn’t, but my main concern as a parent is the children’s safety. When people are victimized they are afraid to come forward for several reasons: Fear, Empathy, Respect, Shame, Guilt, Blame and Trust. Now imagine if your child came forward to you with some news that you just couldn’t believe that shocked you and scared you. Your child trusted you with his/her concerns- as a parent what are you going to do? Well most of us would go to the authorities, correct and most of us would expect our community would stand behind us for the sake of the victim. We send our children to school thinking they will be safe but that isn’t always the case-you can see this on the news all around the US daily. The sheriff’s dept is doing a wonderful job and investigations take time, sometimes a lot of time. We need to be patient and let them do what is best for our children.
    Most of the parents from Lewisville remember when Mr. Snow came back from suspension the first time the school sent home a letter but do we remember what that letter stated…that Mr. Snow was accused of inappropriate conduct towards a TEACHER, not a child. If we as parents knew it was a child we could have made decisions about if we trusted this man or not, we didn’t need details-they could have just said “that accusations were made that involved a child/children and if you don’t want your kids in his class we will accommodate that”, but they didn’t do that. We are smart people and obviously the man didn’t get charged with a crime so if we truly trusted him than we wouldn’t have minded our kids around him or maybe we would have minded but we should have been able to make that decision.
    Now keep imagining that this is your family that the accusations are coming from and you see the reports that the parents and community are protecting Mr. Snow and basically saying these accusations are false and calling your child a liar-how would you feel? How must this child feel hearing all this stuff? I thought we as a society were past the idea that someone asked for it by dressing a certain way or by being in the wrong place at the wrong time, I thought we were past making the victim feel like they are to blame.
    A lot of people will not know this but after the allegations were made Mr. Snow was not immediately suspended he was there at the school as was the victim for a number of days, the parents of the accuser didn’t want him there while the investigation was going on, they felt that you couldn’t have a fair investigation if the accuser and accused were in the same vicinity but no one listened and mistakes were made. As the victim how would you feel knowing that every day you would have to go to school seeing this person that you have made accusations on? I know I would feel like no one believes me, that it is okay to do those things that I thought were inappropriate. I am not saying he is guilty but we need to remember that children are involved and this is very delicate and we are shaping our future so are we going to teach them it is right or wrong to tell on someone doing something we don’t like or something that is hurting us mentally or physically.
    Also think about if something happened at work and someone did something you didn’t agree with or that hurt your feelings or hurt you mentally or physically and you went to the proper authorities would the accused be immediately asked to leave and not be near the accuser, and would we react differently when we hear it on the news (it being adults instead of children)? It seems like the children are not protected they are not believed and they are the only ones who really matters aren’t they? Just remember as this investigation is going on and you are making comments or getting in front of the cameras- “how would you feel” if this was your families issue, if you had to be the parent of the child in question, if even after your child came forward they had to face the accuser in some shape form or fashion during their schools day, or if you were the first accusers who told and nothing was done and the accused was back in your school. How would you feel if it seemed like nobody believed you, if your community wasn’t behind you. Also remember what are we teaching our children or victims in general-that if you come forward you will be made to look like the bad guy, that if you come forward no one is going to believe you, that if you tell on something that you don’t like that you are to blame and the person you accused is going to walk away without any remorse/repercussions for his actions innocent or not. If someone does something to you that you don’t like, makes you feel uncomfortable, that you feel is wrong what would you do-as adults we can choose not to be around the person or we can press charges, what rights are we giving our children if the same happens to them?
    The family of one of the victim wants to talk but they are waiting until the investigation is over and the sheriffs dept has done its job (which they are doing an excellent job) they have also been instructed by family members and close friends to seek legal council to ensure that the investigation that the school is doing goes the way it should and to see if any wrong doing was done in the way that the case was handled when the school found out from the first accusations to the last accusations. The family is trusting the sheriff’s dept completely and cooperating and they know that they will do what is best. From what I know the person in the Sheriffs dept that has been in contact with the family is the only ones who seem to really care about the well being of the child and the outcome of the investigation, and to make sure that it is done correctly and precisely. It is the school and school system that everyone around the victim is questioning, whether they do seek legal council or not is yet to be determined but again it is not toward the sheriff’s dept but toward the school system and school. We don’t need to rush to judgment on anyone but at the same time remember our children are involved. Remember by victims speaking out it opens the door for others who were possibly ashamed or scared to come out before may come out now by the strength and courage of the recent victim. People are always scared or ashamed to come forward as a society let’s not make it harder for them to come forward. Please pray for all involved.
    Concerned Parent and Friend

  3. Victims Rights

    I am sorry the statement above :letter but do we remember what that letter stated…that Mr. Snow was accused of inappropriate conduct towards a TEACHER, not a child…that is my fault that was a misunderstanding, it was not disclosed at all on whom the conduct was toward ( I dont have kids that go there just friends of a family)

  4. parent

    Why does everyone insist these are false allegations? Has anyone not stopped to think that maybe the accusers didnt want the public to know, that they went to the school for help and didnt realized it would turn out this way, and that our children are involved so maybe the accusers family didnt / doesnt want to go to court and put their children / family through the drama and listen to the community no one is giving the accuser a chance, yes Mr Snow is a good teacher yes he was good with children but that doesnt make him automatically innocent. they are saying Misconduct nothing more so that could mean inappropriate language or anything and the officials are investingating and these accusers do not know each other, nor do they know what the other accused Mr. Snow of…Please remember children are involved refrain from making statements that could hurt them. Calling the accusers liars is not fair, they may have decided to back out for reasons unknown, not that they are liars. They may have calld the school and just said please dont alow my child in that class and the officials took over from there, they may not have wanted the publicity or for Mr. Snow to get inot trouble, they are my friend and I know one of the families and you guys are not being to them.

  5. parent

    You cannot call someone a liar if they truly believe something/someone has wronged them. If they believe the statements that someone has made to them (in this case possibly a child)they are only protecting what they believed to be write and I am sure they didnt want Mr Snows name released or him to be in lots of trouble. The releasing of his name is up to the school and officials not the victims, I am sure they wanted it to be kept as quiet as possible for everyone involved so that a fair and good investigation could happen. Lets remember all involved and pray they all have the outcome that is fair.

  6. Jon Lowder

    Good comments and points made by everyone. I want to thank all of you for being civilized in the comments (I’ve seen people be a lot less civilized when they comment on other blogs about a lot less serious issues).
    For the record I want to say that my stance is that we should reserve judgment on all parties in this case until the investigation is done. I agree with the concerned parent that we need to keep in mind that kids are involved so we need to be sensitive to their perceptions. They simply don’t have the world-view to understand the ramifications of what is going on around them, so we need to protect them from the fallout of these proceedings. That includes the accusers and the other children of Lewisville Elementary.
    I also agree with Scott that in our environment today it is far too easy to rush to judgment against those who are accused.
    None of us can know the whole story at this point. Some are hearing the accuser’s side, some are advocates for Mr. Snow and are defaulting to his defense and some are likely getting information from other teachers at the school. Due to the nature of these kinds of allegations we may never know the whole story and we’ll have to live with that. BUT, we do have it within our power, and I’d argue it is our responsibility, to make sure that the school system and the sheriff’s office investigate this case properly, thoroughly and in a timely manner. That is the least that our children and a long-time teacher and member of our community deserve.

  7. concernd parent

    I must say that everyone who I have spoked to regarding this cannot believe the way people are treating the victims/accusers. It is like this kids are being punished for saying what they feel is right or wrong, and the investigation has yet to release the details from the first investigation or the new one so we dont know what misconduct technically is. I know the family of the accuser and I can tell you they didnt know details of the first, these kids didnt sit down and plot this against him, they do think he is a good teacher that is why it is so hard for them and for all involved, think about it do you really think this kid and family is having fun and enjoying this, no they have been in tears over the media. The way it happened shocked them as much as everyone else. They are not out to hurt anyone and again we dont know what the accusations are so dont be quick to judge or think its horrible actions.

  8. concernd parent

    I was speaking earlier on how people are repsonding to the accuser and on the wxii website there was a person that was asking for the “names of the accuser and he was begging so that he could contact them because they were horrible people”…I contacted wxii and asked to have this taken off and they did…the victim and family are now scared for their safety by the way they have heard people respond.

  9. Jon Lowder

    Concerned Parent,
    I hear what you’re saying and I have just a couple of things to say/write in response:
    1. The accusers should absolutely not be identified for the reason that there is no reason any child should feel threatened for coming forward. My wife and I have discussed this at length and one thing we keep saying is we have no way of knowing what happened and what the charges are, but to hold a kid that is at most 11 years old accountable for the turmoil caused by his/her simply speaking up is beyond ludicrous.
    2. As you and other commenters have stated, and as I just stated above we don’t have any idea of the nature of the charges. This came up the last time around and I’ll reiterate my statements from six months ago: in the absence of official word of the nature of the charges we are left to our own imaginations and unfortunately most humans imagine the worst. I think the folks running the investigation feel they are protecting everyone involved, including Mr. Snow, by not revealing the nature of the charges, but in fact I think they are doing the reverse. I’m not sure it is the best policy in this type of case to not say what the nature of the charges are, and I for one wish they would at least comment on what they are investigating.
    3. To answer your question re. if I think the family is enjoying this I can say I never thought they were. I hope for them what I hope for everyone else in this community: that the least amount of damage and the most amount of good comes out in the end.
    4. There is still a lot of rumor and innuendo from the first incident that is affecting peoples’ perceptions of this one. I’ve heard rumor that the first incident was instigated by a bitter and unstable fellow teacher at Lewisville. I hate to even type that because it’s a rumor, but the fact that there isn’t an official story to refute it means that I have to weigh it along with other rumors. This is another reason why I wish the authorities would be a little more forthcoming with information.
    Finally, I want to thank you for your comments. Please feel free to do so again.

  10. SHOE

    I do not know any of the details about this particular incident but I can say first handed that I am very aware of how our local superintendent deals with parents and students who complain about school personnel sexual abuse, misconduct, exploitation and student safety. My personal experiences have proven the Winston Salem Forsyth County School superintendent and all of his lawyers will say and do anything they can to cover up or discredit anyone that would suggest a WSFCS teacher or school personnel would seduce a student. If a parent is willing to support allegations made by their child then they had better be prepared to have an alternative education path for all their school aged children because they and their children will not be welcome or safe in public schools under our current public education leadership.
    If any one is interested in facts then visit the NC DPI safe school reports and review all the cases of teachers and coaches having sex with students in Forsyth County. Review the past 7 years and you will find not one case of any high school in Forsyth County ever acknowledging this type of criminal behavior in our public schools. If serious crimes are not reported as required by law then how can we expect to protect our children? Who will punish our school leaders for under reporting crime? School administrators receive bonuses for schools that keep serious crimes low. If school leaders under-report crime does that mean they ratify or approve of these crimes in our schools? Should tax payers moneys be used to reward under reporting?
    Our county superintendent claims that background checks on school personnel are intense. Go to NC DOC and search the names of teachers and administrators and notice convicted felons who have been approved to work with children in Forsyth County.
    Read the headlines over the last year of students suing the WSFCS for seduction and abuse and you will see the high dollar school attorneys claiming that students who consent to abuse should not be allowed to complain even though the State law states school personnel/student sex is a felony regardless of consent. Our county school leaders and their lawyers argue that any child that consents to abuse by an educator or a person in a position of authority is responsible for the felony.
    Our school leaders claim there is no way to detect or foresee abusive school personnel until crimes are committed. I had suggested our administrators visit http://www.mcgrathinc.com for legally based training programs, additional resources and valuable resources on this topic. Our superintendent told me that I was irrational and un-informed. It is very rare for a child to falsely accuse an educator. Visit http://www.sesamenet.org (Stop Educator Sexual Abuse Misconduct and Exploitation) and read the statistics and facts about this type of crime. Our school system fits the description of what are common practices for school districts that do not understand this type of crime.
    As I continue to watch these cases of abuse unfold in our county there is one thing I am sure of and that is that the WSFCS administrators are clueless on what they need to do to protect our children, educators and the tax payers money. Until they open their eyes and ears and speak with common sense they will continue to BULLY parents, students and educators. Can you imagine a bully telling you as a parent that it is your fault the educator is having sex with and seducing your child and if you want your child to receive a public education you have no right to question the decision of any employee of the school system and you are denied an appeal to the school board. The code of silence has to be broken and it has to start at the top. The WSFCS superintendent’s never ending spin on this subject just makes them look dizzy.

  11. concernd parent

    see that scares me (the comment by shoe), b/c the parents are switching the childrens school next year but this will probably follow them amongst the teachers if what you are saying is true. And I have noticed with my friends situation the schools have not helped much here.

  12. concernd parent

    Mr. Lowder, I didnt mean you when I said do you think they are enjoying this I am talking about all the people who are blaming, attacking the accuser. I am speaking of the ones that have made threatening remarks to the accuser via blogs.

  13. Sligo

    I hesittate to respond to the comments above with the following quote in mind: “Don’t wallow in the mud with pigs, you will get dirty….and the pigs will like it.” People who are so dug into their trenches and believe a certain way are unlikely to change their minds from anything I am about to say. However, I feel as though saying nothing is not an alternative either.
    To answer one question raised above: People keep calling the allegations from last fall against Mr. Snow “false” because after a thorough investigation with several interviews by sherriff’s department investigators, state bureau agents along with a detailed analysis by forensic psychologists, they all came to the conclusion that Mr. Snow did not commit any wrong doing. Keep in mind that these were allegations made by adults about their observations or inferences of what they perceived to be wrong-doing by Mr. Snow. It was not children who came forward saying Mr. Snow did anything wrong. Children were interviewed because of what the adults said.. All the children who were interviewed never said Mr. Snow did anything wrong with them. Period!
    As another previous writer suggests, when people truly believe that something wrong was done you can not call them a liar. I do agree with that assessment. I do in fact think that the folks who made the allegations against Mr. Snow believed they are correct in their perceptions. The alternative is that they are truly evil and they made it up, so hopefully we do not have evil people working with our children. Nevertheless instead of “liar” you might call them biased, prejudging based on preconceived views, or maybe just “off” on how they view things in the world. Nevertheless, if a thorough and complete examination of the facts disproves what they alleged then I am not sure what best to call it?
    There are people in this world who because they were wronged (perhaps abused as children themselves) go through life with a “slanted view” on things. Or, another possibility is a person living with feelings of guilt of their own for neglecting or not giving enough time to their own children, maybe in a divorce situation, perhaps a step parent situation, who also view others in negative ways when that is in fact not the intent of those they are judging. This is the only thing I can come up with for the adults involved in the fall allegation since an examination of the facts disprooved their stories.
    As for the “concerned parent & friend” who wrote under the name “victims rights” above, he or she also seems to be speaking from the point of view of a victim. Again, I would wonder if this person faced abuse in their own lives? If that is true, I am truly sorry, but that also does not mean I have to agree with their analysis of this situation.
    Tom Keith, our very own esteemed district attorney once said in the Winston-Salem Journal: “You can’t just rely on paper,” said Keith, who was also the author of a September letter that offered aid to Nifong from more experienced district attorneys. “You have to talk to the witness. In any of these cases, the key thing is the credibility of the witness.” That said, the adult witnesses in the fall case against Mr. Snow proved unreliable and lacking in credibility. That’s why it appeared to everyone who knows Mr Snow that they were out to get him for whatever agenda they were pursuing.
    If the Duke Lacrosse case proved anything it proved that witnesses can and do lie either purposfully or because of a false sense of reality. In that case the accuser proved not to be the victim but the perpetrator of a lie. Of course, that doesn’t mean victims should be victimized again, however they should be looked at with some skepticism otherwise what happened at Duke could happen over and over again–with it sending a message to liars that there is a “pay-off”.
    For example, the “victims rights” writer above suggests that the family is already pursuing legal consultation for possible mishandling of the current case. To me that suggests a possible alterior motive and puts the claims into some question. Are they trying to sue the school system for financial gain? I certainly hope that is not the case, and it is hard for me to believe a family would do such a thing, but it does raise questions.
    Finally, I think some of the reasons that supporters of Mr. Snow feel so strongly is 1) the fall allegations proved to be unfounded and suggested that the accusers had alterior motives. It was not that people had a blind eye, it was they waited for the results of the investigation, and saw the writing on the wall. Secondly, because the first allegations were so tied to a teacher with a possible vendetta, it puts this second allegations now into some question as well. Were these teachers or the people whose claims in the fall were proven unfounded bent on proving their case and in contact with the current family? Could the mere publicity over the fall case have lent itself to something like the current accusation? These are questions to consider as investigators try and find out all of the truth.
    To be frank, friends of the family have already made reference to the current allegation being something far less sinister than the press has indicated. (This is despite the fact that many people have already assumed and the news has implied it to be far worse in light of other recent cases such as Robert Watson) However, I understand from family friends that what we are talking about at worst is something that only might be considered inappropriate by some people. That is not to diminish the need to look into it the claims. However, if we are going to make Mr. Snow wear a “Scalet Letter”, then there are coaches on every soccer, football and baseball field in this county that should also be investigated.
    If the high standard for “inappropriate” conduct is going to be brought down to this level, then it should be applied evenly to everyone. That means elementary school teachers should not allow their students to hug them; (which is a common daily occurrence in elementary school) Coaches should not be allowed to pat their players when running out on the playing field. And parents should not have physical contact with their children while at school. A separation of “church and state”—so to speak. If at school, there should just should be no human contact. Teachers should stay behind their podiums, and stay out of students’ personal space. No human contact should be allowed if we are going to hold the same standard being applied to Mr. Snow. To me that seems ridiculous, but it might be coming to that?

  14. Victims Rights

    First of all no I was not victimized if you read I said I am a family friend of the victim. Secondly no the people close have suggested to seek legal council to change the laws on how things of this nature are handled including putting the accused names out there, they are looking to protect everyone involved no financial gain, they dont want it nor do they need it, they dont want future kids, teachers or parents to go through this ordeal. I think someone wrote they should do something like send the teacher to a “seminar” while the investigation is going on and keep his / her name in good faith until proven otherwise, this family is a good honest family, they are only their to protect their child/children, also I am not sure where we got a teacher reported it b/c I saw blogs about a parent upset in a school meeting b/c his child was involved, I saw blogs of it being 2 children before, but again I dont know neither does this victim, they no nothing of the first and only are out to protect the victim in the latest case. Speaking of the allegations you mention such as “patting” where did you get that, is that indeed what the allegations are? Again it goes back to rumors we dont know what the allegations are and we are running in circles pointing fingers and it isnt fair to anyone involved!!! I say that we need to be careful with what we are saying and doing b/c there is kids involved and your words or actions could hurt them, their families or even the accuser and that is not fair to any of them. Just please be mindful of all involved here, dont through judgement toward anyone, these are all good people from what everyone has heard on both sides, and it isnt fair to any of us to start fighting of this, let the police do their job, let the families on both side be safe and free from hurtful words or actions and let it take its course-in the end does it matter what we down here say anyway-isnt it the one above we need to worry about doing the judging-if you dont believe in that then maybe you think Karma will come around-but at any rate what good is it going to do to us to throw hurtful words back and forth.

  15. Victims Rights

    you right above friends of the family…well sir this victims name has not been released and only a very very few people know of this victim and the ones who know will not release anything so I am sorry for your information if it is incorrect. Also regardless of the accusations being made when a child feels violated it needs to be taken serious whether it be small or large accusations. I do agree there was a better way to handle the investigation then to throw Mr. Snows name out there the way it was.

  16. Bill Mahr

    The “pedophillia craze” that America is going through is sickening. Of course we need to protect children. But, I am sorry… America has put children on some crazy throne that parents are afraid to discipline their children, afraid to admit when they sometimes lie to them, teachers are afraid to confront the parents in fear of law suits, and administrators are afraid to back up their teachers in fear of parents suing them. You folks are are correct: our Society has become “all about the children”–to some insane level.

  17. Scott S.

    “The lady doth protest too much, me thinks.” is the line from Shakespeare and it reminds me of the person writing as the “victim’s right” on this blog. As in shakespeare, She also does not realize that the lady who “doth protest too much” is usually herself covering something up. The Victim’s Rights person went to great lengths to meticulously copy all of her remarks from here into each 500 character box of the Winston-Salem Journal comments to the article about Mr. Snow. It was also mentioned there that it is remenicient of the people who screamed so loudly when the Duke Lacross players were wrongly accused in Durham. We saw there the dangers of victims who speak so loudly before the case is even finished investigating.

  18. SHOE

    The real issue here is, do you believe your children are safe in WSFCS?
    No that’s why I am now paying over 10K a year for my last child’s high school.
    Do you believe this is a wide spread problem? Yes and here is why.
    According to the below research provided to the US Department of education 15% of our students will be sexually abused in some form by school personnel over their K-12 experience.
    15% of 50,000+ students in WSFCS equal 7,500 children. Could this be considered an epidemic?
    ep i dem ic – adj. 1. Spreading rapidly and extensively by infection and affecting many individuals at the same time. – n. 2. Widely prevalent
    If these were cases of AIDS, West Nile Virus, Leukemia or any other life threatening disease, the CDC would alert the nation and prevention measures would be implemented at an alarming pace. These are life threatening and life altering occurrences perpetrated at the hands of those we entrust the most with our children. Why aren’t we sounding the alarm? Why aren’t we panicked to find a cure?
    Researchers say:
    “The best estimate is that 15% of students will be sexually abused by a member of the school staff during their school career.” (Shakeshaft, Ph.D., Hofstra University: Testimony, NYS Senate Committee On Children & Families, 2/12/98)
    “Criminal convictions of Ontario teachers in 1996-97 involves enough victims to fill an entire classroom.” (The Kingston Whig-Standard, Ontario,9/13/97, p.1)
    “Survey of high school graduates: 17.7% of males and 82.2% of females reported sexual harassment by faculty or staff during their school careers. 13.5% of those surveyed said they had engaged in sexual intercourse with a teacher.” (Wishnietsky, “Reported and UnreportedTeacher-Student Sexual Harassment”, Journal of Ed Research, Vol. 3, 1991, pp.164-69)
    “Many abusers are in positions of power or trust in relation to their victims, which makes it easier to overcome a child’s resistance.” (Finkelhor, “Child Sexual Abuse: New Theory & Research”, ’84)
    “When there is denial (including institutional denial), disbelief or placement of blame on the victim, recovery is more difficult.” (Ken Singer, LCSW, SESAME Newsletter, Fall, ’97, p.5)
    90% of our teachers are good people! 10% have no place around our children. As stated above, let the investigators do their job and then we will see what category Mr. Snow falls in. I just hope and pray someone in a position of authority steps up and implements a comprehensive program that allows children, educators and parents to voice their concerns with out being victimized. This issue we discuss today will scar educators, students and their families long after this case is forgotten. That’s why we pay the big bucks to school leaders to understand how to effectively deal with and prevent abuse of our children and teachers. Do you think we taxpayers are getting our moneys’ worth?

  19. shoes everywhere?

    I don’t know, statisticians remind me of Ross Perot and all of his Charts in the Presidential debates many years ago. I think anyone can manipulate numbers to persuade people to believe their side of a story. The fact of the matter is, sexual misconduct has always been a problem in societies–it is most certainly happening alot more in the “safety” of people’s own homes than it is in schools. Today’s media has convinced us that sexual predators are everywhere to the point that people are overly afraid to practically walk out the door. Yes, it is a problem, and Yes the internet has made it worse. Nevertheles, the internet aside, I am not sure it is any worse than it was when we (the folks of my generation) were growing up in the 70’s and 80’s. People are just more aware of it, which may be helping prevent more abuse now-a-days. Nevertheless, Mr. Shoe would have you believe that the sky is falling and predators are raining all around us–especially in schools. There has to be a happy medium in all of this? I am sorry “Shoe” has had a bad experience in schools and is so angry about it. Sure, the school system has covered up some sex scandles–again the nature of sexual “issues”– most people–including families of victims don’t like their names being plastered all over the media. The media and America’s obsession with tabloid news and trash media is partly to blame. Thus, The public and society is part of the problem too, it’s not all “the big bad wolf” a.k.a the school district causing all of this.

  20. get real

    It is obvious that you do not spend much time in our public schools and I guess that is because your high paying job that allows you to pay $10K a year for private school keeps you busy.
    It is sad that two incidents in our school system have destroyed what so many others do everyday to better our society in educatiing the young. YOU are part of the problem that is seen in our children today; education and teachers are no longer valued.
    I agree that victim’s families should be thought about and protected, but what about the families of those accused? What have they done to deserve their name being tarnished?
    It is sad that ONE small group of individuals with a vendetta can ruin the reputation of a GREAT teacher, a GREAT school, and a GREAT community!
    Let’s leave the mud slinging to those running for president in 2008 and stop trying to crucify someone who is what is RIGHT with education, not a criminal!

  21. SHOE

    The attached link is an independent view by 3 NC judges for the readers to read and evaluate for themselves if our school is for protecting children or can a child’s welfare & safety be translated into dollars.
    Other than reading what this link states, all I know is that this case was settled for $250,000.00 in the best interest of children according to what I read in our local paper.
    My experience with our school leaders has been that there is no middle ground because all communication attempts were rejected.
    According to the sheriff’s incident report school personnel seduced my child and our school leaders choose not to become involved or investigate. They also did not properly report the violent crime as required by state law on the safe school report. No wonder some people think there have been only 2 cases in our county. I know of 3 in the Kernersville area alone.
    Both my wife and I have been very involved in our children’s public education at many levels, PTA members, PTA officers, Public educators in VA, CO & NC, State advisory boards, scouting and Sunday school teachers. My wife had to resign from WSFCS and has lost her desire to teach in public schools because of the lack of support and professionalism experienced by the current administration. We have always supported public education and feel it is one of the greatest opportunities this great country has to offer. 90% of our public educators are outstanding citizens. It is the 10% that have a bad impact on a much higher percentage of children. I never expected to have to take a second mortgage and hardship withdraws for my 401K to pay for my children’s K-12 education. I do feel my child’s K-12 is one of the most important responsibilities I have as parent. I take my responsibility serious to insure my child is safe and becomes a productive citizen and member of our society. I could not stand by and watch mine and other children be abused when I had the means and support to fight for what I know is right. Many single parents and less fortunate children do not have the support or resources to fight City Hall (or WSFCS). It is easy for parents to be intimidated by a bully who will try to use a child’s education as a club to make parents shut up. This type of crime may have been taking place for years but that does not make it right and there really are ways to deal with this type of crime.
    There is a middle ground for this discussion but it takes communications, common sense and integrity. SHOE

  22. Victims Rights

    Shoe, when you state this case your are not meaning the most recent accusations b/c that would not be true. I just wanted to clear that up that these 2nd round of accusations by a seperate accuser from the first has not in any way been settled by any amount of money…this family doesnt want the money they want things to change within the school when problems like this happen, they want changes made to protect everyone involved..they have not asked, seeked or planned on “settling” this case, or accepting any offers for anything by anyone, they want the investigators to do the job of protecting the parties involved and find the appropriate outcome for everyone. They have not refused communication…that is actually all they want but b/c it is an investigation everyone has to wait until it is done. But i just wanted to clear it up that this second investigation has not been settled for any amount of anything and the investigation is moving forward. I am not aware of the first case settling either but who knows????

  23. Victims Rights

    I also want to agree with you from many of your post. We have a major problem within our schools and the relationship with the parents especially when something bad happens it is like the victim turns out to be the vilian and that is not fair, they are outcasted by the schools, teachers and anyone else who is afraid to take a stand. The bad part is that these are KIDS, they should not be treated this way, they should be protected, and when they do have a problem it should be taken seriously and if the outcome is that they told a lie then you give the child counseling but never ever outcast the child, it they were telling the truth then the guilty gets in trouble. The things that I have seen is that the kids have to carry this burden of truth with them until they finally graduate b/c comments are made in their files that go through teacher after teacher to read so they are never again treated the same. SAD!!!

  24. Lewisville Elementary Parent

    Sexual predators use manipulative, cruel, tactics to control their victims, and sham adults. All in hopes of not getting caught the first time, or again. My attacker was a convicted child molester serving time. He convinced the prison minister he was a saved man. He was released from jail with a clean record, married and had a daughter. He molested me and his daughter and threatened to kill my family members if I told anyone. I recall I was around 4-6 years old. My instincts must have turned on as I avoided him, and he left me alone.
    I told my parents when I was around 21 years of age, they are still in denial and want to keep it a secret. They are still afraid of this man. 20+ years later, he is still a real threat. He would of and still will kill people. He should be dead soon though, old age kills everyone. So I am glad I never told anyone about what happened when I was a child, I saved myself a lot of trouble. Although what he did to me is in my mind every day or so. The adult world probably would have called me a liar and this manipulative man could have killed my family.
    How do we know when these things really happen? Today’s world is full of professional psycologists asking these kids all these questions. I wonder if I would have pasted their test or they would have sided with the adult world? I am also a Lewisville parent wanting to know that my child is going to be safe at school.
    There are real child victims in this world. There are real adult sexual predators in this world, that are very smooth and manimulative and cruel. And there are very cruel gossips that will stop at nothing to read the story and talk of someone else’s pain. For the sake of all involved, it will be important to find out which we are dealing with.
    If a child has told someone something about sexual abuse, I would wonder why. You know your child the best. Trust your instincts. And if society will not protect your child from this person, then you need to remove your child from that person. I would not leave my child one second with a person I felt was a true threat to my child.
    I wish my parents had protected me more when I was a child from the man that abused me. They were the ones that got him released from jail and brought him home into our family. He was in jail for a reason. He should have stayed there.


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