Principal Suspended Over Dorchester Teaching Assistant Incident
BOSTON (CBS) – The Boston Public School Department has place a school principal on unpaid suspension over her handling of a 2010 incident involving LeShawn Hill.
Hill is currently facing charges of lewd and lascivious behavior after a witness allegedly caught him and a 14-year-old non-verbal autistic teen with their pants undone in a classroom at the Harbor School in Dorchester.
Shortly after those charges surfaced, The King School Principal Jessica Bolt told Superintendent Carol Johnson that Hill may have been behind a second assault on a different victim at The King School in Dorchester in 2010.
Bolt had investigated the incident and determined the there was not reasonable cause to believe the child was put in danger.
But, according to Supt. Johnson, Bolt violated protocol by failing to report the incident to police.
“This is not the procedure that is clearly called for in our protocol, which calls for all staff members to report allegations of this type to the proper authorities so they may initiate an independent investigation,” Supt. Johnson said Friday. “This ensures that experts trained in detecting child abuse can talk to children, identity areas of concern, provide proper resources to families, and begin legal proceedings if necessary.”
WBZ-TV’s Jim Armstrong reports
State law “requires mandated reporters to immediately make an oral or written to DCF (The Department of Child and Families) when, in their professional capacity, they have reasonable cause to believe that a child under the age of 18 years is suffering from abuse and/or neglect.”
Supt. Johnson said she was disappointed by Bolt’s actions, but calls her “a talented and proven school leader.”
“We continue to have faith in her commitment to students’ well-being,” Supt. Johnson said.
All of Boston’s Principals and Headmasters have already begun retraining in proper reporting protocols.