MIDDLETOWN, R.I. (AP/WPRI) — The Board of Trustees at St. George’s School issued a letter this weekend reiterating its commitment to investigating claims of sexual abuse at the prep school.
In recent months, dozens of former students have come forward to say they were raped or molested by employees and schoolmates over the past four decades.
In the letter issued Sunday, the board apologized to the victims and acknowledged that the school has taken all three actions victims have asked for, including:
- Launching an independent investigation
- Creating a fund to support victims’ mental health needs
- Issuing a public apology
The board also addressed what it called “misinformation” about the situation that has spread rapidly online and over social media.
The school’s current leadership has characterized the abuse as a problem of the past and said it discovered the extent of the misconduct only recently.
Some alumni have accused the school’s leaders of remaining tight-lipped about the abuse to protect the reputation of St. George’s, which was founded in 1896. The Episcopal institution in Middletown has about 400 high school-age students.
Earlier this month, the school announced it would hire a third party investigator to look into claims of sexual abuse.
Separately, Rhode Island state police are looking into possible sex-crime charges and other offenses, including failure to report abuse. There is no statute of limitations on rape in Rhode Island.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.