By Kaylee McGhee White, Commentary Writer
For the past couple of weeks, Loudoun County, Virginia, has denied that school board members knew about the rape of a ninth-grade girl in one of the school’s female restrooms and that school officials hid the assault from the public. This was a lie, and there is now evidence to prove it.
A confidential email obtained by WTOP shows that Superintendent Scott Ziegler alerted school board members back in May of a May 28 incident in which a 14-year-old girl was anally raped by a “gender fluid” male student wearing a skirt in the female restroom at Stone Bridge High School. He did not provide specifics.
“The purpose of this email is to provide you with information regarding an incident that occurred at Stone Bridge HS. This afternoon a female student alleged that a male student sexually assaulted her in the restroom. The Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the matter,” Ziegler wrote.
Ziegler went on to say that the girl’s father, Scott Smith, “caused a disruption by using threatening and profane language that was overheard by staff and students” when he was informed about his daughter’s rape. What Ziegler did not mention was that Smith reacted in this way because school officials had just told him they would handle the assault “in house” when he said he wanted to take his daughter to the police.
As it was, the alleged perpetrator was transferred to another school, where he is accused of yet another sexual assault.
This email should lead to the resignation of every single county official who has now been caught in a lie. Ziegler should be the first to go. During a June 22 school board meeting, he claimed he did not have any knowledge of “any record of assaults occurring in our restrooms.” This email proves that he not only knew about the May 28 assault, but that he was involved in the school’s response to it.
The school board should be held responsible too. After the Daily Wire published an in-depth report about the May 28 assault, Loudoun County officials denied that school board members knew about the rape.
“School Board members are typically not given details of disciplinary matters. The board may be obligated to consider long-term suspensions or expulsions and must ensure that students have not been deprived of due process. Consequently, members of the Loudoun County School Board were not aware of the specific details of this incident until it was reported in media outlets earlier this week,” the county said in a statement on Oct. 13.
One school board member, Beth Barts, resigned shortly after this statement was released. But not one person on the board came forward to correct the record and admit that they had been informed about the rape. They could have told the truth at any time, but they chose to enable the county’s lies instead.
There is a deep rot within Loudoun County’s public school system. My guess is officials wanted to keep the assault under wraps to push an ideological, pro-transgender agenda and because they were concerned about maintaining the county’s image as one of the wealthiest and safest in the country. After all, this is not the first time the county has covered up a sexual assault within one of its own schools. It’s been doing that for years by failing to record multiple known incidents of assault in a public database, which it is required to do by state law.
Regardless of their motivations, county officials knowingly put students at risk, and two young girls have suffered as a result. They must be held accountable.