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Viewpoints: Letters / Opinions

Re: Edwards' Mess

By Gigi Pilcher

January 18, 2019
Friday PM


I agree 100% with John Herrington's Letter regarding prosecution of each and every adult employed by the KGDSB who knew (first hand) about the sexual assault/sexual abuse allegation.

I am stunned the the KGDSB had to pay money out regarding if there was wrong doing regarding the administration's FAILURE to report everyone of the allegations to law enforcement and OCS ( Office of Children's Services).

It doesn't take a brain surgeon or even a lawyer to know that under Alaska Law, which supersedes any policy and procedure that teachers, school administrators, and other school personnel are MANDATED reporters under Alaska law.

From the mid-1980's through 2004, Women In Safe Homes provided training at in services on this subject as well as providing personal safety to students K through 12th grade. Some of your readers might remember the programs that WISH provided.

Part of the personal safety taught was for a student to identify a safe person who they could go to and tell to get help. Why the KGBSD discountinued Personal Safety had to do with a change in administration. The same administration that violated state law at least 6 times.

Shame on us, every adult who votes in this community for allowing something as important as the safety of our children in school to be ignored.

It was the administration's responsibility to these children, whether or not they were our students or another school's, to report. What kind of person ignores the law and what is morally the right thing to do.

The school board did not have to drag this out or pay out more money to know that state law, a crime, was violated. It's the LAW and has been for years and years. How can any one justify putting more kids at risk by dragging this out?

Parents send their children to school hoping they will be safe from danger and when danger happens it was covered up by the top administration, & the school board itself!

Shame on them and shame on us for allowing it to drag out.

This brings to mind that the other stories about the administration's action or lack of action in violations of the Special Education laws, both federal and state, have been going on for too long under the former superintendent as well. What will that take to get that mess cleared up ? What about Title IX violations ? A lawsuit again?

We need some folks with gumption in leadership. We need, as voters, to speak up and be heard.


Gigi Pilcher
Ketchikan, Alaska

About: 47 year resident of Ketchikan, grandmother of 10.

Mandatory Reporting
While it is everyone s responsibility to report child abuse and neglect, there are many in Alaska who are required to report by law. These mandatory reporters are defined in state and federal statutes.

State law (A.S. 47.17.020) requires that the following people report child maltreatment:

Practitioners of the healing arts, including emergency medical technicians, chiropractors, mental health counselors, social workers, dentists, dental hygienists, health aides, nurses, nurse practitioners, certified nurse aides, occupational therapists, occupational therapy assistants, optometrists, osteopaths, naturopaths, physical therapists, physical therapy assistants, physicians, physician assistants, psychiatrists, psychologists, psychological associates, audiologists, speech-language pathologists, hearing aid dealers, marital and family therapists, religious healing practitioners, acupuncturists, and surgeons

Administrative officers of institutions, including public and private hospitals or other facilities for medical diagnosis, treatment or care

Paid employees of domestic violence and sexual assault prevention programs, and crisis intervention and prevention programs

Paid employees of an organization that provides counseling or treatment to individuals seeking to control their use of drugs or alcohol

School teachers and school administrative staff members (public and private schools)
Athletic coaches of both public and private schools

Peace officers and officers of the state Department of Corrections

Child care providers, including foster parents, day care providers and paid staff
Members of child fatality review teams, and multidisciplinary child protection teams



Editor's Note:

The text of this letter was NOT edited by the SitNews Editor.


Received January 18, 2019 - Published January 18, 2019

Related Viewpoint:

letter The Edwards' Mess By John Harrington

letter Systemic betrayal of public trust By Mark O’Brien


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