This is literally what it looks like when elected officials sweep something under the rug.
They’re hiding it in plain sight. That’s usually how it works, too.
For people who cried for days, “let the investigation play out” … this is what you get. It’s so played out.
Pottsville Area School District is actively trying to sweep the alleged “hazing” incident that happened in 2018 right under the rug.
The school announced on Wednesday that it’s completed the investigation into the incident. A week ago, the school district figured it would take a long time. After all, the football team has a lot of people on it. But not nearly as many as it used to, right?
Just a reminder: This is the incident in which at least two members of the Pottsville football team allegedly sexually assaulted a mentally challenged adult. READ THE ARTICLE HERE
You’re thinking … this doesn’t sound like hazing. You’re right. At the very least, if as described, it’s cruel bullying. At worst, sexual assault.
Pottsville “Hazing” Investigation Finished
Apparently, this is a crime in which a board of elected officials and a group of teachers are equipped to handle. At least, that’s what they want you to believe.
At a rug sweeping ceremony on Wednesday, the school’s Superintendent Jeff Zwiebel announced the school completed its investigation.
The result: On Monday, the students serving 10-day out-of-school suspensions for the incident will return to school. This includes all extra-curricular activities as well.
Zwiebel says the school won’t report what it believes happened in 2018. It won’t report on the discipline imposed (even though it has), or the students involved.
The suspensions the school imposed, however, will run their course. Is this an admission something definitely did happen?
Sounds like that to us.
This sounds like a story cooked up in the basement of the administration building. After all, the mother of the alleged victim has told the legacy media she wants to reach a solution that’s positive for the school district and her son.
But that somewhat understandable desire to protect her son doesn’t need to come at the expense of the public’s safety. These are serious allegations. This is something that can’t be handled in-house.
Behavior this deviant and insensitive doesn’t just go away. Certainly, it doesn’t go away after a 10-day school suspension.
It’s a joke with no punchline.
Pottsville Hazing Lingering Questions
The fact that this was allegedly a known incident prior to it leaking to the press and no adult said a word — that’s another matter but related.
Here are some questions to answer:
- What happened that warrants a 10-day suspension?
- Shouldn’t the public be made aware of the facts in an alleged case of sexual assault?
A 10-day suspension is the epitome of a slap on the wrist for something this vile, as it was alleged. How can any of these school board members and teachers allow these students back to the school so quickly?
If it wasn’t that, clearly it was something. Otherwise, why suspend them at all?
The “official” story that likely was arrived at after some intense coaching will not match the initial allegations. There’s no way they could. Because if the school’s “investigation” revealed them to be true, how can they allow them near the rest of the student body?
There’s a cover-up afoot. And this school is trying to get away with it.
Pottsville Hazing Official Statement
Pottsville’s school Superintendent Jeff Zwiebel presented this written statement on Wednesday, Feb. 27. This is a meeting which Pottsville potentially broke Pennsylvania’s Sunshine laws.
Here is what the Superintendent says:
“The Pottsville Area School District has reviewed certain allegations of student misconduct. This review resulted in advisory notification to the Pottsville Bureau of Police as a matter of courtesy, as well as a detailed internal investigation. Our investigation included extensive interviews.
As a result of the actual information uncovered and discovered through the interview and investigation process, certain discipline was imposed and other actions taken. The Pottsville Area School District, consistent with its obligations under the law, will not discuss the specifics concerning the incident, students involved, discipline taken or any other action taken.
The Pottsville Area School District is committed to re-doubling its efforts to communicate with the entire Tide Community our expectations regarding student conduct and provide encouragement and recognition to our students upholding the standards we embrace.
We anticipate that the Tide Community will continue to witness and hear about the success of our students as they display their many academic and extracurricular talents while demonstrating good citizenship.”
We’re not sure if Zwiebel wrote this entirely by himself or if it was written for him. Certainly, it went through legal counsel. But at what point must he, the school board, and teachers privately ask themselves … is what we’re doing right?
The superintendent is at the mercy of the school board here. They pay him and can give him the ax pretty quickly, if they want.
But everyone up there on 16th Street has an obligation to ALL the students and families and taxpayers of the district. Does this all-too-positive solution come at the expense of other students’ safety?
We think it absolutely does.