A Toronto private school was sued over a student’s alleged sexual assault. The school’s name was kept secret until now, and students and parents fear that the judge’s decision will set a dangerous precedent.
In a lengthy news release on December 21, 2019, the Crown announced their claim against the Toronto Catholic District School Board “(TCDSB)” for failing to protect the safety of the “Jane Doe” student, who was allegedly sexually assaulted on the steps of the school in 2012.
“The decision is a step in the right direction,” Toronto Catholic District School Board (TCDSB) President Peter Power said.
“We believe that the school board acted appropriately in response to the complaint and that the decision will be a relief for the community.”
The case is the second high profile case involving Toronto’s Catholic school district. The latest was that of a former teacher who was accused of sexually assaulting students under his care.
But there have also been a multitude of other cases involving the school system as well, involving issues ranging from sexual assault and harassment to bullying and mental health issues, to a student being disciplined for allegedly posting a sexually explicit photo of herself on Facebook.
However, in their release, the Crown lawyers are also suggesting a number of positive changes to have been brought about in the last few years, such as more resources and training for schools, updated sexual education materials, and a review of the ways schools respond to sexual offences.
“The decision does not affect any of the complaints still outstanding.
While the decision addresses the complaints brought by the complainant and other complainants, no one will be allowed to use this decision to file a complaint.”
The release goes on to say that students who were found to be sexual-assault or a sex offender and whose names appeared in the school board’s database had their records removed.
The decision, says the release, “does not affect” the school board’s ability to remove names “if it decides that the information in the database is no longer reliable or accurate.”
The decision comes a day after the former teacher was sentenced to 12 months in prison, after pleading guilty to six counts of sexual assault involving five former students.
The student whose identity was protected, who is now in her 30’s, is a