Evanston middle school staff member accused of inappropriate behavior

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EVANSTON, Ill. – Following allegations of inappropriate behavior, a middle school staff member in Evanston has been placed on leave.

Authorities said the staff member, who has not been identified, works at Haven Middle School.

After learning of the complaint, District #65 contacted Evanston police and the Department of Family Services.

"It’s the appropriate thing to do, to have the investigation and then let us know what happened.” A grandparent said. “Because this is a shock.”

In letters to parents, principal Kathy Roberson said the allegations happened during school hours.

The letter mentioned that multiple people may be involved. WGN confirmed with police that only one individual is being investigated.

Dear Parents/Guardians:

I am writing to share information with you related to a report of a serious nature.  A student at Haven Middle School has reported that a staff member engaged in inappropriate behavior towards this student during school hours.  Upon learning of this complaint late yesterday, the District contacted the Evanston Police Department and the Department of Children and Family Services to inform the appropriate investigative authorities of the complaint and to request that an investigation be initiated.  The Evanston Police Department has come to the school, has met with the student and the student's parent and is actively involved in the investigation of the student's complaint.

On behalf of the District, I want to assure you that maintaining a safe and welcoming educational environment for all of our students is of the highest priority.  District 65 is fully cooperating with the Evanston Police Department and the Department of Children and Family Services to investigate this matter.  The District is also working closely with the family to support the student through this process.  The District has also begun its own investigation of this matter, in such a way as to not interfere with any investigations by outside agencies.  At this early stage of the investigation, in an abundance of caution, individual(s) alleged to be involved in this matter have been placed on leave and will have no contact with students until the investigation is completed.

I assure you that commitment to student safety and creation of a learning environment where all students feel safe and are able to engage in learning is our highest priority.  I will keep you apprised of developments as this matter unfolds.

Kathy Roberson

Dear Haven Parents/Guardians:

I am writing to follow up on the message I sent previously about a student complaint we received earlier this week.  The District continues to work closely with the Evanston Police Department and the Department of Children and Family Services.  Representatives of both of these agencies have been in daily contact with District 65 Administration and have been continuing with their investigation activities.  Both investigations are ongoing.  The Departments are working carefully and methodically to gather information quickly and with fidelity so that the investigations may be brought to a conclusion at the earliest appropriate time.  At District 65, we are also moving forward with our own investigation.  The individual(s) alleged to be involved in this matter remain on leave and have no contact with students.

We continue to focus on maintaining a safe and welcoming educational environment for all of our students.  We have also maintained our focus on academic and social emotional learning and have observed students to be actively engaged in instruction and activities all week. I assure you that the District's commitment to student safety and creation of a learning environment where all students feel safe and are engaged in learning are our highest priorities.  I will continue to keep you apprised of developments regarding this matter.

Thank you,
Kathy Roberson

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