The superintendent of a Virginia school district appeared to admit on Oct. 15 that the district violated state law in failing to properly report alleged sexual assaults, as a state official confirmed that the matter is under review.
Loudoun County Public Schools (LCPS) Superintendent Scott Ziegler made the admission during a brief appearance before reporters, where he read a prepared statement and took no questions.
Ziegler said the district made “errors in our state reporting regarding disciplinary incidents in schools,” stating that it had “inadvertently omitted some information in the past.”
“That is extremely concerning, and we are taking steps to make sure that process is improved. I will say that I have no reason to believe at this time that any missing reports were due to an intent to hide any information from the Virginia Department of Education,” he said, blaming an alleged “lack of oversight” that was in place before he was appointed in June, even though he had served as interim superintendent starting on Jan. 1.
Ziegler appeared to be responding to a report by The Daily Wire that the district failed to record multiple instances of alleged sexual assault, even though it’s required by state law that they do so.
Ziegler said during a June 22 school board meeting that he was unaware of any record of assaults happening in the district’s restrooms, nearly a month after a girl was allegedly raped by a male in a bathroom at Stone Bridge High School.
State law states that reports “shall be made” to school and district authorities regarding all assaults on school buses, on school grounds, or at a school-sponsored activity.
State law also directs district superintendents to annually report such incidents to the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE). But a public database of reports shows at least one assault that wasn’t reported to state authorities.
A Loudoun County Public Schools spokesperson declined to comment on Ziegler’s Oct. 15 remarks but didn’t dispute the characterization that Ziegler acknowledged state law wasn’t complied with.