‘You haven’t done anything’: NK parents confront school board over misconduct allegations

NORTH KINGSTOWN, RI (WPRI) – Still reeling from the previous controversy, the North Kingstown School Board has addressed other issues that first surfaced earlier this month.

Outraged parents took aim at the committee Tuesday night, as the city’s school department deals with a growing list of furloughed employees over allegations of inappropriate conduct.

Three school employees, including two coaches, were furloughed over the alleged misconduct. One of the coaches is accused of harassing a student when she was only 12 years old.

“You knew everything and you did nothing,” said North Kingstown resident Tiffany MacLeod, who spoke to the school committee.

School committee chairman Gregory Blasbalg said the school department is “facing a difficult time” and said parents and the committee must rely on facts rather than rumors and guesswork .

The new allegations come as the city continues to deal with the ongoing scandal of former coach Aaron Thomas, who has been accused of subjecting former students to so-called ‘fat tests’. He required students to undress completely alone behind closed doors.

While the allegations against the comments sparked an investigation by the Rhode Island Attorney General, Thomas has not been criminally charged and denies any wrongdoing.

At Tuesday night’s meeting, North Kingstown’s acting superintendent and athletic director outlined new guidelines for athletic staff and coaches to follow as outlined by the interscholastic league. This included the implementation of an app allowing coaches to communicate with their athletes.

“If you see a conversation going on between a coach and your child and it’s not through the app or through an NKSD email, I want you to ask your child but I also want you to tell us. know,” said Acting Superintendent Michael Waterman. .

At this time, the North Kingstown Schools Department has chosen not to publicly name furloughed faculty members. According to President Blasbalg, the school committee and Acting Superintendent Waterman will make a public comment when permitted by law.