Kentlake High School. COURTESY PHOTO, Kent School District

Kentlake High School. COURTESY PHOTO, Kent School District

Kentlake High staff member accused of inappropriate behavior

Kent School District places employee on administrative leave during police investigation

Kent School District officials placed a Kentlake High School staff member on administrative leave after allegations of inappropriate behavior.

Kentlake Principal Heidi S. Maurer announced the incident in a Dec. 9 letter to the Falcon Family (the school’s nickname is the Falcons) obtained by the Kent Reporter.

Maurer didn’t reveal any specifics about the staff member or incident.

“I know that our community would like to receive details of this situation,” Maurer said in the letter. “However, since the investigation is ongoing, we cannot comment on specifics. We do not want to impede the police investigation. Please know we have taken the appropriate steps to ensure student safety and to honor the legal privacy rights of those involved.

“We recognize situations such as this are extremely sensitive for all concerned and will respond with as much transparency as allowed by board policy and the law.”

Maurer said the district’s first concern is for the well-being of those directly impacted by this event.

“One way we can demonstrate our respect and empathy is ensuring the privacy and confidentiality of those involved,” Maurer said. “Let us be an example for our students and refrain from speculation. I know I can count on our community to focus on confirmed facts and to stay away from harmful gossip and unconfirmed rumors.”

Maurer said situations such as this are never easy and all of us experience various emotions as we process.

“Despite the difficulty of the issue and regardless of the outcome of the investigation, we want you to know that student safety continues to be our number one priority,” Maurer said. “If your student is experiencing anxiety as a result of this situation, please do not hesitate to contact Student Services at 253-373-4910. We stand ready to support our students.”

Maurer said as this situation unfolds and as appropriate, she will keep the Kentlake community informed as school leaders take steps to ensure students and staff remain safe and the learning environment is disrupted as little as possible.

A school district spokesperson declined to answer any questions from the Kent Reporter.

“Since this is an ongoing case, Kent School District cannot comment on specifics of this legal matter,” according to a Dec. 9 email.

A King County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson also declined to answer specific questions.

“This remains an open and active matter with the King County Sheriff’s Office,” according to a Dec. 12 email.

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