School sex probe opens a hot line Investigators invite incident reports

September 13, 1993|By Andrea F. Siegel | Andrea F. Siegel,Staff Writer

Investigators probing how the Anne Arundel County public school system has been handling child sexual abuse allegations against teachers are opening a round-the-clock hot line.

Lawyer Alan I. Baron, who is heading the state-ordered investigation, said he has received numerous leads and spoken to many people since the probe started last month.

The hot line number, 266-3970, allows callers to leave a message. Mr. Baron plans to publish the number in the Northeast High School newspaper as well.

"We want to reach out to students, faculty and parents to assist us in uncovering any problems which still exist in the Anne Arundel County school system. We hope people will come forward and give us their names and addresses and phone numbers. If they insist on anonymity, we will accept the information on that basis," Mr. Baron said.

Mr. Baron, who has two investigators working with him, said he is willing to meet with people at their homes, his office, a coffee shop, "wherever."

The April arrest of Northeast social studies teacher Ronald W. Price, on charges that he had a sexual tryst with a student, started a chain of events centering on the Pasadena school. Price was convicted last week of having sexual relations with three students, and two more teachers have yet to stand trial on charges of sexual child abuse.

A probe by the Maryland Department of Education concluded in July that key administrators knew for years of Price's activities, but failed to report them either to police or social workers. The state ordered the county school system to conduct a more in-depth probe into the role of Superintendent C. Berry Carter II, who was placed on administrative leave pending the outcome. The probe is also to look at how complaints of teachers having sexual contact with students, and related matters, have been handled.

Mr. Baron's probe is scheduled to end Nov. 30.

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