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American School for the Deaf discovers former faculty members abused students

Incidents started in the 1960s and carried on through the 80s.
Credit: FOX61
The American School for the Deaf in West Hartford.

WEST HARTFORD, Conn. — A report released Friday by the American School for the Deaf in West Hartford has shed light on some very disturbing allegations involving former faculty and alumni.

They have been accused of abusing or sexually abusing students. The incidents date back to the 1960's. 

The school got word of the allegations a year ago, in February 2019, and hired private, legal counsel to look further into it.

After interviewing 81 alumni, former faculty, staff and other witnesses, the school has ensured the individuals involved are no longer connected to the campus.

The executive director and president posted the lengthy report on the school website. To read the full report released by the school, click here.

Findings revealed up to seven former faculty members allegedly participated in the abuse -- some of the students would have been only 12 years old or younger at the time. The abuse often took place in the dorms, and at camp.

Witnesses described the abuse to police -- saying students were "forced to kneel on broomsticks, kneeling for extended periods of time, being forced to walk on their knees and being slapped and punched." 

The school went on to apologize to the students who then had to go suffer this abuse.

To move forward -- they are implementing a strict guideline in hiring workers -- such as conducting a criminal background check.

All workers are now required to undergo training in how to report abuse, should an employee suspect anything has happened. 

Over 200 cameras have also been installed throughout the school -- and through new software, reports can be submitted anonymously through the school website.

The school asks that if anyone has any additional information you would like to share to contact ASD Executive Director Jeffrey Bravin directly at 860-415-4206 or jeff.bravin@asd-1817.org

West Hartford police confirmed on February 24 that they have been investigating since March 2019 and the case remains active. 

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