Sexual misconduct investigation at National Cathedral schools widens

One month after the prestigious all-boys St. Albans School hired a law firm to conduct a sexual misconduct investigation, the Washington National Cathedral and two affiliated Episcopal schools that share the cathedral grounds have joined the investigation.

In a letter to the cathedral community, Rev. Randolph Marshall Hollerith said the cathedral, the all-girls National Cathedral School and the co-ed Beauvoir School will be included in the investigation launched by St. Albans, after a former teacher was implicated in having inappropriate sexual relationships with students while working at an Annapolis School in the 1970s.

After being fired amid allegations of sexual misconduct, Vaughn Keith taught Latin and classical history at St. Albans for six years in the 1980s. Keith died in 1990 at the age of 40, of complications from AIDS.

“Let us be clear: This initiative has not been prompted by reports of any current problem or misconduct involving adults and children at any of our schools or Washington National Cathedral,” Hollerith wrote.

“Our hope is that through this investigation, we will be able to listen to anyone affected, to offer pastoral support, and to help with healing where possible,” said Hollerith. “Every allegation will be taken seriously and reported to law enforcement, where appropriate.”

In another letter, Hollerith said the investigation was being widened “because it is the right thing to do.”

“Our responsibility is not only to protect children, but also to be what Isaiah called ‘the repairers of the breach,'” said Hollerith. “We aim to offer healing to anyone who hurt, and to try and repair any breach of trust that was broken.”

The New York-based law firm Debevoise & Plimpton is conducting the investigation.

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