Virginia superintendent reviewing allegations against Loudoun Co. schools superintendent

The head of Loudoun County schools said he has not been contacted by the Virginia superintendent of public instruction over allegations that he misled the public on issues of school safety.

Loudoun Superintendent Scott Ziegler’s statement comes after the group Fight For Schools said that state Superintendent for Public Instruction Jillian Balow’s office is reviewing the accusations in detail and waiting for insights from Attorney General Jason Miyares’ office.

“Loudoun County Public Schools is an excellent and innovative school system where students are provided a welcoming, safe, affirming, and academically rigorous education,” Loudoun County Public Schools spokesman Wayde B. Byard said.

Fight for Schools describes itself as “non-partisan effort to recall the Loudoun County School Board.” In addition to the allegation that Ziegler misled the public on safety issues, the group accuses him of exhibiting “disregard for transparency and accountability.”

Ziegler faced fire over the school system’s handling of two sexual assaults by the same student at two of its high schools. The latest criticism emerged during the district’s fiscal 2023 budget presentation to the Board of Supervisors last month, when one supervisor held back support for the budget saying he no longer has confidence in Ziegler’s administration.

The school system commissioned an independent review of its handling of the sexual assaults but it did not release the report despite a threat to withhold funding.

The 15-year-old boy in the two attacks was found guilty of two counts of sodomy and will remain on supervised probation in a locked juvenile treatment facility until his 18th birthday.

Loudoun County schools implemented a process that could prevent a student charged with a sexual assault in one high school from being transferred to another high school.

“LCPS has responded to concerns in a way that balances the community’s need for transparency with our requirement to maintain student confidentiality. We will continue to focus on our students and make their education our highest priority,” Byard said.

WTOP staff contributed to this report. 

Abigail Constantino

Abigail Constantino started her journalism career writing for a local newspaper in Fairfax County, Virginia. She is a graduate of American University and The George Washington University.

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