Montgomery Co. principal misconduct investigation raises ‘significant concerns’ over personnel vetting, promotion

A report from the first phase of an investigation into the promotion of a Montgomery County, Maryland, high school principal amid sexual harassment allegations has been given to the county’s board of education.

The Montgomery County Board of Education said it’s reviewing the findings of the report from Baltimore-based law firm Jackson Lewis, hired in August to look into numerous complaints about Joel Beidleman, who was promoted to run Paint Branch High School in Burtonsville in June.

“The report raises significant concerns about the vetting and promotion of personnel within MCPS, and the Board is committed to addressing those concerns,” the board of education said in a statement on Friday.

Beidleman was placed on administrative leave after bullying and sexual harassment complaints were made against him from staff, including teachers.

Officials said, after receiving the first phase of the investigation, they will deliberate with the Montgomery County Inspector General and the Maryland Inspector General for Education, who are in charge of deciding what investigations they initiate, when they start and the extent of those investigations.

“We are committed to a transparent, thorough, and expeditious process and to building a stronger, better school system,” the board of education said.

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Tadiwos Abedje

Tadi Abedje is a freelance digital writer/editor for WTOP. He was born in Washington, D.C., and grew up in Northern Virginia. Journalism has been his No. 1 passion since he was a kid and he is blessed to be around people, telling their stories and sharing them with the world.

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