Bixby Parent Defends School Board
BIXBY, Oklahoma - A few weeks ago, a woman came forward at the Bixby School Board's Monthly Meeting to criticize members for not acting soon enough regarding allegations of administrators failing to report sexual abuse of a student.
Now other Bixby parents are coming forward and saying they disagree with this parent.
They say they are applauding the board for making sure they had all the facts straight before making big decisions that could impact the district.
"They don’t have all the facts because the investigation isn’t done," said Bixby Parent, Whitney Allen.
Whitney Allen is a retired Tulsa Police Sergeant who worked in the Child Crisis Unit. She says she sympathizes with the board because she knows firsthand that these investigations take time.
"It is not uncommon for a child abuse investigation to take months," said Allen.
Allen has dealt with hundreds of child abuse cases in the past and says there are specific procedures to follow when the victim is underage.
"People cannot talk about it legally, the school board cannot talk about it, school admin cannot talk about it, law enforcement cannot talk about it."
Allen says she's frustrated that people are criticizing the board when the investigation isn't complete.
"To demand that people who are accused, not convicted, accused is the key word there, to demand that they be removed is so irresponsible," said Allen.
Investigators say it takes time to get all the facts straight and could sometimes take multiple interviews to make sure the stories match up.
"You really have to have every piece in place and every person talked to and every piece of info uncovered before you can present that to a District Attorney," said Cpl. Mark Kraft, Tulsa Police Department, Child Crisis Unit.
But if it does come out that a crime was committed, Allen says she has faith that justice will take its course.
"If sexual abuse was committed or that failure to report sexual abuse was committed then I know that there will be and should be consequences," said Allen.
Allen says she's proud her kids go to Bixby schools and encourages everyone to step back and not rush to judge those involved.
"We have to let it take its course and then when the investigation is complete then we act on the results of that investigation," said Allen.
The Board hasn't announced if or when the next meeting will be held regarding this matter.