July 8, 2011 Dear Parents: It has always been important to me to keep parents apprised of not only the good

news and the progress we are making at Grove, but also of the problems that occasionally come our way. I wrote to you last about such a problem when one of our staff was assaulted three years ago and we were presented with a lawsuit from the assaulting student’s family alleging improper management of that situation. To date, that issue is still unresolved, although our attorney tells me that “it is going nowhere.” The issue I am writing to you about today is a lawsuit that is the result of an incident that happened approximately a year ago, involving what appeared to be a consensual sexual incident between a boy and a girl. It was carefully planned and executed by both students. As it states in the article in the New Haven Register (under the Casey Anthony verdict), these two students managed to find time during the 3 minute pass period between classes to get to a bathroom in the Administration Building, where the therapists are located, in order to share a dalliance of some sort. The girl shared the information, saying “it was not a consensual act” (even though she was the first one into the bathroom), with her therapist three days later. We immediately notified both parents, the police, and DCF (Department of Children & Families), who is our licensing authority. The boy was suspended; however, his parents also immediately removed him from school. The girl’s mother waited 2days to decide, I assume, whether or not to remove her daughter. There was no attempt made to hide or make light of this issue. My understanding is that the boy’s parents brought him to the police station at a later date. As the article noted, he is currently in a program out West. DCF conducted their investigation and basically said that the issue of “physical neglect was unsubstantiated against unknown staff.” It went on to report further details gleaned from the children, the police, supervision status, the fact that the children had a plan to meet and, the reporting of the incident to the therapist. An additional statement said that “it appears that the Grove School followed the supervision status for (the girl) as they understand our policy, it is impossible to prove that any one person was responsible for the individual supervision for either the (girl) or the (boy), therefore physical neglect is unsubstantiated.” Two program concerns were communicated to us: “1. A youth was on a level of supervision yet was able to get out of sight long enough to get hurt.”

“2. Since this incident, the school did not allow the alleged perpetrator back to their program.” “Additionally, the school placed two key locks on the only two unisex bathroom doors that they have on campus.” Their final summary comment was that “as a result of an investigation, no further intervention will be provided. If you submit written permission from the family the Department will be able to discuss this matter with you.” The girl’s absence from her 4th period class was immediately noticed by her teacher who communicated this to the school administrators and followed it up in writing. The girl returned to class approximately 5 minutes late and communicated that she went to the bathroom. We had no reason to believe otherwise at that time. The bottom-line is that we live in a very litigious society. My belief is that the facts will exonerate us. While it is very unfortunate that this incident occurred, there is no evidence that we were complicitous in any way. We will oppose this lawsuit which our counsel believes will prove to be frivolous. We will also continue to be as vigilant as humanly possible in order to assure the safety of all your children in every way. I have said repeatedly to the children, families, and staff, that the safety of the children is our #1 responsibility. I believe that with every fiber of my being. We practice what we preach! This letter is meant to be an open communication to you as a parent and is part of an ongoing attempt to keep you abreast of both the positive, and the not so positive. This is my 50th year working with children and I still feel as excited about what I do and what the staff at Grove does, as I did in my beginning days. I believe that we have the best program of its kind in the country, if not in the world. We are not perfect but we work very hard to assure the safety and ultimately the emotional and educational growth of our students. If there are any questions or concerns please feel free to call or write. I am more than willing to have a dialogue with anyone on this issue. Sincerely, Richard L. Chorney President and CEO

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