St. Paul's School

NHPR File Photo

New charges were filed Monday in connection with the state's probe into reported misconduct at St. Paul's School.

The New Hampshire Attorney General's office is alleging 28-year-old Stephanie O'Connell made false statements to the grand jury tasked with investigating the elite Concord boarding school.

Prosecutors claim O'Connell, of Chicago, lied about her contact with David O. Pook - a former St. Paul's teacher who pled guilty in August to interfering with the investigation.

 

Advocates and attorneys who represent sexual abuse victims see the settlement between St. Paul’s School and the New Hampshire Attorney General’s office as “groundbreaking,” and some say it could serve as a model that could be implemented at private schools around the country.

St. Paul's School

St. Paul’s School focused more on protecting its reputation than on protecting the children entrusted to its care. That was the message from New Hampshire Attorney General Gordon MacDonald today as he announced the end of his criminal investigation into the elite Concord boarding school.

A new report details allegations of sexual misconduct by ten former members of St. Paul's School faculty, including David Pook, a former teacher who pled guilty to witness tampering in a case related to his alleged relationship with a student.

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A former St. Paul's School teacher accused of interfering with an investigation into the school pled guilty in Merrimack Superior Court today. David Pook was sentenced to spend four months in jail.

 

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St. Paul's School in Concord has hired its first female head of school. 

 

Kathleen Carroll Giles has been appointed by the school's board to be its new rector.

 

Michael Hirschfeld, the former leader, announced this year he was retiring early, after multiple sexual abuse lawsuits were filed against the school.

 

Giles currently serves as head of Middlesex School in Concord, Massachusetts and will start at St. Paul's next July. 

 

Courtesy SPS

St. Paul’s School in Concord has hired one of its former math teachers to serve as interim rector for 2018-19 school year.

 

Amy C. Richards has been hired to replace current rector Michael Hirschfeld, who retired a year earlier than originally planned. Hirschfeld told the St. Paul's community in May that he was leaving early because it had been "an usually painful time for the entire School community and also for my family."

Courtesy of St. Paul's School's Website

St. Paul’s School in Concord is extending its resources for sexual abuse victims to alumni of its prestigious summer program. NHPR's Lauren Chooljian reports.

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St. Paul’s School will now offer an independent therapy fund that former students who were sexually abused by faculty members can access confidentially. 

In a letter to the St. Paul’s community Tuesday, school administrators also announced that claims made by alumni for general compensation would now be handled by an independent arbitrator, and the school’s Alumni Association has established a new initiative focused on healing within the community. 

In a phone interview, Board President Archibald Cox, Jr. said these steps should have been taken sooner.

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St. Paul’s School in Concord has agreed to settle with a former student who was sexually abused in the 1970s, though it continues to face lawsuits from other alumni.

The settlement, which remains confidential, was finalized in May and was shared with NHPR by the victim, William Foley, who said he was sexually abused by two teachers while attending St. Paul’s School in the early 1970s. In a statement, the school said it was “pleased" to reach a resolution with Foley and apologized for the abuse he suffered.

NHPR File Photo

  St. Paul's School in Concord said Wednesday it plans to create an independent therapy fund for alumni who were sexually abused by faculty. The school’s announcement comes just hours after NHPR reported St. Paul’s is an outlier among boarding schools that have grappled with similar issues.

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Over a year ago, St. Paul’s School in Concord, New Hampshire published an investigation that revealed decades of sexual abuse allegations. The school is currently being sued by two alumni over faculty sex abuse allegations.

And yet they haven’t established a therapy fund for alumni who were abused, something academics, attorneys and victims believe is essential for healing.

NHPR File Photo

 

The head of St. Paul's School in Concord has announced that he will resign next month - a year earlier than planned.

Rector Michael Hirschfeld was going to step down at the end of next school year, in June 2019.

St. Paul's School

 

A former St. Paul’s student has filed a federal lawsuit against her alma mater, alleging the Concord private school did not protect her from sexual assault and harassment from male students in 2013-2014.

The former student, who enrolled at St. Paul’s in 2012, is not named in the lawsuit, instead referred to as Jane Doe.

Chester Irons' relationship with St. Paul’s School didn’t always feel so complicated.

He’s in his 60s now, yet he can still remember the exhilarating feeling of being dropped off at the Concord boarding school for the first time.

"I stepped out of the car with my parents and said goodbye to them and ran off with a bunch of friends I met literally 20 minutes earlier. It was a new beginning, a new adventure and I was very excited," he recalled in a recent phone interview.

Alumni Sue St. Paul's School Alleging Sex Abuse

May 8, 2018
St. Paul's School

We look at a lawsuit brought by two alumni against St. Paul’s School, saying the school failed to protect them from sexual abuse by faculty members in the 1960s and 70s. Their lawsuit calls the Concord prep school a “haven for sexual predators” that has failed to protect children for decades.  We also examine a recent agreement between the private school and the Concord Police Department about reporting sexual assault.

St. Paul's School

Two alumni are suing St. Paul’s School for not protecting them from sexual abuse by faculty members in the 1960s and 70s, and their lawsuit calls the Concord prep school a “haven for sexual predators” that has failed to protect children for decades.  

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St. Paul’s School is now required to report any allegations of sexual assault to the Concord Police Department, according to an updated agreement between the college prep school and local police.

NBC/Today Show

Chessy Prout has released a new memoir in which she talks about her time at St. Paul’s School in Concord, where she was sexually assaulted as a freshman.

In the book, I Have the Right To: A High School Survivor’s Story of Sexual Assault, she provides an unfiltered look into her assault and her decision to go public as a survivor. Morning Edition Host Rick Ganley talked with Prout about activism and her new book.


Attorney General's Office

  The head of a New Hampshire prep school's board of trustees says a teacher who was let go in 2008 for "repeated boundary crossings" involving students should have been dismissed earlier and shouldn't have been given a favorable recommendation.

A letter from Archibald Cox to the St. Paul's School community said Thursday that David Pook's departure was "overdue and badly handled."

The 47-year-old Pook was charged last week with witness tampering and conspiring to commit perjury following a grand jury investigation into misconduct allegations at St. Paul's.

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St. Paul’s School in Concord is apologizing for misleading another prep school about a former faculty member during a reference check in 2009. The teacher had been fired  from St. Paul's six months prior for violating rules governing boundaries between students and faculty.

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St. Paul’s School in Concord is settling a civil lawsuit brought by the family of a former student, Chessy Prout, who was a 15-year-old freshman at the elite boarding school when she accused then senior Owen Labrie of sexually assaulting her.

Courtesy of St. Paul's School's Website

Long before the #MeToo movement took down politicians, movie moguls and powerful media personalities, St. Paul’s School in Concord was grappling with its own history of sexual misconduct.

St. Paul's School

The head of the elite St. Paul’s School in Concord is resigning.

Michael Hirschfeld has been part of the prestigious prep school’s faculty since 1994, and has led the institution for the past seven years. Like many administrators, he is also an alumni, and he sent both his children to St Paul’s.

Hirschfeld made the announcement at the school’s Chapel assembly Thursday and in a letter to the greater St Paul’s community. He didn’t explain why he was leaving the school, just that “the time is right for new leadership.”

The 2018 -2019 school year will be his last.

Weekly N.H. News Roundup: November 3, 2017

Nov 3, 2017

The state Attorney General's office launches a criminal investigation into allegations of sexual misconduct involving three Dartmouth College professors.  A report regarding sexual abuse by faculty and staff at St. Paul’s School contains new allegations against five individuals.  And residents struggle to recover from the fourth-largest power outage in state history.

St. Paul's School

St. Paul’s School in Concord has notified parents and the wider community that there have been new accounts of sexual misconduct at the school.

Eddie Cheuk

New Hampshire's Attorney General Gordon MacDonald recently announced a criminal investigation into sexual assault allegations at St. Paul's School, in Concord. We discussed recent local stories involving private schools such as St. Paul's, as well as the broader culture in elite boarding schools that may contribute to this issue.  And we talked with a N.H. lawmaker who says she'll be working on changing laws to better protect victims of sexual violence.  


Todd Bookman/NHPR

Seventy years after his death, the life and accomplishments of John Gilbert Winant were honored Friday during a statue dedication ceremony in Concord.

Complete with a military band, prominent politicians and no shortage of cameras, it was just the kind of show Winant would have hated.

NBC/Today Show

A teen who was sexually assaulted during a game of sexual conquest at a prestigious New Hampshire prep school is writing a book.

Chessy Prout made her first public comments about the assault last year, describing what happened to her at St. Paul's School in Concord in 2014 when she was a 15-year-old freshman.

Prout's memoir, "I Have The Right To: A High School Survivor's Story of Sexual Assault, Justice, and Hope," is being co-written with Boston Globe journalist Jenn Abelson. It will be published in March.

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Saint Paul’s School alumni and families will gather on campus for their annual reunion and graduation ceremonies this weekend, and the school is using the occasion as an opportunity to reflect on recent revelations about decades-old sexual abuse by faculty and staff.

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