FORESTVILLE – A Forestville High School teacher was arrested Thursday in connection with the alleged sexual abuse of a student. The female student, who was 17 at the time of the alleged abuse, said Vincent McDuffie engaged in sexual contact with her multiple times between the months of March and April on school grounds, detectives […]
FORESTVILLE – A Forestville High School teacher was arrested Thursday in connection with the alleged sexual abuse of a student.
The female student, who was 17 at the time of the alleged abuse, said Vincent McDuffie engaged in sexual contact with her multiple times between the months of March and April on school grounds, detectives said. McDuffie, 45, is the English department head at Forestville, according to the school’s website.
McDuffie was arrested Thursday, after which, police say, he admitted to his involvement with the student. He has been charged with sexual abuse of a minor and put on leave without pay, according to Prince George’s County Public Schools (PGCPS).
PGCPS is aware of the arrest of McDuffie and said the school system will cooperate with law enforcement’s investigation. They are also seeking McDuffie’s immediate terminiation.
“Any behavior that brings harm to a student will not be tolerated in any way in PGCPS. We remain keenly focused on our commitment to ensuring a quality education in a safe environment for the children of PGCPS,” the system said in a statement.
This is the second case of alleged sexual abuse of a minor within the school system. Earlier this year, a former school aide was accused of creating and distributing child pornography at Judge Sylvania Woods Elementary School. It is also alleged that Deonte Carraway sexually abused minors at the school.
Carraway was indicted by a federal jury and faces multiple federal charges including sexually exploiting 11 children.
In the wake of the allegations and subsequent lawsuits filed against the school system, PGCPS enacted a Student Safety Task Force to conduct an independent study of the system’s policies and procedures concerning student safety. The task force was convened at the request of Kevin Maxwell, the chief executive officer of PGCPS.
“It is our absolute duty to do everything we can to be sure that such heinous crimes against children should not and will not happen in our school district again. I have formed this Task Force to carefully scrutinize every single policy and procedure we have in place. We will leave no stone unturned, but we will also act quickly,” Maxwell said in February.
The task force is expected to release its findings on Tuesday, May 31.
“In response to the ongoing criminal investigation of child sex abuse at Judge Sylvania Woods Elementary School, the Task Force conducted a thorough review of the school district’s current policies, procedures, processes, and practices and made recommendations to ensure student safety,” the school system said in a press release Thursday.
Originally, the task force was supposed to release findings in April but they extended the release date to the end of May to ensure that “due diligence is given to the community’s input.”
“We have an obligation to get this right and we owe it to students, parents and the community to properly complete our work,” Charlene Dukes, the chair of the task force, said in a statement earlier this month.
After the findings are released the school system will use them to enhance current policies, procedures, processes and practices to “further safeguard children from harm.”