Upper Marlboro, Md. – Activists and parents are calling for a state law change to help deal with child abuse issues that are being investigated within Prince George’s County Schools.
More than a dozen protesters took their complaints to the steps of the Prince George’s County Administration Building.
They are concerned because they feel like Maryland House Bill 1107, passed in 2013, gives County Executive Rushern Baker too much control over Prince George’s County Public Schools.
“I'm out here because I care about our children,” said Jacque Chevalier, who’d like to see more administrators held accountable in the wake of child abuse reports in the district. “I care about our county. I care about the fact that we have a troubled system where kids are being molested.”
The school district is currently in the midst of an investigation looking into its Head Start program. The federal government recently pulled the school district’s funding for the early education program after determining child abuse present within the system.
Within the last month, there have also been allegations of sexual abuse against children within the school district that are still being investigated.
Despite some criticism from Prince George’s County Council and the Prince George’s County Public School Board Baker has stood by school district CEO Dr. Kevin Maxwell. Maxwell was handpicked by Baker following the passage of House Bill 1107.
Protesters believe keeping Maxwell atop the school district moving forward does not show the kind of compassion or protection students need at this time.
Maxwell counters that abuse reports are up after increased training on warning signs following a high profile child abuse case discovered at the end of the 2015 school year that led to child sexual abuse and child pornography convictions for Deonte Carraway, a former teacher’s aide at Judge Sylvania Woods Elementary.