Auditor general to investigate allegations of abuse at Glen Mills Schools

Steve Tawa
March 11, 2019 - 2:28 pm
Eugene DePasquale

Tony Romeo/KYW Newsradio

Categories: 

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — Following numerous calls for independent investigations, Pennsylvania Auditor General Eugene DePasquale said his auditors will officially look into how the Glen Mills Schools operates, following allegations of physical abuse and administration cover-ups.

Reports of abuse surfaced Feb. 25 at the privately-run, state-licensed reform school — the oldest in the country — and more than 50 young boys have since been pulled out.

READ: Philly yanking its kids from Glen Mills Schools after reports of abuse, cover-ups

"The alleged abuse of students and long-running culture of secrecy at Glen Mills shocks the conscience," said DePasquale, whose office will look over its books since the institution receives public funds.

DePasquale wants to know Glen Mills' policies and procedures to prevent abuse, and the ways in which students and their families report incidents of abuse. He also wants to know the extent to which Glen Mills complies with background clearances for staff members in contact with students.

The Pennsylvania Department of Human Services, which licenses Glen Mills, has also launched its own investigation, as well as the Delaware County District Attorney's Office.

DePasquale said he will share his office's findings with DHS because "protecting kids from abuse is job one." 

READ: Officials call for deeper investigation into Glen Mills abuse allegations

Last week, several members of Philadelphia City Council, state representatives and child abuse advocates called for independent investigations on behalf of the Pennsylvania attorney general and the U.S. attorney to investigate decades of institutionalized alleged abuse.

Philadelphia has pulled more than 50 of its placements of students, and the city, as well as Delaware County and others, put a moratorium on sending any more juveniles to Glen Mills. Other jurisdictions are doing the same.

DePasquale said the school will receive a formal engagement letter outlining the objectives of his audit.

Glen Mills has denied any wrongdoing.