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Myers Park principal reassigned after claims of sex assault cover-ups

Mark Bosco was suspended with pay in August after protests at the school claimed he wasn't taking reports of on-campus sexual assaults seriously.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Editor's note: This story has been updated to reflect Mark Bosco was reassigned to a new position and did not resign as principal, as an earlier story characterized.

Mark Bosco, the suspended principal of Myers Park High School, has been reassigned from his position Thursday. Earlier this year, parents and students protested his mishandling of reports of sexual assaults on campus.

Bosco's reassignment was confirmed in a message to parents from Central 2 Learning Community Superintendent Tara Lynn Sullivan. In the message, Sullivan said Bosco and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools officials agreed a change in leadership is needed after more than eight years. Bosco accepted a new position with the district as the senior administrator of expanded learning and partnerships. 

Bosco's new position is summarized by CMS as the following: 

"Responsible for aligning and deploying a robust framework of resources to mitigate unfinished learning related to the COVID-19 pandemic and driving strategies that impact student achievement and the transformation of underperforming schools during and post-pandemic."

CMS said it has begun the process of finding Myers Park High School's next principal. 

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Bosco was suspended with pay in early August after protests from parents and students demanded accountability for reported sexual assaults on campus. 

While CMS never publicly confirmed the reason for his suspension, an August statement from his attorney sent to WCNC Charlotte reads, in part:

While he cannot comment on the specifics of student allegations because of his confidentiality obligations, he is confident that he has followed applicable CMS policy at all times and of course will cooperate fully in the investigation.

The statement also said:

Mark [Bosco] welcomes a full investigation of these matters because it is clear that they cannot be resolved in the media. In fact, Mark requested a full CMS investigation of these allegations back in June. 

In their announcement Wednesday, CMS made no public comment regarding the outcoming of their investigation. In a message to WCNC Charlotte later Wednesday, Bosco's attorney claims CMS found no wrongdoing by Bosco:

After a lengthy and thorough investigation of the facts, CMS finds no basis to conclude that Mark Bosco mishandled or failed to respond to any allegation of sexual misconduct.  The issue of school staff's duties in responding to these difficult situations is an important matter for our community to address, but much of the media coverage in recent months has not been fair to Mark.  He of course cannot comment on any specific allegation or reported incident because of his obligations of confidentiality, but he can say that to his knowledge, any situation at Myers Park involving an accusation or evidence of criminal conduct was immediately reported to the Charlotte Mecklenburg Police, and CMS protocols regarding violations of its Code of Conduct were followed. 

During his 28-year career as an educator and particularly as principal at Myers Park, Mark has been deeply invested in responding to the needs of students and supporting them in the challenges they face both in and out of school. Mark’s experience in creating and implementing programs and partnerships to address students’ dynamic needs will be invaluable in his new role with CMS administration. Mark says, “I look forward to getting back to work with Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools and welcome this new opportunity.”

In an August letter, superintendent Earnest Winston shared a note online indicating CMS would launch a Title IX task force. Most of the members of the task force would include students, but an outside facilitator will manage meetings and help finalize recommendations. 

The reassignment did not sit well with Katrina Carson, a senior at the school.

"I definitely do not feel like it is justice," she said. "I find it very disappointing that he is still offered a position at CMS after everything he has done, and I know that it definitely feels like we've been defeated and I know that some of the other girls were talking about it and we just
realize it's not enough."

"I do not feel safe at Myers Park," Lily Russell-Pinson, a rising senior at the school, told WCNC Charlotte in June. "I have at least five friends that have told me, 'I've been assaulted, I've been harassed, I've been groped at Myers Park.' It's to the point where I don't want to walk alone."

Nikki Wombwell, a former Myers Park student, said she was raped in the woods outside the school in 2014. Now 22, Wombwell, known as "Jill Roe" in a lawsuit filed against CMS and Myers Park leadership, claimed school leadership swept the crime under the rug

“I was raped not far from where we are standing now,” Wombell said, looking over her shoulder at a wooded area behind her. “When I tried to report this assault to the school, I was disregarded, victim-blamed and ultimately silenced into not seeking justice by principal [Mark] Bosco and the rest of CMS.”

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