A Toronto private school was sued over a student’s alleged sexual assault. The school’s name was kept secret until now. What do you think?
This story appears in the December 20, 2019 issue of TIME.
In February 2016, a girl from Toronto’s Parkdale neighbourhood went to a friend’s house, to say goodbye. She had been living at the friend’s home for a month, making the journey from the suburbs to the city to attend a private school that day.
When she got there, the friend noticed that the girl had some redness on one knee and another on the top of her head. These were not the kind of symptoms that are usually associated with sexual assault. They were her usual pains.
But at that moment the girl’s friend noticed that the girl seemed to have a different, and more serious, problem.
A month earlier, she and the girl had sat on a bench in the park, alone, and shared a bottle of wine. It was the first time the two had sat with each other, and she was visibly surprised when the girl told her that she was a virgin.
The friend had noticed that the girl was unusually nervous, but hadn’t thought anything of it. She was young, and the friend thought she was just a little shy. “I thought everything was going to be okay.”
Then the girl began to cry, and the friend immediately put it down to the wine. But then, as she continued to cry, she started to touch the girl’s knee. “I just tried to do something that would make her feel better,” the friend would later say. “I wanted her to feel better.”
The friend said she didn’t report the conversation to the school, because the girl “is just going to have to deal with this the way I