Lawsuit against York County School Board reaches resolution

York County

Bruton High School

YORK COUNTY, Va. (WAVY) — In January, two former Bruton High School students claimed a coach sexually harassed them — which resulted in the girls suing him and the York County School Board.

In the suit, the girls claim neither took their complaints to administrators. The former students were each suing for $50,000 for violation of their Equal Protection Rights under Title IX, and for battery.

On Friday, July 3, WAVY News received a joint statement issued by the school board attorneys explaining that the Title IX complaint in the lawsuit had been mutually resolved, or dismissed.

“Catherine Gillenwaters, Keara Mahony, and the County School Board of York County have voluntarily reached a mutually-beneficial resolution to the Title IX complaint Ms. Gillenwaters and Ms. Mahony filed in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia. 

Ms. Gillenwaters and Ms. Mahony acknowledge that when the Bruton High School Principal became aware of the situation involving Harold Strickland, school and Division-level administration took swift, immediate, and appropriate action to investigate and correct the situation. 

Ms. Gillenwaters and Ms. Mahony commend the School Board for its commitment to putting extra supports into place for students with questions or concerns regarding harassment.”

The man accused worked as a coach at Bruton High School from November 2017 to March 2018. He was not charged with any crime, so WAVY News is not naming him in this report.

The lawsuit is still pending against the coach.


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