Taft employees return after hazing probe

WOODLAND HILLS, Calif. In front of the school off the busy Ventura Boulevard, a sign reads, "Taft welcomes back our staff, never a doubt!"

The school's principal, assistant principal, a dean, two teachers and a school police officer were removed from their jobs and reassigned to nonschool position last month.

They were under investigation for allegedly not reporting a hazing incident involving the boys volleyball team in a timely manner.

A source close to the case told Eyewitness News that older boys on the volleyball team allegedly threw younger teammates in the shower fully clothed and waved a sex toy at them.

School police heard about the hazing incident on January 30, but district officials didn't know about it until almost three weeks later.

Superintendent /*Ramon Cortines*/ met with the six employees, and said after talking with them, he's confident they'll support Taft High School's tradition of excellence.

"I want you to know that we have taken steps to make sure that all employees know the procedure and requirements for reporting either the suspicion of or actual issues that involve the health and welfare of young people," Cortines said in a statement.

"The safety and security of all students must come first, but this matter is closed."

Many students at Taft High School felt the district overreacted.

"You know, they didn't even do all that. I think they blew it out of proportion," said student Jonathan Smith.

Students said everyone felt the consequences of the alleged hazing incident because of the absence of school staff.



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