By MountainXpress Asheville City Schools
We are disturbed to learn about the recent allegations involving a former employee. Richard Phelps resigned from Asheville City Schools on September 19, 2017 — prior to the date of the allegations. However, should the Yancey County Sheriff’s Department or State Bureau of Investigation need support from Asheville City Schools, we will fully cooperate. At this time, they have not reached out.
We know situations like this can be triggering or retriggering; therefore, we wanted to let you know the district’s response as well as remind you of several important community resources.
Our District Crisis Team has formulated a plan to support students and staff, and counselors will be available should a member of our Cougar Family need additional support.
For several years, Asheville City Schools has worked closely with Our Voice to provide direct services as well as work toward creating healthier communities through preventive education. With that in mind, if you have concerns about your child, please contact their 24-hour hotline at (828) 255-7576 or text VOICE or VOZ to 85511.
Additionally, please know the Buncombe County Family Justice Center is a safe space where victims of sexual assault – and other forms of abuse – can receive support. For a walk-in appointment, visit their offices, located at 35 Woodfin Street in Downtown Asheville. Or, call (828) 250-6900 to schedule an appointment.
Victims of abuse can also contact the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-4673.