WILMINGTON, MASS. (WHDH) - Wilmington Public Schools announced Wednesday that an outside attorney is conducting an independent investigation into allegations of child abuse and neglect.

The Massachusetts Department of Children and Families was notified in May of allegations against Wildwood School staff, who have since been placed on administrative leave, Superintendent Glenn Brand wrote in a letter to parents and guardians.

The school district recently learned from DCF that some of the claims have been supported, Brand continued.

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An independent investigation by an outside attorney into these allegations remains ongoing.

School officials also became aware last week of a separate series of allegations of misconduct by a staff member at Wilmington Middle School, who has also been placed on administrative leave pending a DCF investigation, Brand wrote.

“Let me be very clear: the allegations in each of these cases are wholly unacceptable, counter to the values of WPS and will not be tolerated,” Brand wrote. “All of our students, faculty and staff deserve to study and work in a safe environment. Any conduct of the type alleged will be investigated thoroughly and, if warranted following those investigations, met with the appropriate discipline and/ or consequences.”

With permission from her mother, sixth grader Kara Quinn spoke to 7NEWS about her experience.

“He would call me pretty and stuff. He would say that we had a close relationship, which I felt was not OK and inappropriate,” she said.

Quinn, who was questioned about the staff member’s alleged behavior, also said the staffer would often touch the hair of many of her friends.

The school district is examining its internal policies to ensure training, handbooks and reporting procedures are in line with best practices for student safety, according to Brand.

Additional information regarding these allegations have not been released.

Families or students in need of additional emotional support services can contact Christine Murray, WPS Coordinator of Behavioral Health and Social Emotional Support, at christine.murray@wpsk12.com.

Anyone aware of an incident that requires attention, whether past or present, is asked to contact Tracy Ingersoll at tracy.ingersoll@wpsk12.com.

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