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EXTON, PA: Police say sex abuse of student occurred at Episcopal-affiliated school

EXTON, PA: Police say sex abuse of student occurred at Episcopal-affiliated school

By John Chilton
Episcopal cafe
August 9, 2021

A former staffer at Church Farm School in Exton, PA has been arrested, accused of forcing a student at the school into hundreds of sexual encounters. The staffer has acknowledged the abuse. It is the second such case at the all-male school in recent years. Earlier this year a former teacher pled guilty to child sex abuse. There is also a lawsuit against the school.

Church Farm School is a member of the National Association of Episcopal Schools. The head of school, the Rev. Edmund K. "Ned" Sherrill II, was named president of the NAES board in 2015. Sherrill became head of school in 2009. The school was founded in 1918 by the Rev. Charles Shreiner. Subsequently, it was led by Charles Sheiner, Jr. and Charles Sheiner, III who retired in 2009.

From The Philadelphia Inquirer, July 27:

Daniel Rowley, 70, was charged late Monday with involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, unlawful contact with a minor, statutory sexual assault, endangering the welfare of children, and related offenses. ... Rowley worked as a dorm supervisor at the Church Farm School in West Whiteland Township between 1991 and 2010, according to the affidavit of probable cause for his arrest.

Investigators said that during Rowley's time at Church Farm, a college-preparatory school run by Episcopal clergy, he groomed then allegedly raped the student during the teen's freshman, junior, and senior years at the school in the late 2000s.

From Daily Local News:

Rowley is said to have acknowledged his abuse of the student, who is now an adult, in an interview with police.

This is the second such case at the school in recent years. MyChesco April, 2 2021:

The Chester County District Attorney's Office announced that Marc Spera, age 58 of St. Petersburg, Florida, pled guilty to Involuntary Deviate Sexual Intercourse and Unlawful Contact with a Minor for the sexual abuse of a student that took place between 2008 and 2010 when the defendant was a teacher at Church Farm School (CFS) in West Whiteland Township. Judge Patrick Carmody sentenced him to 15-30 years in prison.

Authorities state that the victim, a former CFS student, contacted law enforcement in December 2018 to report that he had been sexually abused by a teacher when he was in 7th and 8th grade. The defendant gave back and body rubs to the victim in his on-campus apartment when the victim was in 7th grade. The defendant, who worked at CFS from 1995-2010, gifted the victim with a video game and equipment to communicate with him during the summer break. When the victim was in 8th grade at CFS, the defendant sexually assaulted him more than 40 times.

The defendant left CFS in 2010. He was teaching at Admiral Farragut Academy in St. Petersburg when he was arrested in June 2020.

Pennslyvania Record:

The Church Farm School (CFS) in Exton faces civil charges from a North Carolina man who says he was sexually abused by a former CFS teacher, according to documents filed earlier this year in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas.

According to the lawsuit, other dorm parents and members of the CFS administration were aware of the unusual amount of time that the plaintiff spent alone with the defendant.

Sinclair sued the school for negligence, childhood sexual abuse and vicarious liability, negligent supervision and punitive damages. He asks the court for at least $50,000 in restitution from the defendant.


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