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Oprah School for Girls Controversy

November 1st, 2007     by Stacey May Fowles     Comments

A scandal has rocked the Oprah brand with allegations that sexual and physical abuse has taken place at the at the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls.

Oprah was part of a 46 million dollar educational project to build a school in South Africa and personally hand picked girls to have an educational opportunity otherwise unavailable to them. Allegations have since emerged that one of the matrons fondled a girl and that other pupils had been physically abused:

One student claimed a matron grabbed her by the throat and threw her against a wall, while other girls have said the “dorm parent” swore and screamed at them, assaulted them and sexually fondled at least one girl.

I recall watching a documentary on the school when it first opened in January 2007 and being moved by the testimonials from the girls whose lives the school effected. It’s unclear how these allegations will effect the long-term expansion goals of the academy. As for Oparah?

The father of one of the abused girls is quoted as saying, “What Oprah has done for our children is excellent, and we thank her. It is other people who have failed her. The bad influence there was the dorm parent and the principal.”

Tags: news flash

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