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State investigation: Trevyan Rowe was 'failed at every level'

March 12, 2019 06:25 PM

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) - The state education department commissioner and New York's attorney general released the findings of a civil investigation into the death of Trevyan Rowe, a 14-year-old student in the Rochester City School District (RCSD) who went missing just over a year ago. 

The report looking into Rowe's death lists 23 recommendations for the RCSD to prevent further tragedies. Rowe, who had special needs, wandered away from his bus at James P.B. Duffy School No. 12 on March 8, 2018. Police found his body days later in the Genesee River.

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The investigation concludes that Rowe's death does not appear to have been the result of any single event or single failure in school policy

“The investigation uncovered that Trevyan was failed at every level, from mental health and special education services to procedures to keep students safe at school," Commissioner MaryEllen Elia said.

“It is clear that there were systemic failures at the school and I strongly urge the school district to implement the recommendations outlined in this report," Attorney General Letitia James said. "We all have a responsibility to protect our children and we must all work together to keep our children out of harm’s way.” 

Superintendent Daniel Lowengard issued the following response to the report: 

"The death of Trevyan Rowe continues to have a profound impact on all of us, and we will always keep him and his family in our thoughts and prayers. We have received the State Attorney General’s report and will be reviewing it thoroughly. We have already implemented a number of improved measures to ensure our student attendance and supervision procedures meet the highest standards. We continue to monitor and enhance safety protocols. The safety and well-being of our students continue to be our top priority."

Mayor Lovely Warren says "failures of adults at almost every turn" led to Rowe's death. 

"A child of our city cried out for help and his calls went unanswered," Warren said. "As early as 2013, four years before his tragic passing, it was identified that Trevyan needed mental health counseling to address his suicidal thoughts. However, according to the report, no in-school mental health counseling was provided. The failures of adults at almost every turn led to Trevyan’s death."

News10NBC is working to get reaction from school officials and city leaders. Check back for updates.

Click here to read the 145-page report in its entirety.

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