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Elite prep school settles up to 30 sex-abuse claims

(ABCNEWS.GO) — St. George’s School has agreed to a settlement that would provide compensation for up to 30 former students who say they were sexually abused, the elite Rhode Island boarding school announced Wednesday.

The Middletown school announced the pact in a joint statement with a group representing sex abuse victims, saying the institution will provide an undisclosed sum to settle the claims. Paul Finn, a mediator who also worked on the clergy sex abuse settlement in Boston, will determine how much each person will receive.

Katie Wales Lovkay told the headmaster in 1979 that an athletic trainer abused her, but he sent her to the school therapist and did not report it to authorities. A week before her 1980 graduation, she was expelled.

“This was never about the money. This was about being heard, and St. George’s realized that what they have done to us in the past is completely wrong,” Lovkay said. “It’s nice to know it’s done, it’s over.”