Disturbing news from Bush School just down the hill from Madrona. Jason Paur, a coach, substitute teacher, and guest lecturer at Bush since 1998, was a chaperone to a school cross-country ski trip to Canada. He was arrested on the trip when female students found a spy camera allegedly owned by Paur in their room and reported it to another chaperone. Bush School and the local police were immediately notified which led to the arrest. To find out more about this incident, including a link to the television report, click the link to Q13 Fox News.
Following is the letter sent from Busch to the parents:
Dear Parents and Guardians,
Every year at this time, a group of students and chaperones take part in a week-long cross-country ski trip to Silver Star ski resort in southern British Columbia. I am writing to relate to you an incident that occurred during the trip that has led us to bring our students home earlier than planned. All of the students are safe, and we have been acting promptly and appropriately to address the incident and its consequences.
Early yesterday evening, I received a report from one of the Silver Star chaperones. Two students had reported to him that another group of students had discovered a personal camera in their room that was making a video recording of the room. It turned out that the owner of the camera was one of the other chaperones, Jason Paur, who admitted he had placed the camera in the room. We removed Mr. Paur from the group and shared with all of the students what had happened. While the students were troubled by the information, they were reassured that the students who had reported the incident had done the right thing. Subsequently, the chaperones contacted the local police who began an investigation of the incident and interviewed some of the students. I learned this morning that after the initial investigation, the police arrested Paur and are holding him in jail in Vernon, B.C. pending further investigation of the incident. At this point, the camera and video recording are in the possession of the local police, and we do not know the specific contents of the recording.
Paur has been a popular, long-time coach of the Upper School cross-country ski team. He also has coached Upper School cross-country running and served as a substitute teacher and from time to time as a guest lecturer in journalism in various classes. We had no reason to be concerned about Paur’s work with students, so we were shocked and surprised by the reports regarding this incident.
Last night, we spoke with the parents of all of the students on the trip to inform them of what had happened. We decided to end the trip early, and the students are returning to Seattle today. We plan to meet with the students and their parents when the group arrives this evening.
We will be sharing information about this incident with Upper School students today, meeting specifically with members of the cross-country ski team who did not go on the trip to help them process the information. Our counseling staff will be available to all students in the coming days to help those who are particularly troubled by the incident. If you become worried about your child with regard to this incident, please don’t hesitate to contact John Ganz, Upper School counselor, or Kim Jackson-Butler, Lower and Middle School counselor.
This is a disturbing and upsetting incident for me and all of us here at Bush, I am proud of the way the Silver Star students and chaperones have handled the situation. As I get further information about the incident, I will keep you informed.