April 2014 Letter from Alumni to ASIJ Calling for Investigation

April 6, 2014

Mr. Ed Ladd, Head of School
Ms. Stephanie Toppino, Board Chair, Board of Directors

The American School in Japan
1-1-1 Nomizu, Chofu-shi,
Tokyo, 182-0031, Japan

Dear Mr. Ladd & Ms. Toppino:

We are writing in response to your communication of March 2014 regarding Jack Moyer. To say that we are broken-hearted at this terrible news is a monumental understatement. It is almost impossible for us to believe. Many of us spent our entire formative years at ASIJ. The school, the relationships we forged there, and the memories we made are as beloved to us as our own families. It is shocking and heartbreaking to us that such evil could have befallen any of our classmates and friends. That the evil acts were not only known to the administration of the school but appear to have been sanctioned by it (through continuing to associate with the perpetrator for years after the knowledge of his deeds was brought to the attention of the school) is entirely beyond our comprehension. It is, in a word, outrageous.

As a result, respectfully, as a class, we are not satisfied with your letter. As alumni of the school, many of us have made significant financial contributions to ASIJ over the 27 years since our graduation, and in some cases have sent our own children to become students at the school. We respectfully, but firmly, ask for answers to the following questions:

1. What actions have been and will be taken to protect future students from befalling a similar fate?
2. What specific actions have been taken to understand how this could have happened under the watch of prior administrations, and why nothing was done when the allegations were initially brought forth?
3. Are there any current administration/board members who were present during the years Jack Moyer was associated with the school during and after employment? If so, are they being asked for a full accounting of what might have been known?
4. What plans does ASIJ have to support Jack Moyer’s victims, a number that may well exceed several dozen?

As we know you are aware, one of the overriding purposes of any institution that is entrusted, as ASIJ was and continues to be, with the welfare of children, is to protect those within its care. The unfortunate impression we are left with after reading your letter is that ASIJ cares more about ‘circling the wagons’ than fulfilling the trust bestowed upon it by parents. We are certain that this is not your intent.

A full airing of the past, including who knew what and when they knew it, is the only way forward. If ASIJ chooses to be proactive in allowing 3sunshine2 to prevail, our community will have a far better chance of healing, as Penn State recently learned (and the parallels with Penn State here are deeply troubling, both in terms of the likely number of victims and the culpability of former administrators who looked the other way).

We send this letter in the spirit of caring deeply for ASIJ, and look forward to your response.

Signed: Members of the Class of 1987