Former Student Claims Sexually Abused By OCSA Founder


A former student at the Orange County School of the Arts this week alleged that he was sexually assaulted by the school’s founder, Ralph S. Opacic, in the 2003-04 school year, according to a lawsuit filed Thursday obtained by the Orange County Register. .

The lawsuit alleged that the school’s “toxic culture” allowed Opacic to take advantage of students and it created “a cult-like mentality that idolized Opacic and his vision.”

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Opacic, who retired last spring, helped elevate the OCSA from an after-school program to a well-known public charter school.

He previously worked as a music teacher at Los Alamitos High School in the 1980s, where the program was originally affiliated, according to the OC Register.

The plaintiff is now in his mid-thirties and works as an actor.

He told the OC Register that he switched to OSCA because he didn’t want to be bullied at his previous school.

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“At the time, I felt special,” the former student told the publication. “I felt like someone was seeing me. And it’s hard. I felt like maybe this person really cared about me in a way that I so wanted to feel at the time as a young queer.”

He added that Opacic eventually started sending him “sexually explicit and inappropriate emails.”

OSCA has not yet commented on the allegations, although it has confirmed to the OC Register that it was aware of the allegations.

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