Coelho Middle School Asst. Principal demoted after school lunch incident
The Assistant Principal at Coelho Middle School
has been suspended for five days without pay and will be demoted for her role in
a situation that involved students being denied lunch or told to throw out their
Assistant Principal Susan Fortin will revert to the position
of teacher with Attleboro Public Schools and will serve as a substitute teacher
until a permanent teaching position becomes available.
Superintendent Pia Durkin said the decision was made after
conducting several interviews regarding the April 2 situation. On April 2 up to
40 students were denied lunch or told to throw out their lunch by staff members
of Whitson's Culinary Group after it was revealed they had past due accounts.
"I have concluded that the Attleboro administrator, whose oversight of
the lunchroom was her responsibility, did not question the decisions that the Whitsons
staff made that day nor did she exercise good judgment on behalf of the students
she charged to care for. She did not stop those decisions from being carried out
and announced to students that they would not be able to charge lunch that day,
leading many students to be denied lunch. Her allowing the situation to continue
for four lunch periods is totally unacceptable to me. Further misjudgment occurred
when standard protocol was not followed in not notifying the Principal of the building
as to what occurred in the lunchroom."
The Superintendent said this action will conclude the investigation
into the incident.
After the incident Whitson's Culinary Group apologized for the
actions of its staff saying they were firing 4 people, re-training employees and
would offer students free lunches for three days.