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Court Says Ex-Mamaroneck Teacher May Sue for “Retaliation”

Chatsworth Avenue School

A Federal Appeals Court has ruled that a teacher at Chatsworth Avenue School in Larchmont did, in fact, make a case for retaliation when she was denied tenure in 2007, and she may pursue a civil rights claim against the Mamaroneck School District.

A top story in Tuesday’s New York Law Journal reports Nancy Nagle is claiming former District officials may have reacted to the way Nagle reported a case of teacher-on-student abuse at a prior teaching job in Virginia.

According to the report, “Ms. Nagle had been on the tenure track at the Chatsworth Avenue School in Mamaroneck for three years when , on March 2, 2007, she was told by (then) Principal Steven Castar and Human Resources Assistant Superintendent Rosemalie Coletti, that (then) School Superintendent Paul R. Fried would not recommend her for tenure.” Nagle is no longer working in the District.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit ruled that Nagle, who was a Special Education teacher, can pursue her civil rights claim and that it was premature for a lower court to find school officials were shielded  by “qualified immunity.”

Fried claimed that the Virginia incident had nothing to do with his decision and instead said he did not recommend tenure because of concerns Mr. Caster had about Ms. Nagle’s failure to follow school protocol.

One Judge writes that with “Mr. Fried saying he learned  of the Virginia incident  as he was ‘leaning’ toward not recommending tenure… a jury could be entitled to find the Virginia events convinced  him to follow his inclinations, and thereby played a part in his ultimate decision.”

The Mamaroneck School District did not respond to an inquiry from theLoop Tuesday afternoon.


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