A Vineland School District social worker has been formally dismissed from her job for having sex with a minor student, according to a decision posted by the state Department of Education Wednesday.
A Bridgeton teacher and track coach was also dismissed for making inappropriate sexual comments to female students, while another Bridgeton teacher was suspended for 120 days without pay as the result of an altercation with a student, the department said.
According to the first decision, the Vineland Board of Education filed tenure charges against school social worker Stacey Johnson in February alleging she had sex with a minor student and that she had also attempted to stop the victim from speaking to the police once she became aware of the allegations.
Johnson, of Bridgeton, was arrested last May for allegedly having sexual intercourse with a 16-year-old student several times earlier in the year, authorities said. Johnson, 44 at the time, was charged with two counts of sexual assault and one count of tampering with a witness. The status of those charges was unavailable Thursday night.
Johnson did not respond to the tenure charges, and on April 16 the state Education Commissioner granted a summary decision and dismissed her from her position.
The Bridgeton Board of Education filed tenure charges against Nicholas Brown after the parent of a student who had graduated found a sexually explicit message on her daughter’s Facebook page from Brown, who had been the girl’s track coach. The parent’s younger daughter is also on the track team and the mother notified the district of her concerns. The district investigated, and in January 2013 filed tenure charges to dismiss Brown and suspended him without pay. Brown had worked in the district since September 2009.
After a hearing in March, arbitrator Gerard Restaino on April 13 upheld charges of conduct unbecoming a staff member, accessing pornography, communicating with current female track athletes by using obscene and inappropriately suggestive language, and making inappropriate comments to female students while they were under his supervision as a track coach. He ordered that Brown be dismissed.
Another Bridgeton teacher, Sarah Hancock, was suspended for 120 days without pay after the district filed tenure charges against her following an incident with a student in her special education class at the Cherry Street School.
The arbitrator in that case, Timothy Brown, ruled that what happened was an isolated incident in Hancock’s 22-year career and did not rise to the level of dismissal. The incident happened in November 2012, and tenure charges were filed in December. A hearing was held March 29. Hancock’s suspension without pay or benefits runs from Jan. 8 to May 8, 2013.
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