NEW YORK – A former New York public school employee says a pair of co-workers smeared fecal matter and spilled urine in her office, defaced her personal pictures and slashed her car tires after she reported their in-school hook-ups to the principal.
The allegations are part of a lawsuit that was filed by former elementary school counselor Deborah Berger late last week, NYDailyNews.com reports.
In her lawsuit, Berger claims her life became a living hell in 2010 after she told Public School 009 Principal Robert Wojnarowski that two of her fellow guidance counselors were using counseling rooms for their steamy encounters.
According to Berger’s suit, principal Wojnarowski knew of the ongoing affair and chose not punish the illicit lovers. Instead, he told the couple that Berger had complained about their behavior.
And that’s when the vicious reprisals allegedly began.
Berger claims the pair vandalized her office with human waste, while Wojnarowski allegedly did nothing to punish them. She even claims that Wojnarowski joined in with the retaliation by giving her bad job reviews, NYDailyNews.com reports.
Things reached a breaking point for Berger last June when she found her car tires slashed. Berger claims she became ill from all the stress and needed to take an unpaid leave of absence from her job to receive psychological treatment.
In addition to financial damages, Berger is asking to be reinstated in her guidance counselor job and for the bad job reviews to be expunged from her professional record.
“Education Department officials declined to comment on the pending litigation but said Berger is free to return to work at any time,” NYDailyNews.com reports.
If Berger’s claims are substantiated in a court of law, New York school leaders must move swiftly to fire the offending employees. The city’s teachers union — the United Federation of Teachers — would undoubtedly fight those firings, but doing so would be a public relations disaster for union leaders.
If the allegations are true, UFT leaders would be in the unenviable position of defending school counselors who used school property – during the school day – for their illicit rendezvous. We suspect that might be too much to tolerate even for sophisticated, worldly New Yorkers.