PAWLING – School District Superintendent Kim Fontana has alerted Pawling Middle School parents that a substitute teacher at the school has been charged with sex crimes after an investigation by the Dutchess County Sheriff’s Office and school district officials. The alert was sent on Friday, March 3, 2023, and does not identify the female teacher by name.
According to Superintendent Fontana, the Dutchess County Sheriff’s Office has “completed their investigation and charged the individual with several misdemeanors, including child endangerment and child sex abuse.” Fontana says the issue remains a law enforcement matter.
The Dutchess County Sheriff’s Office has not released information regarding the arrest.
The alert from Fontana says that on February 16, 2023, she was made aware of a “concern” regarding a substitute teacher at Pawling Middle School and she immediately contacted law enforcement. The teacher was immediately placed on administrative leave, according to Fontana, eliminating the teacher’s access to the campus and students. Fontana’s message indicates that the substitute teacher is no longer employed by the Pawling Central School District.
Several parents of middle school students have taken issue with the district’s handling of the issue. Social media posts indicate that parents are upset that the district did not alert parents sooner and have not identified the woman that was arrested.