By JOHN T. WARD
The Little Silver Board of Education has approved a proposed settlement of a lawsuit against Superintendent Carolyn Kossack alleging same-sex sexual harassment and wrongful termination.
The case involved allegations by JoAnn Riley, of Edison, who claimed she was just four months into her job as a $105,000-a-year special services supervisor when she was abruptly fired.
In the interim, Riley claimed, Kossack had sent her a number of “inappropriate” text messages. The purported messages were sent at night and on weekends and “had nothing to do with anything that was remotely work-related,” according to the lawsuit.
Instead, Kossack wrote “about three different female lovers, one of whom was young; another of whom was described as physically beautiful but abusive and one who was mostly platonic because of a lack of sexual chemistry,” according to Riley’s lawsuit.
According to the lawsuit, Kossack joked about converting Riley to lesbianism.
In November, 2012, when Riley complained about the texts, Kossack fired her without advance notice that her job performance had been inadequate, Riley’s lawsuit claimed.
Riley sued the school board and Dennis Morolda, a former principal at the Markham Place School, who Riley claimed refused to help her as Kossack’s advances became more assertive.
A settlement of the lawsuit was approved by the school board in a single-topic executive session held on November 11, school board attorney Bruce Padula said.
In an email exchange with redbankgreen, Padula declined to reveal monetary details of the settlement, which he said will be covered entirely by insurance.