East Hartford Principal Steps Down Amid Sexual Harassment Allegations - NBC Connecticut

East Hartford Principal Steps Down Amid Sexual Harassment Allegations

Riverside Magnet School Principal Jasdeep Singh resigned in June.

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    East Hartford Principal Steps Down Amid Sexual Harassment Allegations

    Jasdeep Singh stepped down as principal of Riverside Magnet School in East Hartford amid an investigation into sexual harassment claims against him.

    (Published Monday, Aug. 26, 2019)

    A central Connecticut magnet school will soon begin the academic year without a new principal.

    Little was known about why the former principal of Riverside Magnet School resigned.

    A note in June from the school district to parents said Principal Jasdeep Singh was leaving to explore new career opportunities.

    A staffer reached out to NBC Connecticut Investigations, claiming Singh stepped down during an investigation into sexual harassment claims against him.

    NBC Connecticut Investigates confirmed the report.

    In April, Singh was placed on paid administrative leave after a pair of staffers claimed he sexually harassed them.

    NBC Connecticut obtained the complaints they filed with the school district. One details how after getting drinks, Singh hugged her and “as he pulled away he went in and kissed me.”

    "Coming forward and saying it's happening. It's embarrassing, it's demoralizing, there is tremendous fear of retribution,” explained Christine Palm of Sexual Harassment Prevention LLC.

    Palm trains companies on how to prevent sexual harassment. She did not address Riverside specifically, but said more people are stepping forward.

    "Most people just want the behavior to stop. Most people do not want to sue. They do not want to have to quit their job. They do not want to punish people. They just want to be left alone to do their work in peace,” Palm said.

    The other alleged victim claims in documents that after drinks with her Singh “...leaned into me, but I turned my face so he wouldn't kiss my face. JS kissed my cheek, then leaned in again and kissed my shoulder.”

    Lisa Dadio investigated thousands of crimes, many of a sexual nature in her 20-plus years at the New Haven Police Department. Dadio explained that sexual harassment is not a crime, However, "sexual harassment could easily bridge over into some type of sexual assault in regards to unwanted touching,” she said.

    Singh resigned on June 4. He turned down a request for comment.

    During the district’s investigation into his alleged sexual harassment, he wrote a letter to the district saying, “though I don't feel as though I've violated the policy, I recognize...the improvements I need to make.”

    While not referring to Singh or Riverside Magnet specifically, Palm said she has seen serial harassers stay under the radar.

    “It just becomes somebody else's problem. And we saw this with the Catholic Church, that just systematically reassigned priests to different parishes and then the behavior continued in the new parish. And that doesn't help anyone."

    The LEARN school district, which oversees Riverside Magnet, gave a statement that reads as follows:

    “Any alleged inappropriate behavior that is reported to us is dealt with immediately, as it was in the situation involving Dr. Jasdeep Singh. At LEARN we do not and will not tolerate any violation of the professional trust of our Riverside community.

    “We want our students, faculty and staff to know that they always have our support. Should there ever be a situation where anyone experiences anything that makes them uncomfortable, we want to know about it. We have professional guidelines for a reason.”

    East Hartford Police said they have not been contacted by the women or the school district about this situation.

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