EVERETT (CBS) – Everett Public Schools Superintendent Frederick Foresteire is retiring, effective one day after he was put on administrative leave because of sexual harassment allegations.
The Everett School Committee voted Monday night to place Foresteire on leave and to allocate $50,000 towards an independent investigation of the sexual harassment claims.
The investigation would be separate from one already being conducted by the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination, which received two complaints in one month’s time about Superintendent Foresteire’s behavior.
As first reported by WBZ, former Everett Public Schools clerk Andrea Garay filed the first complaint with the MCAD on November 21, alleging that Foresteire would make sexual comments and touch her inappropriately in her time working for him. A second woman filed a complaint in the weeks that followed, as confirmed by Tara Swartz, the attorney representing both women.
“My clients are elated to learn of Superintendent Foresteire’s retirement,” Swartz said Thursday night. “They feel this is a positive first step to real change within the Everett Public School system.”
In the two sentence retirement letter dated December 17, Foresteire wrote, “It has been a wonderful fifty-two and one half years!”
Foresteire served as superintendent for 30 years.
The school committee is holding an executive meeting on Wednesday, December 26, to discuss “the discipline or dismissal of, or complaints or charges brought against, a public officer, employee, staff member, or individual.”
School committee members don’t know what will happen to the $50,000 independent investigation into sexual harassment claims.
“I’m not sure about the investigation but that needs to be discussed,” said school committee member Frank Parker. “I strongly believe at a minimum, there is a need to review our harassment policy, procedures, reporting, and provide training from top to bottom. We have to learn from this and get better.”