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Middletown classroom aide under investigation for alleged racial slur

Published: Monday, September 18, 2017 @ 5:09 PM
Updated: Tuesday, September 19, 2017 @ 11:09 AM
By: Michael Clark - Staff Writer

A Middletown Schools special education classroom aide is being investigated by the school system for allegedly using a racist slur in a Facebook comment, this news organization has exclusively learned.

A Middletown Board of Education member said the employee, Rebecca E. Montgomery at Miller Ridge Elementary, has been the source of “multiple complaints” regarding the online posting.

A recent Facebook comment by school board member Michelle Novak - in response to other Facebook comments regarding the alleged posting of a variation of an African-American slur by the school employee - stated: “The school has been notified through multiple complaints and it is now being investigated by our human resources department.”

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“I commend the community for being so proactive in reporting these matters. It is of the utmost importance that we have a safe and respectful environment within our schools,” Novak wrote.

The alleged Facebook post from Montgomery is in a comments section in response to a photo of an unidentified, young African-American girl. The post referenced an African-American slur with the final five letters replaced with asterisks.

The post also includes an emoji face shedding tears from laughing.

Montgomery started as a “substitute aide” with the school system in 2011 and is now a classroom “paraprofessional” or teachers aide, according to district officials.

Montgomery was not a work Monday and unavailable to comment.

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Middletown schools spokesperson Destini Burns said “we are currently investigating” the allegations, and Montgomery is on paid administrative leave pending the results of the investigation.

Burns issued a statement from district officials saying: “Middletown School district embraces its diverse population of students and staff. We champion a safe and supportive environment that appreciates and celebrates the contributions and assets of a diverse learning community.”

This new organization will report more as information becomes available.​