Suspended Teacher's Attorney Claims She'll Return
Hilary Gorzelnik has been suspended with pay since June 6.
William Coy Jr. said he is confident his client will be vindicated, according to NJ.com.
Athletic Director Tom Vara recently named second grade teacher Kathleen Brennan as coach of the girls soccer team that had been led by Gorzelnik.
“As of right now, the issue of Hilary Gorzelnik is in the superintendent’s office," Vara said. "There are conversations going on that we’re not privy to. I was told to bring on a new soccer coach at this point. They’re still working out whatever they need to work out. It could be settled tomorrow or five years from now."
Gorzelnik has been suspended with pay since June 6 until the end of the district's investigation. After that, the district must either reinstate Gorzelnik, who was also a drivers' education instructor, discipline her short of dismissal, or file tenure dismissal charges. If tenure dismissal charges are filed, she can be suspended for 120 days without pay while the case is hashed out in court.
The district is investigating accusations the 31-year-old might have had inappropriate communications with students.
Superintendent Dr. Charles Maranzano has said he recommended the suspension to the school board. Maranzano has also said Gorzelnik was suspended to keep her away from students until the end of the investigation, though he hasn't said what she's been accused of doing.
Gorzelnik, a seventh-year teacher in the district, has received legal representation from the NJEA in addition to her personal attorney, Coy. New Jersey Education Association Director of Communications Steve Wollmer said in June the district had little hard evidence of any wrongdoing by Gorzelnik and that it has "failed to uncover anything other than rumors."
"No factual evidence has turned up" against Gorzelnik, who has a "spotless reputation," Wolmer said in June.