Principals subject of ongoing investigation

District letter to parents contradicts superintendent

Staff photo by Damien Fisher Ledge Street School in Nashua

NASHUA – Parents were still in shock Monday after Nashua School District officials apparently removed two principals from Ledge Street Elementary School late last week.

“It was really frustrating,” parent Jennifer Sawicki said early Monday afternoon. “We still haven’t got any information from the school.”

District officials did not send home any communication last week when reports surfaced that Principal Janet Valeri and Assistant Principal Tiffany Hyatt were removed from their positions. Superintendent Connie Brown said Monday the two administrators are in fact subject to an ongoing investigation into personnel matters, though she declined to specify the nature of the investigation.

“It’s a personnel matter, and as such it is confidential,” Brown said.

Brown stated multiple times during an interview with The Telegraph on Monday that Hyatt and Valeri are still employed by the district, though she declined to state whether either was placed on leave of any kind.

Brown’s statements contradict a letter that was sent home to parents and staff on Monday afternoon to explain the situation at the school, the first time parents had been officially notified by the district about the Ledge Street issues.

“Principal Janet Valeri has retired from the Nashua Public Schools after twenty-eight years of service,” the letter from interim Assistant Superintendent Roland Boucher states. “Assistant Principal Tiffany Hyatt has moved on to pursue other opportunities.”

The Telegraph tried unsuccessfully Monday to reach Hyatt and Valeri.

Brown said that contrary to reports last week, Valeri and Hyatt were not escorted from the building. She said she and other district officials met with the women late in the school day on Thursday, and they stayed in the building until after school let out.

Brown declined to state what exactly resulted from that meeting, or why the meeting was necessary in the first place.

Nashua Teachers’ Union President Adam Marcoux also declined to say why Valeri and Hyatt are under investigation. He said there is typically little information released in these matters.

Last month, members of the union working in the Ledge Street school met with district officials to voice concerns about the administration. Doris Hohensee, a school board member, has said during a recent public meeting that she was told the April meeting involved a vote of no confidence in Valeri and Hyatt, and that a letter went home to some parents about that vote.

Neither Brown nor Marcoux would state that no communication was sent home in April, but both denied their organizations authorized any such letter.

During a special meeting Monday night dealing with another matter, Brown refused to give school board members any update on the Ledge Street situation when asked to by Hohensee. She instead handed out copies of the letter sent home Monday afternoon.

Currently, Bouchard and Assistant Superintendent Mike Frederickson are serving as the interim principals at Ledge Street through the end of the school year.