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Fall River School Committee ordered to release Malone report in 10 days

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A Fall River resident will be the recipient of the investigative report concerning allegations against Superintendent of Schools Matthew Malone.

According to Supervisor of Records, Rebecca Murphy, the School Committee must release the report to Colin Dias within 10 days with proper redactions. Dias had petitioned to have the report released. Multiple City Councilors, Fall River Reporter, and the Herald News had also requested the release of the report.

The response states that “the School did not meet its burden to withhold the report in its entirety pursuant to Exemption (c) of the attorney-client privilege.”

colin dias

Courtesy of Concerned Citizens for the Removal of Superintendent Matthew Malone

Several Fall River City Councilors have previously been vocal in their support to have Superintendent of Schools, Matthew Malone removed from his position as the Council took a vote of no confidence in Malone’s ability to do his job.

City Council Vice-President Pam Laliberte-Lebeau has previously issued a statement addressed toward the School Committee asking them to fire Malone.

“Malone has issued an apology and admitted to using “salty language”. This “salty language” has cost him $17,000 (1 month of his $204k salary), and there is surely an MCAD suit headed our way. His contract was also amended to include language that the School Committee can now fire Malone without cause or reason. I implore them to do just that. Fire Malone.”

“This city just went through 4 years of toxicity and negative publicity from our now ex-Mayor who ruled by threats and intimidation, and who regularly belittled and berated city employees who were afraid to speak up for fear of losing their job. Every member of the School Committee urged the Council to do whatever we could to rid the city of his leadership. It is now your turn to do the same.”

“Keeping Malone comes at the expense of the morale of the 1,600+ FRPS employees, many of whom have reached out, clearly upset by Malone’s behavior, and frustrated by what appears to be a deviation from the standard review procedure when allegations are made against an employee. Keeping Malone also sets a dangerous precedent. You can now insult, ridicule, yell, swear, mock those with different abilities, even throw in the C-word, and as long as you apologize for being “salty” you can keep your job. Malone says he will “be better”. Fall River deserves better.”

Council President Cliff Ponte Jr., requested Massachusetts Secretary of State release the investigative report on Malone to the public.

“Superintendent Malone continues to say that he “was a meanie and used salty language“. If that is the case the report shouldn’t be a big deal to release?”

“Fall River students teachers and employees deserve a leader in a school department that is transparent.”

“RELEASE THE $25,000 REPORT. In order to fully inform the public and the council about the facts of this matter — I am formally requesting the release of the FULL report. If it exonerates the superintendent, and he did nothing wrong, everyone should know. If it does not, at least all the facts will be available for independent review. We are waiting!”

City Councilor Cadime has also previously been vocal in his belief that Malone should be fired and to have Malone’s report released.

Councilor Christopher Peckham has also been on the record agreeing with Cadime’s stance.

“This is a total embarrassment. Morale, emotions and the wellbeing of our Teachers and Staff directly impact the children they teach. Leadership starts from the top. Apparently, not in this case.”

Councilor Michelle Dionne has issued her support in President Ponte’s comments.

“There are those who say the city council has no oversight of the school department and should remain silent. I say Cliff is 100% correct when he states that no responsible elected official should stand by silently. We were elected by the people to represent them and be their voice. If we don’t speak how will those in the school department who were bullied and degraded ever have a voice or know that there are those who not only support them but also feel their pain.”

School Committee members Paul Hart and Kevin Aguiar have also stated that they believe Malone should be fired.

Three accounts from those who worked with Malone that was reportedly submitted to the School Committee before the investigation has been leaked to social media and appear to support the allegations of an environment of bullying, harassment, and intimidation under Malone.

The accusations included ageism, discrimination, and sexism and also included reports of an employee with a disability being called an idiot, a moron, and a retard.

Malone has issued an apology and currently has no plans to resign.

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