Teacher Firings in Beach Haven Have Parents, Retired Faculty Members Up in Arms

Jun 26, 2019

Beach Haven — Despite pleas from parents and retired faculty members urging it to reconsider, the Beach Haven Board of Education did not budge from a recent decision not to renew the contract of two teachers. And during the public comment portion of the June 20 meeting, when numerous speakers demanded to know why second-grade teacher Kim Maschi and special education teacher Jenna Turro were being let go, board President Irene Hughes repeatedly said the board could not comment on specifics.

When the board was asked if it could revisit the issue following its closed session at the end of the meeting, Steve Terhune, board secretary and business administrator, said the board would have to put that issue on a specific agenda to be voted on at another time.

“The problem we are all having is that we love this teacher (Maschi) and there is no reason for this,” said Cassandra Mitchell, a parent. “The Beach Haven Elementary School is like family, and what is happening here is really sad. Parents and children have been upset.”

Another parent, Stanley Markoski, said, “It’s an injustice. It’s not right and it’s not fair.”

Maschi’s husband, Michael Maschi, indicated he might seek legal action.

“What is being done here is arbitrary and capricious,” he said. “It violates the law, and we will seek every remedy available to have this decision reversed.”

He said that since coming to Beach Haven in 2015, his wife had been rated “highly effective” three out of four years during evaluations.

“And now you want to let her go,” he said. “You owe us a reason for why this is being done.”

Marjie Carnevale, who retired from the school in 2018 after teaching for 41 years, noted that several of the parents in attendance were once students of hers.

“They are both excellent teachers,” said Carnevale. “There’s been a turnover of teachers, and I don’t like seeing what’s going on.”

Carnevale said the school hasn’t been the same since Patricia Daggy retired in June 2013 as principal and superintendent.

“She put her heart and soul into this school, gave up her life to help students and reach out to the community,” she said.

“When I retired from teaching, we all felt like family,” added Kathy Guido. “We all cared for each other. We really want you to reconsider this.”

— Eric Englund


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