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TECEC Student Intends to Sue Trumbull [Updated]

Police said a Trumbull Early Childhood Education teacher pushed the 3-year-old's head down onto her desk. The child later claimed injuries.

Editor's note: A previous version of the story identified the girl, but her name has been retracted. Trumbull Patch regrets the error.

As the criminal charge against Jean Marie Pulaski proceeds, the parent of the child she's accused of abusing is planning to sue the town, the school superintendent and the Board of Education.

Pulaski, 48, a veteran teacher, is accused of pushing the child's head down on her desk. She's charged with breach of the peace and her case was continued to Sept. 21 in Bridgeport Superior Court. Pulaski, who is free on $10,000 bond, has applied for a special form of probation for first-time alleged offenders that results in dismissal of the charges.

She is on leave from TECEC.

The child's parent, Athena Perez-Zamri, alleges that on April 24, 2012, the child left her seat in a TECEC classroom and the teacher "forcefully grasped [her] by the shoulders and reseated her. Ms. Pulaski then lifted the chair and roughly pushed it closer to the table then grabbed [her] hair and pushed her head down striking her head on the table top while harshly speaking to [her] in front of the class and the school nurse."

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According to the Connecticut Post newspaper, "Pulaski's lawyer, William Westcott, objected to the continuance. 'Mrs. Pulaski continues to maintain she didn't do anything wrong and that is consistent with the school's findings,' he said later. 'But she certainly recognizes this case has upset the mother of the child.'"

The girl sustained "physical and emotional injury including a mark behind the right ear and a black and blue lip which required medical attention," said Attorney Robert A. Photos, in a filing with the Trumbull Town Clerk.

The filing does not specify damages sought.

Joan October 01, 2012 at 02:13 PM
Well, the nurse is a mandated reporter, so I would certainly expect that she would continue to fulfill her professional and ethical obligations.
trumbulite09 October 01, 2012 at 02:30 PM
Joan - I know the nurse and I know she would but you have to admit it was a tough thing to do and now the victims family now suing the Board of Ed, The Town and The Superintendent I would think anyone would wonder if they did the right thing. Lawsuits hurt everyone. The BoE, The Superintendent, and the Town did what they were supposed. They removed the teacher from the classroom, reported it to the family, reported it the police. Why now should they be sued?
Joan October 01, 2012 at 03:48 PM
I'm not saying they should be sued. I'm just saying that teachers & school nurses are mandated reporters, and they can't let this kind of thing go unreported if for no other reason than that their own careers could go down the drain if they do. (Although I think most would report more out of an interest in the child's welfare.)
Joan October 01, 2012 at 03:52 PM
P.S. As mandated reporters, school nurses, etc. are require by law to report such incidents. I certainly hope that no one would be prevented from doing so because of thoughts about possible future lawsuits against the school district.
Shirley B. Backus October 02, 2012 at 04:01 AM
It's too bad you listen only to the mother's side of the story. According to the teacher, school nurse, and other school officials, the child's head was gently lowered to the desk - not slammed as her mother claims. This woman is exaggerating in order to find somebody to sue. That's all. I don't think it's "unacceptable to speak harshly to a child and show her what you mean when she doesn't act like she understands. The trouble with children today is that they are undisciplined and wild. It's the parents' responsibility to teach them right from wrong and how to behave. This child's mother failed on both counts and wants the school and/or the teacher to pay for it in order to shift the blame from herself. Since there were no injuries on this child when she left the school that day, it is obvious that she suffered them elsewhere, if she suffered them at all.

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