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Ms De Pasquale, banned from her kids' school over row with principal Alexandra Coffey

Updated: 23 Feb 2010
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And stay out ... Adrianna De Pasquale

 

ADRIANNA De Pasquale's two children take the tally to 19 at tiny Ilford Public midway between Lithgow and Mudgee.

 

But the young mother must leave her kids at the gate after being banned from entering the grounds of the 124-year-old school for six months.

 

The ban relates to an argument with principal Alexandra Coffey in a decision that has split the community.

 

Mrs De Pasquale is accused of "verbally and physically" assaulting Ms Coffey. She agrees they had a verbal disagreement over an alleged comment at a Parents and Citizens meeting but denies touching the principal in the confrontation at the school late last year.

 

P and C president Denise Sim said relations between staff and a number of parents in the school community had "broken down".

 

"Parents were shocked when Adrianna was banned . . . the department wants to sweep it under the carpet," she said. 

 

Ms De Pasquale has children aged 11 and eight at the school and was P and C treasurer and worked at the school canteen. She said she had not abused the principal and believed she was the victim of an injustice.

 

"I am seeking reinstatement (of access) and an acknowledgement by the Department of Education and Training that this wasn't handled in the right way," she said. "I have been completely embarrassed and humiliated."

 

Ms Coffey wrote to Ms De Pasquale on November 28 last year warning her police would be called if she did not comply with the ban.

 

The principal said Ms De Pasquale had "displayed aggressive behaviour, verbally and physically assaulting me".

 

"I do not consider your current access to the Ilford Public School site to be in the best interests of either the students or the staff," Ms Coffey said in the letter.

 

". . . you are directed not to come on to the Ilford Public School site again. This directive is to remain in force for a period of six months."

 

An Education Department spokesman said yesterday it was "actively working to resolve this issue".

 

"We have met with the parent and principal on several occasions and we will continue to do so," he said.

 

SOURCE: www.dailytelegraph.com.au

 

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