On Monday, I reported on LEAP Academy University Charter School's $151,000 fine it paid to Aramark for breach of contract in transferring school executive chef Michele Pastorello. Here is the breakdown of how the story has developed.
On Feb. 18, I broke the story of LEAP Academy University Charter School forcing a $24,000 raise for executive chef Michele Pastorello when it switched food service management companies. Not only is his $95,000 salary way more than what such a position usually pays but also Pastorello's relationship to school board chair Gloria Bonilla-Santiago raised some eyebrows.
"If the board put in place a bidding requirement in which the only way a bid is accepted is for you to hire someone who could be considered part of immediate family, [this] raises some very serious concerns under the state ethics code," said David Sciarra, executive director of the New Jersey Education Law Center, which advocates for students in poor districts, such as Camden. He said that a "committed relationship" or live-in boyfriend could be considered immediate family under the ethics code. (Read more HERE.)