Teacher Fired after School Board Finds He Wrote Hate Mail

Jennifer Golson, Star-Ledger (Newark), Mar. 9

Back in November, three African-American teachers at an Elizabeth grammar school found Thanksgiving greeting cards in their school mailboxes that contained scrawled threats and racist hate messages.

Now Elizabeth school officials believe one of recipients was the author.

Rondell Taylor, 29, a special education teacher, was fired March 1 after school administrators determined he wrote the cards and left them for himself and two female colleagues at Peterstown School No. 3.

The school board’s decision was cinched by the findings of a handwriting expert, said Charles Smith, the school district’s affirmative action officer, who conducted the in-house investigation.

School officials think Taylor may have sent the cards because he wanted a transfer out of the school. After he reported receiving the card and said he felt threatened, he requested and was granted a transfer, officials said.

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