Greenwich 'cupcake' principal suspended without pay

GREENWICH - The Greenwich elementary school principal at the center of the so-called "cupcake incident" has been suspended without pay through the end of June.

The penalty was handed down Thursday by School Superintendent Dr. Betty Sternberg.

The suspension stems from a May 6 incident in which a father tried to drop off birthday treats for his daughter. He was told by Glenville School Principal Mark D'Amico that doing so was against school policy.

The student's father says he later checked the online handbook of the school and noticed a new passage stating: "Parents, in order to minimize distractions to our 'teaching/learning' environment, I ask that cupcakes be brought in first thing in the morning. Parents are not permitted into the classroom for birthday celebrations in order to minimize distractions."

D'Amico had been suspended with pay as he awaited Sternberg's final decision. Many parents wondered whether the controversy was over the birthday treats or because of the quick change to school policy.

Sternberg, addressing the issue Thursday said, "This, my friends, is not about cupcakes. This is not about cupcakes."

In a statement, D'Amico acknowledged making a major mistake, accepted full responsibility and said he is looking forward to regaining the community's trust."He made false statements and knowingly misrepresented facts multiple times to multiple people," Sternberg said.

"There was a point at which I was seriously considering terminating him."

Sternberg says she decided against doing so in large part because D'Amico acknowledged wrong doing and accepted responsibility.As of July 1, D'Amico will return as principal of the elementary school but under certain terms and conditions, including a one-year probation.

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