Associate principal claims discrimination

A man who was hired to be an associate principal at Amityville High School says he was reassigned to work in a kitchen after he complained of his treatment as an African-American.

Rodney Wilkins is filing a complaint with the state Division of Human Rights, and he is calling for the school board to investigate his alleged mistreatment by the principal of the school and the district superintendent.

Wilkins says he was vetted and hired in June 2014 with the title of associate principal, and says he came to the district to work on racial issues. He says after he complained about the way he was treated, he was accused of having alleged discrepancies on his application, and had to resubmit college transcripts and reference letters.

Wilkins, who notes that he earned his master's degree in education at Columbia University, says that he was reassigned to work in a kitchen for two months in retaliation for his complaint, and was then was banned from school property entirely. He says the district is trying to force him to resign.

"It was clear to me that I was being treated with no respect and the attempt was to strip me of my dignity, consistent to the type of treatment afforded African-Americans in days I thought had long since passed," Wilkins said in a statement released by his lawyer.

Wilkins' complaint lists 78 allegations of discrimination.

The school district released a statement that says, "The district has at all times acted within its lawful authority and the district intends to vigorously defend against this claim. We are confident that the district will prevail in the appropriate legal forum."

The school board plans to vote on whether to terminate Wilkins on Wednesday.

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