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Madison teacher arrested for sexual contact with student

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MADISON - A female teacher at Daniel Hand High School in Madison was arrested Thursday morning and charged with having sexual contact with a male student who is at least 16 years old. Police said Allison Marchese, 37, of Madison, was charged with sexual assault in the second degree and risk of injury or impairing the morals of a child.

Police said the investigation began at Daniel Hand High School on Jan. 7 after a student reported the incident to the principal. Connecticut’s Department of Children and Families is also involved in the investigation.

"Since that time it's been interviews and gathering evidence to substantiate the allegations before we move forward," Madison Police Sgt. Joseph Race said.

Marchese, a 12-year employee of the district, is currently on administrative leave but, "the district is moving forward immediately with the personnel process regarding her employment," Superintendent Thomas Scarice said.

Marchese was released after posting  $100,000 bond and will appear in court on Feb. 24.

Scarice called the alleged incident "vile and disgusting." His full statement to parents can be read below:

Dear Parents,

We were informed today that former Madison Public Schools teacher, Allison Marchese, was arrested for one count of sexual assault in the second degree involving one student from Daniel Hand High School, and for a separate count of risk of injury to a minor, that she committed while serving as a teacher at the school. Allegations of sexual misconduct against a minor student were reported immediately to the Madison Police Department and the Department of Children and Families on January 7th by my office after a student report was made to the high school principal earlier that day. The police department investigated this matter and has now made an arrest.

I find the alleged conduct of this teacher vile and disgusting. The bond of trust between a professional educator and a student is fragile and precious. The violation of this bond is nothing less than reprehensible. The district will take the most aggressive actions possible to see to it that any individual who abuses this bond is removed from the profession and brought to justice. Should Ms. Marchese be found to have engaged in sexual conduct with a student, she should face the full force of the law. Such acts abuse students, traumatize school communities, and leave a black mark on the entire teaching profession. Such conduct is unspeakable.

The district will continue to work to ensure the safety and well-being of all of our students. Now that an arrest has been made, the high school administration has a plan in place to appropriately communicate this matter to students and staff, while also providing any necessary information and support services to students as they cope with this incident.

Parents at all levels of the school district are strongly encouraged to contact their building principal with any concerns they may have about their own child coping with this incident. Any specific questions or concerns about this matter are to be directed to my office at the following phone number: 203-245-6320.