Newburgh mom demands answers after daughter allegedly identified in disciplinary charges against suspended teacher
A Newburgh mom is outraged and demanding answers after she says her daughter was identified by the school district in disciplinary charges against her former elementary teacher for an alleged incident she was never notified of.
Aneisha Davidson says her 5-year-old daughter, Alexa, is identified as "A.R." in district documents issued this month against Richard Desiderio.
"If she was involved in something, I need to know that," says Davidson.
MORE: Suspended Newburgh teacher, whistleblower issued 14 disciplinary charges for allegedly having children on his lap
The Horizons-On-Hudson student was allegedly named in the five-page complaint against Desiderio, who gave News 12 the disciplinary paperwork. He's accused of pulling the child, and others who were not identified, onto his lap and tickling her when she was in his class last May.
Davidson says no one at her daughter's school contacted her about the alleged incident last school year and the district is now refusing to say what they believe happened with her daughter since the allegations have been made public and she began to inquire.
"Finally, the principal called me and said it was a civil, personnel matter and an ongoing investigation," said Davidson.
Interview with Aneisha Davidson
As News 12 has reported, Desiderio alleges the district has been retaliating against him for years after he alerted authorities of an attendance and grading scandal in 2016. He alleges the district is twisting his interactions with students during alleged incidents dating back to 2021 to fire him.
Davidson says her daughter is special needs and is overly affectionate at times but wants to make up her mind for herself about what happened.
"It should have been my choice," said Davidson. "I know his side of the story, but like, I don't know what the district is saying. So, I want both sides so I can put two and two together because I don't even really know."
The Newburgh School District says teachers are expected to behave appropriately and follow directives given but didn't say if there's specific rules in place about physical contact with kids.
Davidson says she contacted child protective services and City of Newburgh police, and is keeping her daughter home from school because of her concerns with how the situation is being handled.
Desiderio says Davidson's daughter was the only child in his classroom last year with the initials A.R.